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March 19, 2023
Fourth Sunday in Lent

We Come Together as God’s People

Prelude           Cortège et Litanie            Marcel Dupré 
Dr. John Allegar, organ                            (1886-1971)

Welcome                                                 Rev. Christopher A. Henry

Choral Call to Worship      My Lord, What a Morning       Spiritual/arr. H.T. Burleigh
Sanctuary Choir; Dr. Michelle Louer, director                       (1866-1949)

My Lord, what a mornin’ when the stars begin to fall.

* Call to Worship                                                                Rev. Benjamin K. Davison

One: Joy comes to those who hope in God,

All: For the Lord is a keeper of promises.

One: Our God is a God of healing and help and hope.

All: The Lord will reign forever,

One: Our God will keep faith with all generations.

All: Let us praise the Lord both now and forevermore!

* Prayer of Adoration

* Processional Hymn #371         Lift High the Cross           CRUCIFER

Invitation to Confession    Kyrie eleison/Lord, Have Mercy       Dinah Reindorf

Prayer of Confession

They can be such giants in our lives, God of grace.
Each day, our fears, our doubts, and our worries wash over us,
   until we come to believe that you do not care for us.
There is so much wrong in the world,
   and hope eludes us.
The storms of sin and fear batter us, and we cower,
   unable to find the faith to withstand them.
Forgive us, God of hope.
Remind us that if we open our hearts, you will heal us.
If we listen to your words, we will hear peace and joy.
If we open our lives to you, we can go forth to serve our sisters and brothers,
   even as we have been served by our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
(Silent Prayer)

Assurance of God’s Grace

* Response of Praise                We Are Forgiven                   Hal H. Hopson

* Passing the Peace of Christ

* Hymn #84                    In the Cross of Christ I Glory               RATHBUN

We Experience God’s Word

The Word with Children

Prayer for Illumination                                                             Deb Slack

First Scripture Lesson                  Psalm 33:13-22                      (p. 497)

Anthem                       There Is a Balm in Gilead                    Spiritual/arr. William L. Dawson
Sanctuary Choir; Dr. Michelle Louer, conductor                       (1899-1990)

There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole;
There is a balm in Gilead to heal the sin-sick soul.

Some times I feel discouraged, and think my work’s in vain,
But then the Holy Spirit revives my soul again.

If you cannot sing like angels, if you cannot preach like Paul,
You can tell the love of Jesus, and say, “He died for all.”
             Text: inspired by Jeremiah 8:22

Second Scripture Lesson                  Romans 5:1-5                   (p. 1027)

Sermon                                                                 Rev. Christopher A. Henry

“Endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us.”
(Romans 5:4-5)

Moment of Silent Meditation

We Give Thanks to God

* Affirmation of Faith (from A Declaration of Faith, 1985)         Rev. Sara B. Dorrien-Christians

We believe our hope in God gives us courage for the struggle.
   The people of God have often misused God’s promises
      as excuses for doing nothing about present evils.
But in Christ the new world has already broken in
   and the old can no longer be tolerated.
We know our efforts cannot bring in God’s kingdom.
But hope plunges us into the struggle
   for victories over evil that are possible now
   in the world, the church, and our individual lives.
Hope gives us courage and energy
   to contend against all opposition,
   however invincible it may seem,
   for the new world and the new humanity
   that are surely coming.
Jesus is Lord!
   He has been Lord from the beginning.
   He will be Lord at the end.
   Even now he is Lord.

Prayers of the People and the Lord’s Prayer

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 debts, as we forgive our debtors;
   and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen.

Invitation to Discipleship and Generosity

Offertory                How Deep the Father’s Love for Us                 Peggy Bettcher
Handbell Ensemble; Rebecca Holt, director                                    (b. 1961)

* Doxology                                                                                OLD HUNDREDTH

* Prayer of Dedication

We Go Forth to Serve

* Closing Hymn            Lord of All Hopefulness                           SLANE

* Charge and Benediction

* Choral Benediction                  Amen                                            Danish

    Postlude                   Carillon (from 24 Pieces in Free Style)     Louis Vierne