Virtual Church – June 21, 2020

8:30 am

June 21, 2020

Virtual Church

Welcome to virtual church!

Welcome to Celebration Sunday!  Each Sunday morning we will be sending an email to everyone in the congregation for whom we have email addresses, offering an abridged Sunday morning service — “virtual church.” For the latest news and updates from Walton, please check our Facebook page, Instagram and website.

Please contact office@waltonmemorial.com if you would like to be added to our email list.

Sunday Service Video (30+ minutes followed by the hymns)

Today’s service will be offered in 2 formats – a video and text. If you wish, you can download and print the service from this document – link – or you can read the complete service below.

The hymn-sing is at the end.

Announcements

    • On June 8th, the Ontario government made an announcement that churches are permitted to open at 30% of its building’s capacity. At this time, it as been recently decided by Walton Council and Trustees that it is too soon for Walton to reopen.
      Some of Walton’s leaders and staff have been working on a plan over the last 6 weeks regarding the reopening of Walton. This yet to be approved re-opening plan is based on guidance from many credible sources including the United Church of Canada. It is focused on what they feel is best to ensure the health and safety for our people, volunteers and staff.
      As you can appreciate, there are many different people and situations to take into consideration when creating and then implementing the re-opening plan. We thank you for your patience and understanding. More information will be shared when it is available.
      “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.~ Jeremiah 29:11
    • Walton’s prayer chain is open. Confidential prayers requests can be sent to office@waltonmemorial.com
    • There is a new option for making your regular offering. You can now set up your own weekly or monthly ‘offering’ from your bank account or credit card, using our secure online payment page. Simply choose the schedule that suits you, and when you wish the recurring payments to start and stop. When each donation is processed you’ll receive an email confirmation, and of course, all donations are eligible for a tax receipt at the end of the year. Go to waltonmemorial.com/donate-recurring, or to find out more contact stuart@waltonmemorial.com
    • A reminder that the church building is still closed, with absolutely no access for congregation members and volunteers. All staff are still working from home and can be reached through their usual contact information or by the central email office@waltonmemorial.com or the central telephone number 905-827-1643. Both are monitored throughout the day.
    • If you need Rev. Jim for a pastoral emergency, please email him directly at jamescgillwuc@gmail.com.

Welcome

Call to Worship

We gather together, wherever we are right now listening and taking part in this virtual service as church family and friends in the faith, whether it is your first time with us or you haven’t missed a service in years…. We gather on this beautiful new day, Christian Family Sunday, Father’s Day, at the table to pray, sing, hear and be inspired. Come family of God, let’s join together in worship.

Opening Prayer

Father God, on this day, Christian Family Sunday, this Father’s Day, when we celebrate and give thanks for our families, some of whom we have only seen electronically, or standing at the end of the driveway these last weeks and months, We know we all have different backgrounds and histories, experiences and memories. Some of us feel blessed and hold tight to many happy, treasured memories, and some of us are hurt, abandoned and have bitter memories. We dread the thought of when “family togetherness” is unavoidable. Many of us carry a mixed bag of blessing and hurt; sometimes we give thanks, and other times we mourn. It doesn’t matter who we are, or what we bring with us today, may we all find a place in God’s family, in His loving embrace. Amen.

Reflection

VBS Song: Love the Lord Your God

Be Kind

As lockdown starts to ease….. you decide for you, I’ll decide for me.
None of us have the same circumstances (a medically high risk child/ family member or a business about to go under, etc.)
Let’s all stay in our own lanes and keep the judgement down as we begin to unlock. No one should feel pressured either way.
Just a thought… As all of us are trying to figure out how to ease back into somewhat normal, please remember:
Some people don’t agree with the unlocking…. that’s ok. Be kind.
Some people are still planning to stay home…. that’s ok. Be kind.
Some are still scared of getting the virus and a second wave happening…. that’s ok. Be kind.
Some are sighing with relief to go back to work knowing they may not lose their business or their homes….that’s ok. Be kind.
Some are thankful they can finally have the surgery they has had to be put off….that’s ok. Be kind.
Some will be able to attend interviews after weeks without a job….that’s ok. Be kind.
Some will wear masks for weeks, some will not wear masks…..that’s ok. Be kind.
Some people will rush out to get their hair or nails done…. that’s ok. Be kind.
The point is, everyone has different viewpoints/feelings and that’s ok. Be kind.
We each have a different story. If you need to stay home, stay home. But be kind.
If you need to go out, just respect others when you are in public and be kind!
Don’t judge fellow humans because you’re not in their story. We all are in different mental states than we were months ago. So remember, be kind—be understanding. Remember the scripture, Love the Lord Your God, with all your heart, with all your soul with all your mind, and love your neighour as yourself.
Remember, be kind.

