Text & Texture
Here are liturgy, scripture, and sermon for the 2nd Sunday of Eastertide while we continue to worship while sheltering in place. If you'd like to recite the liturgy along with the podcast recording of it, you can find that recording here.
Call to Worship Psalm 16 Adapted
One: Protect us, O God, for in you we take refuge.
All: We say to the Lord, “You are the Lord; We have no good apart from you.”
One: Those who choose other gods multiply their sorrows;
All: their drink offerings we shall not drink;
One: their names we shall not take upon our lips.
All: The Lord is our chosen portion and our cup;
One: The Lord holds our lot. We have a goodly heritage.
All: We keep the Lord always before us; we shall not be moved.
One: Therefore, our hearts are glad, and our souls rejoice,
and our bodies also rest secure.
All: For you, O God, do not give us up to Sheol,
as you do not let your faithful one see the Pit.
One: Like your servant, you show us the path of life.
All: In your presence there is fullness of joy,
One: which we remember though remotely in holding one another in mind and heart, that the peace of Christ may be with all in our congregations. Let us pray.
Prayer of Confession (in unison)
Gracious God, who resurrected Jesus that he might continue in his work of bringing good news to the poor and recovery of sight to the blind, and who raised the church that it might also do this work of blessing and gracing and manifesting your spirit: we pray this however amidst more contradiction than usual—that we might manifest your living body in our gathering even while our gathering is less than ever manifest.
Bless then our gathering in word and spirit for our being not together in place; bless our gathering in mystery and faith for our being not together in time. Bless the space between us, our remoteness to one another, that in this we might witness to our need for healing and wholeness, salvation and care.
We confess we might have come to worship the church, the vessel for our gathering, the forms of our being together. We might have come to substitute dedication to our mode for being together—the institution, the infrastructure—over and against how your mystery might hold. We have taken on a solidity of being church that defies the boundlessness of your spirit—less wall, more wind.
This, though, we’ve done, faithful to the physical presence that is the Risen Christ.
Help us, then, rightly to honor you, rightly to prepare a place for you in our lives and in our life together. Bless us to keep our meetinghouses that there we might meet you in our meeting one another, neighbor and stranger alike; bless us also to trust that we shall meet you wherever we turn to you in truth, in yearning, in loneliness, in need.
We confess and ask these things in the full assurance of your forgiveness and full faith that forgiveness in the world is a powerful force. Help us to live by it, in Christ whose coming to us is peace and in whom we now pray. Amen.