A Season of Saints, Week 3
- Revised Common Lectionary Readings
- Worship Planning Notes
- Resources in The United Methodist Book of Worship
Portrait of Sarah Ann Dickey, ca. 1900. Public Domain.
Revised Common Lectionary Readings
Leccionario en Español, Leccionario Común Revisado: Consulta Sobre Textos Comunes.
Lectionnaire en français, Le Lectionnaire Œcuménique Révisé
Lecionário em português, Lecionário comum revisado
Jeremiah 31:27-34 “After the Disaster” Week 3: “Hope.” God promises a day will come when the exiles would return to their homeland and live under a new covenant — "I will put my law within them and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God."
Psalm 119:97-104 or Psalm 19 (UMH 750) Consider using BOW 193 by Steve Garnass-Holmes as the sung response for this psalm.
2 Timothy 3:14—4:5 “Leaders Persevering” Week 3: “Teaching the Scriptures.” "Continue in what you have learned ... all scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness. Proclaim the message ... do the work of an evangelist."
Luke 18:1-8 “Keep on…” Week 3: “Keep on Praying.” The persistent widow and the unjust judge: "Will not God grant justice?" "When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?"
Today is the twenty-second Sunday after Pentecost.
Our resources support two different options for your observance of Laity Sunday today. These planning helps guide you to continue your current series and include elements appropriate for the observance of Laity Sunday. In addition, we have developed a comprehensive set of non-lectionary based resources that underscore the theme of this year’s observance, “Living Vital Worship.”
If you are continuing your series, supplement worship today with supportive elements from Laity Sunday and A Season of Saints. For Laity Sunday, encourage the participation of skilled laity of all ages as liturgists, readers, leaders in prayer, and possibly even as the preacher. If one or more laypersons are preaching, be sure to work closely with them so their message continues and strengthens the theme of the series and the scriptural theme for this Sunday. This is also an ideal day to recognize the church is the whole people (laos), and to include a “An Order of Commitment to Christian Service” (BOW 591) or “An Order for Recognition or Installation of Leaders” (BOW 599) for all new and continuing leaders among the laity in the congregation. Also, keep in mind our polity requires that authorized presiders (elders, commissioned ministers preparing for ordination as elder, or licensed local pastors) preside at the sacraments. There is no part of the Great Thanksgiving assigned to the presider that may be led by others.
Pastors: That this is celebrated as Laity Sunday does not mean that you are to “give over” responsibility in planning this service or for what or how worship is offered this day. Instead, it calls for enhanced attention to your role of equipping laity as worship leaders and worship planners, including ensuring that worship meets the same standards of pattern (the Basic Pattern) and quality (music, worship leadership, attention to our theology and ritual standards) as when you lead worship on other occasions.
Reformation Sunday is October 30. The date is chosen as the Sunday nearest October 31, but not to interfere with All Saints (November 1 or Sunday closest). It commemorates primarily Martin Luther’s reformation in Germany. While Methodists are far more related to Anglicans than Lutherans, historically and theologically, United Methodists are in full communion with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Consider how you might collaborate with an ELCA congregation and other United Methodists and Methodist bodies with whom we are in full communion (AME, AMEZ, CME, UAME, AUMP) to hold a joint celebration, if not on Sunday morning, at a later time that day.
All Saints Sunday is in three weeks (November 6). Remember that for this day you may choose EITHER the readings for All Saints Day (November 1) OR the “regular” readings for the Sunday. Either set of readings may be appropriate, depending on which series you are wrapping up before heading into Extended Advent (your next series). A full service order, including musical suggestions and Great Thanksgiving, is also available.
All Month Native American Heritage Month (USA)
November 1/6 All Saints Day/Sunday, Daylight Saving Time Ends (USA)(November 6)
November 11 Veterans Day (USA)
November 13 Organ and Tissue Donor Sunday (USA) / International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church / Extended Advent Begins
November 20 Christ the King/Reign of Christ Sunday / Bible Sunday
November 24 Thanksgiving Day (USA)
November 27 Advent 1, Year A / United Methodist Student Day
December 1 World AIDS Day
December 21 Longest Night / Blue Christmas
December 24 Christmas Eve (Christmas Season continues through January 1/6)
December 25 Christmas Day
December 26 Kwanzaa (Kwanzaa continues through January 1)
December 31 Watch Night / New Year’s Eve
January 1 Epiphany Sunday / New Year’s Day
January 8 Baptism of the Lord
January 11 Human Trafficking Awareness Day
January 15 Human Relations Day (2017 resources coming soon)
January 16 The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (USA)
January 18-25 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
January 25 Ecumenical Sunday
Old Testament Stream: After the Disaster, Week 3
This week, our journey with our Judean ancestors recovering from disaster moves from coping here and now to something to hope for in the generations to come.
