October 18, 2020

20th Sunday after Pentecost
October 18, 2020
COVID-19 pandemic week 32
Led by:
11 Old York Road ~ Ringoes, NJ 08551
Rev. Scott Schantzenbach, Interim Pastor
Shannen Hemmel, Musician
Pat Johnston, Lector 
Terry Welsh, Videographer and Editor

In this time of world-wide crisis, congregations throughout this church are not able to gather for worship as the body of Christ. While we cannot be together in person, we can hear the word of God and hold each other in prayer. We offer this worship resource as an aid for prayer and worship in the home.



In today’s first reading God uses the Gentile ruler Cyrus to accomplish divine purposes. When the Pharisees try to trap Jesus, he tells them to give the emperor what belongs to him and to God what belongs to God. To gather for worship reminds us that our ultimate allegiance is to God rather than to any earthly authority. Created in the image of God, we offer our entire selves in the service of God and for the sake of the world.

P: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
And also with you.
P: You are the treasured people of the Lord,
a people holy to the Lord our God.
P: Keep the words of the Lord in your heart; teach them to your children.
Talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise.
P: One does not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.


P: The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Sovereign God, raise your throne in our hearts. Created by you, let us live in your image; created for you, let us act for your glory; redeemed by you, let us give you what is yours, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.


All: Salvation belongs to our God and to Christ the Lamb forever and ever.
I: Great and wonderful are your deeds, O God of the universe;
just and true are your ways, O Ruler of all the nations.
Who can fail to honor you, Lord, and sing the glory of your name?
All: Salvation belongs to our God and to Christ the Lamb forever and ever.
II: For you alone are the Holy One.
All nations will draw near and worship before you,
for your just and holy works have been revealed.
All: Salvation belongs to our God and to Christ the Lamb forever and ever.



FIRST READING: Isaiah 45:1-7

The prophet announces that Cyrus the Persian emperor is the one the Lord has anointed to end Israel’s exile. The Lord makes this choice so that the whole world will recognize this Lord as the only God. Persia had a god of light and a god of darkness; the Lord claims sovereignty over both light and darkness.

1Thus says the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus,
  whose right hand I have grasped
 to subdue nations before him
  and strip kings of their robes,
 to open doors before him—
  and the gates shall not be closed:
2I will go before you
  and level the mountains,
 I will break in pieces the doors of bronze
  and cut through the bars of iron,
3I will give you the treasures of darkness
  and riches hidden in secret places,
 so that you may know that it is I, the Lord,
  the God of Israel, who call you by your name.
4For the sake of my servant Jacob,
  and Israel my chosen,
 I call you by your name,
  I surname you, though you do not know me.
5I am the Lord, and there is no other;
  besides me there is no god.
  I arm you, though you do not know me,
6so that they may know, from the rising of the sun
  and from the west, that there is no one besides me;
  I am the Lord, and there is no other.
7I form light and create darkness,
  I make weal and create woe;
  I the Lord do all these things.

Word of God, word of life.
Thanks be to God.


PSALM: Psalm96

1Sing to the Lord| a new song;
  sing to the Lord, | all the earth.
2Sing to the Lord, bless the name | of the Lord;
  proclaim God’s salvation from | day to day.
3Declare God’s glory a- | mong the nations
  and God’s wonders a- | mong all peoples.
4For great is the Lord and greatly | to be praised,
  more to be feared | than all gods. 
5As for all the gods of the nations, they | are but idols;
  but you, O Lord, have | made the heavens.
6Majesty and magnificence are | in your presence;
  power and splendor are in your | sanctuary.
7Ascribe to the Lord, you families | of the peoples,
  ascribe to the Lord hon- | or and power.
8Ascribe to the Lord the honor due the | holy name;
  bring offerings and enter the courts | of the Lord. 
9Worship the Lord in the beau- | ty of holiness;
  tremble before the Lord, | all the earth.
[ 10Tell it out among the nations: “The | Lord is king!
  The one who made the world so firm that it cannot be moved will judge the peo- | ples with equity.”
11Let the heavens rejoice, and let the | earth be glad;
  let the sea thunder and all that is in it; let the field be joyful and all that | is therein.
12Then shall all the trees of the wood shout for joy at your com- | ing, O Lord,
  for you come to | judge the earth.
13You will judge the | world with righteousness
  and the peoples | with your truth.



