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July 11, 2021 Sunday Worship
Rev. Christine Smaller
Rev. Christine Smaller
Sunday, July 11, 2021
Service and Hymns
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Sunday, July 11, 2021 7th Sunday after Pentecost  

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Leading us today in worship:
Minister:                             Rev. Christine Smaller
Music Director:                  Dr. Christopher Burton
Scripture Reader:              Shirley Woolner  

Leader: regular font ~ All: bold font ~ Sung Words: bold italic font   

Sonata Opus 10 #1 2nd Mov’t L. van Beethoven  

Greeting:      The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.                   
And also with you.


Memorial Candle
Today we light a candle in memory of Ross Hagerman.    

Call to Worship:
The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it! From the east to the west, from the north to the south, God’s Spirit moves across the face of the earth.
From the east to the west, from the north to the south, we gather together, united by God’s Spirit, to celebrate God’s glory and proclaim God’s praise!

Opening Prayer:   
Loving and merciful God,
We give thanks that you have called us here today, to worship you and learn about you and have our hearts filled with your dreams for us.
You know our deepest needs, and want nothing more than to love us into wholeness.
As we come into your presence this day, comfort, guide, challenge and strengthen each of us.
Above all, fill us with your grace and courage during this time of worship, so we can believe in our capacity to bring your love and wisdom wherever we might go.
We pray in the name of your beloved child, Jesus Christ.

Opening Hymn:  VU 240 Praise My Soul

1   Praise, my soul, the God of heaven;
glad of heart your carols raise;
ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven
who, like me, should sing God's praise?
Alleluia! Alleluia!  Praise the Maker all your days!

2   Praise God for the grace and favour
shown our forebears in distress;
God is still the same forever,
slow to chide, and swift to bless:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!  Sing our Maker's faithfulness!

3   Like a loving parent caring,
God knows well our feeble frame;
gladly all our burdens bearing,
still to countless years the same.
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!  All within me, praise God's name!  

4   Frail as summer's flower we flourish,
blows the wind and it is gone;
but, while mortals rise and perish,
God endures unchanging on.
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!  Praise the high eternal one.

5   Angels, teach us adoration,
you behold God face to face;
sun and moon and all creation,
dwellers all in time and space.
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!  Praise with us the God of grace!

Prayer for Illumination:
God of wisdom and compassion refresh our hearts with your living Word here today. May we hear fresh insights and gain new inspiration as we listen together to this ancient text. Amen.  


Psalm 24 (VU 751)  

Lift up your heads, that God who rules in glory enter may.

The earth is God’s, and all that is in it 
the world, and those who live upon it.
     For God founded it upon the seas,
     planted it firm over the waters beneath. 
Lift up your heads, that God who rules in glory enter may.  

Who may ascend the mountain of God? 
Who may stand in God’s holy place? 
     Those who have clean hands and a pure heart, 
     who have not set their minds on deceit,
     nor made false promises; 
they shall receive God‘s blessing, 
righteousness from the God who will save them. 
     Such are those who seek God,
     who seek the face of the God of Jacob. 
Lift up your heads, that God who rules in glory enter may.  

Lift up your heads you gates! 
     Lift yourselves up, you everlasting doors, 
     that the One who rules in glory may enter. 
Who rules in glory? 
     It is God, valiant and strong, 
     God, who is mighty in battle. 
Lift up your heads, you gates! 
     Lift yourselves up, you everlasting doors, 
     that the One who rules in glory may enter. 
Who rules in glory? 
     It is God of hosts, 
     God who rules in glory. 
Lift up your heads, that God who rules in glory enter may.  

Mark 6:14-29 (NRSV)

King Herod heard of it, for Jesus name had become known. Some were saying, “John the baptizer has been raised from the dead; and for this reason these powers are at work in him.” But others said, “It is Elijah.” And others said, “It is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.” But when Herod heard of it, he said, “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.”

For Herod himself had sent men who arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because Herod had married her. For John had been telling Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” And Herodias had a grudge against him, and wanted to kill him. But she could not, for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he protected him. When he heard him, he was greatly perplexed; and yet he liked to listen to him. But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his courtiers and officers and for the leaders of Galilee. When his daughter Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests; and the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it.” And he solemnly swore to her, “Whatever you ask me, I will give you, even half of my kingdom.” She went out and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?” She replied, “The head of John the baptizer.” Immediately she rushed back to the king and requested, “I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.” The king was deeply grieved; yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he did not want to refuse her. Immediately the king sent a soldier of the guard with orders to bring John’s head. He went and beheaded him in the prison, brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl. Then the girl gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard about it, they came and took his body, and laid it in a tomb.


