10.25.2020 Reformation Sunday

On this day we celebrate the heart of our faith:  the gospel of Christ – the good news – that makes us free!  We pray that the Holy Spirit would continue to unite the church today in its proclamation and witness to the world.  In the waters of baptism we are made one body; we pray for the day that all Christians will also be one at the Lord’s table. 


Below you will find prayers, songs, readings, and a message to help you experience worship.  You can light a candle to remind yourself of the presence of the Holy Spirit.  Whether you are alone or with others, we hope that you can feel each other’s presence, and the presence of God, as we find creative ways to worship together, even though we are not in the same building.  One good thing about virtual worship is that if you really like a song, you can listen to it again!  Do what you need to do to worship God wherever you are.

Call to Worship

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In the midst of storm and chaos,

God is with us.

In a world of violence and fear,

The God of our ancestors will never abandon us.

Be still,

and know that God is here.

We give thanks for the gift of the Holy Spirit whose light brought new understanding of both the Living Word and the written Scripture.

We give thanks for the reminder of consistent grace and mercy from God through Jesus Christ.

We are grateful for the inspiration that lead to the printing press, enabling the spread of information and the sharing of the gospel in many languages.

We thank God for the technologies that can be used for good for the support of communities and individuals.

Generous God, we thank you for open hearts that were prepared to hear and receive the good news of freedom in Christ.

We also thank you for our continued freedom in Jesus to share that same news of salvation through your grace and Christ’s faithfulness.

We remember the lives that were lost in the struggle to reform the church on earth- those who were martyred, those who died fighting, those who perished in hiding, and who were killed on all sides.  We lament the pain the church and church leaders have caused throughout the generations.

We remember also the lives that have been lost throughout history in the name of religion and for those who die today for daring to believe.  We lament the continued struggle of many who have been hurt by our church.

We thank you for the presence of Jesus Christ- in us, with us, and for us- and for the support of the Holy Spirit, ever-reforming us. 

God of stability and change, we thank you that true reformation is always your work and always being done in us out of your love for your whole creation. We are ever reformed by the work of your love. 

We are ever reformed by the work of God’s love.  Let us worship God!

Opening Song                          
A Mighty Fortress Is Our God

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A mighty fortress is our God, a sword and shield victorious; he breaks the cruel oppressor’s rod and wins salvation glorious.  The old satanic foe has sworn to work us woe!  With craft and dreadful might he arms himself to fight.  On earth he has no equal.

No strength of ours can match his might!  We would be lost, rejected.  But now a champion comes to fight, whom God himself elected.  You ask who this may be?  The Lord of hosts is he!  Christ Jesus, mighty Lord, God’s only Son, adored.  He holds the field victorious.

Though hordes of devils fill the land all threat’ning to devour us, we tremble not, unmoved we stand; they cannot overpow’r us.  Let this world’s tyrant rage; in battle we’ll engage!  His might is doomed to fail; God’s judgment must prevail!   One little word subdues him.

God’s Word forever shall abide, no thanks to foes, who fear it; for God himself fights by our side with weapons of the Spirit.  Were they to take our house, goods, honor, child, or spouse, though life be wrenched away, they cannot win the day.  The kingdom’s ours forever!

Prayer of the Day

Let us pray.  Almighty God, gracious Lord, we thank you that your Holy Spirit renews the church in every age. Pour out your Holy Spirit on your faithful people. Keep them steadfast in your word, protect and comfort them in times of trial, defend them against all enemies of the gospel, and bestow on the church your saving peace, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen     

Psalm & rEADING                                                 
Psalm 46 & ROMANS 3:19-28

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1God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  2Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; 3though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult.

4There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. 5God is in the midst of the city; it shall not be moved; God will help it when the morning dawns.  6The nations are in an uproar, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts.  7The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.

8Come, behold the works of the LORD; see what desolations he has brought on the earth.  9He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear;  he burns the shields with fire.  10“Be still, and know that I am God!  I am exalted among the nations, I am exalted in the earth.”  11The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.

Romans 3:19-28

19Now we know that whatever the law says, it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. 20For “no human being will be justified in his sight” by deeds prescribed by the law, for through the law comes the knowledge of sin.

21But now, apart from law, the righteousness of God has been disclosed, and is attested by the law and the prophets, 22the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, 23since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; 24they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood, effective through faith. He did this to show his righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over the sins previously committed; 26it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies the one who has faith in Jesus.
27Then what becomes of boasting? It is excluded. By what law? By that of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28For we hold that a person is justified by faith apart from works prescribed by the law.

Children’s Moment

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Gospel and Message                         
John 8:31-36

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31Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; 32and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” 33They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham and have never been slaves to anyone. What do you mean by saying, ‘You will be made free’?”
34Jesus answered them, “Very truly, I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. 35The slave does not have a permanent place in the household; the son has a place there forever. 36So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.”

Hymn of the Day                   
We All Are One in Mission

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We all are one in mission; we all are one in call, our varied gifts united by Christ, the Lord of all.  A single great commission compels us from above to plan and work together that all may know Christ’s love.

