MERIDEN CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH SONG “My Soul is at Rest in God Alone” An Open and Affirming Congregation of the SILENCE United Church of Christ March 13, 2011 SCRIPTURE READINGS Matthew 4:1-11 and 6:9-13 First Sunday in Lent Ten O'Clock Children’s & Youth Time “Heart-Love” SILENT MEDITATION: “Prayer is serene force at work within human beings, stirring them up, transforming them, never allowing SONG “Bless the Lord” them to close their eyes in the face of evil, of war, of all that threatens Bless the Lord, my soul, and bless God’s holy name; the weak of this world. Bless the Lord, my soul, who leads me into Life From prayer we draw the energy to wage other struggles—to (Our young people are lovingly dismissed for church school) enable our loves ones to survive, to transform the human condition, to make the earth a fit place to live in. All who walk in the footsteps COMMUNION MEDITATION “The Heart of „Our Father‟” of Christ, while being in the presence of God, remain alongside other people as well. They do not separate prayer and commitment” OUR LORD'S PRAYER ("debts") - Brother Roger, Founder of the Taize’ Community, France OUR MORNING OFFERING GATHERING MUSIC Invitation to Giving Offertory “Nocturne in C sharp minor” Chopin RINGING of the BELL Kalin Gregory-Davis *Lenten Doxology Old Hundredth Mangwanani / Jambo , & Titambire / Karibu (WELCOME!) Praise God from whom all blessings flow! INTROIT "Veni Sancte Spiritus” Come, Holy Spirit Praise God, all creatures here below! Praise God who guides us on our way! PRAYER OF INVOCATION --Prayers for Evolutionary Mystics Praise Love who forms us day by day! *Prayer of Dedication O Blessed One and Blessed Oneness, “Like an almond tree that blossoms at the first hint of we long to find for ourselves the eagle’s grace to ride, spring, a breath of trusting makes the deserts of the heart burst effortlessly, the thermals of life. into flower again. Borne forward by this breath, who would not wish to alleviate human suffering and trials?” With hearts Distrust keeps the winds of our hearts closed. renewed by your love, O God, we dedicate these gifts to the We have been swept up once too often flowering of our sisters and brothers. Amen. by promises unkept, by tragedies unexpected, KOINONIA In the spirit of this contemplative service, we request by twists of fate unanticipated. that your sharing be focused on prayer requests this morning. Each prayer request will be followed by the congregation singing one verse And so, in this Lenten season, of: we journey with Jesus, Spirit-led, into the wilderness of our apprehension “O Lord, Hear my Prayer, O Lord, Hear my Prayer to face our demons of distrust and to find the courage When I call, answer me. to lean once more into the winds of grace O Lord, Hear my Prayer, O Lord, Hear my Prayer and be uplifted by your mistral presence. Amen. Come and listen to me.” THE SACRAMENT of HOLY COMMUNION Meriden Congregational Church Invitation to the Welcome Table of God’s Boundless Love Eucharistic Prayer (Grace) United Church of Christ Dear God, Thank you for this food we are about to share! Thank you for our sisters and brothers everywhere! Thank you for our family and friends! Thank you for the earth on which our life depends! Words of Institution Prayer of Consecration / Blessing Sharing of the Bread of Life and the Cup of Blessing Our Communion Song “Ubi Caritas et Amor, Ubi Caritas Deus ibi est” (Live in charity and steadfast love, God will dwell with you) . Prayer of Lenten Commitment from Psalm 73 To you, O God, I shall always stay near, You hold me by your right hand; You lead me by your counsel; You will draw me in the wake of your glory. Whom else do I have in heaven? With you, I desire nothing on earth; My heart and my flesh may dissolve, but you, my God, are forever my portion, my rock. It is good to draw close to God, I have made the Lord my refuge, And now I will tell of all your works. ANNOUNCEMENTS *CLOSING SONG “In the Lord I’ll be ever Thankful!” Gathered, 1780 *BENEDICTION Meriden, New Hampshire Let us bless one another, praying together: May God bless you and keep you. May God’s face shine upon you and be gracious to you. Ministers: The Whole People of God May God look kindly upon you and give you peace, now and forever more. Amen. Co-Pastors: *POSTLUDE Revs. Susan and John Gregory-Davis Tenderly Held in our Hearts and Prayers WELCOME all children, youth, and adults who have joined us today on this First Sunday in Lent! If you have come as a visitor this morning, During this Women's History Month, we give thanks for all the women through whom God has so wondrously enriched our lives, even as we we hope that you will leave as a friend. Especially if you are new to our grieve the ways in which women continue to be oppressed by physical, sexual, community or to our church, please know how delighted we and emotional abuse, and distorted societal expectations. And as we journey together throughout the Season of Lent, we give are to have YOU with us!! thanks for our friends in Bolivia, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Zimbabwe, our In the tradition of our Congregational Church, ALL ARE hearts go out to the people of Japan and other lands affected by the recent WELCOME to share COMMUNION with us this morning. earthquake and Tsunami, and we pray for reconciliation, justice, and well-being Wherever you find yourself on Life’s journey, there’s a place for for our sisters and brothers in such troubled lands as Israel, Palestine, Egypt, Libya, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, North