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May 2 2021 Virtual Worship
Shepherd of the Sierra
Presbyterian Church

5th Sunday of Easter
May 2, 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:  Shine, Jesus, Shine   click here

Welcome:   Click here for high resolution.    Click here for lower resolution.

Call to Worship:       
In the wilderness, water brings life.
Seek us out, O God, and take us to the water.
In the Word of God, the good news gives light.
Seek us out, O God, and fill us with understanding.
In the bread and the wine, the body of our Savior nourishes everyone.
Seek us out, O God, and give us yourself.
Here is the water of life, the word that feeds, the food of eternity.
Come and praise the vine that gives all goodness.

Hymn:  Come, Christians, Join to Sing  click here

Call to Confession:  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, God who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Trusting in God’s mercy, let us confess our sin.

Prayer of Confession:  God of mercy, we confess that we have not borne the fruit of the Spirit. We have not loved others as you have loved us. We have denied the promises of baptism and cut ourselves off from you. Forgive us, restore us, that we may abide in your love and live out your mercy, for the sake of Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.  (Please take a moment for silent confession.)

Assurance of Forgiveness:  You have already been cleansed by the word that God has spoken to you. In baptism God claimed you and joined you to Christ, as branches to a vine. Friends, believe the Good News! In Christ we are forgiven. Thanks be to God!

Sung Response:  Jesus, Lover of My Soul  (v.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

Time with Young Disciples:  After watching the message from Ms. Cathy, talk about the parable. What was the story Jesus told? What is one way that people have thought about this parable over the years? What does it mean to have a heart that is like rocky soil or a hard path? What does it mean to have a heart like good soil?      

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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 Parable of the Farmer and Seed, talk about all the ways that we can hear God's Word. What sometimes keeps us from listening to God's Word? What can we do to be like good soil?

Scripture and Sermon:   “A Story About Soil”

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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 4:1-9   Again he began to teach beside the sea. Such a very large crowd gathered around him that he got into a boat on the sea and sat there, while the whole crowd was beside the sea on the land.  2 He began to teach them many things in parables, and in his teaching he said to them:  3 "Listen! A sower went out to sow.  4 And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and the birds came and ate it up.  5 Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and it sprang up quickly, since it had no depth of soil.  6 And when the sun rose, it was scorched; and since it had no root, it withered away.  7 Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain.  8 Other seed fell into good soil and brought forth grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirty and sixty and a hundredfold."  9 And he said, "Let anyone with ears to hear listen!"
Hymn:  We Are Called to Be God's People   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:  One Thing Remains (Your Love Never Fails)  click here 

Sending:  Go out with joy that you have been fed and healed, securely abiding as branches of the true vine. Go and tell the story of faith that is given to you by the One who never lets you go. Seek out those who abound with sacred questions, and be ready to answer a mystery with love. As Jesus entered into human life, his life is still alive in you. The blessing of Almighty God be upon you today and always.

Sending Hymn:  Shalom   click here
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