Saturday morning March 5

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Opening response

Lord, open our lips
and our mouth will proclaim your praise.
Hear our voice, O Lord, according to your faithful love,
according to your judgment give us life.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, God of compassion and mercy,
to you be praise and glory forever.
In the darkness of our sin,
your light breaks forth like the dawn
and your healing springs up for deliverance.
As we rejoice in the gift of your saving help,
sustain us with your bountiful Spirit
and open our lips to sing your praise.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.


O When Shall We Supremely Blest

Charles Wesley
O when shall we supremely blest
Enter the rapturous unrest,
Partake the triumph of the sky,
And holy, holy, holy, cry?

We render thanks with one accord
To our Almighty God and Lord,
Who was, and is, and is to come,
Let Jesus all his power assume.

Jesus let his whole church adore
The elders, and the living four,
Worship divine to Christ be given
By every citizen of heaven!

With all that angel-host, with all
Those blessed saints we long to fall,
And sing in ecstasies unknown,
And praise him on his dazzling throne.

Honor, and majesty, and power,
And thanks and blessing evermore,
Who dost through endless ages live,
Thou, Lord, art worthy to receive.

For thou hast bid the creatures be,
And still subsist to pleasure thee,
From thee they came, to thee they tend,
Their gracious source, their glorious end!

Confession of sin

Let us admit to God the sin which always confronts us.

A time of silence and self-examination may be kept.

Almighty God,
patient and of great goodness:
I confess to you,
I confess with my whole heart
my neglect and forgetfulness of your commandments,
my wrong doing, thinking, and speaking;
the hurts I have done to others,
and the good I have left undone.
O God, forgive me, for I have sinned against you;
and raise me to newness of life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 

May the God of love and power
forgive us and free us from our sins,
heal and strengthen us by his Spirit,
and raise us to new life in Christ our Lord.

The Word of God

Psalm 31

I entrust my spirit into your hands.

I take refuge in you, Lord.
    Please never let me be put to shame.
        Rescue me by your righteousness!
Listen closely to me!
    Deliver me quickly;
        be a rock that protects me;
        be a strong fortress that saves me!
You are definitely my rock and my fortress.
    Guide me and lead me for the sake of your good name!
Get me out of this net that’s been set for me
    because you are my protective fortress.
I entrust my spirit into your hands;
    you, Lord, God of faithfulness—
    you have saved me.
I hate those who embrace what is completely worthless.
    I myself trust the Lord.
I rejoice and celebrate in your faithful love
    because you saw my suffering—
    you were intimately acquainted with my deep distress.
You didn’t hand me over to the enemy,
    but set my feet in wide-open spaces.
Have mercy on me, Lord, because I’m depressed.
    My vision fails because of my grief,
    as do my spirit and my body.
My life is consumed with sadness;
    my years are consumed with groaning.
Strength fails me because of my suffering;
    my bones dry up.
I’m a joke to all my enemies,
    still worse to my neighbors.
    I scare my friends,
    and whoever sees me in the street runs away!
I am forgotten, like I’m dead,
    completely out of mind;
    I am like a piece of pottery, destroyed.
Yes, I’ve heard all the gossiping,
    terror all around;
    so many gang up together against me,
        they plan to take my life!
But me? I trust you, Lord!
    I affirm, “You are my God.”
My future is in your hands.
    Don’t hand me over to my enemies,
    to all who are out to get me!
Shine your face on your servant;
    save me by your faithful love!
Lord, don’t let me be put to shame
    because I have cried out to you.
Let the wicked be put to shame;
    let them be silenced in death’s domain!
Let their lying lips be shut up
    whenever they speak arrogantly
    against the righteous with pride and contempt!
How great is the goodness
    that you’ve reserved for those who honor you,
    that you commit to those who take refuge in you—
        in the sight of everyone!
You hide them in the shelter of your wings,
    safe from human scheming.
    You conceal them in a shelter,
    safe from accusing tongues.
Bless the Lord,
    because he has wondrously revealed
    his faithful love to me
    when I was like a city under siege!
When I was panicked, I said,
    “I’m cut off from your eyes!”
But you heard my request for mercy
    when I cried out to you for help.
All you who are faithful, love the Lord!
    The Lord protects those who are loyal,
        but he pays the proud back to the fullest degree.
All you who wait for the Lord,
be strong and let your heart take courage.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

I entrust my spirit into your hands.

