“Praise the Holiest in the Height”
The Word of God
(BCP p. 355)
Celebrant Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
People And blessed be his kingdom, now and for ever.
Celebrant Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid. Cleanse the thoughts of our hears by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy Name through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Hymn of Praise
Lord have mercy.
Christ have mercy.
Lord have mercy.
Collect of the Day
Celebrant The Lord be with you.
People And also with you
Celebrant Let us pray.
Lord of all power and might, the author and giver of all good things: Graft in our hearts the love of your Name; increase in us true religion; nourish us with all goodness; and bring forth in us the fruit of good works; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.
(Please be seated)
A Reading from the Book of Exodus 3:1-15
Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian; he led his flock beyond the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of a bush; he looked, and the bush was blazing, yet it was not consumed. Then Moses said, “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he had turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Come no closer! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” He said further, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
Then the Lord said, “I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Indeed, I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them from the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the country of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. The cry of the Israelites has now come to me; I have also seen how the Egyptians oppress them. So come, I will send you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt.” But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” He said, “I will be with you; and this shall be the sign for you that it is I who sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God on this mountain.”
But Moses said to God, “If I come to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” He said further, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” God also said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you’: This is my name forever, and this my title for all generations.”
The Word of the Lord.
People Thanks be to God
Psalm 105:1-6, 23-26, 45c
(The Lector and the Congregation
1 Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his Name; *
make known his deeds among the peoples.
2 Sing to him, sing praises to him, *
and speak of all his marvelous works.
3 Glory in his holy Name; *
let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
4 Search for the Lord and his strength; *
continually seek his face.
5 Remember the marvels he has done, *
his wonders and the judgments of his mouth,
6 O offspring of Abraham his servant, *
O children of Jacob his chosen.
23 Israel came into Egypt, *
and Jacob became a sojourner in the land of Ham.
24 The Lord made his people exceedingly fruitful; *
he made them stronger than their enemies;
25 Whose heart he turned, so that they hated his people, *
and dealt unjustly with his servants.
26 He sent Moses his servant, *
and Aaron whom he had chosen.
45 That they might keep his statutes *
and observe his laws.
A Reading from the Letter of Paul to the Romans 12:9-21
Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers.
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” No, “if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
The Word of the Lord.
People Thanks be to God.
Celebrant The Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ
according to Matthew 16:21-28
People Glory to you, Lord Christ.
Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and undergo great suffering at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This must never happen to you.” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; for you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit them if they gain the whole world but forfeit their life? Or what will they give in return for their life?
“For the Son of Man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay everyone for what has been done. Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
People Praise to you, Lord Christ.
The Rev. Dr. John Agbaje
Today’s sermon is titled Hospitality. My text is from today’s second lesson. St. Paul said, “Let love be genuine.” He ends with defining hospitality in terms of love for a stranger. St. Paul asked his listeners, and now us, not to think too highly of ourselves, but rather to associate with the lowly among us. If I have to preach on everything St. Paul said we’ll be here till evening. So, I have decided to preach on Hospitality.
Hospitality has to do with being generous to one another, especially those in need.
Hospitality is an imitation of Christ Himself. Considering how we relate to strangers among us or our neighbors enhances our thoughts, words and actions around hospitality.
Being hospitable must be intentional. Our being hospitable must be about making a stranger feel welcomed.
Jesus once said, “Whoever gives a cup of water to one of these little ones,” meaning His disciples, “will not lose his or her life.”
Hospitality begins with the belief that we will all sooner or later be in need of someone to help us too.
When Jesus needed a place to unwind, He usually went to visit His friend Lazarus his sisters Mary and Martha at their home. These three would usually provide hospitality to Jesus. Once upon a time, Jesus was in their house and a woman came in to wipe His feet with oil. This was when Judas said the oil could have been sold and the money used to help the poor. Judas only wanted to keep the money because he was the one in charge of the money for Jesus’ disciples.
Hospitality includes serving Christ in all persons and loving our neighbors as ourselves as we promised during our baptism. Hospitality includes accepting and respecting others who don’t look like us, or smell like us, or dress like us.
Every time we focus on the needs of others, especially strangers, we are demonstrating hospitality. Scripture says, “Do not forget to show hospitality to others for in so doing others have entertained Angels.” In the Book of Hebrews, we read, “When I was a Stranger you welcomed me, and all who welcomed others have received their rewards.”
