Who Goes Where?: Friday, May 20

General Conference Worship
Friday, May 20, 8:00 AM
Who Goes Where?

Gathering

PRELUDE         Christ UMC Deaf Choir

EXPECTING THE UNEXPECTED

RESURRECTION CELEBRATION

Christ the Lord is Risen Today

Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia!
Earth and heaven in chorus say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like him, like him we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!

Reader 1 (in English): Jesus has been raised from the dead. Go and tell his disciples. He’s going on ahead of you, you’ll see him there!

Thine Be the Glory [stanza 2, sung in English]

Reader 2 (in Portuguese): Jesus has been raised from the dead. Go and tell his disciples. He’s going on ahead of you, you’ll see him there!

Christ Has Arisen, Alleluia [sung in Kiswahili]

Reader 3 (in Kiswahili): Jesus has been raised from the dead. Go and tell his disciples. He’s going on ahead of you, you’ll see him there!

Christ Has Arisen, Alleluia [sung in English]

Reader 4 (in French): Jesus has been raised from the dead. Go and tell his disciples. He’s going on ahead of you, you’ll see him there!

Victoire Alléluia! [sung in French]

Proclaiming

PRAYER

Living God, you shatter our darkness with the light of your power and love.
Open our eyes to your light.
Risen Christ, you burst out of the tomb to show the world that death cannot claim the final victory.
Open our hearts to your love.
Holy Spirit, you are with us still, blowing through your church with an ancient message of new life.
Open our ears to your Word. Amen.

READING 1:       Matthew 27:62-66

Reader 1: The next day, that is, after the day of Preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate and said,

Reader 2: ‘Sir, we remember what that impostor said while he was still alive, “After three days I will rise again.” Therefore command that the tomb be made secure until the third day; otherwise his disciples may go and steal him away, and tell the people, “He has been raised from the dead”, and the last deception would be worse than the first.’

Reader 1: Pilate said to them,

Reader 3: ‘You have a guard of soldiers; go, go, make it as secure, as secure as you can.’

Reader 1: So they went with the guard and made the tomb secure by sealing  the stone.

PRAYER OF CONFESSION

God of the Resurrection,
We keep you sealed inside the safety of the grave.
You offer us the exhilarating redemption of unconditional love,
but we want to box up your mercy in a tomb of judgment.
Christ have mercy.

You offer us the freedom to dance with you along the path of grace,
but we trudge along in the same, predictable way.
Lord have mercy.

You offer us the liberating power of new life, new vision, new possibilities,
but we are too afraid to leave the security of our familiar routines and stereotypes.
Christ have mercy.
Silence

God, we pray that you would give us the courage to embrace your freedom.
Freedom is coming!
Lift us from our fear with the knowledge that the Risen Christ goes ahead of us.
Jesus is coming!
Help us break out of our own tombs into the liberating Way of your grace.
Freedom is coming!

ASSURANCE

Freedom is Coming

singing: O freedom, Freedom is coming
O freedom, Freedom is coming
O freedom, Freedom is coming
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.

Reader 1: Yes, we know that Freedom is coming because the One who comes has already broken out of the tomb! The One who comes has already set us free from the chains of death and sin! The One who comes has already liberated us from everything that entombs us. And the One who comes is calling us to come along … so let’s go with Jesus!

singing: O Jesus, Jesus is coming
O Jesus, Jesus is coming
O Jesus, Jesus is coming
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.
O Yes, I know. O Yes, I know.

READING 2:      Matthew 28:1-8

Reader 1: After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. For fear of him the guards shook and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women,

Reader 2: ‘Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go, go quickly and tell his disciples, “He has been raised from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.” This is my message for you.’

Reader 1: So they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples.

ANTHEM

“Hallelujah” (Ludwig von Beethoven), Central Methodist University Chorale

SERMON      “Leave the Tomb Quickly,”     Bishop Elaine Stanovsky

MOVING FORWARD

“Moving Forward” (Israel Houghton)

Thanksgiving

PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING

Reader 1: God, indeed you make all things new! When the powers of politics and religion tried to keep Jesus in a tomb, you gave the world a new reality where love is stronger than evil. When we feel boxed in by rules, divisions, and sheer exhaustion, here you are, calling us to run with excitement to follow Jesus Christ. Thank you for liberating us from our own self-imposed limits. Thank you for showing us a new way. Thank you for opening your arms to include each one of us in your Good News. Thank you for sending us to go and tell all folks the joyful gospel!

SONG OF PRAISE

Haleluya, Pelo Tsa Rona (Hallelujah! We Sing Your Praises)

Sending

BENEDICTION           Bishop Stanovsky

BENEDICTION RESPONSE

Christ Is Alive

 

****************

Acknowledgements:

We are grateful for the leadership of these guest musicians:

Christ UMC Deaf Choir (Christ UMC; Baltimore, Maryland)
Central Methodist University Chorale (Central Methodist University; Fayette, Missouri)

Unless otherwise noted, all liturgical pieces are written by Laura Jaquith Bartlett, © 2016 The Fellowship of United Methodists in Music & Worship Arts.

Christ the Lord Is Risen Today; words: Charles Wesley; tune: EASTER HYMN, Lyra Davidica; found at #302 United Methodist Hymnal. Public Domain.

Thine Be the Glory; words: Edmond L. Budry, trans. by R. Birch Hoyle; tune: JUDAS MACCABEUS, Harmonia Sacra; found at #308 United Methodist Hymnal. Translation by permission of The World Student Christian Federation.

Christ Has Arisen, Alleluia; words: Bernard Kyamanywa, trans. Howard S. Olson; tune: MFURAHINI, HALELUYA, Tanzanian melody; found at #251 Glory to God. Words © 1977 Howard S. Olson, admin. by Augsburg Fortress.

Freedom Is Coming; words and music: trad. South African; found at #2192 The Faith We Sing.

Moving Forward; Israel Houghton and Ricardo Sanchez; © 2007 Integrity’s Hosanna! Music, admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing.

Haleluya, Pelo Tsa Rona (Hallelujah! We Sing Your Praises); words: South African, trans. by Gracia Grindal; tune: South African; found at #538 Glory to God. English translation © 1984 Utryck, admin. by Walton Music Corp.

Christ Is Alive!; words: Brian Wren; tune: TRURO, Music Sacra; found at #246 Glory to God. Words © 1975, rev. 1995 Hope Publishing Co.

Image: Todd Pick, © 2016.

 

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