Worship Connection: Pentecost Sunday 2022

January 2nd, 2022


SCRIPTURE READINGS: Acts 2:1-21; Psalm 104:24-34, 35b; Romans 8:14-17; John 14:8-17 (25-27)


Call to Worship #1:

L: Come, Holy Spirit! Ignite our hearts with joy and confidence!
P: For God has done wondrous things for us.
L: Come, Holy Spirit! Fill us with the power of the rushing wind that we may faithfully serve you in all that we do.
P: For Christ has called each of us and blessed us!
L: Come, Holy Spirit! Be with us today.
P: Help us to boldly proclaim Christ Risen. AMEN.

Call to Worship #2:
L: We are the Easter people!
P: We have witnessed the Resurrection of our Lord.
L: We are now called to be people of the Pentecost.
P: We are called to boldly share the good news of God’s love.
L: Open your hearts, O people, to God’s great power and love.
P: We open our hearts to hear God’s word for us and to joyfully proclaim Jesus Christ as our Savior. AMEN.

Call to Worship #3:
[Using THE FAITH WE SING, p. 2117, “Spirit of God” (verses 1 and 4), offer the following call to worship. Have the instrumentalists play through the song one time. The second time through, have the choir sing verses 1 and 4 while liturgists enter, decorating the worship space]

L: Come, Holy Spirit of God! Bring your mighty power into our lives.
P: Rush through our spirits, inspiring us to witness to the great love of God.
[Liturgists enter, carrying unlit candles to be placed in the worship center, while the first verse of the song is being sung.]

L: Come, Holy Spirit of God! Burn light bright flames in our hearts.
P: Emblazon us with the confident spirit of faith that our lives will show your love.
[Two groups of liturgists enter. The first group, comprised of two people, enter with a lighted candle-lighter, or a tall lighted candle. They proceed to the worship center and light all the candles on the worship center. The second group of liturgists, comprised of four to six liturgists enter with red crepe paper streamers waving in the air, over the heads of the congregation. These streamers they hang from the pulpit, lectern, and worship table, then they leave.]

L: Come, Holy Spirit of God! Be with us today in our thoughts and our prayers.
P: Come, Holy Spirit of God! Be with us in our words and our deeds. AMEN.

Call to Worship #4:
L: God invites us to wake from our slumbers.
P: There is much to be done for God today.
L: God encourages us to proclaim God’s goodness and love.
P: There are so many people who are lost and hurt, who need the good news of God.
L: God inspires us to be bold in our proclamation, unafraid, confident.
P: Lord God, be with us as we step boldly out to share your Good News. AMEN.


Opening Prayer:

God of wind and fire, embolden us this day to receive your power. Help us to proclaim the wondrous things that you have done and continue to do in our lives. Give us strength and courage to share the Good News of your love and your presence. For we ask this in Jesus’ Name. AMEN.

Prayer of Confession:
Lord God, you know us too well. You know that we would be like the disciples following the crucifixion and even the resurrection. We would rather hide and mutter and weep, than proclaim the power of your love. The world is a difficult place. We fear so much. We want people to like us, and so we hold back on our proclamation of our faith. We don’t want to offend anyone. But your love and presence are not offensive. They are empowering and healing. Bring your holy fire upon us this day to ignite a spark of joy in our hearts and our voices. Bring the power of your rushing wind through our spirits that we may be turned in new directions for service and witness. We pray this in Jesus’ Name. AMEN.

Words of Assurance:
God’s awesome love is offered to you, even when you fear or are unsure of your faith. Know that God is with you. Be not afraid. Hallelujah!

