Sunday 4 June, 2017 – Pentecost, Year A

Here are the resources you need for this Sunday. Please feel free to choose what is suitable for your congregation’s needs. You will notice that the orders of service are available in different formats: choose the “pdf” format if you want something that is ready to print and photocopy, the “doc” or “rtf” format if you wish to change the formatting yourself or the “ppt” format if you use PowerPoint.

The Jewish festival ‘Pentecost’ came fifty days after the Passover. According to the Acts account, this was the day that the Holy Spirit was given to the church. In the earliest period of the church, Pentecost was a double celebration of both the ascension and the coming of the Holy Spirit. It was only late in the fourth century that the ascension came to be celebrated separately on its chronological date 40 days after Easter. At the same time, the term ‘Pentecost’ often referred to the whole 50 day period, not just the final Sunday. Despite the fact that the Acts chronology has received a liturgical imprimatur, Luke’s gospel seems to place Jesus’ ascension on the same day as his resurrection, and John’s gospel also places the giving of the Holy Spirit on Easter day. So it can be seen that the themes of Christ’s resurrection and ascension, together with the coming of the Holy Spirit, form not separate celebrations, but one celebration in the church.

As few people attend the Ascension Day services of the church today, we may need to give consideration to reintroducing the theme of the ascension into the Pentecost celebration, noting the clear connection between the two on the basis of texts such as John 14.

Just as the third article of the creeds was not highly developed in the early period, so also the ancient church developed no particular ceremonies in connection with Pentecost, apart from the fact that this is the last day that the paschal candle is lit.

There are various possibilities for decoration:
*    Use red and white flowers in the sanctuary. Could use poinsettias (like flames) or strelitzia (bird of paradise). Could include white dove and/or red candles (see last point below) in the arrangement.
*    A flame design could be created using red/orange flowers.
*    Arrange twelve torches (candles on high stands) at the end of the pews along the aisle (as sometimes done for carols by candlelight at Christmas), but use either red candles or red chimney glasses.
*    Decorate the church with red, yellow, and orange streamers. Arrange the streamers so that they highlight the places where the Spirit works through the means of grace: the altar, the baptismal font, the pulpit/lectern.
*    Decorate the church with the flags of different nationalities, especially those represented by congregational members.
*    Candles in the church are usually white. This is said to be because they symbolise Christ. However, on this occasion the candles on the altar and in the sanctuary could be red, to symbolise the fire of the Spirit.

Altar colour: Red

Bible readings:
Note: It is intended that the reading from Acts be read as either the first or the second reading. Although alternatives are given for both the first and second readings, the Acts reading should not to be omitted on this day.
FIRST READING Acts 2:1-21 The coming of the Holy Spirit
OR Numbers 11:24-30 Seventy elders of Israel receive the Spirit
PSALM Psalm 104:24-34,35b *For musical settings of this Psalm, please see the song suggestions below*
SECOND READING 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13 The gifts of the Spirit
OR, if not read as the first reading Acts 2:1-21 The coming of the Holy Spirit
GOSPEL John 20:19-23 Jesus gives his Spirit to the apostles
OR John 7:37-39 Jesus promises streams of life-giving water

Notes on the readings:
NUMBERS 11:24-30: General dissatisfaction had arisen in the Israelite camps over current privations in the desert compared to their enhanced memories of Egypt. Moses’ outraged plea to the Lord for relief evoked the command from the Lord to assemble the seventy elders so that the responsibility could be shared. God caused some of the spirit he had given to Moses to rest on the elders, as their prophesying showed. This ‘prophesying’ at this time was no doubt an ecstatic experience inducting them into office.

ACTS 2:1-21: This is the ‘baptism with the Holy Spirit’ predicted by John the Baptist concerning Jesus, and referred to by Jesus after his resurrection (Acts 1:5). It marks the culmination of his earthly ministry and the beginning of his continuing ministry by the Holy Spirit through his church into all the world. The miracle of tongues lay not only in the rational and powerful use by the disciples of languages never learnt, but also in the hearing of Jewish people from all around the Mediterranean world. Tongues of fire and the sound of rushing wind both figure in Old Testament imagery when the presence of God was involved. Peter’s reversal from his former fearful denial to brave confession of Christ, occasioned by the Spirit, proclaimed the long-planned purpose accomplished now in this sign. This prophesying and proclamation in tongues was mentioned by the prophet Joel among the cataclysmic signs of the end, thus demonstrating that this era has now been entered. Most importantly in all of this, ‘Whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved’.

