Saturday, November 24, 2012

God's Promise Will Be Fulfilled

Some additional worship resources for December 2, the first Sunday of Advent.


Adapted from Isaiah 2:3-5 / 2 Nephi 8:19–21 (contemporary language)

Note: References to the “God of Jacob” and the “house of Jacob” have been replaced in this adaptation with more broadly applicable (but literally justifiable) references to the “God of Abraham” and the “children of Abraham.”

Leader:    Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord—
All:           to the house of the God of Abraham.

Leader:    There God will teach us of his ways,
All:           and we will walk in his paths.

Leader:    He will sit in judgment of the nations;
All:           he will settle all their conflicts.

Leader:    They will convert their swords into blades for plowing
All:           and turn their spears into tools for pruning.

Leader:    Never again will one nation take up the sword against another;
All:           no longer will people learn the arts of war.

Leader:    Come, children of Abraham—
All:           let us walk in the light of the Lord!


Adapted from Ether 5:9-10 (contemporary language)

The following scripture might be read in connection with lighting the Candle of Hope, either in tandem with the lectionary reading from Luke 21 or as an alternative to it.

By showing himself to the world
and carrying out the Father’s will,*
Christ has prepared a way
by which others can share in the heavenly gift
and can live in hope of things they have not seen.
For this reason, you too can have hope;
you too can receive the gift.

* Literally: glorifying the Father’s name


3 Nephi 13:54-56 (contemporary language)

This reading is intended to be read in tandem with Jeremiah 33:14-16 (the suggested preaching text) in the “two witnesses” style. For an example of this style, see this post.

When the Lord, in his wisdom, sees fit
that these sayings should come to the nations (as he has decreed),
then you may know
that the sacred promise God made to the people of Israel—
that they would return home from exile—
is already beginning to be fulfilled.

In that day,
you may be assured
that everything the Lord has promised,
through his prophets,
will be fulfilled. . . .

You need not worry
that the prophecies are empty words.
No—the Lord will remember
the sacred promise he made to his people.


Adapted from 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13

May Christ cause us to grow in love
for one another, and for all people.
May he cause our love to grow more and more . . .
so that our hearts become strong and pure,
and we may stand before God unashamed
when our Lord Jesus comes with all the saints.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

November 25 - Christ the King

In the Catholic and Protestant liturgical cycle, November 25 is the feast of Christ the King. The lectionary-designated Gospel reading (John 18:33-37) was chosen to fit that theme. Here are some Restoration-grounded worship resources also based on the theme of Christ’s kingdom.

The Good News of Jesus Christ is at the center of the faith and beliefs of Community of Christ. We are a worldwide community and are committed to follow Jesus, bring forth the kingdom of God, and seek together the revealing, renewing presence of the Holy Spirit. (“Basic Beliefs”)


Adapted from D&C 65:1c-f

A voice cries:
Prepare the way of the Lord!
Prepare the supper of the Lamb!
Make ready for the Bridegroom!

Pray to the Lord!
Call upon his holy name!
Make known his wonderful works among the people!

Call upon the Lord,
that his kingdom may go forth upon the earth—
that the inhabitants thereof may receive it!

May the kingdom of God go forth—
that you, O God, may be glorified,
as in heaven, so on earth.


D&C 164:5, 9b-c

This selection could be read in tandem with John 18:33-37 in the “two witnesses” style. For an example of the style, see this post.

When you are truly baptized into Christ
you become part of a new creation. . . .
Through the gospel of Christ  
a new community of tolerance,
unity in diversity,
and love
is being born as a visible sign
of the coming reign of God. . . .

When your willingness to live in sacred community
as Christ’s new creation
exceeds your natural fear of spiritual and relational transformation,
you will become who you are called to be.

The rise of Zion the beautiful,
the peaceful reign of Christ,
awaits your wholehearted response
to the call to make and steadfastly hold to
God’s covenant of peace in Jesus Christ.
This covenant . . . requires whole-life stewardship
dedicated to expanding the church’s restoring ministries,
especially those devoted to asserting the worth of persons,
protecting the sacredness of creation,
and relieving physical and spiritual suffering.



Option A: Adapted from D&C 77:4a-b

The Lord says:

Little children—
you have not yet understood
what great blessings the Father holds in his hands,
prepared for you.

You cannot bear all things now.
Nevertheless, I will lead you along.
The kingdom and its blessings are yours.

