Home Equipping Leaders African American 21st Century Africana Liturgy Resources for the Fifth Sunday After the Epiphany, Year C

21st Century Africana Liturgy Resources for the Fifth Sunday After the Epiphany, Year C

February Is Black History Month
This Sunday is both a traditional Communion Sunday and the beginning of Black History Month. On February 4, 1913, Rosa Parks, the "mother of the civil rights movement," was born. Consider including quotes from famous African Americans in your worship service each week of Black History Month, beginning with a quote from Rosa Parks.

Songs of Zion, The African American Heritage Hymnal and the forthcoming Zion Still Sings for Every Generation are indispensable music planning tools for this month.

Helpful Websites:

Call to Worship
Come, let us worship and give thanks unto the Living God who is with us.

Thanks be to God.

Come; let us pour our praises at the Master's feet.

Receive our worship, Holy One, and revive us once again.

Gathering Meditation
Where were you, and what were you doing the last time you were certain that you were in the presence of God?

In the year that King Uzziah died, Isaiah had a vision of God's majesty. Remembering the year was not as important as remembering the event. This man, who had been in the house of the Lord all his life, finally caught a glimpse of God finally saw what worship was all about!

We are Isaiah. Isaiah is like us. So many of us come to the place of worship week after week, year after year rarely catching a glimpse of the God we worship. At times, we even forget why we come.

Isaiah's vision of God was neither orchestrated nor planned. It was a gift of God's grace.

May we also be graced by visions of God today.

(Safiyah Fosua)

Holy are you, O Lord. The whole earth is full of your glory.

Our eyes are not worthy to look upon your face.
Our feet are not worthy to stand in your presence.

Yet, you revealed yourself to Isaiah.
You revealed yourself to Moses.
You talked with the woman at the well;
and the woman with an issue of blood touched the hem of your garment.

Open our eyes to see you,
our ears to hear your voice,
and our hearts to respond in praise!

Let your glory fill these temples, we pray. Amen.

(Safiyah Fosua)

Alternate Prayer
We come today, O Lord,
confessing that, like the disciples,
we, too, have worked all night and have precious little to show for our efforts.
Some of us have 'churched' long and hard,
and still our neighbors see no good news
in either the church or church people.

We offer you both our days and our ways.
Teach us how to live our days as servants of God.
Show us new ways to serve that benefit your mission
and not our need to be busy for you.

Direct our strength to the deep and difficult places
where people need you most.
Reorder our thoughts,
and works of service
so that they truly work for your glory, we pray.

(Safiyah Fosua)

Dismissal With Blessing
Go forth to live as disciples
serving God with your whole being,
knowing that you are empowered by the Holy Spirit
to do great exploits in God's Name.

to go into the uttermost places of the world,
and to live and to proclaim the gospel message
of love, hope, peace, freedom, and justice,
continue to watch over the people of God gathered here and throughout the lands.

Hallelujah, thank you, Lord. Amen.

Music Suggestions Special Music: "I Don't Feel Noways Tired," 175, Songs of Zion

Communion Music:

  • "Holiness" by Micah Stampley
  • "Lord, I'm Available to you" (recorded by Rev. Milton Brunson & The Thompson Community Singers )
  • "Sanctuary" (Lord, Prepare Me), 2164, The Faith We Sing
  • "Let us Break Bread Together," 618, United Methodist Hymnal

About the Authors: Stacey Cole Wilson serves as the Associate Pastor of Linthicum Heights UMC in Linthicum Heights, Maryland and is a member of the Baltimore-Washington Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Safiyah Fosua is a former staff member of Discipleship Ministries.