The Feast of the Ascension
We start today’s worship service with a greeting from the Vestry, recorded at their most recent Vestry meeting videoconference. Enjoy…
Prelude: “Alleluia! Sing to Jesus” — Prichard/Mansfield
The Opening Hymn:
Hymn 214 – Hail the day that sees Him Rise
1. Hail the day that sees him rise, Alleluia! Glorious to his native skies; Alleluia! Christ, awhile to mortals giv’n, Alleluia! Enters now the highest heav’n! Alleluia!
2. There the glorious triumph waits: Alleluia! Lift your heads, eternal gates; Alleluia! Wide unfold the radiant scene; Alleluia! Take the King of glory in. Alleluia!
3. See! he lifts his hands above. Alleluia! See! he shows the prints of love. Alleluia! Hark! his gracious lips bestow, Alleluia! Blessings on his church below. Alleluia!
4. Lord, beyond our mortal sight Alleluia! Raise our hearts to reach thy height, Alleluia! There thy face unclouded see, Alleluia! Find our heav’n of heav’ns in thee. Alleluia!
Leader: Alleluia! Christ is risen!
People: Christ is risen indeed. Alleluia!
Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Te Deum laudamus – You are God
You are God: we praise you;
You are the Lord: we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father: All creation worships you.
To you all angels, all the powers of heaven,
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
The glorious company of apostles praise you.
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you.
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.
Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you;
Father, of majesty unbounded,
your true and only Son, worthy of all worship,
and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.
You, Christ, are the king of glory,
the eternal Son of the Father.
When you became man to set us free
you did not shun the Virgin’s womb.
You overcame the sting of death
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.
You are seated at God’s right hand in glory.
We believe that you will come and be our judge.
Come then, Lord, and help your people,
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints
to glory everlasting.
Leader: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Leader: Let us pray.
The Collect of the Day
O God, the King of glory, you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven: Do not leave us comfortless, but send us your Holy Spirit to strengthen us, and exalt us to that place where our Savior Christ has gone before; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.
When the apostles had come together, they asked Jesus, “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?” He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers. The Word of the Lord. People: Thanks be to God.
Psalm 68:1-10, 32-35
1 Let God rise up, let his enemies be scattered; let those who hate him flee before him.
2 As smoke is driven away, so drive them away; as wax melts before the fire, let the wicked perish before God.
3 But let the righteous be joyful; let them exult before God; let them be jubilant with joy.
4 Sing to God, sing praises to his name; lift up a song to him who rides upon the clouds — his name is the Lord— be exultant before him.
5 Father of orphans and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation.
6 God gives the desolate a home to live in; he leads out the prisoners to prosperity, but the rebellious live in a parched land.
7 O God, when you went out before your people, when you marched through the wilderness,
8 the earth quaked, the heavens poured down rain at the presence of God, the God of Sinai, at the presence of God, the God of Israel.
9 Rain in abundance, O God, you showered abroad; you restored your heritage when it languished;
10 your flock found a dwelling in it; in your goodness, O God, you provided for the needy.
32 Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth; sing praises to the Lord,
33 O rider in the heavens, the ancient heavens; listen, he sends out his voice, his mighty voice.
34 Ascribe power to God, whose majesty is over Israel; and whose power is in the skies.
35 Awesome is God in his sanctuary, the God of Israel; he gives power and strength to his people. Blessed be God!
1 Peter 4:12-14; 5:6-11
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that is taking place among you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, so that you may also be glad and shout for joy when his glory is revealed. If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory, which is the Spirit of God, is resting on you.
Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour. Resist him, steadfast in your faith, for you know that your brothers and sisters in all the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the power forever and ever. Amen.
The Word of the Lord.
People: Thanks be to God.
The Gospel Hymn
Hymn 483 – The head that once was crowned with thorns
1. The head that once was crowned with thorns. Is crowned with glory now; A royal diadem adorns. The mighty victor’s brow.
