Worship at Home for Sunday, April 11, 2021

Dear Friends,

I invite you to worship with us on Facebook at 9am on Sunday. 

You can follow along with the worship bulletin for Sunday

For a Children's Message you can go to the Sunday School at Home Page.

The Sunday after Easter is often celebrated as Holy Humor or Bright Sunday. It is a moment to laugh and rejoice in the joy of the Resurrection of Jesus. This Sunday I invite you to think of something that makes you laugh and share it with a friend.

During this Easter Season of the Church we will be exploring what the Resurrection means as we seek to live in community. Who are we because Jesus rose from the tomb? How should we live? Think about what this means in your own life. Please share your thoughts with me.

Announcements:

  • These Days devotional guides are available. Pick one up at church. Or call the church and let me know, if you would like one mailed or dropped off at your home.
  • Youth will go to Sky Zone this Sunday!
  • Volunteers needed at Helping Hands Mobile Markets on the fourth Friday of the month.

Prayers and Blessings,

Pastor Stephanie DeLong

Scripture Lesson: Please read these passages in your Bible at home. If you do not have a Bible, we have many at church and would love to give you one.

Acts 4:32-35, Psalm 133, 1 John 1:1-2:2, John 20:19-31

Sermon: Living in a Resurrection Community

Community over the past year has undergone some transformations. Prior to the pandemic, community meant gathering in person. Then the lock down orders came and everyone scrambled to maintain connections when interacting physically presented a danger to one’s health and life. We found new ways and made use of old ways of being in community. For example, we began this weekly mailing to keep connected with members of our congregation. Worship via Facebook and our church website evolved. Meetings took place via Zoom even with people who lived across town. However, these distanced gatherings felt impersonal as we longed to physically see, hear and touch one another.

We can relate to Thomas who had to learn about the resurrection via the accounts of the disciples who were present when Jesus appeared. Thomas longed to touch Jesus and hear Jesus’ voice for himself. This virtual experience of the resurrection felt empty to him.

Jesus understood Thomas’ need. Jesus understands our need to feel, hear and touch the people we love. Church is not about worship delivered electronically. Church is about a community of believers. Now that the Covid restrictions are slowly being lifted, it is time to live into our resurrection community in new ways.

Like the first believers who sought to live in communities which grew from the joy of new life in the resurrection. We are called to envision new ways of being communities that live out the joy of the resurrection. It is time for us to discover what is truly important to us as a community of faith and to live in ways that reflect the promise of the resurrection.

The community of believers in Acts felt empowered by the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. They were so empowered that many were willing to sell what they had so that no one would be in need. This selling and sharing of possessions eliminated distinctions of class and wealth. There was no rich nor poor in this community of believers. These faithful were living into the hope and joy of the resurrection.

What does that say about us? How do we live into the hope and joy of the resurrection? I would love to have a step by step list of instructions to offer, but this is something that we at St. Peter’s need to work through as a community empowered by the Holy Spirit.

Eden Seminary Convocation has been focusing on these issues this week. Rev. Traci Blackmon has a vision of churches as launching pads of ministry to the wider community. Worship and Bible Study empowers people of faith to creative ministries beyond the church walls to connect with people who need love and support.

Are you being nudged by the Spirit to reach out to people in Owensville? Is there a need that we as a faith community can meet? I have become aware of a housing shortage in Owensville. How can we as the church respond to this need? I would love to hear your ideas!

Since this is Holy Humor Sunday…Pastor Peter and Pastor Andrew were fishing buddies. They invited their new friend Pastor Paul to go fishing with them at Pastor Peter’s lake cottage. The three men were fishing from Peter’s boat close to the cottage when Peter looked into the cooler and saw that they were out of soda. So, Peter climbed out of the boat and walked across the water back to the cottage. After grabbing a two-liter bottle of cola, Peter walked back across the water and climbed into the boat. Pastor Paul is amazed. A while later, Andrew decides that he would like some chips, so he walks across the water and back to retrieve a bag of potato chips. Pastor Paul begins to wonder, if he too has the ability to walk on water like Jesus. So when Peter remembers that they left some brownies on the counter, Paul decides to walk back to the cottage to get them. After all Paul is just as faithful as the other two. When Paul steps out of the boat, he sinks. After Peter and Andrew pull him back into the boat they say, “I guess we should have shown you where the rocks are.”

Prayer

Holy God of resurrection joy, we come to you in prayer.

Empower us to live lives that reflect the hope and love of Jesus our risen Savior.

Guide us in ways that we may live in community with one another.
May we be launched from our time of worship and prayer
to bring your ministry to the streets of Owensville and the roads of Gasconade County.
May the Spirit surround the sick, the grieving and the struggling. Amen.

Silent Prayer followed by the Lord’s Prayer

Prayer list:

Ahna, Priscilla, Grandpa David, Virginia, Vic, Liz’s sister in law, Butch, Marcie, Anonymous Cancer Patient, Linda, Pat, Laurie Lee, Gail, Brenda, Jeff, Terry, Bev, Mark, Dave, Peggy, youth struggling with mental health issues, Shawn, Lindsey, Sue, Diann, Danna, Janet, Lisa, Joyce, Sara, Cheyenne, Katelyn, Michelle and Dawson

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