Saturday, April 17, 2021

Third Sunday of Easter

Third Sunday of Easter April 18, 2021

O God, whose blessed Son made himself known to his disciples in the breaking of bread: Open the eyes of our faith, that we may behold him in all his redeeming work; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. 

The First Lesson Acts 3:12-19 
Peter addressed the people, “You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. “And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out.” 

Psalm 4 

1 Answer me when I call, O God, defender of my cause; *
 you set me free when I am hard-pressed; 
have mercy on me and hear my prayer. 
2 "You mortals, how long will you dishonor my glory; *
 how long will you worship dumb idols 
and run after false gods?" 
3 Know that the LORD does wonders for the faithful; * 
when I call upon the LORD, he will hear me. 
4 Tremble, then, and do not sin; * 
speak to your heart in silence upon your bed. 
5 Offer the appointed sacrifices * 
and put your trust in the LORD. 
6 Many are saying, "Oh, that we might see better times!" * 
Lift up the light of your countenance upon us, O LORD. 
7 You have put gladness in my heart, * 
more than when grain and wine and oil increase.
 8 I lie down in peace; at once I fall asleep; * 
for only you, LORD, make me dwell in safety. 

The Epistle 1 John 3:1-7 

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God's children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 

The Gospel Luke 24:36b-48 

Jesus himself stood among the disciples and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. 

A Litany for the Third Sunday of Easter

Loving Creator, who draws the whole world
you ache to share your love with all creation
you bring good news into our darkest days
and have compassion for all our sorrows.
Lord, help us to be witnesses to your love.

Jesus came among his dear, frightened disciples 
they were witnesses to unbelievable trauma
their faith had been shaken by recent events
as our hearts have been broken by this pandemic.
Lord, help us to witnesses to your love.

In every people and every generation
you raise up people and call everyone
to turn again, forgiven and faithful
so that the world might know your healing.
Lord, help us to be witnesses to your love.

We are often terrified like the disciples  
Help us to tell the story from our hearts.

The days ahead are uncertain and scary
Give us your strength and power today.

You came to your anxious  beloved disciples
Come quickly, Lord Jesus, and be with us.

You Lord, offer the healing and peace we need
Pour your spirit of love into our hearts today.

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