At AMBS, we are aware of the toll that COVID-19 has had on pastors and worship planners over the last eight months. Even in a normal year, the Advent and Christmas season involves extra planning and work; during the pandemic, this planning has likely been even more exhausting.
We would like to offer support to worship planners for all you are doing to keep worship in your congregations vital in these extraordinary times. Members of the Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary community have created elements of a worship service that we are offering to our constituent congregations.
These worship elements, featuring the story of Jesus in the temple as a boy (Luke 2:41-52), would fit particularly well on Jan. 3, 2021, for those following the narrative lectionary. The message of the sermon is broadly focused on the topic of faith formation, though, so it could easily be used at another time as well.
These are the worship elements we have prepared:
- a call to worship that can be done by one voice, two voices, or more.
- a song, “Jesus, we are here” (Sing the Journey #6), sung in several languages by AMBS students
- a prayer
- a presentation of Luke 2:41-52 by Janeen Bertsche Johnson, Director of Campus Ministries
- a sermon by AMBS President David Boshart that is based on the encounter of Jesus with temple leaders at age 12. The sermon speaks to the essential work of every congregation to create spaces where faith formation and vocational call of young and old alike are explored.
- a closing song, “The Lord lift you up” (Sing the Journey #73), sung by AMBS employees
The video elements are available in this playlist.
We invite you to use whatever parts of the service will be useful to you, or to pass these resources along to those who plan worship in your congregation. We would love to hear back from you if you decide to use any of the resources.
Janeen Bertsche Johnson, M.Div., Director of Campus Ministries, Alumni Director, Admissions Associate, Advancement Associate
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