Sunday, May 2: Fifth Sunday of Easter

This worship service, again recorded and available for viewing on YouTube, incorporates music from the May 20, 2018 service. The Prelude, arranged and performed by pianist Patricia Black, was “Improvisation on ‘For the Beauty of the Earth’ and ‘This is My Father’s World.” The Anthem was “My Song In the Night,” an American folk hymn arranged by Mack Wilberg and performed by the Asheville Symphony Chamber Chorus, our guest musicians on that date. Patricia Black accompanied on piano.

This worship service included the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. The congregation was invited to join in this celebration of Holy Communion by taking the bread and cup in their homes, trusting in the power of the Holy Spirit to join us as one with the body of Christ.

Pastors Emily and Curtis gave the Call to Worship, the Opening Litany, the Prayer of Confession, and Passing of the Peace. Emily preached on a reading of John 15:1-8, in which Jesus refers to himself as the True Vine, declaring that his followers will bear much fruit if they abide in him.

Emily’s sermon title, “Abiding in Love,” reflected on these words from Jesus. She affirmed that Christ has in fact already made a home in us, and that we discover our most authentic selves in the love of God that abides in each of us. When we are returned to our authentic selves, we return to the place where Jesus abides in us; we are returned to love. It is in this transformative love that we as the Church “bear much fruit.”

Pastor Curtis Fussell led the congregation in the Prayers of God’s People and the Offertory Prayer. He and Emily then together introduced the Sacrament of Communion with the Prayer of Great Thanksgiving and the Lord’s Prayer, encouraging all to join in taking the bread and cup of salvation.

The service closed with the Benediction Hymn, “God Be With You Til We Meet Again” and Angie Jenkins’ magnificent Postlude, “Festive Trumpet Tune,” which she played live on the pipe organ.

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