Last week, was about now and the foreseeable future, the lifetime of current adults and their children.
This week, Jeremiah sets his vision beyond those two generations, and sees there God’s promise for a new beginning, and with it a new covenant.
Among the promises Jeremiah lists here are many offspring among humans and livestock (31:27), new building and expanded farm production (verse 28), including a major new building project and expansion of Jerusalem (verses 38 ff.), and, between these, a new covenant between God and the people, one unlike that which was made when God delivered the ancestors from Egypt (vs. 29-34).
What lies between defines the success of what lies on either side. It is as the people are prepared to live from a covenant written on their hearts rather than on stone that they will have what it takes to experience these blessings.
What does it take for such a covenant to move from stone to human hearts?
In part the significant shift in the ritual life of the people made necessary by the exile was doing just that. With the temple destroyed and Jerusalem hundreds of miles away, the sacrifices required in Torah (the covenant on stone) and permitted to be performed only at that destroyed temple were impossible to fulfil. Thus, the religious leaders among these exiles created a new way to ritualize their relationship with God. The synagogue form of ritual and religious life these exiles developed relied not on sacrifice, but on the daily reading of Scripture and offering prayers. “Let our prayers be in your sight as the incense, the lifting up of our hands as the evening sacrifice” (Psalm 141:2) was probably written in connection with the daily service of evening prayer in the early synagogues, noting how the people hoped such sacrifices of prayer may be considered an acceptable substitute for the evening sacrifices at the temple required by Torah.
While the ritual of the temple had to be led by highly trained experts (priests and Levites), the synagogue ritual could generally be led by any (adult male) of the faithful. And while the ability for most people to participate in Temple ritual was often limited to one or a few visits per year, synagogue life and worship could be daily in smaller groups, with a particular focus on the Sabbath to gather all the faithful in an area.
By these transformations of worship and devotional life, a much higher number and percentage of the whole people, not just the “experts,” were hearing and responding to God’s word with far greater frequency. Indeed, many more of the “laity” could become expert teachers themselves as they continued to devote themselves to the Scriptures available, ongoing robust conversations about their meaning and application, and to regular prayer in the community and in homes.
In short, the development of synagogue Judaism by the exiles during the exile was already making the promise of Jeremiah’s prophecy of a “new covenant… written on hearts… [where] everyone would know the Lord” a living and lived reality for many more people.
And it was a promise to everyone in the covenant, “from the least of them to the greatest.”
As more and more among the exiles were, in concrete ways, knowing God and God’s word in their hearts, they could gain greater confidence and greater ground for hope that the promises that depended on this new covenant would indeed come to pass, even if not during their lifetimes.
Laity Sunday Angle
This text provides an ideal opportunity to celebrate the ministry of the laity as a sign of the fulfillment of the promise of a new covenant.
A Season of Saints: Sarah Ann Dickey (see photo above)
Sarah Ann Dickey’s life was spent making sure that many people who had been blocked from knowledge and participation in the life of the United States for all their lives, and against whom continuing discrimination, segregation and unjust laws sought to keep it that way, could not only know the Lord, but spread the knowledge of the Lord and many other things throughout American culture, in the South and elsewhere. Even in the face of a shot fired at her by the Ku Klux Klan in Clinton, Mississippi, she was not deterred in her mission. She is reported to have said, “I have come here to do God’s work, and only death itself will deter me.” The Klan never bothered her after that. (The New England Quarterly Journal, Vol 40, No 2 (June 1967), page 287).
In Your Planning Team
In This Series
We’re now in week three of this six week series. We actually take a major turn next week, shifting from Jeremiah to minor prophets, and from the exile to the period some decades after the exiles had started returning to their homeland. (Joel may have been pre-exilic, but it still addresses the post-exilic situation). We will move from hope in what the future may be this week to remembering and seeking to fulfill all that God had promised in the weeks ahead.