Option B: Adapted from D&C 61:6c

The Lord says:

Be of good cheer, little children,
for I am in your midst,
and I have not forsaken you.

Inasmuch as you have humbled yourselves before me,
the blessings of the kingdom are yours.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Help Us Remain Faithful

Some worship resources appropriate for November 18.

Adapted from D&C 162 and 163

1st Reader:    People of the Restoration!
                       Listen to the Voice that speaks from beyond the farthest hills!
                       It calls you once again
                       to the work of the One whose name you claim.   [D&C 162:1a-b]
All:                 Lord, help us remain faithful to your name, and to your work.

2nd Reader:   Listen carefully to your sacred journey as a people.
                       You have been given a foundation of faithful service,
                       even as you build a foundation for what is yet to be.   [D&C 162:2a-b]
All:                 Lord, help us remain faithful to our heritage of service.

3rd Reader:   Strive to be faithful to Christ’s vision
                       of the peaceable kingdom of God on earth.
                       God is calling for a prophetic community,
                       characterized by uncommon devotion
                       to the compassion and peace of God revealed in Jesus Christ.   [D&C 163:3b, 11a]
All:                 Lord, help us remain faithful ministers of your compassion and peace.

4th Reader:    Faithful disciples respond
                       to the abundant generosity of God
                       by sharing according to the desires of their hearts.
                       Give generously according to your true capacity.   [D&C 163:9]
All:                 Lord, help us remain faithful to our commitment to give.

5th Reader:    You are loved with an everlasting love
                       that delights in each faithful step taken.
                       God yearns to draw you close.
                       Come before your Creator,
                       and discover the blessings of the gospel anew.   [D&C 163:10:a-b]
All:                 Lord, help us love you as faithfully as you love us.
                       Help us remain faithful.


Excerpted from D&C 45:4a-b, 5a-b

This passage could be read in tandem with Mark 13:1-8 in the “two witnesses” style. For an example of the style, see this post.

Traditional language (lightly updated):

[I]n that day shall be heard of wars and rumors of wars,
and the whole earth shall be in commotion,
and [people]’s hearts shall fail them,
and they shall say that Christ delay[s] his coming
until the end of the earth.

[People’s] love . . . shall wax cold,
and iniquity shall abound . . .

[N]ow, when I the Lord had spoken these words [to] my disciples,
they were troubled.
. . . I said [to] them: Be not troubled,
for when all these things shall come to pass,
[you] may know that the promises which have been made [to] you
shall be fulfilled.

Contemporary language:

The news will be full of wars and threats of war.
The whole world will be in turmoil.
People’s hearts will sink into despair.
They will say: “Unless Christ returns soon,
there will be no earth left for him to return to!”

People will turn cold and unloving.
Evil will thrive.

When I, the Lord, taught these things to my followers,
they were disturbed.
But I told them: Do not be alarmed.
When you see these things happening,
know that everything God has promised you
will be brought to pass.


Adapted from D&C 102:11d

Traditional language:

The Lord says:
Be faithful,
and behold and lo,
I am with you even unto the end.
Even so. Amen.

Contemporary language:

Christ says to us:
Be faithful.
Look, and see—
I am with you to the very end.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Give Your All

Here are a couple of worship resources appropriate for November 11.


Excerpted from Omni 1:44-47

Traditional language:

Leader:   Come to God,
               and believe in all things which are good.
All:         For there is nothing that is good
               save it comes from the Lord.

Leader:   Come to Christ,
               and partake of the power of his redemption.
All:         Come to him,
               and offer your whole souls as an offering.

Contemporary language:

Leader:   Come to God,
               and believe in all things that are good.
All:         For everything that is good
               comes from God.

Leader:   Come to Christ,
               and experience the power of his redemption.
All:         Come to him,
               and give your whole self as an offering.


Adapted from Mosiah 9:60-63

This passage could be read in tandem with Mark 12:38-44 in the “two witnesses” style. For an example of the style, see this post.

Alma commanded that the people of the church
should impart of their substance,
everyone according to what they had.

Those who had more abundantly,
should impart more abundantly;
and of those who had but little,
little should be required;
and to those who had not, should be given.

Thus they should impart of their substance
of their own free will
and good desires toward God
to every needy, naked soul.

This Alma said to them,
having been commanded of God.