Epiphany Sunday and Holy Communion
Archive for Prayer
We thank Colleen Harris for another Sunday as our substitute organist. It’s always a pleasure to hear her play. Thank you as well to Lisa Patel for her lovely flute accompaniment and solo. This Sunday’s sermon deals with the upcoming issues surrounding the language in the United Methodist Book of Discipline. There will be a special General Conference held February 23-26th in St. Louis Missouri to try to resolve the denomination’s deadlock over how we treat members of the LBGTQ community who wish to be ordained as clergy or married in the church. If you are interested and would like to read more, there is a lot of information on the New England Annual Conference website .
If you are checking out our website for the first time, please know that this issue does not define us! Hope UMC is a loving, welcoming faith community working in mission and ministry in our world.
And what about YOU? What are YOU searching for this Easter?
LOVE? – On Ash Wednesday, we celebrated God’s greatest gift of LOVE – may you especially know what it is to be loved by a strong and very good God! Come on Easter and hear the message of that love risen from the dead! (Worship at the Quabbin Tower at 6:00 AM, and in our sanctuary at 10:00 AM.)
HEALING? – While we remember Jesus’ life and ministry to others, we have been learning to listen. We listen to scriptures about Jesus healing others; we listen to God working deep into our souls.
COMFORT? – During Holy Week, we will remember those who stood all around Jesus and walked that final road with him. Truly the crucifixion was a sorrowful time of life. And yet they found comfort in being together – on the road, hiding in a room, going to the tomb. May you find comfort in being a part of this church home.
LISTEN to God these next few weeks as we explore more ways to pray and be still before God.
LISTEN through Maundy Thursday at a meal (6:00 PM) followed by communion. Readings and music remembering the Way of the Cross (the Via Dolorosa) beginning on Thursday and carrying us through to the Crucifixion story on Good Friday (7:00 PM).
LISTEN as the birds begin to sing on Easter morning (up at the Quabbin Tower at 6:00 AM!!!) – and as we lift our voices too – in great celebration of the Risen Lord on April 1st…. perhaps the very greatest April fools ever – a man sealed in a tomb rises from the dead and walks among those left on earth around him once again! Celebrate the Resurrection at 10:00 AM on Easter morning!
What are YOU searching for? Come home to HOPE and experience the greatest news, the most powerful love, and the most amazing grace!
Holy Week Schedule:
6 PM Come and share in a light meal of soup and bread
6:45 PM Service of music and readings remembering the Way of the Cross
8:00 PM to 3:00 PM Friday, Prayer vigil in the sanctuary
7:00 PM Service continuing to remember the Way of the Cross bringing us to the crucifixion
6:00 AM Sunrise Service at the tower at the Quabbin Resevoir.
9:00 AM Sunday School classes
10:00 AM Resurrection Service in the sanctuary, come and celebrate that HE IS RISEN!
Please enjoy this preview of our theme for Lent at Hope UMC.
January 17, 2018
The Council of Bishops is urging all United Methodists to join with other Christians throughout the world to participate in the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity promoted by the World Council of Churches.
This year’s Week of Prayer (January 18-25, 2018) uses Exodus 15:6 with the theme “Your Right Hand, O Lord, Glorious in Power.”
Christians are reminded of Jesus’ prayer for his disciples that “they may be one so that the world may believe.” (see John 17.21).
*Praying our Way Forward UMCPrays.org
A prayer for the unity of Christ’s church
The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity begins Thursday, Jan. 18. Bishop B. Michael Watson, ecumenical officer of the Council of Bishops, and the Revs. Drs. Jean Hawxhurst and Kyle R. Tau, ecumenical staff officers of the Council of bishops, offer this prayer.
Eternal Creator; immortal, invisible, God only wise:
With these words, we quiet ourselves before you again with awe and reverence.
We thank you for this day, a day that is new and fresh, a day we do not deserve, but a day you have given us. We praise you for your graciousness and your steadfast and generous love.
We confess we have not always used the days you have given us to further your Kingdom. We have been selfish, focusing on our own needs and our own advancements. Forgive us, we pray. Free us for joyful obedience to walk in your ways and to further your love in this world.
This day we thank you for our sister and brother Christians within our own faith community and throughout your world. In your creative genius, you have made all of us with different gifts to bring to your table, and your Spirit has given us the unity to appreciate and celebrate all those gifts. Thank you for that unity in the midst of beautiful, challenging diversity. Thank you for the many expressions of following your son’s Way that are making a difference around your world.
Today, we pray for your universal church. We pray for our shared mission to your world. We pray for open eyes and open hearts for those who need to hear your message of grace. We pray for kindness among our faith communions, even when we disagree with each others theology or opinions. We pray for wisdom and insight to maintain unity without demanding uniformity; to celebrate our diversity instead of making it a cause for division, to claim that diversity as a part of your gracious gift to us.
Grant that we may speak, and act, and live, so that the world may see in us the promise of your will, and so that the world may be challenged to move toward that vision, in and through the Christ, who is our source and our goal.
Bishop B. Michael Watson
Council of Bishops, Ecumenical Officer
Rev. Dr. Jean Hawxhurst and Rev. Dr. Kyle R. Tau
Council of Bishops, Ecumenical Staff Officers