Worship is at the heart of our life as God’s people. Whatever else we do, worship is at the core as it is through meeting God – in the hymns and the music, the movement and the silence, the Word and the words, in friend and stranger as well as in bread and wine – that we are fed and sustained. This encounter with God lifts our spirits and gives our lives direction, our prayers focus and our faith a grounding in the everyday realities of life.
Faithfully, week after week, ministers, elders, and lay preachers lead God’s people in worship. Part of my ministry is to help with that task by co-ordinating the provision of Worship Notes which assist in the careful preparation of worship. Our Worship Notes offer all the prayers needed (and some that might not be!), notes on the readings that could be built into a sermon, and suggestions for hymns (which might be used or might stimulate the thinking of those who lead worship). This week our notes have been provided by the Rev’d Walt Johnson who looks at the concept of leadership which he sees running through all the passages for today. Looking at Jesus as our supreme example of leadership Walt uses the readings to think about the standards of leadership we see in both church and world. Walt gives all the prayers and hymn suggestions needed – including one by Alan Gaunt which you’d need a OneLicence to reproduce. The notes can be found here https://urc.org.uk/your-faith/prayer-and-worship/worship-notes/
We also offer services by PowerPoint (which can be adapted) if you’d prefer to facilitate worship that way as a form of pulpit supply. Sign up here if you’d like to access those materials and drop me a line so I can send you the current set of PowerPoint material for pulpit supply along with the audio and print versions to distribute locally to those who can’t get to church and don’t have access to the Internet.
Walt prepared the sample intercessions some months ago so we also ask some of our folk to prepare weekly intercessions which are more topical and could be used in small groups, personal prayer as well as Sunday worship. This week’s intercessions have been written by the Rev’d Camilla Veitch and they can be downloaded here.
Finally, we are building up a list of prayers that can be useful as people craft worship or wish to use in their own prayer life. We’ve arranged the material by season on the website – click on the Your Faith tab, then Prayer and Worship, then Prayers for Church Seasons or click here. We have lots of resources there and will be adding some more soon.
I hope you find them useful – do let us know your thoughts on these resources as you use them.
With every good wish
The Rev’d Andy Braunston Minister for Digital Worship