So within this series, we might say today needs to get us to the pinnacle of the mountain, or, to use the metaphor from last week, actually out of earth’s atmosphere and into (at least) near earth orbit. This week is about enabling us, like astronauts, to get the “Overview Effect.” This is not the same as the “overture effect” that every series launch needs to provide—a sort of preview of coming attractions. This is the view of the earth and space from orbit above it—a view that tends to transform the lives of those who are privileged to see it.
The idea of a new covenant written in hearts and not stone has strong parallels with the Overview Effect you may wish to explore in this service in some way.
As you prepare for this service, remember the importance of testimony—testimony of people moving from coping (investing in the now) to hoping (experiencing God now and trusting this leads to a brighter tomorrow).
Where do you see folks in your congregation and community making it more likely that more people can know God? Who is tearing down barriers? How? Who is building bridges? How?
Who is helping people move God’s teaching from something remembered and occasionally talked about or revisited to something that inhabits every part of their lives?
Where do you see folks forgiving the sins of others— both those who hurt them, and those who simply need their sins forgiven whether they ask for it or know it or not?
Everywhere you see these things happening, you are witnessing this Scripture being fulfilled in your midst. Use images and soundscapes from such signs of the fulfillment of this Scripture as you read it or as you pray in response to it.
Epistle Stream: Mission in the World but not of It
Leaders Persevering, Week 3
Teaching the Scriptures
This week’s reading from II Timothy offers perhaps the strongest “hang tough encouragement” anywhere in the New Testament. Remember the foundations you have from your upbringing, from me, from Scripture itself. Use the Scripture to make folks ready to do all the good they need to do. Proclaim the message persistently, and teach patiently. Be sober, endure suffering, evangelize, and keep doing it all.
To our ears, a lot of this may seem at first a bit overly anxious. Why does Paul feel the need to offer this exhortation “In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus… and in view of his appearing and his kingdom?” Doesn’t this seem a bit much? Couldn’t he have said, “Keep up the good work, son” without all the “heavy artillery” behind it?
Perhaps this was a bit over the top. But then again, perhaps not. People want what we want. We don’t want sound teaching when it may be uncomfortable, or when it demands too much from us. We certainly don’t usually want outsiders (like Timothy) sent by other outsiders (like Paul) to come in and try to straighten us out (which was why Paul sent Timothy to the churches in the environs of Ephesus), even if some of our own leaders may be hoping or even asking for this.
In other words, Timothy was experiencing serious and entirely predictable spiritual pushback to his work. So, Paul speaks in a way that pushes back harder, encouraging Timothy to keep to his task and engage it all the more.
And very likely, so are you—and so are those in your congregation who are committed to living the way of Jesus and helping others do the same. The vast majority of those who attend many of our congregations are there to get what they want. This is not a critique, but a fact. Consumerist concerns tend to drive what we do and don’t do, what we say and don’t say, far more than our mission to embody Christ as fully as possible in the midst of our contexts, following him as his disciples.
And that reality has not declined, but escalated in the last thirty years.
Church “shopping” is a “normal” activity for churched folks—not just the unchurched or the “Nones,” who now by and large appear to be removing us from their “shopping lists” in geometrically increasing numbers! Jim Twitchell’s book, Shopping for God, has noted that the age of marketing the church, as a follow-up to the church growth movement, has not succeeded in increasing discipleship where tried, but only in deepening the perception that participation in the life of the church is about getting one’s preferred religious goods and services.
And more recently, Kenda Creasy Dean’s book, Almost Christian, has shown how the consumerism that lies behind what she and her fellow researchers call “moralistic therapeutic deism” both dumbs down and deforms the potential of our own youth and young adults to live as disciples of Jesus.
So how does sound teaching ever happen if what people go for—and what we continue to enculturate our congregations to expect-- is all about what makes them feel good, comfortable, and affirmed?
Perhaps what Paul advises and his tone are even more important for us to hear today.
Laity Sunday Angle
As we’ve noted in previous weeks, Paul’s advice to Timothy is from one church leader to another. This is not advice on how to have a “successful” life. It is advice for one sent to teach, and by teaching set people’s lives and the life of their communities straight.
