This liturgy will provide you with a straightforward way to hold a Service of the Word in your own home. As you worship, remember that simply following the instructions on this page will NOT create worship. Worship is an encounter with God in which we receive His gifts of forgiveness and respond with prayer and praise. The “active ingredient” of worship is faith. As you follow these instructions, your worship begins with believing that God is present and expecting that God will have something to say to you during this time.
Read the words in bold aloud. If you are fortunate to be worshiping with others, you may designate one individual the leader, and read the liturgy responsively as indicated by L: (leader) and R: (response). Some elements of this service are links to videos which will play when you click on them. Feel free to include as much or as little of the suggested music as you prefer, or to substitute live music in your home for the videos included here.
Each worshiper will need a pencil and paper during the confession.
Questions from Quarantine
L: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
L: If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
R: If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive our sins, and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:8-9)
At this time, each person silently confesses his or her sin to God. Individual sins may be written (children may wish to draw) on a piece of paper. After an appropriate length of time, continue:
All: Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me… Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. (Psalm 51:1-3)
Scratch out the sins that have been confessed on paper, drawing a cross over the whole page. Then speak out loud the sure and certain word of God that follows:
L: Brothers and Sisters in Christ, we know the Lord hears us when we cry out to Him. While God does not approve of our sin, we are reminded in 1 John 2 that, “…if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” When we bring our sins to God then, we can be confident that our advocate, Christ Jesus, has taken all of those sins to the cross, that they may no longer be held against us. In the Name of Jesus, You are forgiven. Thanks be to God. Amen.
All: Thanks be to God. Amen
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
Statement of Faith
The Sacrament of the Altar
Luther’s Small Catechism
L: What is the Sacrament of the Altar?
All: It is the true body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ under the bread and wine, instituted by Christ Himself for us Christians to eat and to drink.
L: What is the benefit of this eating and drinking?
All: These words, “Given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins,” show us that in the Sacrament forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation are given us through these words. For where there is forgiveness of sins, there is also life and salvation.
L: How can bodily eating and drinking do such great things?
All: Certainly not just eating and drinking do these things, but the words written here: “Given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.” These words, along with the bodily eating and drinking, are the main thing in the Sacrament. Whoever believes these words has exactly what they say: “forgiveness of sins.”
L: Who receives this sacrament worthily?
All: Fasting and bodily preparation are certainly fine outward training. But that person is truly worthy and well prepared who has faith in these words: “Given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.” But anyone who does not believe these words or doubts them is unworthy and unprepared, for the words “for you” require all hearts to believe.
Sermon & Reflection
- How has the disruption to your life made it easier for your light to shine? How has it made it more difficult?
- As Wisconsin re-opens, how can you continue to shine the light of Jesus in your community?
Never forget: You are forgiven and loved by God, and the more you embrace that truth, the more “salty” your life will be!
L: We now pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus and for all other according to their needs. Please join me.
Loving Father, in sending us Your Son, You have given us Your light to shine before all others, that they also may give glory to You. As we experience the darkness of sin and brokenness in this life, continue to have Your light shine in us, even brighter than before due to this pandemic. Keep us from the temptations of fear and complacency, which would have us cover up this light, and, in turn, give us joy and courage to share this light with those who need it most, that Your works may be evident through us. Lord, in Your mercy,
R: Hear our prayer.
L: Lord of all knowledge, You have raised up leaders to serve our nation and carry us into the future. As much of the world prepares to reopen following this pandemic, grant all leaders Your wisdom and guidance, that they make responsible decisions pleasing to You. We ask the same for those You appointed to lead Your church. Have them seek You out in all their decisions, trusting in Your continued provision and grace as churches slowly begin to reopen. Lord, in Your mercy,
R: Hear our prayer.
L: Merciful God, Your Son, Jesus healed many during His earthly ministry. We ask for this same, healing hand upon all those who are presently suffering in body and soul. We especially lift up those we now name in our hearts or aloud [brief silence]. If it be Your will, restore them to full health, or help them accept their present trial, granting them Faith in Your Son, as well as Your peace which surpasses all human understanding. Lord, in Your mercy,
R: Hear our prayer.
L: Heavenly Father, we thank You for the gift of holy marriage and for the opportunities it brings to each couple. We especially thank You for the 56th Wedding Anniversary of Howard and Carole Sager. Continue to bless their marriage and provide many more years for them to grow in You as they grow in love for each other. Lord in Your mercy,
R: Hear our prayer.
L: Lord, remember us in Your Kingdom and teach us to pray…
ALL: Our Father who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those
who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom
and the power and the glory
forever and ever. Amen
L: May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.
R: Amen. (Hebrews 13:20-21)
If you are a member of another congregation, we are delighted that we were able to provide you with the opportunity to worship in your home today. Please honor God by continuing to support your home congregation during these uncertain times.
- We are in the process of re-opening for public worship! We will announce our plans as soon as we have finished vetting them with medical professionals and the individuals who will be handling the logistical details. This will not yet be a return to normal, but it will give us the ability to worship together soon.
- Open Sanctuary returns this Wednesday, May 20th, from 4:30 to 5:30, and will also be available the following weekend. This will restore the Lord’s Supper to our congregation. Sign up here or by calling the church office.
- We understand that gathering in large groups, even with precautions in place, may not be or feel safe for many of our members. The Worship-in-the-Home resource (and service printout) will remain available throughout this time period.
- As always, the freedoms that God has given us are intended not to be used to indulge our own desires, but to serve others and to love our neighbors. That will be the guiding principal behind our plans for re-opening, and is also an important way for us to be serving in God’s world, together.
“Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am going to do these things, but for the sake of my holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you have gone. I will show the holiness of my great name, which has been profaned among the nations, the name you have profaned among them. Then the nations will know that I am the LORD, declares the Sovereign LORD, when I show myself holy through you before their eyes. “‘For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. You will live in the land I gave your forefathers; you will be my people, and I will be your God.
Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed–not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence–continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life–in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.
Bible Study: Questions from Quarantine
- How Do I Fall in Love with my Spouse? (Part 4)
To find past services, or to worship with one of our sister congregations, click the button below.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.