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GATHERING BEFORE GOD
May 10, 2015
Sixth Sunday of Easter

PRELUDE  

GREETING AND PREPARATION

Leader: Alleluia! Christ is risen.
People: The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia!

CALL TO WORSHIP

Leader: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
People: When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.

Leader: When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
People: For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.  

— Isaiah 43:1-3, NIV

PRAYER OF INVOCATION


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 ALL MUST BE WELL

Through the love of God our Savior, all will be well;
Free and changeless is His favor; all is well.
Precious is the blood that healed us;
Perfect is the grace that sealed us;
Strong the hand stretched forth to shield us;
All must be well.

Though we pass through tribulation, all will be well;
Ours is such a full salvation; all is well.
Happy still in God confiding,
Fruitful, if in Christ abiding,
Steadfast through the Spirit’s guiding,
All must be well.

We expect a bright tomorrow; all will be well;
Faith can sing through days of sorrow, all is well.
On our Father’s love relying,
Jesus every need supplying,
Yes in living, or in dying,
All must be well.

On our Father’s love relying,
Jesus every need supplying,
Yes in living, or in dying,
All must be well.


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LORD I NEED YOU

Lord, I come, I confess
Bowing here I find my rest
Without You I fall apart
You're the One that guides my heart

CHORUS
Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Where sin runs deep Your grace is more
Where grace is found is where You are
And where You are, Lord, I am free
Holiness is Christ in me

CHORUS

Teach my song to rise to You
When temptation comes my way
And when I cannot stand I'll fall on You
Jesus, You're my hope and stay

CHORUS

You're my one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You


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RISING SUN

 Praise Him all you sinners
Sing oh sing you weary
Oh praise Him all you children of God
We lift high His glory
Shown throughout our stories
We praise Him as the children of God

CHORUS
Our Great Redeemer
Glorious Savior
Your name is higher than the rising sun
Light of the morning
You shine forever
Your name is higher than the rising sun
Your name is higher than the rising sun

Praise His name forever
Speak it loud and clear now
Oh praise Him all you children of God

CHORUS

Hallelujah name above all
Simply to speak Your name is praise
Hallelujah I will always
Forever we lift your name in praise


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CALL TO CONFESSION 

Leader: Since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us approach with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.  

 —Hebrews 10:21-22, NRSV

PRAYER OF CONFESSION

People: Eternal and merciful God,you have loved us with a love beyond our understanding, and you have set us on paths of righteousness for your name’s sake. Yet we have strayed from your way; we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, through what we have done and what we have left undone. As we remember the lavish gift of your grace symbolized in baptism, O God, we praise you and give you thanks that you forgive us yet again. Grant us now, we pray, the grace to die daily to sin, and to rise daily to new life in Christ, who lives and reigns with you, and in whose strong name we pray. Amen.

SILENT CONFESSION 

WORDS OF PARDON

Leader: Since we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain (that is, through his flesh), and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us approach with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.  

—Hebrews 10:19-22, NRSV

SONG OF RESPONSE - KYRIE ELEISON

Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy on us.
Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy on us. 
REPEAT


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THE WORD OF GOD

SCRIPTURE READING

Acts 10:44-48, NRSV  
 
44While Peter was still speaking, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who heard the word. 45The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astounded that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles, 46for they heard them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter said, 47“Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48So he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they invited him to stay for several days.

Minister: This is the word of the Lord.
People: Thanks be to God!

PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION
Sermon Series: Practice Resurrection
Sermon Title: Baptism

Speaker: Mike Harder


REFLECTIONS

We give you thanks, O holy and gracious God,     
for the gift of water.     
In the beginning of creation your Spirit moved over the waters.     
In the waters of the flood you destroyed evil.     
You led the children of Israel through the sea     
into the freedom of the promised land.     
In the river Jordan, John baptized our Lord     
and your Spirit anointed him.     
By his death and resurrection, Jesus Christ, the Living Water,     
frees us from sin and death and opens the way to life everlasting.     
We thank you, O God, for the gift of baptism.     
In this water you confirm to us     
that we are buried with Christ in his death,     
raised to share in his resurrection,     
and are being renewed by the Holy Spirit.     
Pour out on us your Holy Spirit,     
so that _____ here baptized may be washed clean and receive
new life. To you be all honor and glory, dominion and power,     
now and forever, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.  

- Prayer from Baptism Service


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APOSTLES’ CREED

Minister: Let us say what we believe.
People: We believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth. We believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended to hell. The third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended to heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty. From there he will come to judge the living and the dead. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.


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 THE LORD’S TABLE

THE GREAT THANKSGIVING  

The Lord be with you. 
And also with you.

Lift up your hearts now!  
We lift them to the Lord. 

Let us give thanks to the Lord our saving God.
It is right and good, always and everywhere.
To give thanks, to the Lord. 

Minister: With joy we praise you, gracious God, for you have created heaven and earth, made us in your image, and kept covenant with us—even when we fell into sin. We give you thanks for Jesus Christ, our Lord, who by his glorious resurrection overcame the power of sin and gave us new life. Therefore we join our voices with all the saints and angels and the whole creation to proclaim the glory of your name, saying:

Holy, holy, holy, God of power and might.
The whole earth is full of Your glory,
hosanna in the highest! 
Holy, holy, holy, God of power and might.
The whole earth is full of Your glory,
hosanna in the highest! 

Minister: By your power you raised Jesus from death to life. Through his victory over the grave we are set free from the bonds of sin and the fear of death to share the glorious freedom of the children of God. In his rising to life you promise eternal life to all who believe in him. We praise you that as we break bread in faith, we shall know the risen Christ among us.