We all are called for service, to witness in God’s name.  Our ministries are diff’rent; our purpose is the same:  to touch the lives of others with God’s surprising grace, so ev’ry folk and nation may feel God’s warm embrace.

Now let us be united, and let our song be heard.  Now let us be a vessel for God’s redeeming Word.  We all are one in mission; we all are one in call, our varied gifts united by Christ, the Lord of all.

apostles’ creed, and its meaning
With explanations from Luther’s Small Catechism

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The First Article: On Creation

I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

What does this mean?
I believe that God has created me together with all that exists. God has given me and still preserves my body and soul: eyes, ears, and all limbs and senses; reason and all mental faculties. In addition, God daily and abundantly provides shoes and clothing, food and drink, house and farm, spouse and children, fields, livestock, and all property—along with all the necessities and nourishment for this body and life. God protects me against all danger and shields and preserves me from all evil. And all this is done out of pure, fatherly, and divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness of mine at all! For all of this I owe it to God to thank and praise, serve and obey him. This is most certainly true.

The Second Article: On Redemption
I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of the Father, and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

What does this mean?
I believe that Jesus Christ, true God, begotten of the Father in eternity, and also a true human being, born of the virgin Mary, is my Lord. He has redeemed me, a lost and condemned human being. He has purchased and freed me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil, not with gold or silver but with his holy, precious blood and with his innocent suffering and death. He has done all this in order that I may belong to him, live under him in his kingdom, and serve him in eternal righteousness, innocence, and blessedness, just as he is risen from the dead and lives and rules eternally. This is most certainly true.

The Third Article: On Being Made Holy
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

What does this mean?
I believe that by my own understanding or strength I cannot believe in Jesus Christ my Lord or come to him, but instead the Holy Spirit has called me through the gospel, enlightened me with his gifts, made me holy and kept me in the true faith, just as he calls, gathers, enlightens, and makes holy the whole Christian church on earth and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one common, true faith. Daily in this Christian church the Holy Spirit abundantly forgives all sins—mine and those of all believers. On the last day the Holy Spirit will raise me and all the dead and will give to me and all believers in Christ eternal life. This is most certainly true.

Prayers & The Lord’s Prayer

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Held together in one body by the Spirit of Christ, let us pray for the church and the world, and all who are in need.

God of mercy, throughout history your goodness prevails, open the hearts of all people to discover the deep bond of community. Show us your goodness and mercy that endure forever.  Lord, hear our prayer. 

God of peace, bring peace in this world.  Restore wholeness among us.  Lord, hear our prayer. 

God, our healer, come to our aid as COVID-19 continues to spread, heal those who are sick, protect families and friends from being infected. Support those in public health and medical services. Strengthen our resolve to eradicate all diseases, malaria, dengue, HIV & AIDS, and many others.  Lord, hear our prayer. 

God of justice, hasten justice for those suffering under the power of evil and every form of oppression and greed. Give new life to all.  Lord, hear our prayer. 

God, rock and fortress, protect refugees, those without homes or security, all the abandoned children. Help us always to defend human rights and dignity.  Lord, hear our prayer. 

God of mercy, strengthen and protect those who are persecuted for faith in you and those of other faiths who suffer persecution. Give us the courage to profess our faith.  Lord, here our prayer.

Into your hands, gracious God, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your mercy; through Jesus Christ, our Savior.  Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

Gathered into one by the Holy Spirit, let us pray as Jesus taught us.

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.  Give us today our daily bread.  Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.  Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil.  For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and forever.  Amen.


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The God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in harmony with one another, in accordance with Christ Jesus.  The God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.  The God of all grace ☩ bless you now and forever.  Amen.

Go forth into the world to serve God with gladness; be of good courage; hold fast to that which is good; render to no one evil for evil; strengthen the fainthearted; support the weak; help the afflicted; honor all people; love and serve God, rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit. 

Go in peace.

Share the good news. 

Thanks be to God.

Sending Song                 
The Church of Christ, in Every Age

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The church of Christ, in ev’ry age beset by change, but Spirit-led, must claim and test its heritage and keep on rising from the dead.

Across the world, across the street, the victims of injustice cry for shelter and for bread to eat, and never live before they die.

Then let the servant church arise, a caring church that longs to be a partner in Christ’s sacrifice, and clothed in Christ’s humanity.

For he alone, whose blood was shed, can cure the fever in our blood, and teach us how to share our bread and feed the starving multitude.

We have no mission but to serve in full obedience to our Lord; to care for all, without reserve, and spread his liberating word.

Worship Assistants

Music:  Lori
Message: Pastor Kristin
Readers: Wendy, Maddy Jo, Ian, Ginny, Pat
Children’s Moment: Pastor Kristin

From Sundays and Seasons.com. Copyright 2005 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved.  Reprinted and streamed by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #SAS002432.  New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.  Hymns reprinted and streamed with permission. CCLI#1162147

Call to Worship adapted from Seasons of the Spirit: Congregational Life, Reformation Day and revgalblogpals.org

Sunday school material used with permission from Spirit & Truth Publishing. God’s Word @ Home: Family Faith Formation.