2. The highest place that heav’n affords Is his, is his, by right; The King of kings, and Lord of lords, And heav’n’s eternal light.
3. The joy of all who dwell above, The joy of all below, To whom he manifests his love, And grants his name to know.
4. To them the cross with all its shame, With all its grace, is giv’n; Their name an everlasting name; Their joy, the joy of heav’n.
5. They suffer with their Lord below; They reign with him above; Their profit and their joy to know The myst’ry of his love.
6. The cross he bore is life and health, Though shame and death to him, His people’s hope, his people’s wealth, Their everlasting theme.
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.
People: Glory to you, Lord Christ.
Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all people, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. I glorified you on earth by finishing the work that you gave me to do. So now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had in your presence before the world existed.
”I have made your name known to those whom you gave me from the world. They were yours, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now they know that everything you have given me is from you; for the words that you gave to me I have given to them, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. I am asking on their behalf; I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours. All mine are yours, and yours are mine; and I have been glorified in them. And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
People: Praise to you, Lord Christ.
The Sermon: The Reverend Lois Keen
The Nicene Creed
We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Interlude: “Minuet” – Jean Francois Dandrieu
The Prayers of the People Form III
Leader: Father, we pray for your holy Catholic Church; People: That we all may be one. Grant that every member of the Church may truly and humbly serve you; That your Name may be glorified by all people. We pray for all bishops, priests, and deacons; That they may be faithful ministers of your Word and Sacraments. We pray for all who govern and hold authority in the nations of the world; That there may be justice and peace on the earth. Give us grace to do your will in all that we undertake; That our works may find favor in your sight.
Have compassion on those who suffer from any grief or trouble; That they may be delivered from their distress, praying especially for Deirdre, Becky, Chris, John Douglas, Nicole, Laura, Mary, Joseph, Tammy,Roger, Sue, Cheryl, Eileen, Barbara, Gail, Doris, David, Cyndi, and Dean.
Give to the departed eternal rest. Let light perpetual shine upon them. We praise you for your saints who have entered into joy; May we also come to share in your heavenly kingdom. Let us pray for our own needs and those of others. [The people add their intercessions and thanksgivings.]
A Memorial Day Prayer
We commend, O Lord God, into the arms of your mercy those who have died in their country’s service, beseeching for them your Son’s blessing upon all who lay down their life for their friends, and the immortal crown of the faithful who have overcome; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Together we pray:
Almighty and eternal God, so draw our hearts to you, so guide our minds, so fill our imaginations, so control our wills, that we may be wholly yours, utterly dedicated to you; and then use us, we pray, as you will, and always to your glory and the welfare of your people; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.
Silence may be kept.
All together : Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen. The Leader says: Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen
The Leader says to the people: The peace of the Lord is always with you.
People: And also with you.
The Closing Hymn
Hymn 494 – Crown Him with many crowns
1. Crown Him with many crowns, the Lamb upon his throne, Hark! how the heavenly anthem drowns all music but its own. Awake, my soul, and sing of him who died for thee, and hail him as thy matchless King through all eternity.
2. Crown him the Son of God, before the worlds began and ye who tread where he hath trod, crown him the Son of man; who every grief hath known that rings the human breast, and takes and bears them for his own, that all in him may rest.
3. Crown him the Lord of life, who triumphed o’er the grave, and rose victorious in the strife for those he came to save. His glories now we sing, who died, and rose on high, who died, eternal life to bring, and lives that death may die.
4. Crown him of lords the Lord, who over all doth reign, who once on earth the incarnate Word, for ransomed sinners slain, now lives in realms of light, where saints with angels sing their songs before him day and night, their God, Redeemer King.
5. Crown him the Lord of heaven, enthroned in worlds above, crown him the King, to whom is given the wondrous name of Love. Crown him with many crowns, as thrones before him fall, crown him, ye kings with many crowns, for he is King of all.
The Postlude: “Marche Jubilant” – Robert W. Thygerson