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Your death, O Christ, we proclaim.
Your rising celebrate!
Your coming Lord we await, to make all things new.
(REPEAT)

Minister: Gracious God, pour out your Holy Spirit upon us, that the bread we break and the cup we bless may be the communion of the body and blood of Christ. By your Spirit make us one with Christ, that we may be one with all who share this feast, united in ministry in every place. As this bread is Christ’s body for us, send us out to be the body of Christ in the world.

Praise to the Father,
praise to the Son, 
praise to the Spirit, 
Our God the Three in One.  

WORDS OF INSTITUTION

Minister: Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.         
People: Therefore, let us keep the feast. 

HOLY COMMUNION        

Minister: The gifts of God for the people of God.     

Gluten-free communion wafers are available at the welcome table in the front lobby of the church. Please pick one up prior to coming forward to take communion. 

Holy Communion, also called the Lord’s Supper or the Eucharist, is the family meal of Christians. We invite all committed followers of Jesus Christ to partake of this sacrament: those who are baptized members of a congregation that proclaims the Gospel, who are at peace with God and their neighbor, and who seek strength to live more faithfully for Christ.


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PRAYERS FOR REFLECTION

If you are not a Christian, or if you are not prepared to share in this meal, we encourage you to spend this time in prayer. We hope that this time is helpful to you as you consider your relationship with Jesus Christ and with his people, the church. If you are unable to receive Communion, we invite you to meditate on one of the following prayers: 

PRAYER FOR THOSE SEARCHING FOR TRUTH: Lord Jesus, you claim to be the way, the truth, and the life. Grant that I might be undaunted by the cost of following you as I consider the reasons for doing so. If what you claim is true, please guide me, teach me, and open to me the reality of who you are. Give me an understanding of you that is coherent, convincing, and that leads to the life that you promise. Amen.

PRAYER OF BELIEF: Lord Jesus, I admit that I am weaker and more sinful than I ever before believed, but through you I am more loved and accepted than I ever dared hope. I thank you for paying my debt, bearing my punishment on the cross, and offering forgiveness and new life. Knowing that you have been raised from the dead, I turn from my sins and receive you as Savior and Lord. Amen.

PRAYER OF COMMITMENT: Lord Jesus, you have called us to follow you in baptism and in a life of committed discipleship in your church. Grant that I may take the necessary steps to be one with your people, and live in the fullness of your Spirit. Amen.


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BEFORE THE THRONE

Before the throne of God above
I have a strong and perfect plea.
A great high Priest whose Name is Love
Who ever lives and pleads for me.

My name is graven on His hands,
My name is written on His heart.
I know that while in Heaven He stands
No tongue can bid me thence depart.

When Satan tempts me to despair
And tells me of the guilt within,
Upward I look and see Him there
Who made an end of all my sin.

Because the sinless Savior died
My sinful soul is counted free.
For God the Just is satisfied
To look on Him and pardon me.

CHORUS
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Praise the One,
Risen Son of God!


Behold Him there the risen Lamb,
My perfect spotless righteousness,
The great unchangeable I AM,
The King of glory and of grace.

One in Himself I cannot die.
My soul is purchased by His blood,
My life is hid with Christ on high,
With Christ my Savior and my God!

CHORUS


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COMMUNION PRAYER
    
People: God of grace, you renew us at your table with the bread of life. May this food strengthen us in love and help us to serve you in each other. We ask this in the name of Jesus the Lord. Amen.

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Minister: Let us pray as our Lord Jesus has taught us:     
People: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and forever. Amen.


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SENDING INTO GOD’S WORLD

OFFERING

10,000 REASONS

CHORUS
Bless the Lord,
O my soul O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I'll worship Your holy name


The sun comes up, it's a new day dawning
It's time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes

CHORUS

You're rich in love, and You're slow to anger
Your name is great, and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness I will keep on singing
Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find

CHORUS

And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
Ten thousand years and then forevermore

CHORUS x2


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BENEDICTION

Minister: There is one body and one Spirit, just as we were called to the one hope of our calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.

—From Ephesians 4:1-6, NRSV

People: Amen.

DISMISSAL

Minister: Go out now, in the hope of the resurrected Lord Jesus, to love and serve the world.
People: Thanks be to God!


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ANNOUNCEMENTS

SUMMER INTERNSHIP
For six weeks this summer, Liberti is partnering the Aquinas Center to host an internship for undergraduates interested in urban ministry. Through this internship, we seek to engage college students in a multicultural experience with immigrants in South Philadelphia. Interns will also be discipled and mentored, as to help them grow in Christ and discern their gifts and calling. For more information, and to apply, head to libertichurch.org/internship.

BABY BOTTLE FUNDRAISER
For the next several weeks, we’ll have baby bottles at the connect table. You can take one home, fill it with loose change, and bring it back on Father’s Day, June 21. These funds will support Alpha Pregnancy Services (in Center City) and YoungLives (on the Main Line), both of which are ministries that serve new moms in need.

SUMMER VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
If you are new at Liberti, or have been coming for a while and have yet to get connected, we would love for you to serve with us on Sunday mornings this summer! We’re in need of volunteers in kids ministry, on the worship team, and on our setup and hospitality teams, so that we can continue to live and share the gospel each week. Please contact Ashley Somers (ashley@liberti.org) to talk more about how to best use your gifts!

PRAYER REQUESTS

This week, please pray alongside us for…
Our Church — For the many new and expecting mothers in our congregation.
Our City — For continued racial reconciliation throughout our neighborhoods and institutions.  
Our World — For the people of Baltimore, that they may know peace in our time.

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