A Gathering in Worship Offered by the People of the Church of Christ, Union
Second Sunday of Easter 10:30 am
“All creation is the living joy of God, Maker of Heaven and Earth. We inhabit this joy; our strength derives from it’s embrace; the world is a love letter filled with the laughter of flower and field. What shall we write in return to the one who sends such love?” — Kent Gilbert
Welcome to this service of worship! During the service, you are invited to rise in body or in spirit, standing or sitting, at points in the service marked “.
Please sign in using the pew folder, passing it back down the row so all can greet one another by name, and place the sheet in an offering plate. We’re glad you’re here!
From There to Here: We Gather
¨ The Call by Mary Oliver Jenny Bromley and John Culp, Readers
One: Did you too see it, drifting, all night, on the black river?
Did you see it in the morning, rising into the silvery air –
An armful of white blossoms,
A perfect commotion of silk and linen as it leaned
into the bondage of its wings; a snowbank, a bank of lilies,
Biting the air with its black beak?
One: Did you hear it, fluting and whistling
A shrill dark music – like the rain pelting the trees – like a waterfall
Knifing down the black ledges?
And did you see it, finally, just under the clouds –
A white cross Streaming across the sky, its feet
Like black leaves, its wings Like the stretching light of the river?
And did you feel it, in your heart, how it pertained to everything?
And have you too finally figured out what beauty is for?
And have you changed your life?
¨ Hymn #243 Alleluia! Alleluia! Hearts to Heaven Wiesse Flaggen
1. Alleluia, alleluia! Hearts to heaven and voices raise: Sing to God a hymn of gladness, sing to God a hymn of praise. Jesus on the cross a Savior, for the world’s salvation bled, but the crucified Redeemer now is risen from the dead!
2. Now the iron bars are broken, Christ from death to life is born, Glorious life, and life immortal, on the holy Easter morn. Christ has triumphed, and we conquer by God’s liberating deed: now the Christ with us abiding to eternal life shall lead.
3. Christ is risen, we are risen! Shed upon us heavenly grace, Rain and dew and gleams of glory from the brightness of your face; That we, with our hearts in heaven, here on earth may fruitful be, And by angel hands be gathered, and be yours eternally.
4. Alleluia, alleluia! Glory be to the God of joy; Alleluia! to the Savior who came death’s bonds to destroy; Alleluia! to the Spirit, fount of love and sanctity: Alleluia, alleluia! to the Triune Majesty.
¨ Passing the Peace
Building the Community: News that Connects Us
Lighting the Justice Candle
Every year on April 22, Earth Day marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970. In the decades leading up to the first Earth Day, Americans were consuming vast amounts of leaded gas through massive and inefficient automobiles. Industry belched out smoke and sludge with little fear of the consequences from either the law or bad press. Air pollution was commonly accepted as the smell of prosperity.
Until this point, mainstream America remained largely oblivious to environmental concerns and how a polluted environment threatens human health. However, the stage was set for change with the publication of Rachel Carson’s New York Times bestseller Silent Spring in 1962. The book represented a watershed moment, selling more than 500,000 copies in 24 countries as it raised public awareness and concern for living organisms, the environment and the inextricable links between pollution and public health.
Word And Worship
Hebrew Scripture Reading Psalm 118:14-29, p. 732 Jenny Bromley, Reader
The Lord is my strength and my might; he has become my salvation. There are glad songs of victory in the tents of the righteous: “The right hand of the Lord does valiantly; the right hand of the Lord is exalted; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly.” I shall not die, but I shall live, and recount the deeds of the Lord. The Lord has punished me severely, but he did not give me over to death. Open to me the gates of righteousness, that I may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord; the righteous shall enter through it. I thank you that you have answered me and have become my salvation. The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Save us, we beseech you, O Lord! O Lord, we beseech you, give us success! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord. We bless you from the house of the Lord. The Lord is God, and he has given us light. Bind the festal procession with branches, up to the horns of the altar. You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God, I will extol you. O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.
Children’s Moment Please join in singing as we bless children everywhere:
May God’s blessing guard, protect and guide you. God bless you, God bless you. Our savior’s loving arms be ever ’round you. God bless you, God bless you.
Gospel Reading John 20:19-31, p. 1314
Sermon Proof and Pudding…Love Demands Rev. Kent Gilbert
Call to Prayer & Offering
Ringing of the Peace Bell
The Union Church Peace Bell was created by Jeff Enge in honor of Union Church member Carl Eschbach (1904-1998). A twin bell hangs in Berea’s sister province in Japan and is also rung in the hope of peace for all nations.
A Chance for Generosity: www.easytithe.com/union Our gifts help sustain this particular community of caring by sustaining the building, pastors and staff, and all the materials that make our ministry of healing, justice, and teaching available to all in need. In addition, a portion of our contributions flows out to aid those in need via many external agencies.
Many friends give online, and you can use your smart phone or computer and go to www.easytithe.com/union. You don’t have to register to make a contribution, but if you do, it can make future generosity that much easier.
You can even give by text! Text to 859-448-3403 (Example: Text “$50.00 Offering”)
You can also use US mail! Mail to: 200 Prospect St., Berea, KY 40403
Your contribution is love made visible. Thank you!
