Pentecost-21 (Yr A) Oct 25, 2020



“O God Our Help in Ages Past”

                1. Alexander Matthews



(Please stand)



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 hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy Name through Christ our Lord.  Amen.




(BCP p.356)


Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth.  Lord God, heavenly King, almighty God and Father, we worship you, we give you thanks, we praise you for your glory.  Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father, Lord God, Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world: have mercy on us; you are seated at the right hand of the Father: receive our prayer. For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.


Collect of the Day


Celebrant The Lord be with you.

People And also with you

Celebrant Let us pray.


Almighty and everlasting God, increase in us the gifts of faith, hope, and charity; and, that we may obtain what you promise, make us love what you command; 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 Deuteronomy 34:1-12


Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho, and the Lord showed him the whole land: Gilead as far as Dan, all Naphtali, the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the Western Sea, the Negeb, and the Plain—that is, the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees—as far as Zoar. The Lord said to him, “This is the land of which I swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants’; I have let you see it with your eyes, but you shall not cross over there.” Then Moses, the servant of the Lord, died there in the land of Moab, at the Lord’s command. He was buried in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth-peor, but no one knows his burial place to this day. Moses was one hundred twenty years old when he died; his sight was unimpaired and his vigor had not abated. The Israelites wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days; then the period of mourning for Moses was ended. Joshua son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, because Moses had laid his hands on him; and the Israelites obeyed him, doing as the Lord had commanded Moses. Never since has there arisen a prophet in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face. He was unequaled for all the signs and wonders that the Lord sent him to perform in the land of Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his servants and his entire land, and for all the mighty deeds and all the terrifying displays of power that Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.


The Word of the Lord.


People   Thanks be to God



Psalm 90

(The Lector and the Congregation pray responsively)


1   Lord, you have been our refuge *

    from one generation to another.

2   Before the mountains were brought forth,

    or the land and the earth were born, *

    from age to age you are God.

3   You turn us back to the dust and say, *

     “Go back, O child of earth.”

4   For a thousand years in your sight

      are like yesterday when it is past *

     and like a watch in the night.

5   You sweep us away like a dream; *

     we fade away suddenly like the grass.

6   In the morning it is green and flourishes; *

     in the evening it is dried up and withered.

13  Return, O Lord; how long will you tarry? *

     be gracious to your servants.

14 Satisfy us by your loving-kindness in the morning; *

     so shall we rejoice and be glad all the days of our life.

15  Make us glad by the measure of the days that you afflicted us *

     and the years in which we suffered adversity.

16  Show your servants your works *

     and your splendor to their children.

17  May the graciousness of the Lord our God be upon us; *

     prosper the work of our hands; prosper our handiwork.




A Reading from the First Letter of Paul to the Thessalonians 2:1-8


You yourselves know, brothers and sisters, that our coming to you was not in vain, but though we had already suffered and been shamefully mistreated at Philippi, as you know, we had courage in our God to declare to you the gospel of God in spite of great opposition. For our appeal does not spring from deceit or impure motives or trickery, but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the message of the gospel, even so we speak, not to please mortals, but to please God who tests our hearts.  As you know and as God is our witness, we never came with words of flattery or with a pretext for greed; nor did we seek praise from mortals, whether from you or from others, though we might have made demands as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, like a nurse tenderly caring for her own children. So deeply do we care for you that we are determined to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you have become very dear to us.


The Word of the Lord.


People   Thanks be to God



(Please stand)



Celebrant    The Holy Gospel of Our  Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew 22:34-46

People        Glory to you,  Lord Christ.


When the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?”  He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them this question: “What do you think of the Messiah?  Whose son is he?” They said to him, “The son of David.” He said to them, “How is it then that David by the Spirit calls him Lord, saying, ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, until I put your enemies under your feet”’? If David thus calls him Lord, how can he be his son?” No one was able to give him an answer, nor from that day did anyone dare to ask him any more questions.