Pastoral Prayer:
We would like to settle into a nice, comfortable routine, Lord, in which we don’t have to do much of anything, just sit back and relax. We are tired and wonder if we have anything left to give of our talents, our spirits, our lives. So the story of the disciples hiding in the upper room is not uncomfortable for us. We want to hide, too. But you have come to us in your resurrection love - we have seen the prints of the nails in your hands and feet, we have felt the wound in your side. We have been with you on the seashore, but we still quiver with fear and uncertainty. Send your Holy Spirit upon us today! Let the rushing wind of your spirit, stir us up to action for good and healing. Let the flame of your power ignite our hearts with passion for justice and peace. As we have brought names of people to prayer this day asking for healing mercies, may we also add our names, asking for empowerment and renewal of our spirits. Take us and use our gifts and our talents for healing in your world. Help us to be bold in our proclamation of your great Good News of love and hope. AMEN.

[Using THE FAITH WE SING, p. 2120 “ Spirit, Spirit of Gentleness”, have the choir or a small ensemble sing the refrain through first, and then sing it quietly through 3 more times while a reader is offering the following words - you will need to time this so that the reading ends before the final singing of the refrain]

Choir/Ensemble: singing refrain of TFWS, p. 2120 “Spirit, Spirit of Gentleness”
Reader 1: From the very instant of creation, your Holy Spirit moved on the waters of creation, bringing to life the creative love that is God.
Reader 2: Even when the people were forgetful and stubborn, your Holy Spirit called to them to be unafraid, to follow. It led them through the desert to a land of sweet dwelling.
Reader 1: During all the times of fear and tumult, you sang the song of hope through the prophets, who called people back to you with tender forgiveness.
Reader 2: On a dark winter night you sang your sweetest song and birthed a Savior who came to being us life and witness to your love and power.
Reader 1: At the lakeshore you called to the simple people, the fishermen, to come and follow you. They witnessed your miracles of healing and forgiving love.
Reader 2: When the night seemed to be the darkest, even though it was mid-day - you gave your Son to be a witness to your love. From his cross He forgave those who crucified Him and reminded a thief that paradise would be his home.
Reader 1: On the early morning, the women were startled with the news of His resurrection. Could it be that all he had said was true?
Reader 2: The disciples hid in fear of what others might say, think or do. They were astonished at his presence to them.
Reader 1: Spirit, Spirit of Gentleness, help us to dream dreams and see visions of all that is possible for the healing and hope for this world.
Reader 2: Help us cross lines which divide and unite to proclaim boldly that you are the Spirit of Absolute Love and Peace. Emblazon our spirits. Make bold our voices. Give joy to our hearts, for we have been called to be witnesses, even to the ends of the world. AMEN.

Awesome Spirit! You have inspired us this day to be witnesses to God’s love and power. Help us to be joyful in our service and strong in our faith for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. Now we go in peace, with God’s peace in our hearts.AMEN.


The traditional color for this Sunday is RED.

Surface: Create several levels on the worship table on which candles will be placed. The risers may vary from about two inches high to about 10” high.

Fabric: Cover the entire worship center in Red fabric, so that all the risers are covered and the fabric comes down to the floor.

Candles: You may use votive candles or small pillar candles. At least one of the candles on one of the taller risers should be about 8” high - this candle should be white. Each of the other candles may be white or various colors. Candles should be grouped on the risers and on the main level of the table. I would recommend using about 20-30 candles.

Flowers/Foliage: I recommend using ferns or ivy in this setting, but as a backdrop to the worship center to soften the edges, and give a good background for the candle risers.

Rocks/Wood: Not necessary for this setting.

Other: If you are using call to worship #3, above, in which liturgists bring in red crepe paper streamers, you will want to prepare the streamers in advance. Take red crepe paper streamers, about 3-4 feet in length, and put them together in bundles of five streamers. Each liturgist should be carrying a bundle of streamers in each hand, which they will wave over the congregation. These streamers may be placed on the pulpit, lectern, and worship table. If you are not using the call to worship #3, place the streamers on the pulpit, lectern, and draping down from the worship center. You might also think about hanging some streamers with doves from the walls on the sides of the sanctuary. Be creative, but don’t overdo it!

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