Community Prayer JohnCulp, Reader
Every day we reach to touch something of your essence, to know again that you are close; that we are not alone. We touch the wounded earth, our wounded hearts weary with the weight of a thousand unbearable burdens, and pray to hear you call our name, laugh, and gently prove your peace once again. Stand among us still, Lord. In all our worries, in all our fears, remind us that seen and unseen your presence is power. Help us laugh to banish the shadows. Show to all in need the reminders of such love, healing us body, mind, and soul. All of creation sustains us and calls us to live light, laugh loud, to love bold. May we be your emissaries of such grace to one another and to all in need. Fill us with the resurrecting power of deep joy that each one of us may lift the life you intend into the light of this day. Here us as we pray to you as…
Our Lord’s Prayer
Our Maker, Our Mother and Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.
From Here to There
¨ Hymn What Love Demands Mark Hayes
Dedicated to the public health workers, medical personnel, chaplains, and front-line essential workers who answered love’s demands in a time of national pandemic.
Dedicated to them by the people of Union Church, Berea, KY, in memory of Mr. Tom Warth, Dr. Richard and Ms. Judy Drake, and Ms. Mary Lou and Dr. Lester Pross.
1. What does it mean to love my neighbor? How can I live in harmony? Are you my brother or are you just another? When I look in your eyes, who do I see? I see you’re made in the image of God, uniquely gifted with the right to be loved. Neighbor or stranger, how may I serve you? What does love demand?
Chorus: Love is listening with heartfelt compassion, holding the lonely, wiping a tear. Love demands that I live in the moment to live in the question when the answer’s unclear. Love demands I seek what unites us releasing fear and whatever divides us. With God as my strength I will be the change I want to see. For that’s what love, that’s what love demands.
2. What can we do to stand for justice? What can we do so all are free? What can we do to end oppression, so all have the same opportunity? We will be God’s hands and welcoming arms. We’ll keep you safe from danger and harm. Homeless or helpless, how may we serve you? What does love demand? Love demands we do what we can. Take a stand. Lend a hand.
Chorus: Love is listening with heartfelt compassion, holding the lonely, wiping a tear. Love demands that we live in the moment, to live in the question when the answer’s unclear. Love demands we seek what unites us, releasing fear and whatever divides us. With God as our strength we will be the change we want to see. For that’s what love, that’s what love demands.
Bulletin cover art: Needlepoint by Reda Hutton “6 Days of Creation”
Especially In Our Prayers
¨ Each week we join millions of Christians who pray for one another through the ecumenical prayer cycle and, locally, the Berea Ministerial Association’s prayer cycle. Let us hold the people of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia; and our brothers & sisters at Liberty Avenue Full Gospel Outreach in our hearts, and pray for them. Please hold these concerns in your prayers, today and throughout the week.
¨ Those affected by the Covid-19 virus, their families and friends living with fear, anxiety, and feelings of isolation, may God bring peace to all who love them; and our wider community as we cope with the new realities of living, including the now over 15,300 Kentucky residents, and 274 Madison County residents, who have died to date from Covid-19.
¨ Prayers for all the people of Ukraine for their safety and sovereignty, and especially those in the city of Nikolaev where the family of former Berea International student daughter of Kevin and Carla, Yulia live. Prayers also that the government of Russia will turn to reason & respect for their own peoples’ lives as well as for Ukrainian families.
¨ Ukrainian Refugees and Afghani Refugees
¨ All those feeling the oppression of depression and isolation. May God strengthen us all and build bridges to grace.
¨ All those seeking a new and just society and those fearful that they will be supplanted, may God open their hearts and include them in grace.
¨ Our church family members in nursing homes or who are homebound: Alva Peloquin, Loyal Jones, Lois Morgan, Jan Hamilton, Laura Robie, Dorie Hubbard, Betty Wray, Sally Zimmerman
¨ Families and Friends in Crises…may God be present to every need and heal every rift and wound and those who care for them.
¨ JoAnn Russell, Reda Hutton’s aunt, facing several medical challenges.
¨ Children in detention centers, that they may be reunited with their families soon.
¨ Sharona Nelson, facing a long recovery after surgery to repair a broken shoulder.
¨ Sharona’s husband, and a faithful bridge club member, Dan Kotlow, now recovering at home.
¨ John McWilliams, at the death of his mother, Betty McWilliams.
¨ Raymond Binkley, Betty Wray’s brother, aged 94, and in ill health.
¨ Meg Suters, recovering from a broken wrist.
¨ Prayer concern received online, from Levi, who asks prayers for a chapel at his university in Turkey
¨ Important dates—if we haven’t got yours, let us know. We’ll help you get connected in FellowshipOne Go!
Birthdays: Today , April 24 – Jessica Burton, Elaine Vaughn, Sam Franklin; 26 – Marty Hensley; 27 – Susan Doring Zook, Bryce Carlberg
Anniversaries: Next Sunday, May 1 – Charles & Megan Hoffman
Mission & Service Board trip to the
US/Mexico border May 11-19.
Want to go? Call Carla Gilbert by MONDAY. 859-358-2962. At present, the cost is not fixed and will be determined by travel expenses. Plane fares are a factor. Mission and Service has allocated funds and others have made contributions to assist with expenses. (Of course more are welcome) And if you happen to have miles you would like to contribute, those are welcome as well. Prayerfully consider joining us either in person or in support of those who would like to go.
This is the chart that Church Council has been using to determine occupancy in the building. Madison County remains in the Green!
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