Bulletin for Sunday, March 29th, 2020

The Liturgy of the Word 

Opening Hymn  

Abide with me                                    

Opening Acclamation                                    

Priest: Blessed be the God of our salvation

People: Who bears our burdens and forgives our sins.

Collect for Purity    

Priest: Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen

Collect for this Season                     

Priest: May God be with you.

People: And also with you.

Priest: Let us pray. 

God of our joy and of our sorrow, you entered a world in crisis as the vulnerable child of an occupied people; teach us to live, even as we fear death, to sing, even as we feel silenced, to love, even as we are separated, to act, even when we are afraid. Care for the sick and the suffering, bless the dying, attend to the lonely, release the captive, and all for your love’s sake. Amen.

Old Testament                                          

Ezekiel 37:1-14

The hand of the Lord came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me all around them; there were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. He said to me, “Mortal, can these bones live?” I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. I will lay sinews on you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live; and you shall know that I am the Lord.”

So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath: Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.” I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude.

Then he said to me, “Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off completely.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: I am going to open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people; and I will bring you back to the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people. I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you on your own soil; then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken and will act,” says the Lord.

ReaderHear what the Spirit is saying to God’s people.               

Response: Thanks be to God.

Psalm                                                               

Psalm 130

1 Out of the depths have I called to you, O Lord;

Lord, hear my voice; *

let your ears consider well the voice of my supplication.

2 If you, Lord, were to note what is done amiss, *

O Lord, who could stand?

3 For there is forgiveness with you; *

therefore you shall be feared.

4 I wait for the Lord; my soul waits for him; *

in his word is my hope.

5 My soul waits for the Lord,

more than watchmen for the morning, *

more than watchmen for the morning.

6 O Israel, wait for the Lord, *

for with the Lord there is mercy;

7 With him there is plenteous redemption, *

and he shall redeem Israel from all their sins.

The Epistle                                        

Romans 8:6-11

To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law– indeed it cannot, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.     

Reader: Hear what the Spirit is saying to God’s people.         

Response: Thanks be to God.

The Gospel                                                 

John 11:1-45

Priest: The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.

Response: Glory to you, Lord Christ.

Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair; her brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, “Lord, he whom you love is ill.” But when Jesus heard it, he said, “This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” Accordingly, though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was.

Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.” The disciples said to him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?” Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them.” After saying this, he told them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him.” The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.” Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death, but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”

When Jesus arrived, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, some two miles away, and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them about their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary stayed at home. Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” She said to him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world.”

When she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary, and told her privately, “The Teacher is here and is calling for you.” And when she heard it, she got up quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. The Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus began to weep. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”

Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upward and said, “Father, I thank you for having heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me.” When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”

Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.

Priest: The Gospel of the Lord.   
Response: Praise to you, Lord Christ. 

Sermon                 The Rev. Erin Maxfield-Steele

Liturgical Affirmation   

All: You, O God, are supreme and holy. 

You create our world and give us life. 

Your purpose overarches everything we do. 

You have always been with us.                  

You are God.

You, O God, are infinitely generous, good beyond all measure. 

You came to us before we came to you. 

You have revealed and proved your love for us in Jesus Christ, who lived and died and rose again.

You are with us now. 

You are God.   

You, O God, are Holy Spirit. 

You empower us to be your gospel in the world. 

You reconcile and heal; you overcome death. 

You are our God. We worship you. Amen.

Prayers of the People             

Reader: With all our heart and with all our mind, let us pray to God, saying, “God, have mercy.”

For the peace from above, for the loving-kindness of God, and for the salvation of our souls, let us pray to God.

    All: God have mercy.

For the peace of the world, for the welfare of the holy Church of God, and for the unity of all peoples, let us pray to God.

        God have mercy.

For Michael our Presiding Bishop, José our Bishop, Erin our Priest, and for all clergy and people, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

For all global, national, state, and local leaders, and for all in positions of power, that they be held accountable to the people impacted by their decisions, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

For this city of Asheville, for every city and community, and for those who live in them, let us pray to God.

        God have mercy.

For God’s good earth and for the wisdom and will to conserve it, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

For the aged and infirm, for the widowed and orphans, and for the sick and the suffering, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

For the poor and the oppressed, for the unemployed and the destitute, for prisoners and captives, and for all who remember and care for them, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

For all young people, protect and guide them that may grow in love and hope, and may find your peace and grace throughout their lives.

        God have mercy.

For all who have died in the hope of the resurrection, and for all the departed, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

For deliverance from all danger, violence, oppression, and degradation, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

That we may end our lives in faith and hope, without suffering and without reproach, let us pray to God.

         God have mercy.

In the communion of saints, let us commend ourselves, and one another, and all our life, to Christ our God.

        To thee, O God.

The Confession and Absolution 

(Following a period of silence)

All: God of all mercy, we confess that we have sinned against you, opposing your will in our lives. We have denied your goodness in each other, in ourselves, and in the world you have created. We repent of the evil that enslaves us, the evil we have done, and the evil done on our behalf. Forgive, restore, and strengthen us through our Savior, Jesus Christ, that we may abide in your love and serve only your will. Amen.    

The Peace

Priest: The peace of Christ be always with you. 
People: And also with you.

If you would like, send us some peace via a facebook message-

Announcements, Joys & Concerns—

Please send us a message and we will try to read it aloud. Please add “No name” if you’d like us to read it but not say your name.

The Holy Communion

Offertory Hymn  

Where the Soul of Man Never Dies

Offerings can be made by clicking the donate button below or on the main page of the website.

The Great Thanksgiving   

Enriching our Worship, prayer 2      

(Please stand in body or in spirit)

The Priest continues:We praise you and we bless you, holy and gracious God, source of life abundant.

