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April 4 2021 Virtual Worship
Shepherd of the Sierra Presbyterian Church
Resurrection of the Lord
Easter Sunday

April 4, 2021

Welcome to Worship! We invite you to join with those in your home – or in spirit with others from Shepherd – and worship God this day. (If you experience any trouble accessing this material, including links, please send feedback to Cathy Lovejoy at children@shepherdpres.org.)

We will be celebrating the Lord’s Supper this morning.  If you wish to join us, please gather bread and juice before you begin this service.


Instrumental Prelude:  Were You There   click here

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Call to Worship:  
Alleluia! Christ is risen!
Christ is risen, indeed! Alleluia!
This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Alleluia! Christ is risen!
Christ is risen, indeed! Alleluia!  

Hymn:  Christ the Lord Is Risen Today   click here

Call to Confession:  Jesus’ rising from the dead assures us that we, too, have been given new life. Let us repent of our sin before God and one another, certain of God’s mercy.

Prayer of Confession:  All-knowing, all-powerful God, we confess that, even on this most holy day, we are unable to believe in the victory over death shown to us in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Lord. We confess our utter dependence on you not only for life but also for faith, hope, and love. Without your astonishing appearance to our ancestors and your stunning presence throughout the ages, we would be lost. Forgive us and transform us, that in every way our work and prayer will make whole what is broken and give peace on earth. Amen.   (Please take a moment for silent confession.)

Assurance of Forgiveness:  By the grace of God and the witness of our ancestors, the good news of Jesus’ resurrection is our rock and our salvation. You shall not die but live. The rejected cornerstone has become your strength and your song.  Friends, believe the Good News! In Christ we are forgiven. Thanks be to God!

Sung Response:  That Easter Day with Joy Was Bright  (vs 3)   click here

Passing of the Peace: Click below for photo greetings from some of our Shepherd friends. Additionally, if you wish to stay connected with others from Shepherd, find us on Facebook here. Or, search for “Shepherd of the Sierra Presbyterian Church. “Like” or “Follow” us, or say hello on today’s worship post.

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We Hear God’s Word

Special Music:  Resurrection Alleluias  (arr. by Mark Hayes)   
Sung by the Shepherd Choir

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Time with Young Disciples: After watching the message from Ms. Cathy, talk about your experiences with darkness. Was it expected? Scary? What kind of light did you use to chase away the darkness? Why is Jesus like light for our hearts? How does Jesus' resurrection remind us that nothing can separate us from the light of God's love?  

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Click here to access the children's materials for your family, including some coloring bulletins and a video. Because these materials are copyrighted, you will need to enter the user ID and password included in the congregation email. After watching the video, talk about the unsettling parts of the story, and the good parts of the story. Why do you think we say that Jesus' resurrection and triumph over death is good news for the world? 

Scripture and Sermon:   “The Never-Ending Story”

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Scripture Prayer:  Open our eyes and soften our hearts, O God, through the work of your Holy Spirit, that in the hearing of your Word we may receive new life.  Amen.   

Mark 16:1-8
 When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him.  2 And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb.  3 They had been saying to one another, "Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?"  4 When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled back.  5 As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man, dressed in a white robe, sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed.  6 But he said to them, "Do not be alarmed; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him.  7 But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him, just as he told you."  8 So they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them; and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.

Hymn:  The Day of Resurrection!   click here
We Respond to God’s Word

Offering & Prayer of Dedication:  We invite you to continue to give by mailing a check to the church office, using your online bill pay service, or click here to donate online now.

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Sung Response:  Doxology   click here

The Eucharist
At Shepherd of the Sierra, the Gifts of God really are free, as Jesus gives us his life even when we do not know him. The table is completely open, and all are invited to take the bread and the cup regardless of age, race, creed or any other arbitrary human division. As Jesus freely welcomed sinners and gave communion to the ones who betrayed him, denied him, and deserted him, and because the scriptures say, “Nothing can separate us from the love of God,” this table is especially open to those who are aware of their own brokenness. Like Jesus, we exclude no one.

Prayers of the People and Communion
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If you are feeling vulnerable, have a specific need for assistance, or are experiencing financial distress, please reach out to your deacon or Pastor Dave at 916-652-4851.  For prayer requests, email pastor@shepherdpres.org.

Celebration of the Lord’s Supper
Great Prayer of Thanksgiving
Lord’s Prayer

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

Breaking of Bread
Communion of the People
Prayer of Thanksgiving

The Sending

Hymn:  Alleluia! Christ Is Arisen   click here

Sending:  Go from here renewed and strong, knowing that the Lord is alive, almighty, and present. Look for the blessings that await you this week. Weep with those who weep. Rejoice with those who celebrate. Tell the story of hope. Now may the truth of the empty tomb – the astonishing reality of Jesus’ resurrection – keep you fearless and sure that you will see the Resurrected One again and again in this life. May the power of God’s endless love surround you and guide you, this day and always.    

Sending Hymn:  Shalom   click here
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