Holy God, you sent your Son to be baptized among sinners, to seek and save the lost.
May we, who have been baptized in his name, never turn away from the world,
But reach out in love to rescue the wayward; by the mercy of Christ our Lord,
Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
*HYMN GtG# 24 God Who Stretched the Spangled Heavens
CALL TO CONFESSION Matthew 3:2-3
The voice of one crying out in the wilderness Prepare the way of the Lord!
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.
Trusting in God’s grace, let us confess our sin.
PRAYER OF CONFESSION (in unison)
Merciful God, in baptism you promise forgiveness and new life, making us part of the body of Christ.
We confess that we remain preoccupied with ourselves, separated from one another.
We cling to destructive habits, hold grudges, and show reluctance to welcome one another.
We allow the past to hold us captive.
In your loving-kindness, have mercy on us, and free us from sin.
Fulfill the promises of our baptism so that we may rise to new life, and live together in grace.
ASSURANCE OF FORGIVENESS Matthew 3:17
As a voice from heaven said to Jesus, so, in Christ, God speaks to us:
You are my child, my beloved; with you I am well pleased.
In the name of Jesus Christ, we are forgiven! Thanks be to God.
*SHARING OF THE PEACE
The peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. And also with you.
Glory be to God, creator, redeemer and Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be. Amen.
HEARING THE WORD
PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION
Saving God, source of our calling, your Word is full of power and glory.
Pour out your Holy Spirit upon us so that we may receive your grace and live as your beloved children;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
FIRST LESSON Acts 19:1-7
*HYMN GtG #293 Loving Spirit
SECOND LESSON Mark 1:4-11
The Word of the LORD. Thanks be to God!
SERMON “A Baptism of Repentance; A Baptism of the Holy Spirit”
RESPONDING TO THE WORD
THANKSGIVING FOR BAPTISM Have a bowl of water and a towel at hand.
Glory to you, O God – your voice is over the waters, full of power and majesty.
Your word shakes the wilderness and blesses us with peace.
We give you thanks and praise for the new thing you have done in Jesus Christ our Savior.
Baptized by John in the Jordan, you anointed him with your Holy Spirit and claimed him as your beloved Son.We give you thanks and praise that by the grace of our baptism, you have claimed us as well and poured out the gifts of your Spirit so that we might be dead to sin and alive to you in Christ Jesus.
Continue to pour out your Spirit upon us.
Empower us to love and serve you and live as your faithful people,
bearing witness to the good news of Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Remember Your Baptism: at this time, you are invited to dip your hand in the water and bless yourself with it. You may wish to make a cross on your forehead, wash your hands, or whatever other sacred gesture will remind you of your baptismal calling.
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
If you would like to share your joys and concerns with the congregation, please call or email the church office.
We approach God in prayer not as distant strangers, but as beloved children, baptized in Christ Jesus.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers.
We pray for the church.
Enliven and encourage us for our mission, that we may be salt of the earth and light to the world.
Breathe fresh life into your people.
Give us power to reveal Christ in word and action. Give grace to all whose lives are linked with ours.
We pray for the world.
Lead us and every people into ways of justice and peace, that we may respect one another in freedom and truth.
Awaken in us a sense of wonder for the earth and all that is in it. Teach s to care creatively for its resources.
Show us the way of the Kingdom; guide our feet into the way of peace.
We pray for our nation and for our leaders.
God of truth, inspire with your wisdom, your justice and your compassion
those whose decisions affect the lives of others, that all may act with integrity and courage.
We pray for those in need.
God of hope, comfort and restore all who suffer in body, mind, or spirit. May they know the power of your
healing love. Make us willing agents of your compassion. Strengthen us as we share in making people whole. Grant us the courage to renounce evil and work to eradicate it in all its forms.
We pray for those who have died and for those who mourn.
We remember with thanksgiving those who have died in the faith of Christ,
and those whose faith is known to you alone.
Give comfort to those who mourn. Fill the emptiness of loss with your never-ending peace.
We pray for ourselves and for our ministries.
Lord, you have called us to serve you.
Grant that we may minister in your name, with your love in our hearts, your truth in our minds,
your strength in our wills; until, at the end of our journey,
we know the joy of our homecoming and the welcome of your embrace.
Holy One, as you are well pleased with Christ, help us to live in a way that will be pleasing to you.
As you have called us to listen to Christ, help us to always heed his word and seek his will.
These things we pray in the name of Jesus, your beloved Son, our Savior and Lord. Amen.
THE LORD’S PRAYER
OFFERING OF OUR GIFTS AND OURSELVES
As we offer ourselves and our gifts to you, O God, we pray that our lives may reveal your love in such a way that many will respond, seeking a baptism of fire and spirit. Awaken in us a love for you and for one another that is contagious. Remove from us all apathy, pretension, and greed that we may grow in holiness and compassion, living joyously in communion with you. Amen.
Doxology Praise God from whom all blessings flow.
Praise Christ, all people here below.
Praise Holy Spirit evermore,
Praise Triune God, whom we adore. Amen.
*HYMN GtG #259 The God of Heaven
*CHARGE AND BENEDICTION Mark 1:11, 9:7
Beloved children of God,
receive the gift of the Holy Spirit,
the grace of Jesus Christ,
and the blessing of the Lord forever. Alleluia!
As Jesus called the first disciples,
so he calls to us this day: Follow me. Amen.
Covid-19 Update: Sunday services will be held virtually ONLY at 10 AM for the foreseeable future, until it is safer to gather. Contact the office for further information.
Food Pantry – As of January 1, 2021, the Food Pantry has suspended operations.
Alternate arrangements have been made for all recipients to transfer to another pantry.
Please contact Kathy Sorce or Pastor Margery for more information.
Annual Congregational Meeting: Our annual congregational meeting is scheduled to take place immediately after 10 AM worship on Sunday, February 15, 2021. We will send out further instructions on how to participate by way of Zoom as the date draws closer. Please put this date in your calendar.
Committee chairs and others responsible for reports: please submit your reports to firstname.lastname@example.org by January 20, 2021.
The Free Community Dinner provides take-out meals on the 1st & 3rd Saturday of each month.
Our next Free Community Dinner To-Go is on Saturday, January 16th. Please note change of distribution time: you may pick up meals between 4-5:30 PM.
You may email us at email@example.com or leave a voicemail message at (845)297-2800.
We will send out an email list during the week.
If you would like to receive pastoral care, please call the church office at (845)297-2800 or call Pastor Margery directly at (914)539-5323. Pastor Laurie is available 3-5 PM on weekdays. You can reach her at (845)632-1124 or by calling the church office.
Pastoral care will be offered by appointment only, either outdoors or in the church dining room, fellowship hall or sanctuary, to accommodate for social distancing.
Please let us know how else we can support your spiritual needs.
Offering of Our Gifts and Ourselves:
Thank you for continuing to honor your pledges during this time. Whether you bring it to worship, send a check to the church office by mail or make your contribution using online banking, it is important that we maintain our ability to pay our bills as we continue to navigate this disruptive time as a church community. Thank you for your generosity!