First United Methodist Church of Schenectady
Worship for the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost
August 16, 2020
2020 Photo from Dominick Giaquinto
It may help to center yourself into worship by lighting a candle, as a symbol of God’s presence with you during the time of worship. You may also want to pay attention to lighting, the position of your body, and the availability of distractions.
“O God, make me an instrument of your justice”
Breath prayers involve breathing in the first phrase, and breathing out the second.
You may wish to simply pray for a moment before starting, or you may wish to pray while listening to the prelude.
“Ave Maria” by Giulio Caccini
David Read – Baritone acc. Dominick Giaquinto – Organ (FUMC)
Call to Worship
One: Answer me when I call, O God of my right!
Many: You gave me room when I was in distress.
One: Be gracious to me, and hear my prayer.
Many: How long, you people, shall my honor suffer shame?
One: How long will you love vain words, and seek after lies?
Many: But know that the LORD has set apart the faithful for himself; the LORD hears when I call.
Hymn #117: O God Our Help in Ages Past
Connecting in Prayer
Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on us. As we gather in your presence, fill us with your very being. As we worship today, we remember our brothers and sisters who are worshiping elsewhere throughout the world. Inspire each of us to work more faithfully for justice. Raise our vision above the barriers of color and culture that we use to separate us. Give us wisdom as we deal with one another. Help us to recognize and to respect different ways, rather than to judge. In the name of Jesus who came not to be served, but to serve, we now must reach out our hands with help and open our hearts in love. Awake in us the desire to seek your way of service in the world. Amen.
You are welcome to read this out-loud or silently.
Give us, O God, the strength to break the bonds of tradition that victimize your people. May we call on the oppressors to see the harm they do. May we
work with the oppressed to lift our communal life out of the swamp for self-righteous greed. May we truly find peace through justice for all. Amen.
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.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil:
For thine is the kingdom, and the power,
and the glory, for ever. Amen.
Word and Reflection
I Couldn’t Hear Nobody Pray – Hall Johnson
Scripture – Amos 5:18-24
Mission Moment – Jan Huston
Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York
(Please consider contributing a mission moment. It can be an experience, a poem, something meaningful that you recently learned, a brief book review, an insight, or maybe something else. Send your idea to me – Jan Huston.)
Bethany Stiles of the Regional Food Bank sent an update:
COVID-19 Week 20 Service Update:
Three Cheers for Volunteers!
In any given year, volunteers provide an immense service to the Food Bank by helping us accomplish more than we ever could on our own. In a year like this one, our volunteers are more important, and appreciated, than ever. Whether it’s sorting donated food in one of our warehouses, hosting a food drive, raising funds, or harvesting veggies at our Patroon Land Farm, volunteers expand our capacity and help us get more food out to more hungry people.
Volunteers and staff work together seven days a week and adhere to strict sanitation protocols to keep everyone safe. We appreciate their support so much. Imagine our delight when a volunteer thanked US for the opportunity to serve.
I’m signed up at the Food Bank for a number of dates in August. But things have changed: I’m returning to work, finally, after four months. So I’m afraid I won’t be doing any of these shifts, which actually leaves me feeling a bit wistful. I’ve very much enjoyed my experience at the Food Bank. Not only is it work of immeasurable importance, especially now, but you guys are so pleasant and cheerful. It’s motivating! If only more workplace supervisors were possessed of such qualities.
We are honored to work with volunteers like this, who give so generously of their time and share our commitment to meeting people’s basic needs. If you would like to learn more about our volunteer opportunities, please visit
Passing of the Peace
If you are worshiping with others, please pass the Peace of Christ.
Whether you are alone or with others, please take a moment to find God’s peace within, and then to share it with the world. You may want to reach out to speak peace to another during this week.
Hymn #729: O Day of Peace
Scripture Reading: Luke 18:1-8
Sermon – “The Way to Peace” – Rev. Bill Pattison
The Loving Ways of Jesus
The loving ways of Jesus
we model every day
Through kindly acts of mercy
in what we do and say
We have the power in us
to live in harmony
And sharing Earth’s resources
we aim for unity
The lessons Jesus taught us
allow us all to see
That everyone around us
forms one humanity
That what we see reflected
in others is ourselves
So let us welcome strangers
just as they see themselves
2017 Photo Show – “Prayers, Presence Gifts, Service, Witness” by Larry McArthur
If you wish, you are welcome to use this time to make a donation to the church online, or to put a check in the mail.
The time of offering is not only about our financial gifts to the church, it is about offering our lives to God and the building of the kindom. This is a time for reflection: What is being asked of us? What is being given to us? What are we able to offer? What do we need?
“Will You Come and Follow Me” by Tom Trenney
Prayer of Presentation
We offer ourselves, O God, to work toward peace through justice. May our gifts be used to build a more just society. Amen.
Hymn #428: For the Healing of the Nations
Let us move from worship to service while aiming for peace through justice. Amen.
“Sinfonia from Cantata 29” by Johann Sebastian Bach
Vincent Dubois – Organ