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4/28/24 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

April 28, 2024 - Fifth Sunday of Eastertide

This service will be in-person and on Zoom at 10:00  (Recorded for Facebook and YouTube)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 822 2425 2518

Passcode: 755650


The first pew in front of the pulpit has books and quiet activities for people of all ages.

Please find something that suits you, take it to your pew, and return it after the service.

Silent Prayer

My voice shakes, and still I sing; to God I offer my praise, though the memory of my cries of pain, my despair and grief, the Holy One had abandoned me, my voice shakes, and still I sing.  The scars ache, and still I sing; to God I kneel in worship, remembering the words of my enemies, their encircling threats, body and soul torn apart, the scars ache, and still I sing. My soul is weary, and still I sing; to God I offer my life, knowing that, even in the pit, I fed on unseen grace, holding me, never alone my soul is weary, and still I sing.


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




Prelude       The Strife Is O’er                                                                    Palestrina, Handel/ Lau




*Introit       From All That Dwell Below the Skies (vs. 1)                                                  B. #27

From all that dwell below the skies let the Creator's praise arise;  Alleluia! Alleluia!Let the Redeemer's name be sung through every land, by every tongue. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


*Call to Worship

One: We delight ourselves in the presence of Christ and his love for all creation.

All: Let us open our hearts to receive Christ’s abundant love.

One: Christ calls us to see him as the vine and for us to become the branches.

All: Let us seek to produce much fruit in God’s Garden where all are welcome.

One: Come, let us worship the Master Gardener, Creator of all that was, is and forever will be.

All: Amen and Asè (pronounced “ah-shay” and is Swahili for Amen).


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


*Hymn       For the Beauty of the Earth                                                                           B. #28

For the beauty of the earth, for the splendor of the skies,

For the love which from our birth over and around us lies,

God of all, to you we raise this, our hymn of grateful praise.


For the wonder of each hour of the day and of the night,

Hill and vale, and tree and flower, sun and moon, and stars of light,

God of all, to you we raise this, our hymn of grateful praise.


For the joy of human love, brother, sister, parent, child,

Friends on earth, and friends above, for all gentle thoughts and mild,

God of all, to you we raise this, our hymn of grateful praise.


For the good that love inspires, for a world where none exclude,

For a faith that never tires, and for every heart renewed,

God of all, to you we raise this, our hymn of grateful praise.


*Invocation (in unison)

Living God, we embrace your presence in our lives. Help us to grow stronger together in your garden of love. Plant us together in your peace. Root us together in your hope. Transform us together by your equal justice for all. In your loving presence, we pray. Amen.


Children’s Message                         


Christian Scripture                                                                                              John 15:1-8

Contemporary Reading                                          Psalm 22:25-31 – Rev. Dr. Kehaunani Hill


Special Music        Trio                                                                                               David Lasky 


Message                                                                                                    Rev. Linette George


*Hymn       In the Bulb There is a Flower                                                                     B. # 433

In the bulb there is a flower; in the seed, an apple tree;in cocoons, a hidden promise: butterflies will soon be free!In the cold and snow of winter there’s a spring that waits to be,unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.


There’s a song in every silence, seeking word and melody;there’s a dawn for every darkness, bringing hope to you and me.From the past will come the future; what it holds, a mystery,unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.


In our end is our beginning; in our time, infinity;in our doubt there is believing; in in our life, eternity.In our death, a resurrection; at the last, a victory,unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.


Prayer for Transformation and New Life

Creating God, we are grateful for the hope that you offer to us and all creation. Prune us so that we may have a cleansed heart. Help us to grow your garden of love. Water our despair so it can be transformed into your hope. Feed our minds so that all may glean from your wisdom. Nurture our spirits so that we can become more fruitful in our lives. Give us new life, we pray. Amen.


Words of Grace

One:  Merciful God, your love for us grows deep and wide. We ask for your forgiveness in those times when we fail to follow your example; when we choose greed over advocating for human rights; and when we choose silence over speaking truth to power.

All:  Create in us your power to change our hearts and minds from earthly scarcity to your divine abundance. Renew in us the courage to get into “good trouble” even when the arc of peace and justice is long. Strengthen us to be branches so that all might know of your garden of forgiveness and love. In your mercy, we pray. 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 –  The offerings we bring are a witness and a contribution to this church’s works in the world. May we freely share and participate in God’s work of grace and mercy, faith and justice.


Offertory      A Celtic Pastorale                                                                                 David Lasky 


*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)             

Let us pray: Compassionate God may these gifts be blessed by your light that cultivates love for all creation. As our gardener, O God, sprinkle water on our dry branches of despair to bring us hope. Shine your light of peace on our weariness to bring us justice for all. With Christ as our vine, save us from all that seek to bring us harm. May these fruitful gifts be a blessing in your garden of love. Amen


*Hymn       For the Fruit of All Creation                                                                     B. #425 

For the fruit of all creation, thanks be to God.

For God's gifts to every nation, thanks be to God.

For the plowing, sowing, reaping, silent growth while we are sleeping,

Future needs in earth's safe-keeping, thanks be to God.


In the just reward of labor, God's will is done.

In the help we give our neighbor, God's will is done.

In our world-wide task of caring for the hungry and despairing,

In the harvests we are sharing, God's will is done.


For the harvests of the Spirit, thanks be to God.

For the good we all inherit, thanks be to God.

For the wonders that astound us, for the truths that still confound us,

Most of all that love has found us, thanks be to God.




*Sung Blessing     Lord, Dismiss Us with Your Blessing (vs. 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      That Easter Day with Joy Was Bright                             Puer Nobis Nascitur/ Harris


(Please remain seated for the Postlude)


If you are visiting with us today, please sign our Guest Book in the back of the sanctuary. 


Support our Church Financially

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



Many thanks to those who make this service possible –

in front of the camera and behind the scenes.


Music Minister – Debbie Riley

Choir – Mary Angela Davis, Nick Davis, Jeanne Edwards, Peggy Emigh, Jane Lennon,

David Mack, Pat Summerer,

Deacons – Vicky Espling and David Wildes

Liturgist –  Vicky Espling

Audio-Video Support – Ron Schwizer

Office Administrator – Vicky Espling

Settled Minister – Rev. TJ Mack

The Body of Christ – You


Resources, adapted

 Living Psalm 22 Breaking the Silence by Rev. Moira Finley - Silent Prayer – Call to Worship, Invocation, Prayer for Transformation, Words of Grace, Offering Prayers and Prayer of Dedication


"Permission to podcast / stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE,                     

License #A-738532. All rights reserved


From All That Dwell Below The Skies

Words and Music - ©2024 Stephen DeCesare / Exultet Music

Contributors: Stephen DeCesare, Traditional, Issac Watts


For the Beauty of the Earth

Words and Music - ©1917 Willow Publishing Pty Ltd

Contributors: Folliot Pierpont, Conrad Kocher


In the Bulb There Is a Flower

Words and Music - ©1986 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: Natalie Sleeth


For the Fruit of All Creation

Words - ©1970 Hope Publishing Company

Contributors: Fred Pratt Green


Lord, Dismiss Us with Your Blessing

Words and Music - Public Domain

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