Lent 2018 Worship Planning Series

Fifth Sunday in Lent 2018, Year B

Above all, this season is intended to move us from uncertainty and a confused way of living toward a living hope that orders our steps in Christ’s ways. The hope in us has become real, palpable, and we confess that today. And we do so precisely in the face of the circumstances in which we find ourselves that may cause us to lose hope. That is the core dynamic of today’s service: Hope that can move us through and beyond despair.

Promise — Fifth Sunday in Lent

AH = The Africana Hymnal

BOW = United Methodist Book of Worship

CCLI = Christian Copyright Licensing International, SongSelect

TFWS = The Faith We Sing (2000)

UMH = United Methodist Hymnal

W&S = Worship & Song (2011)

SOZ = Songs of Zion


“Lord of All Hopefulness” TFWS 2197, st 1 (in 4/4)
“Hope of the World” UMH 178
“Lord of All Hopefulness” TFWS 2197, st 4 (in 4/4)


“Song of Hope” (“Heaven Come Down”) CCLI #5111477
(alt words for bridge: Sing hosanna, sing, sing; O God save us, sing, sing)
“The Hope of All Hearts” CCLI #5604829

Prayer for Illumination

Hope of the world,
Hope of all hearts,
our hope remains in you
especially when hope seems hard.
Speak to us through your word.
Come to us at your table.
And sustain us in the hope of the covenant
you have written on our hearts. Amen.


Scripture Jeremiah 31:31-34 (NRSV, alt).

Unseen Reader:
The days are surely coming,
People: The days are surely coming.

Unseen Reader:
The days are surely coming,
People: The days are surely coming.

Unseen Reader:
When I will make a new covenant
with the house of Israel and the house of Judah.
People: A new covenant.

Unseen Reader:
The days are surely coming.
People: The days are surely coming.

Unseen Reader:
It will not be like the covenant that I made with your ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt--a covenant you broke, though I was your husband.
People: A new covenant.
Unseen Reader: A new covenant.
People: Not like the covenant we broke.

Unseen Reader:
Not like the covenant you broke.
But this is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after those days:
I will put my law within you...
People: Your law will be within us.
Unseen Reader:
I will write it on your hearts;
I will be your God.
People: You will be our God.
Unseen Reader:
You will be my people.
People: We will be your people.

Unseen Reader:
No longer will you teach one another, or say to each other,
"Know the LORD,"
for you will all know me,
People: We will all know you.
Reader: You will all know me
from the least among you to the greatest;
for I will forgive their iniquity,
and remember their sin no more.

People: You will continually forgive us.
These days are surely coming?

Unseen Reader:
These days are surely coming.
People: These days are surely coming.

Sermon Promise

Call to Hope for Transformation

People may be invited to become aware of their hope for a new heart, the degree to which they already sense that newness at work, and what leads them to feel a lack of hope for transformation in this life. Invite them to write these down, make two copies, and give one copy to one other person with whom they will check in during the coming week to share how they may have become more (or less!) hopeful, and why. Midweek formation groups will be another opportunity to check in, pray for one another, and encourage one another.

Music during Call to Hope for Transformation
“When Our Confidence Is Shaken” UMH 505
“My Hope Is You” CCLI #2373672

Prayers of the People

We are still in the wilderness.
We are learning the way,
and getting better at following.
Yet this is still the wilderness.
We are not yet fully renewed.

And so we pray:
Joy of every longing heart,
make our hearts beat with yours.

With people still kept in poverty or slavery,
some in fear from abusers, terrorists, and oppressors,
some facing addiction,
and some targeted for unjust treatment because of who they are;
and we now see how our own actions or inaction
leave things as they are, or make them worse.

Joy of every longing heart,
make our hearts beat with yours.

With those among us and those around us who are leaders
in religious, political, economic, and social life;
with our families, friends, and neighbors;
and with all who sustain and protect our lives
as military, civilian workers, and first responders;

Joy of every longing heart,
make our hearts beat with yours.