Another example of hospitality is when the Zarephath woman hosted Prophet Elijah with the little food that she had left for her and her child. Thank God she listened to Elijah and experienced a miracle.
Showing hospitality is synonymous with being welcoming. I remember when I would lead workshops on Church growth in the Dioceses of Chicago and the Diocese of Southern Virginia, I usually reminded my audience what Rick Warren wrote in his book, A Purpose Driven Church. He writes that when a new parishioner enters any Church, before the processional Hymn starts, the newcomer has already decided whether to join the Church or not. The newcomer also is watching how the congregation interacts with each other.
This also means that as you watch the visitor, the visitor is also watching you.
A welcoming attitude is also a hallmark of a healthy Church. It represents a Church where others want to go.
Every time hospitality is provided it enables the person on the receiving end to feel fulfilled, and it gives a sense of belonging. It facilitates growth especially in a Church.
This reminds me of the song that goes, “sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name…“ It also helps a person to feel needed. Hospitality reminds us not to get stuck in the rejection of people we don’t even like.
My brothers and sisters in Christ, Jesus usually showed up as a stranger wherever he went. We never know when He may choose to come among us.
My prayer for all of us is that the power of the Holy Spirit will continue to move our hearts and empower us to be hospitable believing that one day we may be the one in need of hospitality.
I also pray that the Holy Spirit will transform our hearts so that we all can be like Jesus to someone who is in need of hospitality. When this happens, especially in a Church, that person may come back and be part of the community. Won’t that be wonderful?
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
The Nicene Creed
(BCP p. 358)
We believe in one God
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven:
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he became incarnate
from the Virgin Mary,
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified
under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand
of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son he is
worshipped and glorified.
He has spoken through the Prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and
We acknowledge one baptism
for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead
and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Prayers of the People
In the Anglican cycle of prayer, we pray for the United Church of South India.
In the Diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for St. Barnabas in Montgomery, St. James in Cincinnati, and St. Margaret’s in Trotwood.
In our Parish cycle of prayer, we pray for Megan Rubino, and Adam and Addison Oiler; Jim and Judy Rudd; and Carolyn Sargent.
(BCP p. 389)
In peace, we pray to you, Lord God.
For all people in their daily life and work;
For our families, friends, and neighbors, and for those who are alone.
For this community, the nation, and the world;
For all who work for justice, freedom, and peace.
For the just and proper use of your creation;
For the victims of hunger, fear, injustice, and oppression.
For those on our Parish Prayer List (N), and for all who are in danger, sorrow, or any kind of trouble;
For those who minister to the sick, the friendless, and the needy.
For the peace and unity of the Church of God;
For all who proclaim the Gospel, and all who seek the Truth.
For Michael, our Presiding Bishop, and Thomas our Bishop; and for all bishops and other ministers;
For all who serve God in his Church.
For the special needs and concerns of this congregation.
The People may add their own petitions
Hear us, Lord;
For your mercy is great.
We thank you, Lord, for all the blessings of this life.
The People may add
their own thanksgivings
We will exalt you, O God our King;
And praise your Name for ever and ever.
We pray for all who have died, that they may have a place in your eternal kingdom.
The People may add their own petitions
Lord, let your loving-kindness be upon them;
Who put their trust in you.
We pray to you also for the forgiveness of our sins.
Silence may be kept.
Leader and People
Have mercy upon us, most merciful Father; in your compassion forgive us our sins, known and unknown, things done and left undone; and so uphold us by your Spirit that we may live and serve you in newness of life, to the honor and glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Lord’s Prayer
Celebrant As our Savior Christ has taught us, we now pray,
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 for ever. Amen.
Celebrant The peace of the Lord be always with you.
People And also with you.
The congregation is dismissed.
People Thanks be to God.
“The Old 104th”
For today’s announcements, click HERE.
St. Mark’s Vestry
Senior Warden: Gary Welch
Junior Warden: Katherine Wagner
Treasurer: Don Nancarrow
Secretary: Dave Reuter
Carol Nancarrow, Tracey Swartz
Jen Bonifas, Susan Kendall
Kendall Rubino, Jenna Walch
St. Mark’s Staff
Transitional Priest in Charge The Rev. Dr. John Agbaje
Parish Administrator Katherine Wagner
Music Director Donna Larsen
Sexton Douglas Plummer
Look for us…
On the web: www.StMarksDayton.org
Facebook: St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Dayton, Ohio