Anthem: Shine Jesus Shine

Scripture Reading: Colossians 1:15-20 NIV

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Morning Message: Rev. Jim Gill

In the media nowadays there is lots of talk about red ink. Not just red ink for governments and businesses, but for individuals. There is increasing debt in these Covid times. Here at Walton we appreciate all that you have been doing as you are able to reduce Walton’s own red ink.

When this all began back in early March, I discarded my original preaching plans which had already been laid out for late winter and spring of 2020. Today, on this first Sunday of summer, I want in one small way to return to normal. For many years I have planned a summer sermon series. Today on this Christian Family Sunday- Father’s Day I want to begin the summer series of messages I originally planned at the end of 2019.

Today I begin a series of messages entitled The Colours of the Bible. In particular today, I want to consider the colour red in the Bible. God created all the colours of the world, and we celebrate each colour. We live in a world full of God’s vibrant colours, especially in the summer, and I want to talk about the colours of the Bible over these summer Sundays that lie ahead.

You will notice I am wearing this red stole around my neck today. It is the stole I use most often. I use it for nearly all weddings, funerals, baptisms, and other special times throughout the church year. At the end of May, we celebrated Pentecost Sunday. Pentecost is the birthday of the Christian Church and the blessing of the Holy Spirit coming upon the early church 50 days after Easter. Red is the symbol of the Holy Spirit. For the Holy Spirit came upon the early church members like the red tongues of fire. It transformed them from frightened followers of Jesus to believers who could go out and change the world in the name of Christ.

The word ‘red’ occurs 53 times in the Bible, six of which are in the New Testament. Of course we know other things mentioned in the Bible are obviously red, like human and animal blood, without needing the actual word red used in the Bible.

When we think of red, there is of course the burning bush out in the wilderness. Moses was called to free his people who were captives back in Egypt . Often God does use burning bushes in our lives, in different ways, to get us to change our lives. The burning bush is a symbol of God calling us. It may be to get us free of those powers, forces and temptations that imprison us in actions, attitudes and addictions that rob us of the abundant life Jesus promised to those who follow Christ.

Today I wish everyone watching a Happy Father’s Day. We honour all fathers, grandfathers, stepfathers, God-fathers and to those who father in many different ways, formal and informal. It can be both a very happy day and a sad day, especially if we are missing those father figures in our lives.
You may be able to see the red carpet under the choir pews behind me. This chancel platform area and down the center aisle of Walton Sanctuary is covered in red carpet. On this Christian Family Sunday- Father’s Day I think of those parents who stand up here on this red carpet while making their promises in the baptisms of their infant, toddler or child. The parents take on extra roles in the Christian upbringing of a child. It is a big-time vow. We pray the Holy Spirit guides them in that role as the child grows and prospers. Being a parent in these Covid days has both been a challenge and blessing. Maybe there has been more time together than ever before, while also trying to work from home and do on-line learning.

On this Christian Family Sunday- Father’s Day I think of one of the great joys of being the minister here for nearly two generations. That child I baptized here on the red carpet maybe 25 years later is walked down this red carpet, often by a father, for his or her wedding. I will never forget that feeling of walking down this center red carpet in the church which I have probably done nearly every day of my life for decades. But it was very different the day it was with my daughter on my arm at her wedding. Again, we pray in Christian marriage for the Holy Spirit to bless the union of marriage. Again, self-isolating in your bubble, even though it now can now be expanded to 10, can still be both a challenge and blessing in marriages.

In the Bible we also think of the Red Sea and the parting of the Red Sea waters when the people of Israel were fleeing the Pharaoh’s armies. God has a way of often parting the waters for us in times of trouble. Through prayer and listening to God’s leading there are ways around, through, over or under the Red Sea. They often come to us through other Jesus followers. I know at times I have need to be reminded to stop, like a red stop sign calls us to stop, then look and listen for what God has in store for us.

Today in our scripture we are powerfully reminded about what Jesus did on the cross for us all on Good Friday. Today we see a fundamental red in the wine of the Holy Sacrament we celebrate. In the Upper Room on Maundy Thursday we read in the Bible how Jesus transformed the Passover meal into what we call the Lord’s Supper, Communion or the Bread and Wine. The first colour of the Bible in this summer series is red. The red of the wine calls us all to this feast this morning.