Psalm prayer

Lord Jesus Christ,
when scorn and shame besiege us
and hope is veiled in grief,
hold us in your wounded hands
and make your face shine on us again,
for you are our Lord and God.

Old Testament reading
Exodus 1:22-2:10

Then Pharaoh gave an order to all his people: “Throw every baby boy born to the Hebrews into the Nile River, but you can let all the girls live.”

Now a man from Levi’s household married a Levite woman. The woman became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She saw that the baby was healthy and beautiful, so she hid him for three months. When she couldn’t hide him any longer, she took a reed basket and sealed it up with black tar. She put the child in the basket and set the basket among the reeds at the riverbank. The baby’s older sister stood watch nearby to see what would happen to him.

Pharaoh’s daughter came down to bathe in the river, while her women servants walked along beside the river. She saw the basket among the reeds, and she sent one of her servants to bring it to her. When she opened it, she saw the child. The boy was crying, and she felt sorry for him. She said, “This must be one of the Hebrews’ children.”

Then the baby’s sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Would you like me to go and find one of the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?”

Pharaoh’s daughter agreed, “Yes, do that.” So the girl went and called the child’s mother. Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse it for me, and I’ll pay you for your work.” So the woman took the child and nursed it. After the child had grown up, she brought him back to Pharaoh’s daughter, who adopted him as her son. She named him Moses, “because,” she said, “I pulled him out of the water.”

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Hebrews 8

Now the main point of what we are saying is this: We have this kind of high priest. He sat down at the right side of the throne of the majesty in the heavens. He’s serving as a priest in the holy place, which is the true meeting tent that God, not any human being, set up. Every high priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices. So it’s necessary for this high priest also to have something to offer. If he was located on earth, he wouldn’t be a priest because there are already others who offer gifts based on the Law. They serve in a place that is a copy and shadow of the heavenly meeting tent. This is indicated when Moses was warned by God when he was about to set up the meeting tent: See that you follow the pattern that I showed you on the mountain in every detail. But now, Jesus has received a superior priestly service just as he arranged a better covenant that is enacted with better promises.

If the first covenant had been without fault, it wouldn’t have made sense to expect a second. But God did find fault with them, since he says,

Look, the days are coming, says the Lord,
        when I will make a covenant with the house of Israel,
        and I will make a new covenant with the house of Judah.
It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors
    on the day I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt,
        because they did not continue to keep my covenant,
        and I lost interest in them, says the Lord.
This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel
        after those days, says the Lord.
I will place my laws in their minds,
        and write them on their hearts.
I will be their God,
    and they will be my people.
    And each person won’t ever teach a neighbor
    or their brother or sister, saying, “Know the Lord,”
        because they will all know me,
            from the least important of them to the most important;
        because I will be lenient toward their unjust actions,
            and I won’t remember their sins anymore.

When it says new, it makes the first obsolete. And if something is old and outdated, it’s close to disappearing.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full.

Bless the Lord God of Israel
because he has come to help and has delivered his people.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house,
just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago.
He has brought salvation from our enemies
and from the power of all those who hate us.
He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
and remembered his holy covenant,
the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham.
He has granted that we would be rescued
from the power of our enemies
so that we could serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes,
for as long as we live.
You, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way.
You will tell his people how to be saved
through the forgiveness of their sins.
Because of our God’s deep compassion,
the dawn from heaven will break upon us,
to give light to those who are sitting in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide us on the path of peace.”

Luke 1:68-79

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full.

Brief silence.

The Apostle’s Creed

Let us unite in this historic confession of the Christian faith: 

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I 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.


Intercession and thanksgiving

Prayers are offered
for the day and its tasks
for the world and its needs
for the Church and her life


Loving God, we look to you.
Receive our prayer.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

Almighty God,
whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain,
and entered not into glory before he was crucified:
mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross,
may find it none other than the way of life and peace;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.     

The Lord’s Prayer

Trusting in the compassion of God,
as our Savior taught us, so we pray

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and forever.


May God our Redeemer show us compassion and love.