On Independence Day, July 4, we celebrated “freedom.” But freedom is not a gift, it’s our responsibility. What are you going to do with your freedom? Let’s talk about this in today’s service.
Follow the entire service in the video here, or go at your own pace with portions of the service provided below.
The Prelude sets the mood for the service. Listen as Denise plays “Cares Chorus” from The Faith We Sing, #2215.
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.
Welcome from from Pastor Patrick:
Today is the fifth Sunday after Pentecost, and the day after Independence Day – so Happy 244th Birthday, America!
Here Christ welcomes all, and all are welcome. May the love of God, the grace of Christ, the friendship and peace of the Holy Spirit, be with you.
At Morgan Hill United Methodist Church, our vision, as a faith community, is to create an inclusive, reconciling and progressive spiritual community that welcomes all people based on the teaching of Jesus “to love one another.” (John 13:34-35)
The Call to Worship with Trish Catalano is based on Psalm 72, a prayer for our governmental leaders.
O God, our God, with your judgment and with your justice endow our leaders, that they may govern your people with justice and righteousness; and defend the afflicted and poor and redeem them from oppression and violence. Blessed are you, O Lord, our God who alone does wondrous deeds and blessed forever be Your glorious name; may the whole earth be filled with Your glory, Amen and Amen.
Creator God, you have created us to walk with you. Help us walk with you in this time of worship, that we may be strengthened to walk with you all the days of our lives. As we come to you this day, bless us with your grace and your Shalom rest that we may find renewal and the strength to serve with confidence and joy, this we pray, as we walk in the way of your Christ, Amen.
Our hymn is “Be Thou My Vision,” from The United Methodist Hymnal #451, played by Denise Melroy.
Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;
naught be all else to me, save that thou art.
Thou my best thought, by day or by night,
waking or sleeping, thy presence my light.
Be thou my wisdom, and thou my true word;
I ever with thee and thou with me, Lord;
thou and thou only, first in my heart,
great God of heaven, my treasure thou art.
Notes about this hymn: Although still relevant today, the words are from an Old Irish text, often attributed to Saint Dallán Forgaill in the 6th century. The words “thou” and “thee” were an informal way to address someone who may have been a close friend. See more at Wikipedia.
Our Gospel reading from Matthew 11:16-19 and 25-30 (The Message) offers us hope that our sorrows and burdens will be lifted.
Our offering is given to the mission and ministry of MHUMC. Find out more, and see ways to give, on our Giving page.
John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist Movement, gave us 3 general rules for Christian discipleship. These 3 rules are a guide to help us grow in holiness of heart and life, and are the rule of life for every United Methodist congregation.
- First: Do no harm.
- Second: Do good, as far as possible, to all people.
- Third: Love God and pay attention to the means of grace again with our prayers, our attendance, our giving, our service and our witness.
Receive these gifts we bring, and bless them to be gifts for your world. Through our giving renew others, that they too may know the comfort and find rest in the arms of your compassion and your love we pray. Amen.
|Special Music: “What Wondrous Love is This,” played by guest pianist Andoni Bundros.
The Prayer of the People and the Lord’s Prayer include these words of comfort: Come to us Holy Presence in the Spirit of Christ as we draw near to you in the confidence of your children, knowing that Christ will carry our burdens, renew our souls and give us rest, through your mercy and grace.
We pray in the way that Jesus taught us to pray, saying: “Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is heaven, give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespasses against us and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory forever, Amen.”
The message today from Pastor Patrick is “What are you going to do with your freedom?” Freedom is not simply a gift we are given, but a responsibility placed in our hands. The question isn’t really “Are you free?” or “How free are you?” The question is, “What are you going to do with your freedom?” You have a choice to make. What will you choose? See it in the video recording above, at 18:00.
The Service of Holy Communion, led by Pastor Patrick, is included in the video following the Pastor’s message. To participate in your home, please have your own bread and juice or wine at hand.
Eternal God, we give you thanks for this holy mystery in which you have given yourself to us. Grant that we may go into the world in the strength of your Spirit, and give ourselves for others with the same love, as Jesus gave himself in love for us, this we pray. Amen.
Closing Hymn: “Blest Be the Tie That Binds,” The United Methodist Hymnal #557, played by Denise Melroy.
Blest be the tie that binds our hearts in Christian love;
the fellowship of kindred minds is like to that above.
Credits and copyrights
- “Cares Chorus” by Kelly Willard. © CCLI License #2718708.
- “Be Thou My Vision” Ancient Irish words translated by Mary E. Byrne, traditional Irish melody with harmony by Carlton R. Young. Public domain.
- “Blest Be the Tie That Binds” by John Fawcett and Johann G. Nageli, arr. Lowell Mason. Public domain.
- All other text on this page © The United Methodist Church of Morgan Hill.