The Gospel of the Lord.


People      Praise to you,  Lord  Christ.



(Please be seated)



The Sermon

The Rev. Dr. John Agbaje


Greatest of the Laws


Today’s sermon is titled what love truly means. I will be preaching from part of the Gospel reading we just heard. Matthew chapter 22 verses 35- 40.


A lawyer asked Jesus in order to test him, which is the Greatest Commandment. Jesus said to him, Thou should love the Lord your God with all your hearts and with all your soul and with your entire mind. Jesus said this is the first and great commandment and that the second commandment is like unto it-Thou shall love your neighbor as your self. On this two commandments hang all the laws and the prophets.


To understand where this question comes from one has to take a look at what was happening at that time. This means at Jesus’ time there were lots of discussions There was also a movement at Jesus’ time to simplify the laws. So to test Jesus, a lawyer came to ask which was the greatest commandment.


Jesus aware of the fact that these laws were already summarized in the books of Deuteronomy and the book of Leviticus told this lawyer about what the Torah said about love of God and love of self and love of neighbor as self.


In his book titled- “Systematic, Theology,” a theologian called, Paul Tillich, defined love as a state of being taken by Spiritual presence into the transcendent unity with God. This means, love fosters unity at home, at work, and even at the church.


The wall of hatred or separation could not be pierced or broken without love. Love is what drives us to care and to be kind and it is what leads to forgiveness. The type of love that Jesus is advocating is to accept one another, without any reservation. This is the love which allows us to accept people who are different from us or who don’t talk like us or dress like us. This is what love is!  This type of race transcends race, religion, and nationality. The type of love Jesus was advocating for leads to giving self to the other.


This type of love is present as God gave Jesus to all of us who believe so we do not perish but have everlasting life. This is Agape love. The type of love Jesus was talking about is the type of love demonstrated by the Father of the prodigal’s son, who accepted him back willingly after his son has lavished his inheritance.


This same love is what enables us to sacrifice for our Church, by giving fund and pledging. Through our giving and or pledges the Good News is shared in our neighborhood and beyond.


As we leave the Church today we are encouraged to keep on loving, keep on thanking God and keep on supporting our Church. May God bless our offering and pledges which come from hearts that love. Let the Church say Amen.



(Please stand)



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

   apostolic Church.

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 Church in Wales.


In the Diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for Church of the Redeemer in Cincinnati, St. John’s in Lancaster, and Trinity in Bellaire.


In our Parish cycle of prayer, we pray for Carmen Davis; Steve, Tibby, and Will Day; and Wayne and Gail Harper.


I ask your prayers for God’s people throughout the world; for our Bishop, Thomas; for this gathering; and for all ministers and people.

Pray for the Church.



I ask your prayers for peace; for goodwill among nations; and for the well-being of all people.

Pray for justice and peace.




I ask your prayers for the sick (N); for the poor, the hungry, the oppressed, and those in prison.

Pray for those in any need or trouble.




I ask your prayers for all who seek God, or a deeper knowledge of him.

Pray that they may find and be found by him.




I ask your prayers for the departed [especially __________ ].

Pray for those who have died.




Praise God for those in every generation in whom Christ has been honored.

Pray that we may have grace to glorify Christ in our own day.




Celebrant    Lord Jesus Christ, you said to your apostles, “Peace I give to you; my own peace I leave with you:” Regard not our sins, but the faith of your Church, and give to us the peace and unity of that heavenly City, where with the Father and the Holy Spirit you live and reign, now and for ever. Amen.



The Confession of Sin

The Book of Common Prayer, page 360


Celebrant: Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.


Silence may be kept.


Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone.  We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.  We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.  For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name.  Amen.

Celebrant Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen you in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life.


People   Amen.




The Peace


Celebrant: The peace of the Lord be always with you.

People: And also with you.


