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1/8/2023 Bulletin


Open and Affirming of ALL God’s Children

The Baptism of Christ

First Sunday after Epiphany

January 8, 2023

This service will be in-person and on Zoom at 10:00 a.m. (Eastern Time)

(Posted for later viewing on Facebook and YouTube)

Meeting ID: 883 2746 7219

Passcode: 131738

Silent Prayer

Mysterious One, through the ordinary elements of the earth, we are reminded that your grace is woven into our common life. The same waters that revive our bodies and the earth’s, invite, too, the renewal of our souls. May we not take for granted the sources of our life but be

good stewards of these gifts that restore. Amen.

* Indicates points in the service when we stand in body or spirit


Prelude Gloria 18th century tunes/ Martin


Introit Here in This Place (v. 3) R. #250

Here we receive new life in your waters; here we receive the bread of new birth; here you shall call your sons and your daughters, call us anew to be salt for the earth. Give us to drink the wine of compassion, give us to eat the bread that is you; nourish us well, and teach us to fashion lives that are holy and hearts that are true.

*Call to Worship

One: God hovered over the waters and brought forth life.

All: Delighting in earth’s creatures and creations, God called these wonders “good!”

One: Though greed and cruelty seeped in, bringing violence and destruction into life’s abundance,

All: still, God persists in the work of love.

One: Stirring the waters again and again, God points us back to our divine beginnings

All: while also ushering us towards new forms of life.

One: Let us remember anew with joy God’s proclamations over creation:

All: The earth and all its creatures are beloved. All life is Sacred. Each person, birthed from the Divine.

One: Thanks be to God, who calls us back to ourselves - beloved and good and free to pursue life together.

*Passing of the Peace (ASL) and lighting Peace & Justice Candle

*Hymn Love Divine, All Loves Excelling R. #404

Love divine, all loves excelling, joy of heaven, to earth come down, fix in us thy humble dwelling, all thy faithful mercies crown; Jesus, thou art all compassion, pure, unbounded love thou art; visit us with thy salvation, enter every trembling heart.

Breathe, O breathe thy loving Spirit into every troubled breast; let us all in thee inherit, let us find thy promised rest; take away the love of sinning; Alpha and Omega be; end of faith, as its beginning, set our hearts at liberty.

Come, almighty to deliver, let us all thy life receive; suddenly return, and never, never more thy temples leave. Thee we would be always blessing, serve thee as thy hosts above, pray, and praise thee without ceasing, glory in thy perfect love.

Finish, then thy new creation; true and spotless let us be, let us see thy great salvation perfectly restored in thee; changed from glory into glory, till in heaven we take our place, till we cast our crowns before thee, lost in wonder, love and praise.

*Invocation (spoken in unison)

Still-speaking God, as these words from Scripture are read, may it be to us as if the heavens are opening, and we see your Spirit descending on us like a dove, revealing your love for us. Amen

Children’s Message “Home By Another Way” Barbara Brown Taylor

Old Testament Reading (Hebrew Scriptures) Isaiah 42:1-9

New Testament Reading (Christian Scriptures) Matthew 3:13-17

Special Music Behold That Star African American Spiritual/ Thompson


Hymn O Holy Dove of God Descending B. #285

O holy Dove of God descending, you are the love that knows no ending, All of our shattered dreams you’re mending: Spirit, now live in me.

O holy Wind of God now blowing, you are the seed that God is sowing, You are the life that starts us growing: Spirit, now live in me.

O holy Rain of God now falling, you make the Word of God enthralling, You are that inner voice now calling: Spirit, now live in me.

O holy Flame of God now burning, you are the power of Christ returning, You are the answer to our yearning: Spirit, now live in me.

Prayer of Confession (spoken in unison)

God, you show no partiality, yet we are not always tolerant and accepting. Forgive our intolerance, and help us to see as you see, that we may be found acceptable in your sight

through Jesus our Christ. Amen

Declaration of Forgiveness

God forgives all our sins and promises to bring us to everlasting life.

Thanks be to God!

Prayers of the People – Sharing Joys & Concerns

Lead me Lord, lead me in thy righteousness, make thy way plain before my face.

For it is thou Lord, thou Lord, only, that makest me dwell in safety.

Invitation to Offering – Friends, through baptism we recognize ourselves and one another as family in Christ. With us, the earth and the soil and the water and the creatures - they are our family too. In gratitude for this entangled life and for the Creator who ushers us towards right-relationship with one another, let us bring our gifts together.