1 CORINTHIANS 12:3b-13: The background to this reading needs to be born in mind. The Corinth congregation was beset by rivalry, division, envy and dissension despite its prominent gifts. A veiled reference in the previous verses to Father, Son and Spirit implies the purpose of unity behind these gifts. The primary and essential gift, of course, is common to all Christians, that is, personal saving faith in Jesus as Lord and Saviour. This attestation or manifestation of the Son’s headship in the body of believers is accompanied by God’s production of differing and divergent spiritual abilities in individual believers. These, though, are not for personal aggrandisement, but to achieve a shared benefit and blessing one to the other, according to the Spirit’s plan and purpose, apportioned as he wills. Christ’s body is to be built up with a unity of purpose which serves his headship.

JOHN 20:19-31: The peace between God and his foremost creature, established and pronounced by God in Jesus’ resurrection, is now declared by Jesus to the assembled disciples. They are commissioned and given the Holy Spirit. They are directed to pass on God’s peace in declaring forgiveness in the absolution. Any who refuse that forgiveness still live under condemnation.

JOHN 7:37-39: Jesus invited people at the Festival of Tabernacles at Jerusalem to come to him to drink. The scriptural reference here quoted by Jesus could well be a summary of many Old Testament prophesies depicting the pouring out of God’s Spirit in the messianic age as flowing water which may be drunk. John points in this section to the prediction of the coming of the Spirit after Jesus’s suffering and resurrection, that is, after his glorification.

Lay-readers please note: the linked sermons have not been edited for general use. As part of your preparations, keep in mind that they have been written for specific people in a specific context, and for this reason the issues they address or the examples they use may not be entirely suitable for people in your congregation. If you feel this is the case, you may need to make minor adjustments or find another sermon
Based on gospel: edited for lay reading sermon – john 20v19-23 – year a – pentecost
Based on Acts reading: Pr Vince Gerhardy ; edited for lay reading sermon – acts 2 1-21 – years a b c – pentecost
Based on 1 Corinthians reading: Pr Heath Pukallus ; NEW Pr Vince Gerhardy
Based on Numbers reading: NEW edited for lay reading sermon – numbers 11 24-30 – year a – pentecost

Opening sentences:
God has poured out his love into our hearts
by the Holy Spirit whom he has given us.
Come, Holy Spirit, Lord and giver of life.
Fill the hearts of your faithful people
and kindle in them the fire of your love.
Come, Holy Spirit, Lord and giver of life.

Come, Holy Spirit. Fill the hearts of your faithful people
and kindle in them the fire of your love.

Orders of service:
Pentecost Word & Prayer ( pdf / doc / ppt )
Service of the Word (pdf / rtf / ppt)
Morning Praise (pdf / rtf / ppt)
Service without communion (pdf / doc / ppt)
Service orders with holy communion
Service with communion (page 6) (pdf / doc / ppt )
Alternative form A (page 58) (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Sing the Feast (Chataway) (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Simplified Spoken (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Service with Five Songs of Faith (pdf / rtf/ ppt)

Prayer of the Day (Collect): Choose one of the following
O God,
since you taught the hearts of your faithful people
by sending them the light of your Holy Spirit:
Grant us by the same Spirit
to have a right judgment in all things
and always rejoice in his holy comfort;
through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

OR, modernised traditional
Lord God,
you taught the hearts of your faithful people
by sending them the light of your Holy Spirit.
Fill us with the same Spirit,
so that we may love what is right
and always rejoice in his comfort.
We ask this through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

OR, new (revised alternative)
(Let us pray for the power of the Holy Spirit. [silence])
Almighty and merciful God,
you sent your Holy Spirit at Pentecost,
making the disciples bold to preach the good news.
Send us out with the power of the same Spirit
to spread the fire of your love.
We ask this through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

ALLELUIA VERSE (after the second reading)
The Spirit of the Lord fills the world. Alleluia!
Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful people,
and kindle in them the fire of your love.

