PUC Worship Service ~ Third Sunday of Easter, April 19, 2020


The Christ Candle is Lit

Land Acknowledgement
We acknowledge these lands upon which we worship, as the ancestral, traditional and unceded lands of the Syilx (Say-elks) / Okanagan First Nations. Together with Indigenous peoples we desire a different relationship based on respect and right relations.

As Earth Day was this week, we also acknowledge that wherever we live in creation we are part of a watershed, an interdependent ecosystem nested in a larger system. Watersheds are God’s map, integral to the design of creation. We are all bound together in this dense, global ecosystem. In Penticton, we are part of the Pacific Ocean watershed.

Call to Worship
One: We are connected.
All: We are one in Spirit.
One: We are different, unique, yet
All: we are one in the body of Christ.
One: We belong to one tree of life.
All: We are one people on one planet,
called by God to be caretakers of this earth.
One: Come, let us worship in unity with all creation.
– Jani Francis, Gathering

 Hymn VU 291 All Things Bright and Beautiful

Gathering Prayer
ALL: Eternal and Gracious Creator,
We come to you this day,
each with different stories, different pains
asking for your blessing and your wisdom.
Guide our hearts and minds into stillness
as we seek to hear your voice.
In the sounds of this worship,
and the silences in between,
let us grow in the wisdom held by you, O Lord.
Let us grow in the wisdom held by the Earth,
by each other,
and by the blessed safe keepers of traditional knowledge.
Amen. (Kairos)

 Theme Conversation:
As it was Earth Day this week, take a moment now to reflect on your earliest memory of being in nature.

Response: MV 7 Gather Us In
Gather us in, ground us in you.
Gather us in, ground us in you.
Gather us in, gather us in.
Ground us, ground us, in you.

Words and music: David Hann, 2005, Frensh trans. David Fines, 2006. Words and music copyright © 2005, David Hann. Used by permission. French translation copyright © 2006. David Fines. All Rights  Reserved. Used by Permission One License A-605256

Reading: Morning Poem by Mary Oliver

Every Morning

the world

is created.

under the orange


sticks of the sun

the heaped

ashes of the night

turn into leaves again


and fasten themselves to the high branches —

and the ponds appear

like black cloth

on which are painted islands


of summer lilies.

If it is your nature to be happy

you will swim away along the soft trails


for hours, your imagination

alighting everywhere.

and if your spirit

carries within it


the thorn

that is heavier than lead –

if it’s all you can do

to keep on trudging –


there is still somewhere deep within you

a beast shouting that the earth

is exactly what it wanted –


each pond with its blazing lilies

is a prayer heard and answered


every morning,


whether or not

you have ever darted to be happy,

whether or not

you have ever dared to pray.


Response: MV7 Gather Us In
Gather us in, ground us in you.
Gather us in, ground us in you.
Gather us in, gather us in.
Ground us, ground us, in you.
Words and music: David Hann, 2005, Frensh trans. David Fines, 2006. Words and music copyright © 2005, David Hann. Used by permission. French translation copyright © 2006. David Fines. All Rights  Reserved. Used by Permission One License A-605256

 Scripture: Acts 2:14a, 36-41

14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. 36 Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah,[a] this Jesus whom you crucified.” 37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, “Brothers,[b] what should we do?” 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls.” 40 And he testified with many other arguments and exhorted them, saying, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 So those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added.


 Time of Silent Reflection

 Music: VU 227 For the Fruit of All Creation
For the fruit of all creation, thanks be to God.
For the gifts to every nation, thanks be to God
For the ploughing, sowing, reaping, silent growth while we are
sleeping, future needs in earth’s safekeeping, thanks be to God.

In the just reward of labour, God’s will be done.
In the help we give our neighbor, god’s will be done.
In our worldwide task of caring for the hungry and
despairing, in the harvests we are sharing, God’s will is done.

For the harvests of the Spirit, thanks be to God.
For the good we all inherit, thanks be to God.
For the wonders that astound us, for the truths that still confound us, most of all that love has found us, thanks be to God.
Words: Fred Pratt Green 1970 Music: Welsh folk melody ca. 1784. Words copyright©1970 Hope Punlishing Company All Rights Reserved.  Used by Permission One License A-605256


Pastoral Prayer or Prayers

We begin our prayers today with an Earth Day Prayer written by Kairos

2020 Earth Day Prayer (Kairos)
On Earth Day
we give thanks for signs of spring
melting snow, blooming flowers,
singing robins, flowing streams.
O Creator, we give You thanks and praise.

THIS Earth Day
as we mostly see those signs through our windows or walking alone,
we notice that the earth has some rest from human activity,
Even while we worry and struggle, with people around the world.
O Creator, we learn in the midst of our concerns.

Each Earth Day,
We grieve the state of life and loss on the Earth, deteriorating faster than ever before.
We confess our selfish actions, taking – using – what we want, not only what we need.
Not all of our actions have brought You the honour we wish to bring
O Creator, we confess our sins with humble hearts.

The Earth cradles us in her sorrow
You, our Source, grieve with her, Your love for us abiding always.
In the midst of all our faults and blunders,
You forgive and love us still.
O Creator, we rest in the assurance of that love.

This year we have seen how swiftly humans can adapt
Give us the eyes to see wisdom in this moment.
Give us the courage to change our ways forever
to live responsibly, to advocate boldly,
to honour and protect what You have created.
O Creator, with your help, we will change our ways,

Through the power of the Spirit,
with Jesus as our guide.


Creator God,
We are thankful for all of creation
For the sea and skies
For the birds and the bears
For the signs of spring all around us.

Now more than ever we are aware of our interconnectedness,
that we are part of a sacred web of life.
We pray for all those who lost their lives in the mass shootings in Nova Scotia
We pray for all those who were impacted by the devastation,
for families and communities that are grieving and will be forever changed.

We pray for all who have lost their lives to COVID-19
And for those who are recovering,
For healthcare workers, scientists and researchers who are working on a vaccine,
For leaders who are trying to find ways to support our communities during this difficult time
For frontline workers who are helping us all through
And for those who are experiencing pain, isolation, anxiety and grief during this difficult time.

We pray those who are experiencing violence and racism
For those who are ill and those who are grieving.

We And now we pray for those who we name in words and in the silence of our hearts and we hold them in the light of your love…

Help us know your presence as we seek
To work for justice and solidarity with one another,
embracing the most vulnerable in our midst
and working to change the status quo.

Now let’s join together in saying the Lord’s Prayer.

Lord’s Prayer (VU 959)
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 trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom
the power and the glory
Forever and ever

One: Your voice, O God, is calling us to action:
All: to speak out for the needy,
to care for the earth,
to affirm the seekers,
to comfort the distressed,
to encourage the downhearted,
to challenge the complacent.
One: These gifts enable your voice to be heard; bless them!
All: Amen.
– David Sparks (adapted) 

Music: What a Wonderful World – Camila Cabello & Shawn Mendes from One World: Together At Home


Sending Forth and Benediction:
One: We go with questions answered and answers questioned.
All: Each day we live, we discover again what it means to be an Easter people.
One: We go together
All: with the blessing of the living Christ. Amen.
– Ryan McNally, Gatherings 

Going Forth: MV #215
Peace be with you, peace forever,
peace be with you my friends.
Till we meet again,
may God be with you.
Peace, peace, peace.
(Words and music Alison L Wesley (Slaats) 2000. Words and Music copyright Alison L. Wesley (Slaats). Used by Permission (©LicenSing #605256))



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