ST. JOHN’S UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST
223 West College Avenue, Bluffton, OH 45817
April 4, 2021
Rev. Katherine Beckett (567-226-1009) Church (419-358-5641)
No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here!
Prelude “Hallelujah” George Frederick Handel
Gospel Reading Mark 16:1-8
*Call to Worship+
One: They went to the cross,
Many: And watched you breathe your last.
One: So, they ran to the upper room
Many: And locked the door in fear.
One: Then, on this day so many years ago, some women went to the tomb,
Many: But you were not there.
One: You were not there.
Many: You were already set loose in the world-spreading a holy type of love.
One: So, find us here.
Many: Spread love here.
One: Family of God, Christ is risen!
All: Alleluia! Amen!
*Opening Hymn “Christ the Lord is Risen Today” P. 288
(vs. 1 & 3)
*Call to Confession+
Easter is a story of transformation – Death to Life; despair to hope; betrayal to forgiveness. We need that type of transformation – every day and all the time. So, join me in the prayer of confession, for in our truth-telling with the divine, we are transformed. Please join our hearts together in prayer.
*Prayer of Confession+
God of new life, we need Easter like the desert needs rain. For
you give us unending love, and we turn it into a commodity.
You give us mystery, and we force it into certainty. You give
us community, and we set rules about who is in and who is
out. You give us grace, but we hold grudges against our
neighbors. You give us light, and we ration it out to those we
believe deserve it.
God of grace, forgive us for our shortcomings. Dwell among
us like rain in the desert – holy and unexpected – until new life
grows here. Gratefully we pray, Amen.
*Assurance of Forgiveness+
*Hymn “The Day of Resurrection” P. 298
(vs. 1 & 3)
Time with the Children
Prayer for Illumination+
Holy Love, there are so many words in a day–to-do lists and stress, self-talk and notifications. There are so many words, and yet the only words we really need are yours. So today we pray–drown out every voice but your own, and speak to us through this text, for we are craving good news. We are desperate for your risen love. With gratitude we pray. Amen.
Reading from Church History Acts 10:34-43
Gospel Reading John 20:1-18
One: Hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.
Many: Thanks be to God!
Reflection Reverend Katherine Beckett
*Hymn “In the Garden” P. 300
Invitation to the Table
Words of Remembrance
Prayer of Consecration
Sharing of the Elements (Meditative Music: “We Remember You”
Prayer of Thanksgiving and The Lord’s Prayer
*Closing Hymn “He Lives” P. 302
(vs. 1& 2)
*Postlude “Thine Be the Glory” arr. Lani Smith
*Please stand if you are able.