Fourth Sunday of Easter
The congregation is invited to say the words together in bold. Please sing along with us! To prepare for worship, you may want to place a candle or two in the place where you worship, to light during the opening prayer.
The service begins with several minutes of preludes from the Holy Communion music archives.
The ushers and the rector welcome the congregation. If you are new to us, consider filling out our “get connected” form, let us get to know you better.
Song of Praise
Celtic Alleluia –
The Collect of the Day
You are invited to light a candle at home with us.
Let us pray.
Almighty God, whom truly to know is everlasting life: Grant us so perfectly to know your Son Jesus Christ to be the way, the truth, and the life, that we may steadfastly follow his steps in the way that leads to eternal life; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
We Walk by Faith – Hymnal #205
A Reading from the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 8:26-40)
An angel from the Lord spoke to Philip, “At noon, take the road that leads from Jerusalem to Gaza.” (This is a desert road.) So he did. Meanwhile, an Ethiopian man was on his way home from Jerusalem, where he had come to worship. He was a eunuch and an official responsible for the entire treasury of Candace. (Candace is the title given to the Ethiopian queen.) He was reading the prophet Isaiah while sitting in his carriage. The Spirit told Philip, “Approach this carriage and stay with it.”
Running up to the carriage, Philip heard the man reading the prophet Isaiah. He asked, “Do you really understand what you are reading?”
The man replied, “Without someone to guide me, how could I?” Then he invited Philip to climb up and sit with him. This was the passage of scripture he was reading:
Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter
and like a lamb before its shearer is silent
so he didn’t open his mouth.
In his humiliation justice was taken away from him.
Who can tell the story of his descendants
because his life was taken from the earth?
The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, about whom does the prophet say this? Is he talking about himself or someone else?” Starting with that passage, Philip proclaimed the good news about Jesus to him. As they went down the road, they came to some water.
The eunuch said, “Look! Water! What would keep me from being baptized?” He ordered that the carriage halt. Both Philip and the eunuch went down to the water, where Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Lord’s Spirit suddenly took Philip away. The eunuch never saw him again but went on his way rejoicing. Philip found himself in Azotus. He traveled through that area, preaching the good news in all the cities until he reached Caesarea.
The Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God
The Psalm (Psalm 22:24-30)
My praise is of you in the great assembly;
I will perform my vows in the presence of those who worship you.
The poor shall eat and be satisfied,
and those who seek you shall praise you:
“May your heart live for ever!”
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to you,
and all the families of the nations shall bow before you.
For yours is the royal power, O God;
you rule over the nations.
To you alone all who sleep in the earth bow down in worship;
all who go down to the dust fall before you.
My soul shall live for you;
my descendants shall serve you;
they shall be known as yours for ever.
They shall come and make known to a people yet unborn
the saving deeds that you have done.
The Holy Gospel of our Savior Jesus Christ according to John (John 15:1-8)
Jesus “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vineyard keeper. He removes any of my branches that don’t produce fruit, and he trims any branch that produces fruit so that it will produce even more fruit. You are already trimmed because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. A branch can’t produce fruit by itself, but must remain in the vine. Likewise, you can’t produce fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, then you will produce much fruit. Without me, you can’t do anything. If you don’t remain in me, you will be like a branch that is thrown out and dries up. Those branches are gathered up, thrown into a fire, and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified when you produce much fruit and in this way prove that you are my disciples.
The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to you, Lord Christ.
The Sermon: Emilee Walker-Cornetta
It is Well with My Soul
Let us pray in the way Christ taught us, and in the language of our hearts.
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 trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.
You may add your prayer requests in the comments at any time. Know that people will pray for you.
Our Lord lives, for death has no dominion over him. And so we, God’s holy church, proclaim the resurrection, saying: Christ is risen! Amen, Alleluia!
Created in the image and likeness of God, we pray to see God’s image in one another, especially for those who are celebrating birthdays this week, Lauren Williams, Cassandra Gonzalez, and Michael Salsich. And for those celebrating anniversaries, especially Meg & Brian Goldstein. May our lives proclaim: Christ is risen! Amen, Alleluia!
Tested in our faith and strengthened by God’s love, we pray for open hearts, that we may live to proclaim: Christ is risen! Amen, Alleluia!
Joining with those who share in the passion of Christ through illness, famine, war, temptation, and trial, we pray for their courage and strength that those who suffer may proclaim: Christ is risen! Amen, Alleluia!
United in our hope that we and all who die will live again, we pray for family and friends who have died, proclaiming: Christ is risen! Amen, Alleluia!
Loving and true God. you have glorified Christ Jesus as the pledge of our freedom from sin and death, receive our praise and prayer through Christ our Lord, the great Amen and our Alleluia, now and forever. Amen.
Announcements are shared
God of justice, we pray in the midst of injustice. We pray as a pandemic continues to claim lives through disease. We pray as racism continues to claim lives through structural violence. We pray as the epidemic of gun violence continues to plague our streets and communities. In these days of imagining our future, help us to make concrete steps toward Beloved Community. Help us to heal division. Help us to be courageous as we work for change and dismantle unjust systems which are costing lives, and robbing us of promised futures. Help us to remember we belong to one another. Amen.
Almighty God, Father of all mercies,
we your unworthy servants give you humble thanks
for all your goodness and loving-kindness
to us and to all whom you have made.
We bless you for our creation, preservation,
and all the blessings of this life;
but above all for your immeasurable love
in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ;
for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.
And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies,
that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise,
not only with our lips, but in our lives,
by giving up our selves to your service,
and by walking before you
in holiness and righteousness all our days;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honor and glory throughout all ages. Amen.
The Peace is then exchanged.
The peace of Christ be always with you.
And also with you.
The Peace is then exchanged. Consider sending a text, a message on Facebook, or even writing a letter or email to someone who could use some peace.
Christ is Made the Sure Foundation – Hymnal #518
The Deacon dismisses the congregation:
Let us Bless the Lord. Alleluia, Alleluia.
Thanks be to God. Alleluia, Alleluia.
Postlude on Dix – Connor Scott
Preacher : Emilee Walker-Cornetta, Seminarian
Officiant: The Rev. Mike Angell
Assisting: The Rev. Marc Smith
Deacon: The Rev. Chester Hines
Lectors: Ellis Anderson, Shirley Mensah
The Lord’s Prayer:
Greeters: The Cummins-Ludwig Family, The Norris-Rose Family
Guest Musicians: Connor Scott
Director of Music: Mary Chapman
Streaming Producer: Tyler Schwartz
Music reprinted and broadcast with permission by OneLicense # A-704988
The Psalms and Collect of the Day are copyright of the Order of Saint Helena. The Scripture Translation is the Common English Bible. All are used by permission.
The Prayers of the People are from an Easter service at Washington National Cathedral.