On this Laity Sunday, who would you lift up as examples in your own congregation, today or in the past, who have faithfully taught the Scripture, not simply so people would know what it says, but so people would live that way, too? Consider including images of these people onscreen as this scripture is read, or creating a gallery of images others can visit after worship, to celebrate the faithfulness of those to teach, in season and out of season, regardless of the preferences of those with “itching ears.”
A Season of Saints: John Ri
The story of the entrance of Christianity into Korea is a long and painful one. There were many martyrs, and it was more than a century before there were as many as 9000 living converts to the faith, while within a similar time some estimates indicate as many as 10,000 may have been killed for their faith. Most of those who died are known at most by their names. Many names remain unknown.
We know little about John Ri except that he was evangelized and catechized by a lay French missionary, and was, with more than 100 others, imprisoned, probably tortured, and executed for this faith in 1839. One reason we know his name is the prayer he left behind, paraphrased slightly in the song, Ri. The lyrics are reproduced here with the permission of the composer (Michael Glenn Bell).
The sins of my entire life
by which I have offended you
weigh me down like a mountain
a mountain of my own creation.
I cannot bear this alone.
But your strength will keep me from falling.
The prayers of others will uphold me,
in my time of need.
(From Martyrs Prayers, Liner Notes, page 4).
John Ri’s prayer is powerful teaching itself. And it reflects the powerful teaching of the lay missionary who taught him, and others with him, under the cover of darkness for months on end.
“The prayers of others will uphold me,
in my time of need.”
Indeed. Such prayers by others with whom he was imprisoned, and the presence in his life of such a dedicated teacher, upheld John Ri until his death for the sake of the gospel of Christ.
In Your Planning Team
In The Series
This is week 3 of 4 in a series that is more about deep dives than a linear progression. This week, like last, is primarily about taking this week’s deep dive well. Next week, as series conclusion, you’ll also need to create a wrap-up that delivers on the whole series promise and offers a segue into your next series.
Last week’s deep dive was about leaders dealing with suffering when suffering oneself and being around the suffering of others was culturally equated with failure rather than faithful, effective leadership, possibly even within the church.
This week’s is about the words those being ordained hear when the bishop places hands on their hands: “Take authority.”
Here, the authority in question is to teach and proclaim the Scriptures.
When Christian leaders teach the Scriptures with authority, they do not not seek to please those with “itching ears,” but to teach it so and until it reshapes the lives of the hearers until they are truly and fully “trained in righteousness, equipped for every good work.” Sometimes such teaching provides a word of correction. But more often it is about training, persistently teaching until the hearers reproduce faithfully in their lives what they are hearing with their ears.
Pastors, while on this Laity Sunday you should certainly celebrate the lives and witness of laity who have modeled such authoritative and effective teaching (team, you may be vital in helping identify who these persons are!), ultimately this whole letter is directed at you. How well are you doing at teaching God’s word so that people’s lives are not only informed, but transformed? Where have you stayed on track with this work? Where have you succumbed to the interests of those with “itching ears”? What are you planning to do now to handle any course corrections you must to get back on the track Paul lays out for your teaching ministry and its intended fruits—many more around you trained in righteousness and equipped for every good work?
Team, help your pastor reflect on these questions honestly. In this, as in previous weeks, you may be acting a bit as a sort of “second-string staff-parish relations committee.” Pastors, if you feel uncomfortable with that, or it would be problematic for your SPRC for your worship planning team to be working on this with you, then use the SPRC for this purpose directly, and report to the team what you have discerned together.
And as part of that fruit, what have you put in place to ensure that leaders, at least, are in fact not only expected to be so equipped, but are actually being so equipped?
In other words, what have you put into place, or what will you (as of today) put into place to ensure more of your leaders, and especially your teachers, are actively involved in teaching that transforms lives, in discipling that both disciples others and trains them to disciple others, too?
If your congregation is like most, you probably do not have a “congregational” DNA of discipling in this way. The expectation that all might become faithful disciples of Jesus, rather than simply more or less faithful church members or participants, may be foreign to your congregational culture. Trying to insert this into congregational culture per se may not be the most effective strategy.