Word of life, Jesus Christ, all glory to you!
Word of life, Jesus Christ, all praise to you!
Our hearts burn within us while you open to us the Scriptures.
Word of life, Jesus Christ, all glory to you!
Word of life, Jesus Christ, all praise to you!



GOSPEL: Matthew22:15-22

After Jesus begins teaching in the temple, religious leaders try to trap him with questions. First they ask if God’s people should pay taxes to an earthly tyrant like Caesar.

The holy gospel according to Matthew.
Glory to you, O Lord.


15Then the Pharisees went and plotted to entrap [Jesus] in what he said. 16So they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and teach the way of God in accordance with truth, and show deference to no one; for you do not regard people with partiality. 17Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?” 18But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, “Why are you putting me to the test, you hypocrites? 19Show me the coin used for the tax.” And they brought him a denarius. 20Then he said to them, “Whose head is this, and whose title?” 21They answered, “The emperor’s.” Then he said to them, “Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 22When they heard this, they were amazed; and they left him and went away.

The gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.



(see separate attachment for Reflection Papers)



SING: HYMN: ELW 825 "You Servant of God"
1          You servants of God, your Master proclaim,
            and publish abroad his wonderful name;
            the name, all-victorious, of Jesus extol;
            his kingdom is glorious and rules over all!
2          Ascended on high, almighty to save,
            yet still he is nigh, his presence we have.
            The great congregation his triumph shall sing,
            ascribing salvation to Jesus, our king!
Text: Albert F. Bayly, 1901-1984
Text: Charles Wesley, 1707-1788, alt.






P: Dear friends, we give thanks for the gift of baptism and for these people, one with us in the body of Christ, who are making public affirmation of their baptism.


A: I present PETER CHILCOAT, ERIN GILL, AALIYAH LAVOIE, AND CHASE MULHOLLAND who desire to make public affirmation of their baptism.


P: Let us pray.
Merciful God, we thank you for these, your children
whom you have made your own by water and the Word in baptism.
You have called them to yourself,
enlightened them with the gifts of your Spirit,
and nourished them in the community of faith.
Uphold your servants in the gifts and promises of baptism,
and unite the hearts of all whom you have brought to new birth.
We ask this in the name of Christ.


P: I ask you to profess your faith in Christ Jesus, reject sin, and confess the faith of the church.
Do you renounce the devil and all the forces that defy God,
the powers of this world that rebel against God,
and the ways of sin that draw you from God?
I renounce them.

The presiding minister addresses the candidates and the assembly.

P: Do you believe in God the Father?
ALL: I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
P: Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God?
ALL: I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.
P: Do you believe in God the Holy Spirit?
ALL: I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.



P: You have made public profession of your faith. Do you intend to continue in the covenant God made with you in holy baptism:
to live among God’s faithful people,
to hear the word of God and share in the Lord’s supper,
to proclaim the good news of God in Christ through word and deed,
to serve all people, following the example of Jesus,
and to strive for justice and peace in all the earth?
Each person responds:
I do, and I ask God to help and guide me.
P: People of God, do you promise to support these sisters and brothers and pray for them in their life in Christ?
C: We do, and we ask God to help and guide us.


P: Let us pray.

We give you thanks, O God, that through water and the Holy Spirit you give us new birth, cleanse us from sin, and raise us to eternal life.

Stir up in Peter, Erin, Aaliyah, and Chase  the gift of your Holy Spirit: the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord, the spirit of joy in your presence, both now and forever.

Those making public affirmation stand and face the assembly. A representative of the congregation addresses the assembly.

A: Let us rejoice with these, our fellow sojourners in Christ.

We rejoice with you in the life of baptism.
Together we will give thanks and praise to God
and proclaim the good news to all the world.


P: The Peace of the Lord be with you.

And also with you.



Glory to you, God, for yours is the earth;
yours the anointing, the radiant worth.
Ours the rejoicing for spirits aflame.
ours the thanksgiving to your holy name.
Ours be the telling of deeds greatly done.
yours be the glory, O God, yours alone.




P: In the abundance of God’s steadfast love, God calls us from death to life, from silence to speech, from idleness to action. In Proverbs 3:9 Solomon writes: “Honor the Lord with your substance, and with the first-fruits of all your produce.” Giving is an act of honor. Living Waters is a generous people honoring our neighbor, our community, our God, by sharing and serving.

