We Invite you to Join Us for Our Sunday Celebration! Service at 11 AM on Facebook Live or In Person at the Church

April 12, 2021

Bible Passages for Sunday

Acts 4:32–35

Psalm 133

1 John 1:1–2:2

John 20:19–31

Acts 4:32–35

32 Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. 33 With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. 34 There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. 35 They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

Psalm 133

A Song of Ascents.

    1      How very good and pleasant it is

    when kindred live together in unity!

    2      It is like the precious oil on the head,

    running down upon the beard,

    on the beard of Aaron,

    running down over the collar of his robes.

    3      It is like the dew of Hermon,

    which falls on the mountains of Zion.

    For there the LORD ordained his blessing,

    life forevermore.

1 John 1:1–2:2

1 We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— 2 this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us— 3 we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true; 7 but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

2 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2 and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.

John 20:19–31

19 When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” 22 When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

24 But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.”

26 A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.”

30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. 31 But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.


Sunday Celebration for March 28th

March 29, 2021
Sermon Message Theme: Ransom, Wrath or Love?

We Invite You to Join Us at 11 AM For Our Sunday Celebration on Facebook Live or In Person at the Church

March 28, 2021

March 28th, 2021 11:00AM

Announcements

Greeting /welcome to others: You can wave “Hello” or “Peace to You”

For Reflection: How can I daily emulate more fully the Jesus who “emptied himself of all but love”?

Opening Music: “Were You There?” Music Courtesy of Laurie Holdridge

Call to Worship

L: Here in the midst of this pandemic, staying as safe as we can, we come to worship you.

P: We come with the groans of loneliness, and the whispers of hope in our hearts.

L: Here in a season of being apart, we come to remember you. We come, hoping we have not been forgotten, and that here, now, your presence will be felt.

P: We come, knowing you have heard us through every lonely day, in every moment, never holding back your constant love. we come, to praise you for your steadfast love

.Unison Prayer for Forgiveness: All: This past year, we often lost our way… But you have shown us a new way. When we focused more on ourselves than the forgotten, we betrayed you. When we kept our mouths closed instead of speaking up for justice, we denied you. When we choose not to do good for others, we turned our backs on you. Here at the foot of the cross, where we have found ourselves so many times these last months, we stand beside all who stepped off the path of faithfulness, who forgot you, who chose to go another way than follow you. Have mercy on us, Lamb of God. Forgive us, cleanse us with the hope, the grace, the peace you poured out for us.

Silence is kept

Assurance of Pardon

L: Christ did not forget us, but carried our suffering on his back, walking with all our hurts, our foolishness, the pain we caused, taking it all into the heart of our God, who takes them, and continues to love us with steadfast assurance.

P: Fed with grace, carried in God’s arms, we know that we are loved and forgiven. Thanks be to God. Amen.

Readings: Isaiah 50:4-9a, Psalm 31:11-16; Philippians 2:5-11; Mark 14:1-15:47

Message: “Ransom, Wrath or Love ” Shared by Cathy Young

Musical Reflection: Hymn 223 “What Wondrous Love”

Prayers of the People Lord in Your Mercy All: Hear our Prayer

Pastoral Prayer: O Great Love, thank you for living and loving in us and through us. May all that we do flow from our deep connection with you and all beings. Help us become a community that vulnerably shares each other’s burdens and the weight of glory. Listen to our hearts’ longings for the healing of our world. Knowing you are hearing us better than we are speaking, we offer these prayers in all the holy names of God, amen. (Source: Fr. Richard Rohr) In your holy names we pray your prayer –

Lord’s Prayer Inclusive Version: Our Father-Mother in heaven, hallowed be your name. May your presence be realized here on earth as it is in heaven. May we receive the bread that you provide us. Enable us to know that our sins have been forgiven, just as we forgive those who sin against us. Strengthen us to deal with trials too great to endure. Free us from the grip of all that harms us and others. For your power of Love reigns now and forever. Amen

.INVITATION TO SHARE:May these gifts represent our willingness to deny ourselves, so others might be blessed by your grace, your peace, as well as your hope, in every moment of their lives. Amen.