(Please be seated)



Birthday and Anniversary Prayers




Holy Communion


The Ushers collect the offering at this time.

(Please stand as the offerings are brought up)





“Lord, Forever At Thy Side”

Healey Willan



Celebrant All things come of thee O Lord and of thy own have we given thee




Eucharistic Prayer B

(The Book of Common Prayer, page 367)


Celebrant         The Lord be with you.

People               And also with you.

Celebrant         Lift up your hearts.

People              We lift them to the Lord.

Celebrant         Let us give thanks to the                 Lord              our God.

People              It is right to give him          thanks and praise.


Celebrant  It is right, and a good and joyful thing, always and everywhere to give thanks to you, Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth.  Therefore we praise you, joining our voices with Angels and Archangels and with all the company of heaven, who for ever sing this hymn to proclaim the glory of your Name:



Holy, holy, holy Lord,

God of power and might,

heaven and earth

are full of your glory.

Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who comes

in the name of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest.


(Please stand or kneel)


Celebrant             We give thanks to you, O God, for the goodness and love which you have made known to us in creation; in the calling of Israel to be your people; in your Word spoken through the prophets; and above all in the Word made flesh, Jesus, your Son. For in these last days you sent him to be incarnate from the Virgin Mary, to be the Savior and Redeemer of the world.


In him, you have delivered us from evil, and made us worthy to stand before you. In him, you have brought us out of error into truth, out of sin into righteousness, out of death into life.


On the night before he died for us, our Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said, “Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.”


After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said, “Drink this, all of you:  This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me.”


Therefore, according to his command, O Father,


Celebrant and People


We remember his death,

We proclaim his resurrection,

We await his coming in glory;


Celebrant And we offer our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving to you, O Lord of all; presenting to you, from your creation, this bread and this wine.


We pray you, gracious God, to send your Holy Spirit upon these gifts that they may be the Sacrament of the Body of Christ and his Blood of the new Covenant. Unite us to your Son in his sacrifice, that we may be acceptable through him, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit. In the fullness of time, put all things in subjection under your Christ, and bring us to that heavenly country where, with St. Mark and all your saints, we may enter the everlasting heritage of your sons and daughters; through Jesus Christ our Lord, the firstborn of all creation, the head of the Church, and the author of our salvation.


By him, and with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit all honor and glory is yours, Almighty Father, now and for ever.


All 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.




The Breaking of the Bread


The Celebrant breaks the consecrated Bread.

A period of silence is kept.


Celebrant  Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us;
People Therefore let us keep the feast.


Facing the people, the Celebrant says the following Invitation


The Gifts of God for the People of God.

Take them in remembrance that Christ died for you,

and feed on him in your hearts by faith, with thanksgiving.



We welcome our visitors today, and we invite all baptized Christians to join us in receiving Communion.  Those not partaking are invited to come forward, cross your arms over your chest, and receive a blessing.

Please line up as directed by the ushers; at your turn walk up to Fr John and he will drop the Host into your hand.  Return to your seat to consume it, then please replace your mask.



(Please stand)


Prayer After Communion


Eternal God, heavenly Father, you have graciously accepted us as living members of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ, and you have fed us with spiritual food in the Sacrament of his Body and Blood.  Send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve you with gladness and singleness of heart; through Christ our Lord. Amen.


(Please be seated)












The congregation is dismissed.


Celebrant Let us bless the Lord.

People Thanks be to God.





“Festive Postlude”

Joseph Roff






For today’s announcements, click HERE.


To read a copy of the latest Vestry Minutes, click HERE




St. Mark’s Vestry


Senior Warden: Gary Welch

Junior Warden: Katherine Wagner

Treasurer: Don Nancarrow

Secretary: Dave Reuter


Vestry Members:

Carol Nancarrow, Tracey Swartz

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

Webmaster Dave Reuter



Look for us…


On the web:

Facebook:  St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Dayton, Ohio

Instagram:  stmarksdayton