We offer ourselves to God and neighbor, and with the Church through all the ages we give thanks for the saving love in Jesus.



A: Let us pray. God of goodness and growth,
all creation is yours,
and your faithfulness is as firm as the heavens.
Water and word, wine and bread:
these are signs of your abundant grace.
Nourish us through these gifts,
that we might proclaim your steadfast love
in our communities and in the world,
through Jesus Christ, our strength and our song.



A: With confidence in God’s grace and mercy, let us pray for the church, the world, and all those in need, responding to each petition with the words “In mercy, receive our prayers.”

A: We pray for the church around the world: that church leaders be supported in their ministries, especially pastors Scott, Becky, Bruce and Jaymie; that national and local churches receive the necessary funding to accomplish their tasks; and that, hearing you call us by name, we join with all the baptized to give you praise, even in this time of great trouble. You are great, O God, our Redeemer:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: We pray for the earth, the lands, the waters, the animals: that what has been destroyed or harmed be renewed; that the wildness of both storms and viruses be tamed; and that all people become faithful stewards of your good creation. You are great, O God, our Creator:

in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: We pray for the nations of the world: that violence between and within nations cease; that ELCA World Hunger, the World Food Programme of the United Nations, and other relief agencies be enabled to feed those who face starvation; that elections in the world’s democracies be conducted fairly; and that the people of our country shun acts of hostility and sedition. You are great, O God, our Sovereign:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: We pray for a right use of taxation: that laws concerning taxes reflect justice for all; that tax monies be directed to worthy uses; and that citizens honestly pay what is fairly charged, so that our nation may be maintained. You are great, O God, our Judge:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: On this day commemorating St. Luke, we pray for all ministries of healing: that hospitals and clinics receive adequate resources; that medical care be improved in neighborhoods of poverty, in prisons, and in refugee camps; that physicians and nurses be upheld; and that kindly hospice care be available to the dying. You are great, O God, our Healer:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: We pray for all in need: for all who suffer from the coronavirus; for all who are living with high anxiety; for those who are unemployed; for those evicted from their housing; for all who experience prejudice based on skin color, ethnicity, or economic status; for those we name here before you. 

Paul Telenson
Karen Symonoski
Nathan Resch
Genevieve Alana Hemmel
Cecelia Albrecht
Dick Thorpe
Becky M.
Debbie Hoffman
Teachers, students and all those returning to work/class in school
Bill and Mary Ann Reiter
Phyllis Gardner
Brand Kahler Jr.
Jesse Galinkin
Betty Fink
Ted Weisenbach


You are great, O God, our Comforter:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: We pray finally for ourselves: that you give us steadfastness in faith and love; and that you hear the petitions of our hearts. . . . You are great, O God, our Friend:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

A: We praise you for the centuries of the faithful who have died in the faith, especially today for the evangelist Luke, and for those we remember in our hearts. . . . That at the end you will welcome us all into your presence, we pray. You are great, O God, our Hope:
in mercy, receive our prayers.

P: Hear us when we call upon you, O God, and enfold in your loving arms all for whom we pray, in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.



Let us pray with confidence in the words our Savior gave us:
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those
who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours,
now and forever. Amen.
P: May the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ fill you with every spiritual blessing.
P: May the God of faithfulness and encouragement grant you to live in harmony with one another, in accordance with Christ Jesus.
P: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Go in peace. Serve the Lord.
Thanks be to God.



SENDING SONG: ELW 774 "What a Fellowship"
1          What a fellowship, what a joy divine,
            leaning on the everlasting arms;
            what a blessedness, what a peace is mine,
            leaning on the everlasting arms.
            Leaning, leaning, (Leaning on Jesus, leaning on Jesus,)
            safe and secure from all alarms;
            leaning, leaning, (leaning on Jesus, leaning on Jesus,)
            leaning on the everlasting arms.
2          Oh, how sweet to walk in this pilgrim way,
            leaning on the everlasting arms;
            oh, how bright the path grows from day to day,
            leaning on the everlasting arms. Refrain
Text: South African, tr. Freedom Is Coming, 1984
English text © 1984 Utryck, admin. Walton Music Corp.




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