OR, especially if the alternative gospel (from John 7) is used:
Alleluia, alleluia.
Jesus said: ‘Let the one who believes in me drink.
As the scripture has said,”Out of the believer’s heart
shall flow rivers of living water”.’ (John 7:38 NRSV)

Prayer after the gospel
This is the gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.
Thank you, Lord Jesus Christ,
for giving the Holy Spirit to your disciples.
Fill us with the joy and peace of the Spirit.

Offering Prayer
Holy God,
may the Spirit you give us
make us more and more like your Son,
loving and self-giving.

Prayer of the Church/ General Prayer: Prayer of the Church- Pentecost A ; NEW Litany to the Holy Spirit

Resources for services with Holy Communion
It is indeed right and good,
Lord God, holy Father,
that we should at all times and in all places
give thanks to you,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
When he had ascended above the heavens
and was enthroned at your right hand,
he poured out the promised Holy Spirit
on his chosen people.
At this the whole earth greatly rejoices,
praising your name with many tongues.
And so, with angels and archangels,
and with all the company of heaven,
we adore and praise your glorious name:

Jesus says: ‘Let anyone who is thirsty come to me,
and let the one who believes in me drink.’
(Thanks be to God.)
Come, everything is ready.

We thank you, heavenly Father,
that you have given us one Spirit to drink
through the body and blood of your Son.
Let your Holy Spirit unite us all
in the holy fellowship of faith and love and praise.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

This seasonal blessing is used together with (ie before) the usual blessing in the order of service.
(May) the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing,
so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope; . . .

Go in peace, in the Spirit of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.  OR  In the name of Christ. Amen.

Visual images for the day: His Word in Pictures

Song/Hymn suggestions: * =  Modernised version available (please click here to go to the Modernised hymns page) ;G3, G4 . . . =  Guitar chords available in the Music Package 3, 4 . . .; GS =  Guitar chords in the Supplement to LH
First reading (a): Acts 2:1-21

116    Come, Holy Spirit, heavenly dove * G8
117    Come, Holy Ghost, our souls inspire
119    Come down, O Love divine G8
121    Come, Holy Ghost, God and Lord * G4
124    O Holy Spirit, enter Thou * G3
128    O Spirit of life, O Spirit of God * G5
129    Breathe on me, Breath of God G5
227    O Spirit of the living God G5
229    Revive Thy work, O Lord * G5
505    Father, who the light this day G4
773    Filled with the Spirit’s power G7
775    Let every Christian pray G7
779    My Lord of light, who made the worlds G8
218    Spirit, Spirit of gentleness
249    As a dream receive your history
264    Spirit of God, you’re with me
299    Pour it all out, Jesus
334    Wa wa wa Emimimo
358    Holy Spirit, living water
186    Alleluia (v 6)
396    Come, Holy Spirit, our souls inspire
397    Come, Spirit blest, Creator, come
398    Come down, O Love divine
399    Come, Spirit of God, holy Lord
400    O Holy Spirit, enter in
401    O Spirit of life, O Spirit of God
404    Lord God, the Spirit blest
405    O Spirit of the living God
406    Spirit divine, attend our prayers
407    Breathe on me, Breath of God
409    O breath of life, come sweeping through us
411    Filled with the Spirit’s power
415    Praise the Spirit in creation
416    Great God, your Spirit like the wind
420    Holy Spirit, go before us
422    Come, Holy Spirit, come
423    Christians, lift up your hearts
572    O thou who camest from above
711    Wa wa wa Emimimo

First reading (b): Numbers 11:24-30

229    Revive Thy work. O Lord* G5
359    Holy Spirit, living water
415    Praise the Spirit in creation

Second reading (a): 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13

121    Come, Holy Ghost, God and Lord* G4
194    Thy hand, O God, has guided G3
245    Lord of the Church, we humbly pray* G6
264    Spirit of God
313    Christ be our light
388    One body
399    Come, Spirit of God, holy Lord
413    Holy Spirit, come confirm us
419    Like the murmur of the dove’s flight
422    Come Holy Spirit, come
440    Christ, from whom all blessings flow
442    All praise to our redeeming Lord
456    Your hand, O God, has guided
468    We are your people
572    O thou who camest from above
630    The law of Christ alone can make us free

Second reading (b): Acts 2:1-21
See above under the first reading.

