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Order of Worship September 19, 2021

Updated: Jul 5, 2022

UJCC Sunday House Worship Service

September 19, 2021 * 17th Sunday After Pentecost * Blessing of the Animals

10:30 AM

The Peace of Christ be with you! You are invited to use the following prayers & order of worship as we lift our hearts to God together!

“Many people who live with animals have noticed that their cat or dog becomes solicitous of them when they are feeling unwell. A cat who is normally aloof may come sit in the sick person's lap; a normally rambunctious dog may tone himself down when his human friend isn't up to romping or running. In some cases, the ability of animals to sense illness in a human has been lifesaving.” Linda Bender, Animal Wisdom: Learning from the Spiritual Lives of Animals

Reading: “Canticle of The Creatures,” St. Francis of Assisi

Most High, all-powerful, good Lord, Yours are the praises, the glory, and the honor, and all blessing.

To You alone, Most High, do they belong, and no human is worthy to mention Your name.

Praised be You, my Lord, with all Your creatures, especially Sir Brother Sun, Who is the day and through whom You give us light.

And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendor; and bears a likeness of You, Most High One.

Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars, in heaven You formed them clear and precious and beautiful.

Praised be You, my Lord, through Brother Wind, and through the air, cloudy and serene, and every kind of weather, through whom You give sustenance to Your creatures.

Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Water, who is very useful and humble and precious and chaste.

Praised be You, my Lord, through Brother Fire, through whom You light the night, and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.

Praised be You, my Lord, through our Sister Mother Earth, who sustains and governs us, and who produces various fruit with colored flowers and herbs.

Praised be You, my Lord, through those who give pardon for Your love, and bear infirmity and tribulation.

Blessed are those who endure in peace for by You, Most High, shall they be crowned.

Praised be You, my Lord, through our Sister Bodily Death, from whom no one living can escape.

Woe to those who die in mortal sin. Blessed are those whom death will find in Your most holy will, for the second death shall do them no harm.

Praise and bless my Lord and give Him thanks and serve Him with great humility. Amen! (fa)

Songs of Centering “Great is the Lord" Becky Messer

"Great are You, Lord"

We Humbly Adore and Receive

Sermon “Lessons From Creation” Rev. Akiko Miyake-Stoner

Blessing of the Animals/Creation

Take some time now to bless your pets, if you have them. Thank God for the love and relationship you share and ask God for safety, health, and happiness for your pet.

If you have lost a pet, recall some memories of them and give thanks for the ways they enriched your life.

If you do not have any pets, that’s okay! Bless a houseplant, if you have one; give thanks to God for the miracle of life, of photosynthesis, of the oxygen the plant produces. Ask God to continue to bless it with health and ask God to bless you to be a good caregiver.

If you do not have a houseplant, that’s okay! Go into your front or backyard and feel the sun on your skin and notice the trees and plants that surround you. Give thanks to God for the wonder of creation and pray to be a good steward of the natural gifts God has given to us.

Litany for Creation and All Creatures

Holy God, Creator of heaven and earth,

You are Holy and Mighty, the Redeemer of the world,

Sanctifier of creation, blessed and glorious:

Grant that all your creatures may thank and serve you;

Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Grant favorable weather, temperate rain, and fruitful seasons, providing food and drink for

all your creatures;

Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Open our eyes to the joy and beauty of creation, that we may see your presence in all your


Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Look with favor upon all who care for the earth, the water, and the air, that the riches of

creation may abound for all your creatures;

Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Make us faithful stewards of creation, wisely caring for the earth, the air, the seas, and all the

life they bear;

Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Awaken us to our responsibility for the care of creation;

Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Forgive us our waste and pollution of creation and strengthen us to heal wounds we have


Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Remember all in captivity and those who are hunted, trapped, deserted, or abused, that they

may find safety and protection;

Shower your blessing on earth, O God.

Holy God: No sparrow falls without your attention; nothing dies that is lost to you; nothing

comes into being without your love. Give us just and compassionate hearts, that we may

serve the earth and all its creatures, holding fast to the vision of your peaceable reign in

which all will live with you eternally; through the Risen One, Christ our Savior. Amen. (sclm)

Song of Reflection "Rejoice in the Lord Always" Becky Messer

Song of Sending Forth "The Love of God" Becky Messer

You are invited to continue your spiritual practice of giving to the church. Please either mail your offering to the church (136 N. Villa Ave., Clovis, CA 93612) or try our online giving option (LINK HERE). Thank you!

Doxology Youth Band

Joys and Concerns & Time of Prayer

You are invited to share your joys and concerns with one another using our usual format:

Person lifting the prayer: “O God of Mercy;” everyone’s response: “This is our prayer.”

After you share your joys and concerns, go around the circle and offer prayer, praying freely or using this format:

“God, I thank you for…” and “God, I ask for…”

You are invited to close together with The Lord’s Prayer.

* If you or your kids would like to contribute to our virtual worship by music, painting, photos, recipes, or anything, please contact Nathan:

Postlude "Go Now In Peace" Becky Messer

Worship Resources: (fa) St. Francis of Assisi, “The Canticle of The Creatures.”; “Litany for Creation and All Creatures,” (sclm) Reports to the 78th General Convention: Supplemental Materials, Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music, pages 258-9, slightly adapted

Job 12:7-10

But ask the animals, and they will teach you; the birds of the air, and they will tell you; ask the plants of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of every human being.

After Worship…

Over lunch or sometime this afternoon, you are invited to reflect on today’s worship as a family. What did you learn and/or experience at church?

Family Reflection Questions

1. What did you hear about God today in worship?

2. Where do you feel God’s presence in nature?

3. If you have a pet or a plant, what is one way you can care for them?

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