But we have an example in early Methodism of another way. The Wesleys and early Methodists were not even trying to change the culture of their congregations directly. Instead, they invited people who were moved by the call to entire salvation—justification and sanctification in this life—to participate in intense formation processes outside of and in addition to their participation in what congregations could offer. Through society meetings and class meetings, and through the practices of prayer and searching the Scriptures, these meetings taught and promoted in individual and family life, these early Methodists, also participating in congregations, were being transformed themselves. The transformation of congregational culture, where it would occur, thus wasn’t the result of the pastor of the congregation demanding the culture change, but rather the result of transformed people “re-infiltrating” congregations and spreading the fruits of their transformed lives into the congregational culture.
So consider the possibility of inviting leaders who are ready to take this journey of transformational teaching to a separate group experience (perhaps something like an early Methodist class meeting, or a Covenant Discipleship Group), focused on supporting one another to grow in such teaching themselves. It not a matter of “requiring” all teachers to participate in this process up front. It is rather a matter of working with those who are ready or willing to work on this, and then allowing their influence to spread to others who may become ready, and so on. Jesus was right. “A little leaven leavens the whole loaf” in time.
Pastors, again, as noted last week, if you are not yet in a place to offer such an option for your lay teachers, strongly consider keeping the focus of your preaching around this text in a more confessional mode.
Gospel Stream: Learning from the Master
Keep on… : Week 3
Keep on Praying
This week’s reading from Luke offers a story and a probing question from Jesus.
The story is of a widow who shows up regularly at court pleading for assistance until the judge finally grants it to be rid of her.
The question is: Will the followers of Jesus be this faithful to trust that God will indeed grant justice when we continue to ask? The challenge of the question is twofold: a) Will we have faith in God to provide justice, and if so, b) will we show that faith by persisting in confident prayer until we see the signs that God is granting it?
This story and the question say much about our approach to prayer and to our common vocation as the baptized, as “priests of the most high God.” The woman in the story approaches boldly, confident that she will be heard though she knows the judge cares little about justice.
How boldly do we take up our priesthood in prayer, individually and corporately, when we pray for justice? Do we allow ourselves to “get into it” in such prayers, to pray boldly for justice, knowing and trusting that God indeed wills and is working to deliver it quickly, as Jesus said (verse 8)? Or do we sort of move through them in a ho-hum fashion, drowsily, as it were, thinking “God may get to it, someday. Maybe.”
Laity Sunday Angle
Who leads in prayer in your congregation? If it’s usually the pastor, or even a deacon, today strongly consider the possibility of asking a layperson (perhaps your lay leader) to lead your congregation’s prayers.
Just be sure this layperson understands what she or he is doing in leading the prayers of the community. (Pastors and deacons, how have you modeled this?) This is not an occasion for sermons disguised as prayers, nor for monologues addressed to God, nor for devotional prayer expressing one’s personal feelings. The leader of prayer leads the people in fulfilling their priestly baptismal calling as intercessors for the church and for the world. The leader of prayer thus both guides the praying of the people and prompts their praying. Strongly consider using something like the form of prayer found in The United Methodist Book of Worship (495) or the forms of intercessory prayer in the services of morning or evening prayer (BOW).
And do one more thing. Be sure to provide any needed assistance so the layperson who leads prayer today can embody in the way he or she prays the kind of confidence and persistence in praying for justice today’s gospel reading calls for.
A Season of Saints
Both John Ri and Sarah Ann Dickey embody something of the confident praying for justice commended in today’s gospel reading, though in different ways. John Ri’s prayer expresses confidence that justice will be done for him by enabling him to stand strong in his circumstances. Sarah Ann Dickey’s life work of creating educational opportunities for African Americans after the Civil War was its own confident and persistent prayer for justice for all she taught and the school faculties she assembled and led.
In Your Planning Team
In This Series
This is week 3 in this six-week series. In week 2, you will have taken the series from its grounding (obedience as basis for everything else) to the first specific activity all disciples are called to keep on doing (healing all). You’ve thus established a kind of platform of expectation of what the rest of the weeks in this series may look and feel like until you reach series end with All Saints (November 6). Keep to the basics of the pattern you have now established, and use that as a common warp that underlies how you’ll weave each theme from week to week.
Part of that pattern has been both worship on Sunday and ongoing challenge and support during the week for living out the theme of each week so these holy habits are more likely to be developed by all. Be sure to continue that pattern, too, this week with a focus on encouraging and supporting the daily prayer life of all in your congregation.