Gospel (a): John 20:19-23

129    Breathe on me, Breath of God G5
504    To Thy temple I repair G5
512    Lord, Thy blessing send us* G7
513    Peace to soothe all grief and woe G5
803    Peace with the Father G7
305    Thuma mina
343    Jesus come and stand among us
406    Peace
576    Bless us Lord (benediction)
363    Alleluia (v 4)
407    Breathe on me, breath of God
408    O breath of God, breathe on us now
466    Peace with the Father, peace with Christ his son
623    Lord Christ, true peace of all above
635    ’Forgive our sins as we forgive’
749    Thuma mina

Gospel (b): John 7:37-39

126    O Thou source of sweetest gladness
127    Come, Holy Spirit, come (v 5)* G4
158    Jesus, lover of my soul G4
364    A new heart, Lord, create in me* G5
359    Holy Spirit, living water
211    Jesus, lover of my soul
559    A new heart, Lord, create in me
744    Refresh my heart

The following songs from the ‘All Together’ books are suitable for Pentecost.
99    Pentecost Prayer
105    Spirit of God
192    Spirit of Peace
202    Move when the Spirit say move
217    Shine, Jesus, shine
218    Spirit
223    When your Spirit moves
249    Dreams and visions
251    God sends us his Spirit
264    Spirit of God
276    Into your death
299    Pour it all out, Jesus
334    Wa wa wa Emimimo
359    Holy Spirit, living water
469    Wind is moving
605   God of creation
607   Spirit of Dreaming
643   Spirit, Lead us

TIS 65, Praise the Lord, O my soul, is a version of Psalm 104:1,24,27-31,33.

The following metrical version of Psalm 104:24-34, 35b by David Schütz may be sung to the tune of ‘What wondrous love is this’ (LHS 794, ATA 145). If reproducing this version, please put ‘Words (c) David Schütz’ at the beginning or the end of the psalm.

How many are your works, O Lord God, and how wise!
Your creatures fill all parts of the earth.
Where ships sail to and fro, on seas so great and wide,
there countless creatures live, and the whales have their sport,
and you have made them all, great and small.

See how they look to you for their food in due time.
You open up your hand, they are filled.
But when you hide your face, they suffer in dismay.
You take away their breath, and they die and decay;
they all return again to the dust.

You send your spirit out to create life again,
and you renew the face of the earth;
rejoice, Lord, in your works, your glory evermore!
You look upon the earth, and it trembles and quakes;
the mountains pour out smoke at your touch.

So I’ll sing to the Lord, for as long as I live;
I’ll sing my praise to God all my life.
And may my words and thoughts be pleasing to the Lord,
for in the Lord alone will my soul find its joy:
O bless the Lord, my soul! Praise the Lord!

Music Resources Vol. 3– Psalm settings: Psalm 104 p174 , Psalm 104 p175

While the LCA does not necessarily endorse the content of these websites, you may find them helpful in your worship planning.
Small Church Music: You can download mp3 and midi files of popular hymn tunes from this site.
Together to Celebrate: lectionary based song and hymn suggestions from a variety of sources.
Singing from the Lectionary: has song and hymn suggestions based on the RCL from other hymnals.
Song Select: you can search for more contemporary songs by theme. If your congregation has a paid subscription you can also download sheet music.
Hymns Without Words: mp3 downloads of hymn tunes.
Song and Hymn Index. Contains all the indexes of the LHS and AT books in one Excel file. Download the file (zip file) here.
Metrical Psalms by Dale Schoening : Psalms set to well known hymn tunes.
Keyboard Accompaniments for Together in Song – CDs are available for purchase through ACR. CD 1 & 2 ; CD 3 & 4.

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