6.23.2010

Agape Service

Gathering Around the Table

Greeting and Invitation to the Table

Opening Prayer (responsively)

Leader: Jesus, light of our hearts, you call us to follow you in faith, because your Gospel changes both our heart and our life.
People: Jesus, Son of God, you have never forsaken us when we abandoned you in our thought and deeds. You humble yourself and took the form of a slave, lifting us up to share in your glory.
Leader: Christ, even when there are frailties in us, you always welcome us saying, “My peace I leave you; let not your hearts be troubled or afraid.”
All: Our joy is in you!

Hymn 138 Holy, Holy, Holy

Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty
Early in the morning our song shall rise to Thee
Holy, holy, holy, merciful and mighty
God in three persons, blessed Trinity

Holy, holy, holy, all the saints adore Thee
Casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea
Cherubim and seraphim, falling down before Thee
Which, wert and art and ever more shall be

Holy, holy, holy, though the darkness hide Thee
Though the eye of sinfulness Thy Glory may not see
Only Thou art holy, there is none beside Thee
Perfect in power, in love and purity

Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Alimighy
All Thy works shall praise Thy Name in earth and sky and sea
Holy, holy, holy, merciful and mighty
God in three persons, blessed Trinity

Preparation for the Meal

Prayer of Confession (In unison)

God of mercy, you sent Jesus Christ to seek and save the lost.
We confess that we have strayed from you and turned aside from your way.
We are misled by pride, for we see ourselves pure when we are stained and we see ourselves great when we are small.
We have failed in love, neglected justice, and ignored your truth.
Have mercy, O God, and forgive our sin.
Return us to paths of righteousness through Jesus Christ, our Savior.
Amen.

Declaration of Pardon

Leader: Jesus Christ, you have given us your life.
All: Now we give you ours.
Leader: Forgive us for what we have been in the past.
All: Through you, what we shall be begins now.
Leader: Take us, renew and remake us.
All: May we be your living presence in this world.
Leader: Friends, let us believe the Good News of the Gospel.
All: In Jesus Christ, we are forgiven.

Agape Meal

Sharing Bread

Sharing Food and Transformational Story-weaving

Scripture Reading: Mark 6: 30-44

(As we Read Mark 6: 30-44, you may close your eyes and picture what was going on. Have a silence after reading.)

The apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught.

He said to them, "Come away with me by yourselves to a quiet place and rest a while." It was because many were coming and going, they did not even have a chance to eat. And they went away in the boat to a quiet place by themselves.

But many saw them going and recognized them. And they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them.

As Jesus landed, he saw a great crowd. He felt compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began to teach them many things.

When it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, "This is a deserted place, and the hour is now very late; send them away so that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy something for themselves to eat."

But Jesus answered them, "You give them something to eat." They said to him, "Are we to go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread, and give it to them to eat?" And he said to them, "How many loaves have you? Go and see."

When they had found out, they said, "Five, and two fish." Then he ordered them to get all the people to sit down in groups on the green grass. So they sat down in groups of hundreds and of fifties. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and he divided the two fish among them all. And all ate and were filled; and they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish. Those who had eaten the loaves numbered five thousand men.

Questions for Discussions

(Each person may choose one of the following questions to answer and discuss with your group.)
• How did Jesus feel toward the crowd?
• Have you ever felt the same way toward a group of people? Who were they? Have you done anything for the group?
• Have you experienced God's compassion upon your church or community? Can you recall your personal story? Can you identify a group of people today who would need God's compassion and feeding?

Prayers of the People and the Lord’s Prayer

Thanksgiving of Fellowship

Offertory

Hymn 276 Great Is Thy Faithfulness

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not;
As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.

Refrain:

Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.

Refrain:

Pardon for sin and a peace that endures
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Refrain:

Offering Prayer

God of all good gifts, we thank you and praise you. Your Spirit has touched our lives, bringing wisdom, power, joy, courage, and passion. Enable us to use our gifts in service to you and for the world. In all that we do, and in all that we are, may your name be glorified. May your kingdom be within us and remain here on this earth. We pray this in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Departure
Hymn 339 Be Thou My Vision

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art –
Thou my best thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Riches I heed not, nor vain empty praise,
Thou mine inheritance now and always:
Thou and Thou only first in my heart,
Great God of heaven, my treasure Thou art.

Be thou my wisdom, and Thou my true word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord;
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my vision, O Ruler of all.


Benediction