Offering Response: Lord, we lift your name on high, Lord we love to sing your praises. We’re so glad you’re in our lives. We’re so glad you came to save us. You came from heaven to earth to show the way, from the earth to the cross, our debt to pay, from the cross to the grave, from the grave to the sky. Lord, we lift your name on high.

Sending Prayer

God who holds every day in your hands, God who has always led your people into new lives, new dreams, new ways of serving, may we continue to let our compassion increase, may we continue to stand up to the powerful, may we continue to learn from the vulnerable, may we continue to trust in you always, may we continue to walk with you, even when the way seems uncertain.AmenLiturgical Prayers courtesy of (c) Thom M. Shuman•

Closing Song: “The Palms”


We Invite You to Join Us For Our Sunday Celebration at 11 AM, on Facebook Live or In Person, with Social Distancing and Masks. Sermon Title: Lamentations and Idolatry, Scripture: Psalm 130, Exodus 32:1-8, 15-20

March 13, 2021

Please Join Us for Our Sunday, March 7th Celebration with Communion, at 11 AM on Facebook Live or In Person

March 7, 2021

NEWARK VALLEY UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST

March 7, 2021

Third Sunday in Lent

Celebrating the Gifts of Women

OPENING MUSIC

WELCOME AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

CALL TO WORSHIP                                       Psalm 95.1-7

O come, let us sing to the LORD;

  let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!

Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;

  let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!

For the LORD is a great God,

  and a great King above all gods.

In his hand are the depths of the earth;

  the heights of the mountains are his also.

The sea is his, for he made it,

  and the dry land, which his hands have formed.

O come, let us worship and bow down,

  let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!

For he is our God,

  and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand.

CALL TO CONFESSION

Scripture tells us that every nation and all peoples will stand before the throne of glory of our Alpha and Omega, Jesus Christ, shepherd of all.  Seeking mercy, let us come in faith and humility before the throne of grace.  Let us confess our sins against God and neighbor.

UNISON PRAYER OF CONFESSION

God of glory and righteousness, we confess that we do not live as citizens of your kindom.  We give allegiance to worldly thrones.  We ignore the neediest in our midst  We discount our own worth.  We forsake your just sovereignty and the rules of your kindom.  Take from us the spirit of isolation, greed, lust for power, and false pride.  Give us instead the spirit of interdependency, generosity, humility, and love.  In all things grant us time for amendment of life, that we may serve you all the length of our days.  Through Jesus Christ we pray.  Amen.

A MINUTE FOR SILENT PRAYER

ASSURANCE OF GRACE

Beloved in Christ, we are blessed by God to inherit the kindom prepared for us from the foundation of the world.  By the power of the Holy Spirit we are refashioned every day to live according to God’s reign, in the freedom of Christ Jesus.  Friends, know that we are forgiven and be at peace.

PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

Shepherding God, you seek us out in our scattered places and bring us again to the rich and good pastures of your holy scripture.  By your governing Spirit, feed us now with your word of life, and lead us in all truth and obedience, for you alone are our protection and sure hope.  Amen.

READINGS FROM HOLY SCRIPTURE

         Ezekiel 34.11-24

         Matthew 12.46-50

         Matthew 25.31-46

SERMON           Holy Disruption                  Rev. Barbara J. Schwartz

LITANY for Women Who Disrupt Systemic Poverty

Holy and loving God, author of life and giver of every good gift, you visit us with your glory and set u on paths of justice and compassion.  Receive our thanks and praise!  Hear especially our gratitude for women who have kept your commandments in caring for the least among us.

For Mary and Hannah’s proclamations of your righteousness and for all who continue this praise and declaration,

We give you thanks.

For Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah’s insistence on their worth, and for all who challenge the economics of patriarchy,

We give you thanks.

For Queen Esther, who negotiated with power, and for all who strategize on behalf of the powerless,

We give you thanks.

For Lydia’s just use of wealth, and for all who use their influence for good,

We give you thanks.

For Tabitha’s care for the well-being of others, and for all who are turned outward with compassionate care,

We give you thanks.

For the Samaritan woman at the well who risked speaking to Jesus and who shared the good news, for all who speak up and speak out,

We give you thanks.

For women who organize themselves, increasing power by numbers;

For women who dance, paint, sing, all artists who expand our vision of justice;

For young women crying out against all manner of evil;

For women with length of days who teach by experience;

For women who educate, propose new policies, legislate, and activate;

We give you thanks.