With all who need your healing power,
and all who offer healing through their skill and presence;

Joy of every longing heart,
make our hearts beat with yours.

With all creatures with whom we share this planet,
those who sustain our lives, and those who threaten us,
those whose lives we sustain, and those whose lives we threaten:

Joy of every longing heart,
make our hearts beat with yours.

With Jesus and all of his disciples
from generation to generation:

The Lord’s Prayer

Receive the prayers of your people, most merciful God.
In your compassion, forgive our sins,
stir up our hope in your redemption,
and make our hearts beat more and more with yours;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


In the name of Jesus, you are forgiven.

In the name of Jesus, you are forgiven.

All: Glory to God! Amen!


Forgiven and sustained in the hope of God’s salvation,
let us offer the peace of Christ to one another and our gifts to God.

The people exchange the peace of Christ as the offering is collected and presented if Communion is celebrated. If Communion is not celebrated, the presentation of the collected gifts is part of the Act of Thanksgiving, below.

Music during the Offering and Peace
“Through It All” UMH 507
“Be Thou My Vision” UMH 451 or
“Mighty to Save” W&S 3038

Act of Thanksgiving (if Communion is not celebrated)
As the offering is presented, the congregation stands:
“All things come from you, O God…” BOW 552 or
“All Things Come of Thee, O God” UMH 588

The Great Thanksgiving BOW 60-61 or

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.
We are yours, O God.

Bless the Lord!
God’s holy name be praised!

Praised in heaven, praised in earth,
praised throughout your creation
is your name, Holy Triune God.

From generation to generation,
you have been true to your promises.

You transform us from the inside out,
and claim us as your people.

So with prophets, leaders, and faithful people,
we, with all creation, cry “Holy!”

Holy, Holy, Holy,
Lord God of power and might,

Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest!

Blessed is Christ who comes in your name!
Hosanna in the highest!

Blessed are you, Jesus Christ,
Word made flesh.
You are the new covenant,
God with us,
and within us you are making
all things new.

Blessed are you, Jesus Christ.

Merciful are you for coming among us
and for offering yourself to us
in this holy meal
to fill our hungry and erring souls,
and to empower us to break free from Satan’s lies
and follow where you lead,
loving God and neighbor
fully as ourselves.

With your first disciples, on the night of your betrayal into death,
you took bread, blessed it, broke it, and gave it, saying:
Take and eat this, my body given for you.

Then you took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it, saying:
Drink this, my blood of the new covenant for you.

Even so,
here and now,
come, Holy Spirit.
Come, Holy Spirit.

Come upon these gifts
and upon us.
Make them be for us
Christ’s body and blood,
that we who receive them may be for all
the body of Christ enlivened by his blood.

Come, Holy Spirit.
Make us one.

Come, Holy Spirit.
Unite us with you.

Come, Holy Spirit.
Revive us!

Dwell in our hearts, O Christ,
and make us fully your people,
this day and every day
until that day
when we shall feast with you in new creation.

To you, All-Merciful Creator,
through Christ, and in the power of the Holy Spirit
we raise our cry of thanks:
All praise, and honor, and glory are yours,
blessed Triune God,
now and forever.


The Breaking of the Bread and Distribution

Music during Communion
“When God Restored Our Common Life” TFWS 2182 or
“Listen to Our Hearts” CCLI #903151

Thanksgiving after Communion
Pastor and People:
Jesus, thank you!
You have offered us yourself
in these gifts of bread and wine.
By the power of the Holy Spirit,
continue to write your ways into our hearts,
that we may know you as you are. Amen.


Invite the congregation to face the back of the sanctuary, toward the exits.

“Come Out the Wilderness” UMH 416

Deacon or Lay Leader (from the back of the worship space)

We’re coming out of the wilderness.
We know God’s promise.
God will surely keep it.

Jesus is in us.
The Spirit is moving among us
and driving us out of here
to keep living in the hope
of full salvation,
all things new.

Go in hope and the peace of our Triune God.

Postlude Variations on TURNER