and South Korea, YOU here!! And if you have no church of your own, we hope our faith Burma, and Tibet remembering especially the dedicated members of our community may become your spiritual home! Visitors and country’s protective services at this time. So too do we celebrate with all those newcomers are requested to sign our Guest Book and to fill out a bearing new life, and pray with those yet hoping to conceive, or seeking to adopt a Butterfly Visitor Card which may be found on the table at the beloved child of God into their family. back of the church. Yet our hearts also ache with all who have lost loved ones, with special concern for Elaine Lenz and all her family, as well as all of us who knew and Our Ushers & Deacons this morning are Glenn Griffin, loved Elaine’s mother, Jane Gibson; Susan Sorensen, whose father Gordon Steve Jameson and Kathy Wright. They have Children’s and Murray also recently died; Rob Constantine, upon the death of his father, Robert; and Wayne Evans, as he and many other family and friends, grieve large-print bulletins available as desired. the untimely death of Nancy Evans. The Flowers on the altar this morning are offered in loving Likewise do we pray for anyone burdened by any form of troubled relationship, financial hardship, dis-comfort, or dis-ease, and for their friends and memory of our beloved Jane Gibson. Jane’s Memorial Service will families, especially Susan Sanzone’s mother, Norma Sanzone, as she is be held today 2pm here. All are very warmly welcome to attend. hospitalized with pneumonia and cardiac difficulties, Jim Lenz’s friend, Dick Whitfield; Becky Luce’s step-father, Preston; Betty Pardoe’s daughter, The Ugandan Flag hanging in our sanctuary this morning is Cathy; Leslie MacGregor’s nephew, Matthew, as well as her friend Beth representative of the national flag adopted by the Ugandan people on Jones' daughter, Bailey Thomas; Susan Sorensen’s son, Martin; Odile October 9, 1962, the date Uganda became independent from the United Clavier’s father, Alain; Jeff Robbins’ mother, Verla; Brad Churchill; Kingdom. The three colors of the flag symbolize the African peoples Karen Rogers’ mother, Janet Tilden; Bobby Ellison; Susan Borchert’s (black), Africa’s sunshine (yellow), and African brotherhood (red being the father, Sven, as well as Susan’s uncle, Nils; Mary Kardel’s aunt, Jessie; color of blood, through which all Africans are connected). The Grey Laine Gillespie’s uncle, Bob Bostwick; Patricia Swett; Christine Crowned Crane (the national symbol) is known for its gentle nature and Greenough’s mother, Diane; Joan Dumont’s dad, Carole; Richard Atkins was also the military badge of Ugandan soldiers during British rule. on’s parents, Bob & Betty; Malcolm Grobe; Rod Wendt’s father, Walt; The Cloth on our Communion Table is from the African Jeff Good’s sister, Jennifer; and Brenda Phillips’ former exchange student nation of Ghana, courtesy of Charlotte Houde Quimby. Asel’s father, Kanat, as well as her friend, Liz. We pray as well for these members and friends of our faith community Nursery Care for Children aged 3 and under is available downstairs currently receiving treatment for cancer: Andrea Keen’s beloved mentor, in our Parish House, provided today by Brenda Phillips (adult Stephen Brady; Leslie MacGregor’s friend, Sonali Seth; Karen Jameson’s aunt, Gabrielle; Christine & Glen Greenough’s sister-in-law, volunteer) and either Meg Fauver or Alex Jameson. Jennifer; Sue Turner’s dear friend, Mary Forkel; Jeff Good’s colleague, Church School will be taught this morning by Karen Jameson Mark Travis; Penny Arcone’s friend, Ruth Baker, as well as Penny’s and members of our Christian Education Committee. Our children are brother, Skip Hills; Naomi Goodwin’ aunt, Susan; and Nora Kells invited to return to worship after church school to share in our Gordon’s niece, Catherine celebration of Communion. IMPORTANT EVENTS for our CALENDARS SUN Mar 13 First Sunday in Lent Set Clocks Ahead!! 10:00 Taize’ Worship with Communion 12:45 Choir Rehearsal for Jane’s service 2:00 Jane Gibson Memorial Celebration 5:00 Faith Odyssey Movie--“Gandhi” Mon Mar 14 7:30 “Economy of Love” Study Group Tues Mar 15 7:00 Men’s Spirituality Gathering 7:00 Spiritual Companions (Alpha) Wed Mar 16 10:00 Morning Coffee 7:00 Centering Prayer Thur Mar 17 Happy St. Patrick’s Day!! SUN Mar 20 Second Sunday in Lent 8:45 Choir Rehearsal 9:00 O.W.L. Parent Orientation 10:00 Worship / Church School 11:30 U.V.I.P. Listening Session O.W.L. Parent Orientation Birthdays this coming week—We give joyous thanks for the gifts of the births and lives among us of Ray Webb, Mike Anikis (Today!), Alex Good (Monday), Jeffrey Taylor (Tuesday), Ashley Brooks, Judy Salsbury, Fiona Greenough and Grace Perotti (Wednesday), Aaron Franklin, Karen MacArthur and Audrey Perotti (Thursday), and Joan Burch (Friday)! We hope that your special days will be filled with grateful celebration for all that your lives have been thus far, and we rejoice in anticipation of all that yet lies before you! Birthday Blessings, Dear Friends!! Awesome MCC Calendars for sale at a bargain price!!! It’s not too late to purchase a MCC Calendar—filled with joyful pictures of our church family for each month of 2011!--now at a discount: one for $15 or two for $25! Please support our church in this Christian Education fundraiser. Calendars are available in the parish house or through any Christian Education Committee Member (Karen Anikis, Odile Clavier, Jeannie Hines, Karen Jameson, Andrea Keen and Pam Miller) or any of our enthusiastic youth!