Hear our thanks and praise, O God.  For we pray in the name of the one who dwells in our midst and calls us to serve, Christ our Lord.  Amen.

JOYS AND CONCERNS FOR OUR PRAYERS

PASTORAL PRAYER

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.  Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.  Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever and ever.  Amen.

INVITATION TO THE OFFERING

OFFERING RESPONSE

UNISON PRAYER OF DEDICATION

You lift us to our feet so we can walk with you, Loving God, and you fill us with your gifts so we may pour them out for those around us.  Take what we offer and use them in that kingdom work which strengthens the weary, feeds the hungry, and gives hope to the despairing.  Amen.

MUSIC OF REFLECTION

THE SACRAMENT OF THE LORD’S SUPPER

Friends, this is the joyful feast of the people of God throughout the world.  People will come from east and west and from south and north to gather at the table of our Risen Lord Jesus.  He invites all who long to know him to share in the bread of life and the cup of salvation.  Blessed are all who hunger for this bread and thirst for this cup.

The Great Prayer of Thanksgiving

The Lord be with you!

And also with you!

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give our thanks and praise.

Loving God, we thank you for the gift of life, and for the earth, our home.  We thank you for your lovingkindness to us and to all humanity.  Your works are great and wonderful.  Your ways are just and true.  With the host of heaven and your people in all times and places we praise you, saying:

Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might.  Heaven and earth are full of your glory.  Hosanna in the highest.  Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.  Hosanna in the highest.

Holy God, we praise you for your Son Jesus, the Word that became flesh and made his home among us.  He shared our weakness, and was tempted in every way as we are.  Obeying you, he suffered and died for the redemption of all.  You have raised him to sit at your right hand, and you have given him a name above every name— Lord and Christ.  We praise him and we glorify you, great God our Father.

Now give us your Holy Spirit in the breaking of bread, so that by your power we may be drawn together and made one with Christ, who is our way, our truth, and our life.

With the faithful throughout all ages, we lift our hearts to you, giving thanks and trusting you to use us as your people, for the sake of Jesus Christ our Savior.  Amen.

The Words of Institution

Communion of the People [Worshipers will partake of the communion elements while seated in the pews.  Worshipers online may partake of the bread or crackers, wine or fruit juice of their choice at home.]

Unison Prayer after Communion:

Gracious God, you have made us one with all your people in heaven and on earth.  You have fed us with the bread of life, and renewed us for your service.  Help us who have shared Christ’s body and received his cup, to be his faithful disciples, so that our daily living may share in the life of your kingdom, and our love be your love reaching out into the life of the world; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

CHARGE AND BLESSING

CLOSING MUSIC

Liturgical prayers are adapted from the PC(USA) 2021 Celebrating the Gifts of Women worship resource.

Worship Leader                                              Rev. Barbara J. Schwartz

Co-Moderators                                               John Schwartz & Cathy Young

Musician                                                         Laurie Holdridge


Sunday Celebration for February 28th

March 1, 2021

Please Join Us Feb 28th for Our Sunday Celebration at 11 AM on Facebook Live! The Theme Will Be:”The Kingdom of Strength and Productivity”

February 28, 2021

Pause for a moment……

February 23, 2021

take time to be mindful, pause and pray, listening for a voice deeper than your own. Try to pick a quiet place or moment where you may be able to do, be it in the car, a particular chair, room (it can even while brushing your teeth!). Sometimes a beautiful photograph or piece of artwork can even be your gateway to an open heart!


February 21rst Sunday Celebration Service Live Stream Video

February 22, 2021

Sunday Celebration at 11 AM Program

February 21, 2021

Follow Along with our Sunday Celebration Service February 21rst, 2021 11:00AM Announcements

