FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH
Head Deacon, Mary Alden
Office: (207) 548-0327; or
Church Office Assistant: Bill Zito
Email: or text/call at 207-323-0230
Church Office Hours
Tues/Th 11 am - 3 pm
DRIVE - IN WORSHIP This Sunday we will continue to offer drive-in worship services in the church parking lot on Knox Bros. Ave. Worship will begin at 10 am on the dot. You may want to arrive early because parking will take some time. Be ready with your car radio tuned to 103.5 FM. Remember to bring masks in case you to need speak to someone who outside your car (during collection?). You are asked to remain in your vehicle the entire time. Bathrooms will not be open. We have attached a simple bulletin with the hymn lyrics on it. You may want to print it and bring it along with you but we will direct your through the service if you decide not to do so. To limit contact and to maintain social distancing, we have decided to NOT distribute any papers to individuals. We will take up a collection with a trustee bringing a wooden box on a long pole to your car window during the service. If you have a joy or concern you would like us to share during prayer time, please let us know by 7 pm Saturday night. We have made lots of plans using a great deal of consideration to keep everyone safe. OUR FIRST SERVICE IN THE SANCTUARY (CHURCH) WILL BE JULY 4. Let us pray this adventure will please God.
BULLETIN - JUNE 13 - at 10:00 AM as PDF and WORD Bulletin prints out as:
AND AT HOME SERVICE WILL BE POSTED FOR JUNE 13 AS FOLLOWS:
ORDER OF SERVICE
SEARSPORT CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH
June 20, 2021
Pastor Vance Jordan, Guest Carolyn Maunz, Minister of Music
Prelude This is My Father's World Carolyn Maunz, Minister of Music
Welcome, Announcements, Joys, and Concerns – Head Deacon Mary Alden
Call to Worship (from “This is My Father’s World”)
This is my father’s world, o let me ne’er forget.
That though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the ruler yet.
This is me father’s world, why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is king, let the heavens ring!
God reigns, let the earth be glad. Amen.
Opening HymnAbide With Me Carolyn Maunz, Minister of Music
Abide with me, fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens, Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail, and comforts flee.
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.
I need Thy presence ev’ry passing hour;
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
Who like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.
(ending………… in the Lord’s Prayer)
Anthem (Offertory) O My Beloved Father Carolyn Maunz, Minister of Music
Prayer of Acceptance
1 Samuel 15: 34, 16: 13
2 Corinthians 5: 6-17
Mark 4: 26-34
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost!
As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be –
World without end. Amen!
June 20, 2021 Armor f God...Your Faith has freed you...
We find these words from the book of Samuel. "Saul said to David, go and the Lord be with you. Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of
armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them.I
cannot go in these he said to Saul because I am not used to them. So he took them off. Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of the shepherd's bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine." David was just a boy although we are not told how old he was. He volunteered to fight Goliath so that a long war might be avoided. King Saul was doubtful about the outcome of that battle but wanted to give David all the advantages possible. Saul gave David his armor and his weapons. After trying them on for size, David found it difficult even to move around and walk in them.I sometimes thi nk of David stumbling around in the heavy armor when I see the elementary students get on and off the school bus with their big backpacks. Saul had given David another source of protection he didn't even know that he had. "Saul said to David, go and the Lord be with you." David knew this was the only armor he really needed. "David said to the Philistine, you come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will hand you over to me." The apostle Paul wrote about armor to teach and encourage the early church. "Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with a readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit,which is the word of God." The truth of God's love and forgiveness will always be a source of strength and protection whenever we face difficulty or danger. Paul calls it a belt because it holds everything together. The breastplate covers our chests and protects our heart. When we live as brothers and sisters of Jesus and try to live as he did, we are living the right way as God intended for his children to live in peace. In all these things we are told to carry the shield of faith to protect us from all the attacks of evil, like hurtful words spoken in anger and little jealousies that keep us from working and playing together. It is God's work that teaches us to live in peace and to help each other. Let us live and work and play dressed in the armor of God not the armor of war.
