Peace Mennonite At-Home Worship: May 31, 2020

Welcome to Pentecost Sunday with Peace Mennonite Church!

Butterfly Milkweed – Photo by Ken Ratzlaff

You are invited to join us for sharing and prayer on Zoom each Sunday morning at 11.  Simply click this link. This morning the Worship Committee plans to have some structured sharing and prayer time for the first thirty or forty minutes, and then leave the zoom call open for more informal conversation afterwards.

A reminder that our current church announcements are available here.

Prelude: Sara and Perry

Welcome from Pastor Melissa

I have been exceedingly blessed by this month at Peace as Sabbatical Coverage Pastor. Thank you all very much for sharing yourselves and your gifts that keep enhancing our worship and fellowship times! As we celebrate Pentecost today, I pray that the Holy Spirit will surprise you in whatever way you need surprising.

In my interview project earlier this year, there was strong evidence that you all hope to grow in numbers to include “as many as are meant to be here.” Pentecost is sort of Intro to Church Growth 101: The Holy Spirit Arrives! The only way any growth toward God’s Shalom happens is through the movement of the Holy Spirit! As you worship, I challenge you to consider: Where am I seeing the Holy Spirit these days? That answer is good news that someone else needs to hear, someone who may be meant to be here!

Scripture Reading: Rosie Claassen, Joel 2:23-32

Prairie Burn, Chase County – Photo by Ken Ratzlaff

Call to Worship: written by Christina Rossetti

As the Wind is your symbol, so forward our goings.

As the dove, so launch us heavenward.

As water, so purify our spirits.

As a cloud, so abate our temptations.

As dew, so revive our languor.

As fire, so purge out our dross. Amen.

Hymn and Congregational Prayer: Holy Spirit, Come with Power (Blue Hymnal: A Worship Book #26)

Our Lord’s Prayer: in Swahili, to remind us of all the languages in which followers of Jesus sing and pray around the world!

Children’s Time: Jenny

Hymn: Breathe on Me, Breath of God (Blue Hymnal: A Worship Book #356)

Scripture Reading: Rosie Claassen, Acts 2:1-21

Sermon

Hymn: Veni Sancte Spiritus (Come Holy Spirit). A version can be found in the Blue Hymnal: A Worship Book #298.

Offering

You are invited to mail your financial contributions to the church (615 Lincoln St., Lawrence, KS, 66044) or to the home of our treasurer, Roberta Renz (address in the church directory).

See the “How and Where to Give” section of our announcements page for information on giving to other organizations who need funding at this time.

This is a photo of Roger Gibson’s lettuce bed taken a little over a month ago. He has written the reflection here in response to the Peace and Justice Committee’s request for personal testimonies of how you are participating in God’s mission in these troubled times. (Go here for that invitation; you too could submit!)

“I’m just not that crazy about salad, but I grow lettuce anyway, and sometimes I eat it, and sometimes I sell it at the Farmers Market. That’s what I was going to do this spring—the selling part, I mean. And then Covid-19 presented itself just after I planted my seeds.
My growing of lettuce has become somewhat of a ritual, an annual exercise in humility and awe. I am somehow proud of it, even though the burying of a seed, the transplanting of a seedling, the harvesting of a whole, beautiful head has very little to do with me. I’m really just an interested front-row bystander who has an appetite for being amazed over and over again.
That a tiny sliver of seed can grow into a big, beautiful salad, night after night, just astonishes me and makes my thoughts turn to things holy and sacred and beyond my understanding.


I have raised two teenage boys by myself. At their ugliest, both boys have been hard to like, at times, and routinely turned up questions in my mind about love, too. Attempts to express my love for them were mostly irrelevant. But in both cases, along about their fifteenth or sixteenth year, the daily regimen of cooking a good evening meal stopped being the production and serving of nutrition and became, instead, the only remaining way I could think of to let them know that they were loved. And so I served them, mindful of Jesus who lovingly served the throng, and said a silent prayer that someday they could recognize my meal as symbolic of my desire to be in loving communion with them.

So, Covid-19, miracles in a seed, and the giving of food as an expression of love. All have been relevant as I have sought and found a place for my lettuce this year, given the late start of the Farmers Market. The Ladybird Diner, which happens to be owned and operated by a former fifth grade student of mine, serves 200 sack lunches everyday, and is handing out 10 Pantry Boxes every week to people who have lost their jobs or are otherwise in crisis because of the virus. And I am thrilled that the lettuce I have given is being distributed to those who are hungry this year. It’s a very small thing in the overall picture, like a lost seed in the dirt, but I’m
glad to have found a way, however small, to help.”
—Roger Gibson

Roger’s full grown lettuce!

Benediction

adapted from Sing the Story Worship Resources #195

Sending Song: Like the Murmur of a Dove’s Song, Twila Schmidt