Today’s text is about praying for justice. It both teaches us to do so, and how to do so—with confidence and persistence.
So whatever you do in worship today, whether in song, prayers, or sermon, or as you pray the Great Thanksgiving for Laity Sunday or the New Great Thanksgiving for Laity Sunday (2016) (pastors, remember this is your role to lead, not to be “split” with others!), both teach and consistently model what confident, persistent praying for justice looks like.
Strongly consider purchasing for your planning team and for your leaders copies of Dr. Mark Stamm’s book, Devoting Ourselves to the Prayers. This is the richest, most thorough and most practical United Methodist resource for supporting the corporate prayer life of your congregation currently available. You will find it invaluable not only for today, but for continuing to strengthen corporate prayer in your congregation for years to come.
Questions for Your Planning Team:
What “justice hymns” does your congregation know, or might they be willing or able to learn for worship this day?
What kinds of artwork or images would express both confidence and persistence in praying for justice in your context?
And whom do you know, laity or clergy, who prays for justice like Jesus seems to commend here? Team, divide up names and interview these persons individually. Ask them how they learned to pray this way. And ask them what they’d want to help others learn, so they can, too. Consider catching these interviews on video, and perhaps creating a compilation of them, including examples of them actually praying for justice, to be shown as part of worship today if you have the technology to show it. Otherwise, include it, and maybe some of these people, in a forum on praying for justice either before or after worship today.
Embodying the Word: Prayers of Thanksgiving after Holy Communion
We thank you, God, for opening your life to us in Jesus Christ,
and for this sacrament in which you claim us by entering our flesh and spirits.
Blessed are you forever!
Now send us from this place to live as those who no longer rely on tablets of stone,
but your Word dwelling richly in our hearts
leading us and teaching us all truth,
that we may be the means by which all the world will know
our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Confident in the truth we have received,
we are bold to praise you, for Christ dwells in us!
Make us bolder still to proclaim Jesus Christ in season and out of season,
wherever you send us,
and not to be satisfied with the telling,
but to be patient and persistent in the teaching,
until all know the gospel,
and all who know are equipped
to seek and save the lost in the name of Jesus. Amen.
You are no unjust judge, O God!
You have heard our cry,
and have come out of your way
to come our way this morning,
and give us yourself in all your glory
in the body and blood of Jesus.
Send us now to go out of our way
to proclaim and trust your justice
and pray it with confidence and joy
until all can see it come
by the power of your Spirit.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus! Amen.
Opening Prayer BOW 461 or 468 (Psalm, 2 Timothy; “We believe, O Lord”),
BOW 457 (Jeremiah, 2 Timothy, Luke), BOW 375 "A new heart and a new spirit" (Jeremiah), UMH 401, "For Holiness of Heart" (Jeremiah, Psalm, 2 Timothy),
BOW 348 (2 Timothy, Luke; Wednesday in Holy Week), BOW 510 (2 Timothy, Luke)
WORD AND RESPONSE
Litany BOW 432 (Laity Sunday)
Response to the Word
If you preach from Jeremiah, you might refer to or use parts of the "Covenant Renewal Service," BOW 288, particularly the rubric at 294:
"You are advised to make this covenant not only in your heart, but in word; not only in word, but in writing. Therefore, with all reverence, lay the service before the Lord as your act and deed. And when you have done this, sign it. Then keep it as a reminder of the holy agreement between God and you that you may remember it during doubts and temptations."
"The Ten Commandments" (BOW 496), includes the refrain "Almighty God, write your law upon our hearts."
Prayers of the People
Litany for the Church and the World (BOW 495)
Prayers of the People from Full Service for Laity Sunday 2016
Sung call or prayer response: TFWS 2200, "O Lord, Hear My Prayer" (Luke)
Ecumenical Prayer Cycle: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal
THANKSGIVING AND COMMUNION
Invitation, Confession and Pardon
An invitation (UMH 7) and pardon (UMH 8) or words of assurance should always precede and follow a prayer of confession.
UMH 597, "For the Spirit of Truth" (2 Timothy)
BOW 478 (Psalm, Luke)
BOW 488 (Jeremiah)
Thanksgiving if No Communion
See Laity Sunday 2016 full service order