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3/5/23 Bulletin


We respect tradition — and we welcome inclusive language about people and expansive language about God. Please pray using words most meaningful to you.

Open and Affirming of ALL God’s Children

Second Sunday in Lent - Communion Sunday

March 5, 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

God, you have given us the gift of this new day, and you send us out to live it fully and well. Help us to be attentive to your direction and leading. If you should call us to go in some new direction, give us courage to try this new thing. If you present us with a mysterious truth or grace, help us to understand, or to seek understanding, with a sense of wonder and faith.

Whatever this day may hold, we trust that you will keep us in all our comings and goings.

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


Mission Moment Savanna Havey

Prelude Lord Jesus, Think on Me Southwell/ Thompson


Introit Praise to the Lord, the Almighty (v. 1) R. #26

Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the God of creation!

Sing, my soul, praising the source of thy health and salvation!

All ye who hear; now to God’s temple draw near;

join me in glad adoration!

*Call to Worship

Liturgist: From the safety and comfort of home, God called Abram to go from all he knew to embrace a future yet to be revealed.

All: “Go from,” God says, and our hesitant hearts place one foot in front of the other to trust God with the unknown.

Liturgist: By night, Nicodemus came seeking greater insight into the teachings of God for the journey set before him. Jesus called him out of the shadows and towards a life born anew.

All: “Go towards” God says, and a new life awaits us. We reach towards a God who has not come to condemn the world but to offer a salve that can heal all wounds.

Liturgist: We fear the unknown and that which we lack in understanding. “How can this be?” we proclaim with Nicodemus. And yet, God’s call is one that urges us to go with our whole self into that unknowing, trusting that God will provide a way.

All: Love calls us forth into lives of transformation, born anew into new paths of faith. Though we do not know where we are going, God has promised to never leave us alone. Let us worship the One who will show us the way.

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

*Hymn Though I May Speak (The Gift of Love) R. #68

Though I may speak with bravest fire,and have the gift to all inspire,

and have not love, my words are vain, as sounding brass, and hopeless gain.

Though I may give all I possess, and striving so my love profess,

but not be given by love within, the profit soon turns strangely thin.

Come, Spirit, come, our hearts control, our spirits long to be made whole.

Let inward love guide every deed; by this we worship, and are freed.

*Invocation (spoken in unison)

God of calls and courage, you draw us towards your loving embrace even as we face what seems like impossibility. We experience heartache and grief, injustice and cruelty, fear and anxiety as daily teachers on this path of faith. As you call us to go into an uncertain and unknown future, O God, grant us the courage needed to let go of all that we have known so that we can take hold of the new life you are bringing about even now. Though we may not know where we are going, God, your way is revealed moment by moment, step by step, and breath by breath. In the name of the One who so loves the world we pray. Amen

Children’s Message

Christian Scripture John 3:1-17

Poem Sabbath Poem XII, 2007 Wendell Berry

Special Music At the Table of the Lord Jay Althouse


*Hymn God Our Author and Creator B. #530

God our Author and Creator, in whose life we find our own,

make our daily witness greater, by our lives make your love known.

Help us show how love embraces those whom fear and greed down-trod;

in all yearning hearts and faces let us see a child of God.

Like those first apostles, Savior, give us strength to love and serve:

when our fainting spirits waver, fire our hearts and steel our nerve.

Teach us wisdom and compassion: bid our restless thoughts be still;

by your guidance help us fashion lives conformed unto your will.

Keep us faithful, Holy Spirit, help us bear the message true,

that at last all lands may hear it: "God is love; Christ died for you."

Join our lives in mighty chorus till we come from every place,

with all those who went before us, to the fullness of God's grace.

Prayer for Transformation and New Life

Minister: O God, we all too often wish to go our own way, maintain control, and rely on our own strength rather than trust that you will provide. Forgive us in our unwillingness to live by faith or to not trust you with providing all that we need for the journey.

All: May God’s mercy surround our weaknesses with grace for restoring us to hope everlasting.

Words of Grace and Assurance

Minister: Friends, the call of God does not leave us isolated and condemned on a road of uncertainty, fear, and mistakes. God’s unending love and compassion is for all whose burdens are heavy. May the tender arms of God carry you forth in strength.

All: God has not come to condemn, but to offer a healing salve for our wounds. We welcome God’s healing and salvation through Jesus Christ. Amen

Prayers of the People – Sharing Joys & Concerns

Our Father (Creator, Mother) 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. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen

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 Gracious God, you have called us to give of our resources so that others may experience the new life you are inviting us into. Let our gifts be for the birthing of new life in our local community, in the global community, and in our faith community.

Offertory Humbly I Adore Thee Pachelbel/Lau

*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)

O God who calls us to go out into the world with generosity, may these gifts call us from our lives of comfort and towards a faith journey that embraces your love, justice, and compassion for a world in need of your healing. Amen

*Communion Hymn Be Known to Us in Breaking Bread B. #342

Be known to us in breaking bread, but do not then depart;

O Savior, stay with us and spread your table in our heart.

Here share with us in love divine, your body and your blood;

That living bread, that heavenly wine, be our immortal food.

