Join us online for worship
April 26
To access our worship service online, please visit our website at www.umcw.org/sermons
(The service has been pre-recorded.)
Ripples of Empowerment
Matthew 28:16-20 (NRSV)
 When we drop a pebble on the peaceful lake, it creates a plash and then waves that radiate outward in every direction. We call it the ripple effect. Surely disciples were broken and in despair, probably even frightened. Judas was dead, Thomas was alone in his depression, Peter resigned himself and said, “I am going fishing” and the others were still confused. Then the risen Christ appeared to them and commissioned them: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations. I am with you always the end of the age.” Jesus throws a stone into the pond of disciples’ heart and the ripples that go out from them to us now. Like disciples we are now in despair and frightened, living in a global pandemic. And we are scary, anxious, and in fear. Regardless of what has happened in our life, the promise of the risen Christ “I am with you always” holds. Every moment, every circumstance, we are called to make real and visible this promise. We are the blessed, chosen, adopted, and forgiven sons and daughters of God to touch and change the lives of others with God’s love in the time of distress and despair. God will redeem all that bad, working good even from the horrendous and making “all things” new. This is what Christ has done for each of us, and it is what God in Christ Jesus will do for the whole world. This is the “ripple effect” of the gospel. Are we a powerful representation of “good news” in this community? Or are we too caught up in the bad news?
Order of Worship
Third Sunday of Easter
April 26, 2020

Welcome and Sharing of Announcements

Prelude - “The King of Love My Shepherd Is” - UMH #138

Call to Worship 
(Jill and Liv Lohmeier)
Liturgist: The day has dawned.
People: Sing a new song!
Liturgist: Christ is alive.
People: Rejoice in new life!
Liturgist: With open minds and Easter faith,
People: Come to worship God!

Opening Prayer
(Jill Lohmeier)
O feed us with your word, Jesus. With new perspectives, and a vision of your presence, refresh our hearts this day. Be present in our midst, that we might hear your voice and respond to your call. In your holy name, we pray. Amen.

Opening Hymn - “We've a Story to Tell to the Nations” - UMH #569 (vss 1,3,4)

Pastoral Prayer and Lord’s Prayer
 
Prayer Response - “Cares Chorus” - TFWS #2215 (2 times)

I cast all my cares upon you,
I lay all of my burdens down at your feet,
and anytime that I don’t know what to do,
I will cast all my cares upon you. 
(Repeat)

Attention to the Word of God

Scripture Reading - Matthew 28:16-20
(Jill Lohmeier)
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (NRSV) 

Liturgist:   The word of God for the people of God.
People: Thanks be to God.

Message - " Ripples of Empowerment" - Pastor Seok-Hwan

Special Music
(Joy Stepinski, flute)
“Alleluia, Sing to Jesus!” - by Rowland H. Pritchard
“‘Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus” - by William J. Kirkpatrick

We Respond

Offertory Prayer 
We thank and praise you, O God, for the power of your healing touch and the gift of your saving presence. Bless these gifts, that they may bring the power of your gifts to a world in need. In Christ’s mighty name, we pray. Amen. 

Closing Hymn - " Lord, You Have Come to the Lakeshore " - UMH #344 (vss 1,2,3)

Benediction

(The Abingdon Worship Annual 2018: Worship Planning Resources for Every Sunday of the Year by Mary Scifres)

Response - “Evergreen 2020”
( To medical professionals around the world fighting COVID-19)
Our Openness Statement
“The United Methodist Church of Westford is an open and welcoming community of Christian Faith. Without any exceptions, we welcome anyone who seeks to love and to serve God.”
Please click here for “A Statement of Our Openness”.