The Word of God for the people of God.
Thanks be to God.  

Musical Interlude
Variations on a Hymn ~ C. Burton  

Sermon:  Scandalous Decisions  

Hymn:   VU 559 Come O Fount of Every Blessing  

1.      Come, O Fount of every blessing,
tune my heart to sing your grace;
streams of mercy, never ceasing
call for songs of endless praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
sung by flaming tongues above,
Praise the mount; I'm fixed upon it,
mount of God's unfailing love.

2.      Here I pause in my sojourning,
giving thanks for having come,
come to trust, at every turning,
God will guide me safely home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
wandering from the fold of God,
came to rescue me from danger,
precious presence, precious blood.  

3.      O, to grace how great a debt
or daily I am drawn anew!
Let that grace now, like a fetter,
bind my wandering heart to you.
Prone to wander, I can feel it,
wander from the love I've known:
here's my heart, O, take and
seal it, seal it for your very own. 

Prayers of the People  

New Zealand Anglican Lord’s Prayer (Maori Translation):
Eternal Spirit,
Earth-maker, Pain bearer, Life-giver,
Source of all that is and that shall be,
Father and Mother of us all,
Loving God, in whom is heaven:

The hallowing of your name echo through the universe;
The way of your justice be followed by the peoples of the world;
Your heavenly will be done by all created beings;
Your commonwealth of peace and freedom
sustain our hope and come on earth.

With the bread we need for today, feed us.
In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In times of temptation and test, strengthen us.
From trial too great to endure, spare us.
From the grip of all that is evil, free us.
For you reign in the glory of the power that is love,
now and forever. Amen.

Passing the Peace:
The Peace of Christ be with you all.                         
And also with you.  

Everyone is invited to share the peace of Christ by offering a message in the chat box.  You may also wish to think of someone you would like to pass the peace to this week.  

Music while we share the Peace of Christ
Prelude ~ M. Ravel  

Invitation to the Offering:  

Prayer of Dedication:  
A single stone placed in the offering plate honours all our gifts.
Donate online:,  select “Give”
or contact the office by email:
or  phone: 519-599-2438 to arrange a cheque pick-up, or an e-transfer
Mail: Grace UC, 140 Bruce St. S. PO Box 219, Thornbury, ON N0H 2P0
Care, Prayer, Share


Closing Hymn: VU 271 There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy  

1.      There's a wideness in God's mercy
like the wideness of the sea;
there's a kindness in God's justice
which is more than liberty.  

2.      There is no place where earth's sorrows
are more felt than up in heaven;
there is no place where earth's failings
have such gracious judgement given.  

3.      There is plentiful redemption
in the blood that Christ has shed;
there is joy for all the members
in the sorrows of the Head.

4.      Troubled souls, why will you scatter
like a crowd of frightened sheep?
Foolish hearts, why will you wander
from a love so true and deep?  

Commissioning and Benediction  

Sung Blessing:                  
Go now in peace. Never be afraid.
God will go with you each hour of every day.
Go now in faith, steadfast, strong and true,
Know God will guide you in all you do.
Go now in love, and show you believe.
Reach out to others so all the world can see.
God will be there, * within, around, above.
Go now in peace, in faith and in love.
Amen, amen, amen.  

* alternate words: watching from above  

Waltz in A Minor F. Chopin  


RESOURCES USED (all with permission):  

Prayers and Liturgies:
-        Call to Worship: Adapted by C. Smaller from a prayer by Christine Longhurst (based on Psalm 24).
-        Opening Prayer, Prayer for Illumination, Pastoral Prayer:   C. Smaller  

Hymns and Sung Responses:
-        Praise My Soul: Words: Henry Francis Lyte 1834, alt.; adapt. vs 1-3, 5 Ecumenical Women's Center 1974 Music: John Goss 1869; desc. W. Herbert Belyea 1975 Descant copyright 1975 Herbert Belyea.
-        Psalm 24, VU 751: Refrain arrangement copyright 1971 F.R.C. Clarke
-        Fount of Every Blessing: Words: Robert Robinson 1758, alt. Music John Wyeth, Repository of Sacred Music, Part 2, 1813 Word alterations copyright 1993 The Pilgrim Press One License
-        There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy: Words: Frederick William Faber 1854; alt. Music: Johann Ludwig Steiner 1723 Public Domain  

Prelude: Sonata Opus 10 #1 2nd Mov’t L. van Beethoven
Interlude: Variations on a Hymn C. Burton
Passing of the Peace:  Prelude   M. Ravel
Postlude: Waltz in A Minor F. Chopin  

All Public Domain