Invitation to Holy Communion

Jesus gathered his followers together round a table and they ate the Passover meal as a family, not related by blood but by faith. Each person there brought to the gathering talents and growing edges. They had hopes and dreams, disappointments, and fears. Sometimes they all got along, and sometimes they didn’t, but they were bound together by their love and belief in Jesus.

Look around you…today we are the family Jesus has gathered together for this meal. We are the people who bring all that we are, and all that we hope to be, to the table. We are siblings by faith, the Body of Christ, children of God. We have all received Jesus’ invitation to share the bread and cup so Come! Eat! and know that we have found a common home and family in Jesus Christ.

Communion Prayer

All: Jesus came as teacher, full of stories and lessons meant to change our ways. Jesus came as prophet, to testify to the truth of God’s love and presence in our lives. Jesus came as a revolutionary, eager to challenge the thinking and practices of the leaders. Jesus came as a human: a man who ate and drank with the outcasts, who loved and forgave his enemies, and who suffered and died an excruciating death on a cross.

Leader: But Jesus left us gifts to help us through the ordinary and the extraordinary.

His spirit lives within us, guiding, comforting, challenging, forgiving, and loving us each moment of every day.

All: His life example inspires us to live the life he lived even when it seems difficult and sometimes impossible. And he gave us this meal we are about to eat: a reminder of his love, his faithfulness, his hope for our salvation, and his wish that we serve each other

the bread and cup as a covenant to the community that binds us to him.

Breaking Bread and Pouring Wine

All: Through the broken bread we participate in the body of Christ.

Through the cup of blessing we participate in the new life Christ gives.

Sharing the Elements

Leader: The gifts of God for the people of God. Come, for all things are ready.

Leader: The bread of life.

All: Amen

Leader: The cup of joy.

All: Amen

Prayer of Thanksgiving

All: Bountiful God, we give you thanks that you have refreshed us at your table. Strengthen our faith, increase our love for one another, and send us forth into the world in courage and peace, rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen


*Sung Benediction Go With Us, Lord R. #336

Go with us Lord, and guide the way through this and every coming day,

That in your Spirit strong and true our lives may be our gift to you.

Postlude Savior, When In Dust To Thee Spanish Chant/ R Lau

(Please remain seated for the Postlude)

The Crabtree Family will hold a Memorial Service to celebrate the life of Marcia Crabtree at 4 pm on Monday July 10, 2023 at 864 Point Road in Hancock. All are welcome.

We look forward to seeing you and sharing memories about Marcia.

We invite you to stay for food and drink after the ceremony.

Please RSVP to Shona Crabtree at only if you are coming

so we can be sure to have a seat for you. Thank you.

Many thanks to those who make this service possible –

in front of the camera and behind the scenes.

Music Minister – Debbie Riley

Deacons – Mary Angela Davis, Nick Davic and Vicky Espling

Liturgist – David Wildes

Graphics Minister – Cynthia Wood

Audio-Video Support – Mike Summerer

(Mike Summerer is happy to teach others this important 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 new webpage

(please note that still exists as an archival site)

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


UCC Worship Ways and Feasting on the Word: Worship Companion

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

Praise To the Lord

Words and Music - ©1863 Willow Publishing Pty Ltd

Contributors: Joachim Neander, Catherine Winkworth

Though I May Speak with Bravest Fire - GIFT OF LOVE

Words and Music - ©1972 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: Hal H Hopson

God Our Author and Creator

Words - ©1987 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: Carl P. Daw, Jr.

Be Known to Us in Breaking Bread

Words - ©1979 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: James Montgomery

Go with Us, Lord

Words - ©1990 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: Mary Jackson Cathey

Please keep the following people in your prayers this week:

the people of Syria and Turkey;

the people of Ukraine and Russia;

the family and friends of Michelle “Mickey” Worth who died Feb. 24th;

President Jimmy Carter and his family;

Nick’s sister Susan recovering from a mild stroke; Kenny Stratton recovering from a fall;

Joy & David; Sally’s friend Joan; Denny Doucette; Vicky’s Aunt Eleanor; Morgan Espling; Debbie E; David Mack; Coulter Huyler; Sandy Phippen; Josh Friend;

Renata’s sister-in-law Joanne; Linda K.;

a church family seeking prayers for effective mental health treatment and healing;

Judith Crowley; Steve Crabtree; Debbie Maddocks and her Aunt Linda Reed; John Wood; Andrew and Tamara; Austin’s cousin Danny; Kathy’s sister Patti Wotton; Roberta Scott;

Betty Johnston; Betty’s step-daughter Mollie; Margaret B; Liz & Jim; Gary Edwards;

Bruce’s sister Lynn; Renata and the women she cares for; Eleanor’s step-daughter Holly;

Tom & Judy’s son Andrew and his family; Cynthia; Nancy;

all individuals and families experiencing addictions; all caregivers; all affected by memory loss;

those living with depression and other mental health issues; for all victims and loved ones of violence, those impacted by laws limiting reproductive justice;

those experiencing food and housing insecurity;

all in your heart…

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