Welcome to this plan for worship at home. Today, we celebrate the anniversary of the founding of our Baptist congregation, which was in the fall of 1838, according to some records. We have a guest preacher today, the Rev. Borden Scott, Pastor of Faith Baptist Church, Lower Sackville, NS. He shares a sermon and scripture by video recording, audio recording, and a manuscript. Borden has been Pastor there for about a decade, and today has some helpful insights about this present time in the churches. We welcome him to our ‘virtual pulpit’ today!
The Pastor, Deacons, and Trustees are in conversation about our re-opening plans, and will be sharing in July the when and the how of our getting together again, at 2 Mount Street.
WORSHIP WELCOME (Matthew 16:15-18)
Jesus once said to the disciples, “But who do you say that I am?”
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it.” Let this same statement be the rock upon which our church is still built: Jesus is Messiah, Son of the living God!
HYMN 745 ‘Jesus Shall Reign’ – Cairine Robertson at the Organ
PRAYER Creator of all, we bow with awe in the midst of this world we enjoy. Giver of life, we rejoice in the new life in Christ we find. Spirit of truth, we worship with thanks for all You teach us and all the ways you lead us. Judge of all justice, we lift up our hearts to You, we bow our spirits before You. Hearer of prayer, to You we have come, and come seeking to bless our world. Still, Small Voice, speak, Lord, for Your servants are listening.
And we pray in the way we know, from You, Jesus: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name… AMEN.
CHILDREN’s Time How Old Are We? – Pastor Jeff White
Anniversary SCRIPTURE Sharing
SERMON: ‘Witnesses‘ – Acts 1:1-8 – Rev. Borden Scott
Or LISTEN to the audio file:
OFFERING It is a long tradition for churches to take up a special offering for themselves on special occasions, including Christmas, Easter, Church Anniversary, and Thanksgiving. Today we offer special thanks and worship to God for the creation of our congregation 182 years ago, and for our calling to do good in our neighbourhood still today. May the monetary offerings we give be worship of Christ as much as anything else in the service today.
PRAYERS Lord Jesus Christ, true and only Head of the Church, at one time we found our mission for ourselves. We claimed, before You, that we are to reach out to those in the church and community conveying Your message. As You make clear the Good News to us, make us also into clear communicators. We pray that we may share the story of salvation. We pray that we may understand our family, friends and neighbours, so we may ‘speak their language,’ know their needs, and grow in love and care for them. You hear our prayers for the ill and injured, the depressed and distraught, the lost and lonely. You receive our rejoicing with those who celebrate, who take steps in the right direction, who have been surprised with a gracious blessing in life. This week, we bless Tjark, who is returning to Germany after these months with us here; we ask for help and guidance in the lives of all who travel or move or cross borders. Turn our prayers also to those we do not yet know, those we do know but avoid, and those we fear or dislike or belittle. Bless them, also, in Your name.
Holy One, our mission statement reminds us to do our ministry through preaching and teaching, with hearts of compassion and loving hands in service. Show us again how our preaching happens in day-to-day small talk, how it happens in letters and phone calls and social media. Sometimes, Lord, we don’t think we know how. But You do. We see those who suffer, around us. We give our hands to You again, that we may serve them.
All-seeing God, we’ve had a vision, to build our church based on the teachings of Christ and on the ideals of giving, living, and serving. We confess that we have heard before that You, Jesus, build Your Church. We confess that at times we, Digby Baptist Church, have been more interested in getting than in giving. We have been more interested in resting and looking back with nostalgia, than in living life abundant and free today. We have fallen into the temptation of serving ourselves, but not many others. Renew our present vision, we pray. We know that this is a dangerous prayer, for it changes us, for the sake of those You love.
We have come this far by faith, Christ. We have learned from our mistakes, Almighty. We have studied and we have stayed with the fellowship, Holy Spirit. Take all this as material for our mission, our work in our part of the world now. May You be amazing now, in Digby. May You be gracious, to Digby, we pray. AMEN.
HYMN ‘This Is Amazing Grace‘
BENEDICTION (Romans 15:5-6) May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. AMEN.