Order of Worship
February 14, 2021

Organ Prelude
Call to Worship 
We come to this place expecting God to meet us,
to remind us of God’s enduring presence, with us and within us.
Let’s take a moment to acknowledge God and the strength to worship within each person gathered in virtual worship today.  Remember that Christ is in you and Christ is in each.
Come, let us worship.

Opening Prayer  Based on Psalm 50:1–6
Invite the gathered community to close eyes and imagine what it looks like or feels like when you cannot keep yourself from running toward someone you deeply love and greatly desire. After a time of silent reflection offer the opening prayer.
God of fire and rain,
you call us to you, you call on the soil beneath our feet, and it rises;
you pull on our heartstrings, and our chests heave at the sound of your voice.
Draw us near your merciful justice;
we ache to be comforted by your presence.
Set us apart from whatever would inhibit our most fervent adoration.

Storytelling             “A Mountain Top Experience”
Sharing of Scripture                                  Mark 9:2–9
Message in Music
Message                   “Coming Through the Clouds”               Rev. Laura McLeod
Prayer of Dedication
God of glory, it is good for us to be in this place, to find shelter, to mark the occasion of your presence among us, to know that we are full of hope and aching with desire for you to stay with us, comfort us and provide the wisdom we need. In this, we offer ourselves fully. We offer time, talent, treasure. We offer one another the best of what we have to give and know you will know just how to use it for your glory. Amen.

A Time of Prayer
Preparation for Prayer
Silent Prayer
Pastoral Prayer and Lord’s Prayer
One:   In the shadows of this world,
working for a politic of justice;
in the hunger of your people,
speaking out for trade rules that are fair.
All:      May we be people of the transfiguration.

One:   In the conflict of the world,
living lives of peace;
in the prejudice of our traditions,
speaking words of inclusion and acceptance.
All:      May we be people of the transfiguration.

One:   In the grieving of your people,
being the presence of hope;
in the propaganda of the nations,
being the way of truth.
All:      May we be people of the transfiguration.

One:   In the living of the faith,
being the community of love;
in the needs of your people,
being the hands of heaven.
All:      May we be people of the transfiguration.

One:   In the bad news of the papers,
being the good news of God;
in the ordinariness of the world,
being the presence of your glory.
All:      May we be people of the transfiguration.
We pray this in the name of Jesus, who taught us to pray saying, Our Father…Amen.

One:   And now we share in a common practice of blessing one another. We will repeat it twice.
All:      We may fail; God does not.
            We may end; God does not.
            Bless and be blessed. Amen.

Organ Postlude

Sharing of Scripture                                  Mark 9:2-9
Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them. And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.
As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one about what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead.

A Mountaintop Experience
based on Mark 9:2–9

It was an early spring morning. The fields were covered with wildflowers when Jesus asked James, John, and Peter to join him on a walk up the mountainside. As they climbed higher and higher, the Sea of Galilee below looked like a shimmering piece of glass. By the time they reached the top, they were ready for a rest. James, John, and Peter settled on some rocky ground in the shade of some trees. Half asleep, they noticed Jesus heading off to a place not far away.

Jesus raised his arms and began to pray. Suddenly, before their eyes, Jesus’ appearance changed. The three friends squinted and felt quite dizzy at the sight. Jesus’ face shone brightly like the midday sun, and his clothes turned a dazzling white. Then two other shining figures (it looked like Moses and Elijah) appeared and began talking with Jesus. “Jesus, what should we do?” exclaimed Peter in terror. “It is good that we are here. Perhaps we should make three shelters: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

But as Peter was speaking, a misty cloud rolled over the mountain and came down upon them, and the rest of the words on Peter’s lips failed him. From somewhere inside the cloud, they heard a voice saying, “This is my beloved. I love him. Listen to him.”

Peter collapsed on the ground and lay trembling. James and John fell down on either side of him. They were all terrified. Slowly the cloud lifted. Timidly, they looked up but saw only Jesus standing before them. Jesus called each of them by name, gently touched them on the shoulders, and told them not to be afraid.

As the sun set, and they descended the mountain, Jesus warned them not to tell anyone what they had seen, or what they had heard. And for the rest of their journey down the mountain, James, John, and Peter puzzled over what this could mean.
, your sister,

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