In the sanctuary I am lifting up 3 themes from scriptures: from Matthew’s Gospel Jesus tells a parable that calls for us to share generously and stay awake, keep engaged! From I Thessalonians a passage where the Apostle says to the church “When you grieve, grieve as those whose still have hope. Your hope comes from the truth that God raised Jesus from the dead.” And from Joshua this exhortation to God’s people, “As for you, choose this day whom you will serve.” These lectionary scriptures are being shared by millions of Christians in countries around the world, in Haiti, Uganda, in China, in Mexico, some in Egypt, some in Europe, many in the United States. Stay engaged, grieve as those with hope, choose whom you will serve.
Rev. Will Wellman is leading a class on the God of Life, a theology of Liberation, Scott Stichter is leading a class on Resurrection, Rev. Michael Peacock leads a class seeking to discern and address racism amongst us.
We will be collecting groceries for the Beth-El Food Pantry for farmworkers here in Hillsborough County. We are trying to fill this food source for the working poor for two months. And it’s stewardship season, and we are seeking friends who will stand with the church by financially supporting its mission and ministry in 2021. In this pandemic your generosity has equipped the Witness and Service Committee to send checks of support to our partner clinics in Haiti, Honduras, and Uganda. The Food Pantry in PCPC’s parking lot is restocked with donated food for the hungry close by, and the The Kindness Matters team will be delivering energy bars and food cards to homeless folks along Bayshore early Saturday morning. And our 4th to 5th Grade Justice Seekers will be gathering Sunday to learn more about “Seeking justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly with our God.”
In the Vespers Service at 6:00 PM we will be praying for the sick, the grieving, the oppressed, as those requests are shared with us through the Intercessory Prayer Ministry. We will be praying for the community, the state, the nation, for wisdom, character, and compassion for those who lead and serve, and for peace and justice for this world God loved so much he gave us Jesus Christ.
I hope you can join us in worship online or in person Sunday. In this pandremic we support those who are socially distancing for health by having the services online, and we will be wearing masks in the sanctuary.
In the Traditional services we will hear the hymn “How Firm A Foundation,” and reflecting on the lyrics, drawn from scripture and meant to encourage the faithful, and they go like this:
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said,
To you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?
“Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God, and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.”
“When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.”
“When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.”