From before time you made ready the creation. Your Spirit moved over the deep and brought all things into being: sun, moon, and stars; earth, winds, and waters; and every living thing. You made us in your image, and taught us to walk in your ways. But we rebelled against you, and wandered far away; and yet, as a mother cares for her children, you would not forget us. Time and again you called us to live in the fullness of your love. And so this day we join with Saints and Angels in the chorus of praise that rings through eternity, lifting our voices to magnify you as we sing: (All sing:)

The Priest continues:

Glory and honor and praise to you, holy and living God…

…Through Christ and with Christ and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, to you be honor, glory, and praise, for ever and ever. AMEN.

And now, as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to say: 

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. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen.

* “Father” is the dominant, but by no means the only metaphor for God. Other words may be used, such as: “Mother,” “God,” “Creator,” or “Source.”

The Breaking of Bread                               

Priest: Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us. 
People: Let us keep the feast.

Postcommunion Prayer

All: God of abundance, you have fed us with the bread of life and cup of salvation; you have united us with Christ and one another; and you have made us one with all your people in heaven and on earth. Now send us forth in the power of your Spirit, that we may proclaim your redeeming love to the world and continue forever in the risen life of Christ our Savior. Amen. 

Blessing 

Priest: God’s blessing be with you, Christ’s peace be with you, the Spirit’s outpouring be with you, now and always. Amen.

Closing Hymn    

I want Jesus to walk with me                     WLP 805   

1 I want Jesus to walk with me.
I want Jesus to walk with me.
All along my pilgrim journey,
O, I want Jesus to walk with me.

2 In my trials, Lord, walk with me.
in my trials, Lord, walk with me.
When my heart is almost breaking,
O, I want Jesus to walk with me.

3 When I’m in trouble, Lord, walk with me.
When I’m in trouble, Lord, walk with me.
When my head is bowed in sorrow,
O, I want Jesus to walk with me.

Dismissal

Priest: Go in peace to love and serve our God.

    People: Thanks be to God!

St. George’s Episcopal Church

1 School Road, Asheville, NC 28806

Tel. 828-258-0211

Website: stgeorgeswavl.org

www.facebook.com/stgwestavl/

Email: stgeorgeoffice28806@gmail.com

-Rev. Erin Maxfield-Steele, Priest in Charge

-Sarah Cayson, Parish Administrator

-Kathy Wallace, Parish Musician

A warm welcome to newcomers!

We’re glad you’re here!  

Join us for Zoom Coffee Hour at 11:30! More details here —

Announcements:

  • Small Group: if you would like to be part of a small group, we will begin “gathering” via Zoom once a week. All you need is a cellphone or a computer, and we’re happy to help you get set up! Please email Sarah with your phone number and what times work best for you: stgeorgeoffice28806@gmail.com.
  • Social Media Help! We are all learning a lot right now. If you would like to learn how to watch our service on facebook live, find ways to video chat with family and friends, or learn how to set up a social media account, we’d like to help you connect! 

Email Rev. Erin at erinsaintgeorge@gmail.com.

  • Prayer Chain: We are starting a text prayer chain. If you have a cellphone and would like to be part of this, please text “Prayer Chain” to 615-651-1064 and Rev. Erin will add you to the list. You will be able to share and receive prayer requests, joys, and concerns with other folks from St. George’s and our wider community.
  • Outreach: Rev. Erin and Noel Schwartz have been in touch with our friends in the Deaverview Community. Many people there have lost their jobs in the current crisis and are in need of assistance. If you would like to help, please consider contributing to Rev. Erin’s discretionary fund. Checks can be mailed to St. George’s, 1 School Road, Asheville, NC 28806 or you can donate via PayPal on our website: stgeorgeswavl.org
  • We are updating our directory! If you have a photo you’d like to share with us, please email it to Sarah at stgeorgeoffice28806@gmail.com.

Some notes about the service

We are a small church with deep roots. We welcome people of all walks of life. We strive to love & honor one another deeply & authentically, to seek justice & peace in our community, & to extend radical love & hospitality—truly welcoming all.   Online worship: due to Coronavirus, we are currently only worshipping online or “virtually.” Please join us on Facebook for our live service each Sunday morning at 10:30 am. We will not gather in person until after Holy Week, but we hope you join us at the church when we do!   Families with young children, while we are not meeting physicially, Rev. Erin is live streaming a storytime on our facebook page twice a week: www.facebook.com/stgwestavl/ When we are in the church, kids are welcome to move around in the sanctuary, make noise & explore. There are ways to help out: lighting candles, ringing the bell, reading, or helping with the offering. Let the greeter know if a little one would like to help! Kids have a corner of the sanctuary designed with them in mind & they may use the peace garden outside. There is a changing table in the hallway bathroom. The liturgy (meaning worship structure & the words we use) comes from The Book of Common PrayerEnriching Our Worship, & The New Zealand Book of Common Prayer (He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa). The Collect for the Season was written by Rev. Erin, as were all changes made to hymn lyrics. We intentionally use expansive language for God & people when possible, meaning that we do not only refer to God as ‘he’ or to people as ‘men.’ Other than the hymns, everything the congregations says & sings is in the bulletin in bold italics.       Visitors, please email us your information at stgeorgeoffice28806@gmail.com, let us know a little about you, if you’d like to be on our email list, and if you’d appreciate a call from our priest. Thanks!  Communion—we share the Eucharist weekly. All are welcome to receive. We believe that Jesus is present in the bread & wine that have been blessed, broken, & shared. We receive this holy food in remembrance of all that God has done for us, & in hope that through it we will be renewed & strengthened in faith & service. Due to the county and state Stay-at-Home Order, we have suspended communion kit pick up. No matter what, we hope you can break bread together in remembrance of all Christ has done for you.    

We’re glad you joined us- 

May you feel God’s love & grace!