Invitation to Communion

Communion Liturgy

We are sharing in virtual Communion this morning, please pause here to gather, locate whatever you may need to take part in Communion this morning.

O God of creation, whose Spirit stilled the waters of chaos, whose breath filled all creatures with life, we praise you.

O God of inspiration, whose Spirit anointed kings and priests,whose power emboldened the prophets of old, we praise you.

O God of Jesus Christ, whose Spirit descended dove-like on the man of Galilee, whose glory shone in words of wisdom and deeds of love, we praise you.

O God of Pentecost, whose Spirit came to the faithful waiting at Jerusalem, whose gifts empowered the church for service and witness,we praise you.

Prayers of Concern: We invite the Spirit of God to blow through our lives and our world, as we pray about the needs that surround us. This is an interactive prayer. When one of says, “Your Spirit’s touch brings life, O God,” you are welcome to say, “and we are thankful.”

One: Let us pray; Your Spirit’s touch brings life, O God
All: and we are thankful.

One: We pray for those who have lost faith –for those who have come ungrounded in their lives, who see nothing but hopeless around them, who feel distant from you, O God. Your Spirit’s touch brings life, O God
All: and we are thankful.

One: We pray for those who face challenge– for those whose health is failing them, who find money to be an obstacle, who suffer oppression and injustice. Your Spirit’s touch brings life, O God
All: and we are thankful.

One: We pray for those who live apart from you– for those who do not show love freely and abundantly, who act selfishly, who hurt others by their actions or inaction. Your Spirit’s touch brings life, O God
All: and we are thankful.

One: Spirit of God, fill this world with your compassion. Pour your love upon it. Light it up with your power. This was Jesus’ vision that he taught us to pray about and we pray about it now, saying:

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 forever and ever. Amen.

Remembering Jesus at the Table

When Jesus was at the table with his friends, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to those who were gathered there. And they were changed.

Continuing to offer hospitality, he took a cup of wine and blessed it, and passed it around the table. And the holy spirit was revealed.

This same meal is now offered to us. We gladly accept it, knowing that in any ordinary moment like this, God can be revealed to us too. All is now ready for you.

Distribution of the Elements

“This is my body, broken for you. Take and eat.” Bread is distributed
“This is my blood, shed for you. Take and drink.” Juice is distributed

Post-Communion Prayer

One: Through the great Comforter, Advocate, our faithful Guide,we have become a part of God’s holy love. And so we pray to the eternal one:
All: God of love, as you have blessed this meal, bless now our work and our words,that we may extend your welcome to the world in what we do and by who we are.May the Spirit’s power make it so. Amen.
(Rev. Ali Smith, Forest Hill United Church, John Moses Gathering L/E/P 20212)

Offering of Ourselves, Our Gifts, Our Tithes

Father, you call us to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind and to love your neighbour as yourself. Help us reach into our hearts, our pockets and our cupboards to help others in what way we can today, O Lord. The offering will now be received.

♥ Secure online payment from your bank or credit card.
♥ One-time payment – waltonmemorial.com/donate
♥ Weekly or monthly payments – waltonmemorial.com/donate-recurring
♥ Cheque through the mail slot at the Church office entrance or by Canada Post.
♥ Monthly PAR payments. To sign up contact stuart@waltonmemorial.com

Offering Prayer

We are gathered as your family of faith – diverse, delightful, devoted. Bless the gifts of time, talent, and treasure we offer this morning, that they may reflect the wonderful diversity of your family worldwide, that our beating hearts may connect with our human family everywhere. Amen.
(adapted Gord Dunbar, L/E 2019)

Benediction

We have left the table, but not forgotten what the table means to each one of us, that God so loved us he sent his son Jesus. God sends us out as his beloved children, to share the gift of love with one another, and to offer forgiveness, freedom, justice and mercy to each person who God places before us. We go trusting in God’s unconditional love and support today and always.

Walton’s Musical Message

This morning on Facebook and on YouTube, we’re sharing a video where Linda shares with us several of our favourite hymns! Sing along!

    • God Made From One Blood All the Families of Earth
    • When Jesus Called You “Father”
    • Come Let Us Sing of a Wonderful Love
    • Faith of Our Fathers
    • Olde Irish Blessing

In case you missed it…

Rev. Jim’s midweek update from Wednesday, June 10th

 
 
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