Worship this summer (June, July and August) will look a bit different, and I’d like to share with you what to expect. Each Sunday we’ll begin with soft music from the piano or a guitar as we ready ourselves. Continue to greet friends and catch up, but I also hope you’ll take a couple of minutes to center yourself and breathe deep. We’ll use the same morning prayer each week in our opening, which we also used in Lent. The first hymn will be a hymn of praise, and the hymn after the sermon will be one of reflection. The last hymn for June and July will be the same sending hymn, “Sent Forth By God’s Blessing.” Occasionally we’ll sing a fourth hymn.
We will have a chance to lift up prayer concerns and joys each week, and then sing a version of the Lord’s Prayer, called “Life-Giver, Lover of Us All.” For Holy Communion, we’ll use an abbreviated liturgy and blessing, and then sing a song of preparation called “Let Us Be Bread” from The Faith We Sing songbook. Matthew Penfield will help us learn these the first week. During August we’ll have Sundays dedicated to different styles of music – camp, Cokesbury hymnal, gospel and global.
The scripture for the sermons will come from the Gospel of Matthew, including several parables. The messages may be a bit shorter, but I hope they’ll be challenging and give you something to chew on during the week.
Mostly, what I’m hoping with the changes this summer, is that you can come and unburden yourself, giving both praise and the weight of life to God. I hope these songs and prayers we’ll use over and over will get stuck in your head and become a part of your regular spiritual walk. Come comfortably, come expectant, come ready to release, come even if it seems too hot to walk outside. I’m hoping our summer worship will be pleasing to God and pleasing to our souls.