Offertory Tell Me the Old, Old Story Tune: Evangel/ Powell

*The Doxology

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; Praise God, all creatures here below;

Praise God for all that love has done; Creator, Christ, and Spirit, One. Amen

*Prayer of Dedication (spoken in unison)

Holy One, with thanks for your love that stretches beyond our comprehension, we bring our gifts. What a wonder, your invitation to be co-creators of life. May we be bold enough to believe it’s true: that you have called us, that you claim us, and that together, we can do a new thing. Through Christ we pray, Amen

*Communion Hymn As We Gather at Your Table B. #332

As we gather at your table, as we listen to your word,

help us know, O God, your presence; let our hearts and minds be stirred.

Nourish us with sacred story till we claim it as our own;

teach us through this holy banquet how to make Love's victory known.

Turn our worship into witness in the sacrament of life;

send us forth to love and serve you, bringing peace where there is strife.

Give us, Christ, your great compassion to forgive as you forgave;

may we still behold your image in the world you died to save.

Gracious Spirit, help us summon other guests to share that feast

where triumphant Love will welcome those who had been last and least.

There no more will envy blind us nor will pride our peace destroy,

as we join with saints and angels to repeat the sounding joy.

The Lord’s Supper

Invitation to Communion Come to your new journey to be sustained by the food and drink of this holy table. We come following the stars of guidance. Come in spite of all the detours of your life. We know God shows us every year, every day an oasis of safety and rest when we are escaping from dangers all around us, and the ‘home by another way’ which may be a new staying place or a new adventure. Come for there is always a table waiting. We come to share what strengthens us and receive the gifts of others. Words of Remembering We remember that scripture tells us that people are fed on the roads of life. There is manna in the wilderness, door-dash, meals-on-wheels, one innkeeper’s unexpected kindness,and another’s, much later, in Jericho for a Samaritan, inspiring the first warming shelter.But mostly we remember that final evening with his disciples when Jesus shared with a meal with friend, betrayer, denier, in a borrowed room, under fear’s shadow, in the Passover tradition. So is bread and wine redefined,as a promise to us and those we carry in the baggage of life that we pack for every road – both the tourism of life’s joys and the paths we take through sorrow. This Holy Communion is the “Take-Away” from all our stories on all our journeys. Prayer of Consecration Give us strength and courage, O Dreamweaver, to cast our lot into the deep and refreshing pool of your unconditional grace, so we may become your next chapter of hope for all who hunger and thirst for the loaf and cup of shalom. Amen Sharing of the Elements For all your paths in the New Year, and all the light arising on your way home, Take this bread and eat. For every meal you share with others, and every sip you need of hope. Take this cup and drink. Prayer of Thanksgiving God, as you serve us in sacrament, shine before us a star, and teach us to be cooks and servers for the hungry in the world, those who are escaping some tyranny, those who just need a gift, we go forth to share your kindness, your wisdom, your open heart and resting place. Amen


*Sung Benediction Lord, Dismiss Us with Your Blessing (v. 1) R. #333

Lord, dismiss us with your blessing; fill our hearts with joy and peace; let us each, your love possessing, triumph in redeeming grace: oh, refresh us, oh, refresh us, traveling through this wilderness.

Postlude Raise Now Your Song on High Saint-Saens/ Lani Smith

(Please remain seated for the Postlude)

Many thanks to those who helped make this service possible –

in front of the camera and behind the scenes.

Music Minister – Debbie Riley

Deacons – Robin Long, Pat Summerer, Doug Kimmel

Liturgist – Jeanne Edwards

Graphics Minister – Cynthia Wood

Audio-Video Support – Mike Summerer

(Mike Summerer is happy to teach others this simple task. Please inquire…)

Office Secretary – Vicky Espling

Settled Minister – Rev. TJ Mack

The Body of Christ – You

Support our Church Financially

Please visit Hancock (Maine) UCC on Facebook or our webpage

or visit this link to our PayPal account:

or mail offerings to:

Union Congregational Church, PO Box 443, Hancock, ME 04640 (Attention: Treasurer)

Contact Us

207.422.3100 207.323.6743


enfleshed: liturgies that matter and Feasting on the Word: Worship Companion

Communion Liturgy – Maren Tirabassi and Todd Jenkins (prayer of consecration)

"Permission to podcast / stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE, License #A-738532. All rights reserved.”

Here in This Place / Gather Us In

Words and Music - ©1982 GIA Publications, Inc.

Contributors: Marty Haugen

Love Divine, All Loves Excelling

Words and Music - ©1993 MorningStar Music Publishers / Birnamwood Publications

Contributors: Charles Wesley, Sid Davis

O Holy Dove of God Descending - Bryan Jeffery Leech

Words and Music - ©1976 Fred Bock Music Company

As We Gather at Your Table

Words and Music - ©1989, 1992 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: Carl P Daw, Jack Schrader

Lord, Dismiss Us with Your Blessing

Words and Music - ©pd Public Domain

Contributors: Public Domain

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