New Covenant Community Church

Sermons

Leaving the Light On – 10/30/22

by | Nov 7, 2022 | Sermons

Bulletin 10.30.22

WELCOME

PRELUDE                                      There Is A Fountain                                                       – Berry

*CALL TO WORSHIP (adapted from Isaiah 51:4-6)
     Leader: Let us listen to the Lord, for the Lord will teach us with His word.
     People: Let us open our eyes, for God’s justice will serve as a light for all people.
     Leader: God’s salvation extends across the earth, and God’s arms of righteousness will guide our
                  steps.
     People: As we worship, let us lift our eyes to the heavens, for in God do we hope.
     Leader: Let us rejoice in the Lord, for God’s deliverance will never be ended, and God’s
                  salvation reaches to all generations.
     People: With hearts bursting with gratitude, let us praise the God of glory and Lord of love.

*HYMN OF PRAISE                        Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee                           Glory to God,#611

PRAYERS OF CONFESSION (Unison)
   God of grace and mercy,
        although You have blessed us in more ways than we can count,
             we confess that we do not always serve You with an unwavering commitment.
   Forgive us when our choices reveal our selfishness rather than Your glory.
        Have mercy upon us when we too quickly judge other people without first listening to
        their stories.
             Forgive us when we have not only been unaware of Your presence among us, but we
             have also ignored the needs of others.
   Gracious Lord, strengthen us through the renewing power of Your Spirit,
        so that we will make choices that clearly reveal our identity as Your faithful people,
             for we ask it in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.
                                                                                       (Silent)
ASSURANCE OF FORGIVENESS (adapted from Micah 7:18-19)
     Leader: There is no one like our God who pardons our iniquities, passes over our transgressions,
                  and delights in showing clemency.
     People: God will have compassion upon us, for the LORD will tread our iniquities under foot
                    and cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.
     Leader: Friends, believe the good news of the gospel:
     People: Through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we are forgiven.

MUSICAL INTERLUDE                     Praise to God the Father                        Glory to God, #605

SCRIPTURE                                                                                                             Isaiah 61:8-11
   8 For I the LORD love justice, I hate robbery and wrongdoing;
      I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
   9 Their descendants shall be known among the nations, and their offspring among the peoples;
      all who see them shall acknowledge that they are a people whom the LORD has blessed.
10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my whole being shall exult in my God;
      for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
      he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
      as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the earth brings forth its shoots, and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
     so the LORD God will cause righteousness and praise to spring up before all the nations.

MUSICAL INTERLUDE                               O Sing to the Lord                                       Glory to God, #637
        [During the interlude, you are invited to turn to this hymn from Brazil and read the
        textual notes at the bottom of the page that are associated with this piece of music.]

SCRIPTURE                                                                                                                   Matthew 25:1-13
  1 “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like this. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and went
to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 When the foolish
took their lamps, they took no oil with them; 4 but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps.
5 As the bridegroom was delayed, all of them became drowsy and slept. 6 But at midnight there
was a shout, ‘Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7 Then all those
bridesmaids got up and trimmed their lamps. 8 The foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of
your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the wise replied, ‘No! there will not be enough for
you and for us; you had better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ 10 And while
they went to buy it, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went with him into the
wedding banquet; and the door was shut. 11 Later the other bridesmaids came also, saying,
‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ 12 But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I do not know you.’ 13 Keep awake
therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.”

MEDITATION                                                                                              Leaving the Light On

ANTHEM                           Spirit, Spirit of Gentleness                                     Glory to God, #291
                                  Dan Derbin and Ken Heischman, duet

*AFFIRMATION OF FAITH from A Social Creed for the 21st Century
   In faith, responding to our Creator, we celebrate the full humanity of each woman, man, and
        child, all created in the divine image as individuals of infinite worth.
   In the love incarnate in Jesus, despite the world’s sufferings and evils, we honor the deep
        connections within our human family and seek to awaken a new spirit of community.
   In hope sustained by the Holy Spirit, we pledge to be peacemakers in the world and stewards
         of God’s good creation.
   We — individual Christians and churches — commit ourselves to a culture of peace and
        freedom that embraces non-violence, nurtures character, treasures the environment, and
        builds community, rooted in a spirituality of inner growth with outward action.
   We make this commitment together — as members of Christ’s body, led by the one Spirit —
        trusting in the God who makes all things new.

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE AND THE LORD’S PRAYER
        . . . Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy
        will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive
        us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us
        from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen.

INVITATION TO GIVE

MUSICAL INTERLUDE                             A Grateful Heart                                 Glory to God, #652
             [During the interlude, you are encouraged to turn to the hymn and read the helpful
             textual notes at the bottom of the page that are associated with this piece of music.]

PRAYER OF DEDICATION (Unison)
   God of joy and generosity, from the abundance You have provided us, we offer our gifts, and
   we recognize that what we give from the depths of our hearts is more important to You than
   what we carry in our wallets and purses. As we contribute to Your kingdom, use the
   financial and human resources we share to strengthen the ministry of Your church, to meet
   the needs in our community, and to fashion the kind of world that You desire, for the glory
   of Jesus Christ our Lord, in whose name we pray. Amen.

*HYMN                                            Christ Be Beside Me                                         Glory to God, #702

*BENEDICTION

*CHORAL RESPONSE                     Surely, the Presence of the Lord                              – see screens

POSTLUDE                                               Wayfaring Stranger                                                – Hayes

ANNOUNCEMENTS
Our collection for Rahab Ministries ends this Sunday. If you would like to contribute to the
cause, the list of items includes:
     Body wash (full-sized)       Lotion (full-sized)
     Conditioner (full-sized)      Ethnic hair care (full-sized)
     Bras & underwear             Deodorant
     Toilet paper                       Paper towels

The next meeting of the Akron Area Interfaith Council will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 1, from
12:00 -1:30 p.m. at Fairlawn West UCC (2095 W. Market St.).

On Thursday, November 3, 2022, our Governing Board and Pastor Nominating Committee will
gather with the Holy Cow Consultants to take some initial steps in moving toward a new future
for the church.

Plans are underway for our annual Christmas Party, which, because of weekend conflicts, will
be held on Wednesday, December 7, beginning at 5:30. Look for a sign-up sheet in the middle
of November. The Fellowship Committee will provide ham, chicken, punch and coffee.
Attendees will provide the rest. Most important, however, and a real treat, is that we will have
as entertainment, Mark Alan Wade, renowned hammered dulcimer player, performing for us.
In addition to his entertaining, he will lead us in the singing of Christmas carols.

The Fellowship Committee will meet next month on Wednesday, November 30, at 10:30 a.m.
in the Fellowship Hall. You are invited to come and help in the planning of activities for
Christmas and for early 2023 activities. Everyone is welcome. Please contact Nancy Williams
if you have questions.

Contributing to the Cause – 11.13.22

Rev. Tom Ulrich looks at the importance of giving.

The Messenger, November 2022 Newsletter

The NCCC monthly update on fellowship, mission and ministry opportunities.

Risky Discipleship – 11/6/22

General Presbyter Cathy Ulrich and Rev. Tom Ulrich take a compelling look at the parable of the talents.

10/23/22 Announcements

Here are ways you can worship, fellowship, and serve this week.

How Can We Keep from Singing?

Rev. Tom Ulrich explains how we can keep singing, even in times of discord.