Hilary Plowright
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On Sunday we will continue the theme of our calling. Last week we focussed on God’s calling of the boy Samuel in a time when things were really dark and God’s voice was seldom heard. We heard how the temple lamp was still burning even in the greatest darkness, even in the middle of the scariest night, even in the midst of an age when people do not hear God anymore. Our calling is to seek that tiny light and know that even in the greatest darkness, God is there. In the cries of creation, God is there, in the pain of suffering, God is there, in the help we give to one another, God is there. The light, even tiny, reminds us that God still speaks. And so on Sunday we’ll focus more deeply on our personal calling. Some people seem to have great clarity in their call of a particular vocation – a social worker, a doctor, a teacher, an artist. They follow their heart, their dream, and no matter how hard, they ARE who they are meant to be. Most of the rest of us feel ordinary and uninteresting and don’t believe we have a special calling or a real purpose. I wonder why that is. I have wondered about that a lot. Life takes over. We get caught up in the busy-ness of it, in the distractions of it, in the everyday needs of it until we no longer hear the Voice whisper to us. Until we realize that our calling is to BE, to come home to ourself. More about that on Sunday! If you can’t be at church, please consider linking in on Zoom! 
Rev Suzanna


Hybrid Worship, January 21, 2 024, Epiphany III

Rev. Suzanna Bates

Music Director: Dorothy Dittrich

We acknowledge these lands upon which we worship are the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Snuneymuxw First Nation.

Whoever you are and wherever you are on life’s journey,

you are welcome here!

Words for Worship

Words in bold italics, please say together

Prelude: Sarabande                                                by A. Corelli (1653-1713)

Singing Bowl


Greeting & welcome

Hymn: Come And Find The Quiet Centre                                VU #374

Acknowledgement of the Land

Lighting the Candles

We light this candle to draw near to God and to one another.           

We light this candle as a sign of our commitment to healing and reconciliation between all peoples.

We are here. God is here.

This space is holy ground.

Call to Worship

We gather to respond to the call of God’s love, thankful that someone cared enough to share this good news with us. 

May we be compassionate enough to share this divine presence with others.

Love, when shared, is not divided but multiplied. 

Love, given away, is not diminished but expanded.

May our gathering beckon and welcome those near and far 

to know the love of this divine presence.

Hymn: Jesus You Have Come To The Lakeshore                  VU #563

Opening Prayer

Gentle and patient

God, you are calling.

Careful and persistent

God, you are calling.

In grieving and in praise

God, you are calling.

Through dawn and midday

God, you are calling.

Unexpected and planned

God, you are calling.


In a still small voice and in power

God, you are calling.

Spontaneous and prepared

God, you are calling.

Willing or protected

God, you are calling.

Our God is eager to share with us, wherever we are in our journey. 

May we be diligent to listen. 

God, you are calling.

Prayer Before the Reading of Scripture

We long to hear you, O God.

We long to hear your truth. 

We long to know your love. 

Open our hearts and minds. 

We are listening. Amen.

Psalm 62                                                                                    VU #779 

Rest in God alone.


Rest in God alone, rest in God alone, my soul, my soul.

How long will all of you set upon me and batter me,

as though I were a tottering wall or a leaning fence?

            Their purpose is to thrust me down from my eminence,

            they delight in lies,

            they bless with their lips but curse me in their hearts.

Yet be still, my soul, and wait for God,

            from whom comes my hope of deliverance.  R

In God is my deliverance and my honour,

the rock of my strength and my place of refuge.

            Put your trust in God always, you people;

            pour out your hearts before the One who is our refuge.  R

For we mortals are only a puff of wind,

the great among us are but illusion,

            placed in the balance,

            we weight less than a breath.

Put no trust in extortion, set no wain hopes on plunder;

            if riches increase, do not set your heart upon them.

Once God has spoken, and twice have I heard it said,

“Power belongs to you, O God. Steadfast love is yours.”

            You reward us all according to our deeds.  R                                    


First Reading: Jonah 3:1–10 (NRSV)                                     Reader: Don Moser

Jonah calls Nineveh to repent.

The word of God came to Jonah a second time, saying, “Get up, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim to it the message that I tell you.” So Jonah set out and went to Nineveh, according to the word of God. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly large city, a three days’ walk across. Jonah began to go into the city, going a day’s walk. And he cried out, “Forty days more, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” And the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast, and everyone, great and small, put on sackcloth. When the news reached the king of Nineveh, he rose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. Then he had a proclamation made in Nineveh: “By the decree of the king and his nobles: No human or animal, no herd or flock, shall taste anything. They shall not feed, nor shall they drink water. Humans and animals shall be covered with sackcloth, and they shall cry mightily to God. All shall turn from their evil ways and from the violence that is in their hands. Who knows? God may relent and have a change of mind and turn from fierce anger, so that we do not perish.”When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil ways and God’s mind was changed about the calamity that God had said would be brought upon them, and God did not do it.

Gospel Reading                                                            Reader: Mona Smart

As is your custom, please stand or sit for the reading of the gospel. 

Reader: God be with you.  
All: And also with you

Reader: The Good News of Jesus the Christ according to Mark

All:      Glory to you, Christ Jesus.

Mark 1:14–20 (NRSV)

Jesus calls Simon, Andrew, James, and John.

Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the good news of God and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent and believe in the good news.” As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea, for they were fishers. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of people.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James, son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and followed him.

This is the Gospel of Christ.

We give thanks for Good News today!                                         4

Word: Called To Be

A New Creed

We are not alone, we live in God's world.

We believe in God:

who has created and is creating,

who has come in Jesus, the Word made flesh,

to reconcile and make new,

who works in us and others by the Spirit.

We trust in God.

We are called to be the Church:

to celebrate God's presence,

to live with respect in Creation,

to love and serve others,

to seek justice and resist evil,

to proclaim Jesus, crucified and risen,

our judge and our hope. 

In life, in death, in life beyond death,

God is with us.

We are not alone.

Thanks be to God.


Offertory Hymn: Take, O Take Me As I Am                               MV #85

Prayer of Dedication

We make the offerings of our lives, with the hope and confidence

that all we do, all we offer, all we say, all we think, and all we hope

will take root in this world and be the source of new expressions

of God’s love, of God’s justice, of God’s character, 

of God’s mission, and of God’s reign.

May God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven

through us, alongside us, despite us,

and for us. Amen.

Hymn: Jesus Christ Is Waiting                                                 VU #117

Prayers of the People                                                              Tim Leadem

We pray to the Lord,

            Hear our Prayers.

Hymn: Will You Come and Follow Me                                      VU #567




May the grace that is eternal
wrap our living today and everyday. 

May the ancient light that lit the heavens 

light our living today and tomorrow. 

May the movement of re-creation
begun in history shape our living today 

and in the future. 

May the love that was born first and will be the last,
call us into living today and always. 


The peace of Christ be always with you.

And also with you.


Postlude: Softly and Tenderly                       by W.L. Thompson (1847-1909