The first Sunday in June was cancer survivors day. One of my volunteer opportunities has been to facilitate a men's cancer support group in Norway. There are stories of suffering through treatments. There are also stories of remission, a new sense of purpose in life and a newfound empathy for those who
suffer for any reason. God speaks to us in amazing and wonderful ways if we will only listen for him. We all can learn from what we see around us and the opportunities that arise to help our neighbors through whatever suffering they may face. All three synoptic Gospels tell the story of the woman who had been suffering for 12 years. "She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse." Even today there is much that the medical community does not know or understand despite all their best efforts to help and to do no harm. One of the superstitions of her day was that if she could just touch the clothes of the great healer she might find relief. She was considered unclean because of her illness so she could not approach Jesus to ask for His help. According to their purity laws she shouldn't even have been in the crowd in the first place. How often do we still ostracize the sick and hurting in our own communities? Then there was a miracle of faith and healing and being saved. ''Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was free from her suffering." There was no waiting for the medicine to work or the chemo or radiation treatments to have an effect.
Jesus knew that something wonderful had just happened. I think he knew it would happen before the woman even came up behind him. His purpose was never to suggest she had taken something that was not hers to take. His purpose in calling attention to her was to increase her faith and to let her know it was not some
magic but the power of God that had made her well. She became a witness to the power of God's healing through Jesus. Matthew and Luke report she, "was healed from that moment." Luke records that, ''she was freed from her suffering." She told everyone in the crowd the whole story and the whole truth. I have to believe that the trembling with fear turned into trembling with excitement as the complete healing- including a sense of saving came to her. Jesus said to her,
''daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be free from your suffering." Jesus calls her daughter, a term of inclusion at')d love. She is no longer
an outcast because of her suffering but has now been healed and saved. If John had written about this he might have said she was born again. Surely she had a
new life -the life God had given to her. Jesus now moves to the first crisis of the day and they laugh at him for being too late. Yet a loving father and mother had not given up hope. Jairus was given that hope when Jesus told him, ''don't be afraid; just believe." There was fear in the woman for being caught in the act of taking something that she didn't feel she had the right to take. There is fear that death would have the final word in a 12-year-old girl. There is fear in continued
suffering after trying every option. There is fear in the potential for loss. Jesus gives us hope in all circumstances. "Your faith has healed you... Don't be afraid;
just believe." May these words take away our suffering today -whatever that suffering may be. The Apostle Paul suffered much for his faith yet he always wrote of love and hope. He wrote, ''we put no stumbling block in anyone's path, so that our ministry will not be discredited. Rather as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way..." Most of us will not suffer as his long list shows how he suffered for his faith. We must always be ready to show the world there is no difference between what we profess as faith andwhat we show in the living of our faith. "Understanding, patience, kindness, love and the power of God... Always rejoicing, making many rich... Possessing everything." These are the gifts we have been given through the Holy Spirit. Living our faith in these ways will ease the
world's suffering and fear, and bring about all the possibilities of healing and new life. The evidence of our Christian faith is in service to God and neighbor. It is not what we receive but what we give that shows the world we have been freed from our suffering and we are no longer afraid because we now believe. We are to "open wide our hearts..." We are no longer to keep God's gifts of healing and life to ourselves but we must tell everyone will listen. This is how we do our
parts in preparing the way for the kingdom of God. Amen.
Closing Hymn Precious Lord, Take My Hand Carolyn Maunz, Minister of Music
Precious Lord, take my hand,
Lead me on, help me stand;
I am tired, I am weak, I am worn;
Through the storm, through the night
Lead me on to the light
Take my hand, Precious Lord, lead me home.
When the darkness appears
And the night draws near,
And the day is past and gone;
At the river I stand,
Guide my feet, hold my hand;
Take my hand, Precious Lord, lead me home.
Three fold - Amen
Postlude How Greqt Thou Art Carolyn Maunz, Minister of Music
Played by Carolyn Maunz, Recorded for you by Don Maunz