Welcome to worship from the Eastern Region of the Riverina Presbytery of the Uniting Church in Australia. Today, this service will be led by multiple people from the Eastern Region. We will walk with the those two disciples on the road to Emmaus and also remember all those men & women who have served our country in time of war. The service has been ‘pre-recorded’ in four videos using ‘Vimeo’. Four Youtube videos of music are also included.
HYMN: “GOD IS OUR STRENGTH AND REFUGE”
Let us join together, wherever we are, and sing our first hymn, ‘God is our strength and refuge’. The words of all hymns will display within the video so you can join in if you want to. “God is our strength and refuge” (Psalm 46) is sung to the tune “Dam busters” by the leaders of Glory Presbyterian Church Singapore on 13 July 2014.
Call to worship & welcome
The ‘Call to Worship’ and ‘Opening Prayers’, which are in the video below, are led by Rev. Keith Robinson and Ros Robinson. The words are also included underneath the video.
In the beginning when it was very dark God said,
“Let there be light.”
And there was light
[The sign of light, a lighted candle, is placed on the empty table]
In the beginning when it was very quiet, the word was with God.
And the word was God
[The sign of the Word, the Bible, is opened and placed on the table]
When the time was right God sent His Son.
He came among us, and was one of us.
[The sign of the Son, a cross, is placed on the table]
Today we gather, wherever we are,
In the name of the risen Lord. Alleluia!
Acknowledgment of country
As we begin our worship, we also acknowledge the Wiradjuri people, the first inhabitants of our region, part of God’s good creation. We honour them for their custodianship of the land, on which we live today.
Let us pray…
We praise you, God of earth and heaven; with people all around the world, we praise you. You are always there, never growing old, fresh as each new day.
You were in Jesus, showing us your love. By his resurrection, you give us hope of living with you forever. You bring life and light to the world by the Holy Spirit, making every moment your moment; each day you come to our rescue. To you – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – let all the world give praise, today, and every day, for ever and ever.
Lord of all nations, on Anzac Day yesterday, we remembered those who gave themselves with courage in service for their country. We pray that the sacrifice of those who have gone before us will not be in vain. Have mercy on our broken and divided world and banish the spirit that makes for division & war.
In the midst of worldly turmoil and strife, make us yearn for peace – not only with each other – but peace with you through our crucified and risen Saviour. Trusting in him for the forgiveness of our sins, may we be the hands and feet of Christ in this world, as we look forward to his return.
In his name, we pray. Amen. Let us spend a moment in silent reflection…
Promise of God’s forgiveness
Sisters and brothers, hear the Gospel message:
‘Christ has died for us, Christ is risen for us,
Christ intercedes for us.’
Let us take up the new life Christ offers;
for through him, our sins are forgiven:
Thanks be to God!
MUSICAL REFLECTION: ‘IN REMEMBRANCE’
You are now invited to play a musical reflection, called ‘In remembrance’. It is sung by the ‘Lady Cove Women’s Choir’. The words, which are not included in the video, are below.
Do not stand at my grave and weep; I am not there, I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow. I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn’s rain. When you awaken in the morning’s hush, I am the swift uplifting rush of quiet birds in circled flight. I am the soft stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there, I did not die. (Words: Mary Elizabeth Frye, Music: Eleanor Daley)
Listening for God’s Word
readings: Luke 24: 13–27 & Luke 24: 28–35
The Bible readings for today are from Luke, chapter 24. We hear the story of two disciples who, three days after Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem, walked to a village called Emmaus. Let us travel with them as they walk this road. Our readings for today are read by Stewart Bruce (Harden Uniting Church) & Linley Chaplin (Cootamundra Uniting Church).
The message today is by Rev. Keith Robinson, the Minister Eastern Region, Riverina Presbytery, Uniting Church in Australia. He concludes his message with a guided meditation.
Sending out into God’s world
Prayers of the People & Closing Blessing
Join Arnold Spackman of Boorowa Uniting Church in his prayers for today. Select play in the embedded’ video below. Rev. Keith Robinson concludes with the Lord Prayer & a closing blessing.
Jesus said, ‘Peace be with you.’ May God’s peace be with you on the path you walk this week, in every breath, in every challenge and in every joy. And may the blessing of God the Creator, Christ the Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit the Sustainer, be with you and remain with you, now and forever. Amen.
Closing Hymn: “To God be the glory”
A virtual choir sings, “A mighty fortress is our God”. This choir piece features the performances of 176 singers and musicians from 34 countries, recorded individually and assembled by David Wesley into what you see and hear! Words and Music by Martin Luther (1529), arrangement by David Wesley and Don Hart.