NVUCC Announcements • February 28th: Sunday Service led by Cathy Young• March 7th: Sunday Service with Communion celebrated with Rev Barbara Schwartz• March 14th: Sunday Service led by John Schwartz• Tax Assistance Program starting soon. Call 444-1525 for info.• Program for Youth coming soon! Stay Tuned for more information. We intend for this program to provide tutoring opportunities, wi fi connection for schoolwork and connect children with an authentic spiritual experience that is inclusive, creative and multi-layered.• Sharing Cupboard Project: We recognize that times are hard and people may need a boost. Please consider bringing non perishable food items as well as toiletries for donating to those in need in our community. We would like to place a food cupboard on our front porch for anyone to donate nonperishable foods or hygiene items as well as anyone to take what they need. Suggestions for donations are: peanut butter and jelly, cans of tuna or soup, cereal, toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap. Any of us could be in need of a little help– especially during this pandemic. Greeting /welcome to others: You can wave “Hello” or “Peace to You” (Due to Covid concerns, Please stay in your own seats)For Reflection: Our temptations say more about what is going on within us than what is happening around us. That’s why just say no is an overly simplistic understanding of this gospel and an inadequate response to temptation. Temptation is less about a choice and more about our identity and direction in life.Hymn: “Balm in Gilead”

Call to Worship

Following God’s ways is not easy; We are called to step out in faith.We do not know what will happen tomorrow; We are called to put our trust in God.We know that God’s love is always with us;We know that God never abandons us.Come, join together in this time of worship; Come, join together in following Jesus.(Source: Rev Mindi, Rev-o-lution)

Call for Reflection Holy God, we like to claim that your way is mysterious and we are uncertain how to follow. We confess that we don’t want to understand the fast that you choose. You call us to loose the bonds of injustice, to let prisoners free, to break every yoke, to bring the homeless into our house, to feed our neighbors and pray for our enemies. We make it sound like a difficult metaphor so we don’t have to act on your word, because we don’t like to be uncomfortable. Forgive our apathy, our willful ignorance, our false modesty, and our unexamined privilege. Create in us a clean heart, and lead us into a Holy Lent…and beyond, to abundant life for all your creation. (Source: Rev. Teri Peterson, LiturgyLink)

Silence is kept

Assurance of Pardon

What can sustain us in the days to come, what will nourish us on our Lenten journey?Look, here is all the food we need: God’s Love, God’s Word, God’s Hope.Through the wilderness and into the kingdom of life, we are given daily bread for every day of the journey. Thanks be to God. Amen.

Readings: Genesis 9:8–13;17, Psalm 25:1–10, 1 Peter 3:18-22, Mark 1:9-15

Message: “Survival in the Wilderness” Shared by Cathy Young

Musical Reflection

Prayers of the People Lord in Your Mercy All: Hear our Prayer

Pastoral Prayer: O Great Love, thank you for living and loving in us and through us. May all that we do flow from our deep connection with you and all beings. Help us become a community that vulnerably shares each other’s burdens and the weight of glory. Listen to our hearts’ longings for the healing of our world. Knowing you are hearing us better than we are speaking, we offer these prayers in all the holy names of God, amen. (Source: Fr. Richard Rohr) In your holy names we pray your prayer

–Lord’s Prayer: Our Father-Mother in heaven, hallowed be your name. May your presence be realized here on earth as it is in heaven. May we receive the bread that you provide us. Enable us to know that our sins have been forgiven, just as we forgive those who sin against us. Strengthen us to deal with trials too great to endure. Free us from the grip of all that harms us and others. For your power of Love reigns now and forever. Amen.

INVITATION TO SHARE:Holy God, we offer our gifts to bring healing to the broken, hope to those in despair, light to those in shadows, and grace for all your people. Amen.

Offering Response Lord, we lift your name on high, Lord we love to sing your praises. We’re so glad you’re in our lives. We’re so glad you came to save us. You came from heaven to earth to show the way, from the earth to the cross, our debt to pay, from the cross to the grave, from the grave to the sky. Lord, we lift your name on high.

Sending Prayer

Facing a Barren Desert

Today, like Jesus, we may be facing a barren desert We may be tempted to do the wrong thingTo do something selfish, To do something hurtful.Or perhaps we have become lostNot sure which way to turn in our livesThe desert sand gives us no help.In these bleak momentsWe need to reach deep into ourselvesAnd find the sacred sparkThat represents all that is best in usWhich knows who we really areAnd who we can beAnd remind ourselves that we are hereTo share this spirit of live and love with othersTo blossom in the desert, Or the concrete of the cityAnd help others to blossom too.(Source: Roger Courtney, Progressive Christianity)•

Closing Hymn: