Hilary Plowright
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Hybrid Worship 

March 17, 2024 

Lent V 

The Gift of Temptation 

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: Silent Moon                                                        N. Telfer (1950 - )  Gathering
 Hymn: All Praise To You                                                           VU #297

1All praise to you, O God of all creation: you made the world, and it is yours alone. The planet earth you spun in its location amid the stars adorning heaven’s dome. We lease the earth but for a life’s duration, yet for this life it is our cherished home. 

2With wondrous grace you clothed the earth in splendour; with teeming life you filled the sea and land. Instil in us a sense of awe and wonder when we behold the bounty of your hand. Then when we hear the voice of bird or thunder, we hear the voice our faith can understand. 

3To tend the earth is our entrusted duty, for earth is ours to use and not abuse. O gracious God, true source of all resources, forgive our greed that wields destruction’s sword. Then let us serve as wise and faithful stewards while earth gives glory to creation’s Lord. 

Acknowledgement of the Land

Threshold to the Dark Woods                  (choir sings— people sing the echo)  

There’s a path there’s a path 

though it winds its way through darkness  

We would choose  we would choose 

to avoid it if we could  

We awake we awake 

to an unexpected calling  

God says, “come 

God says, “come 

there are gifts in the Dark Wood”  


Lighting the Candles
God’s unexpected light and love enters our lives and opens us to the gifts residing deep within the Holy Shadows of our lives. God walks with us, speaks to us, calls to us. 

We are here. 

God is here. 

This place is sacred ground. 

Opening Prayer 

Litany of Confession and Forgiveness
For being too busy to be wonder-struck by your works, Forgive and restore us, O God. 

For filling the holes in our spirit with things that cannot truly feed us, Forgive and restore us, O God. 

For denying the world our best selves, Forgive and restore us, O God. 

Silent prayers… 


Hear these words of assurance: 

God is already making a wonder of you. 

You are a part of this astounding creation. 

God is with you, forgiving and restoring you to wholeheartedness. Through the grace of Jesus Christ,  who poured out great love, so you might live. 

Thanks be to God for a loved like that! Amen! 

Hymn: There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy                            VU #271
1There's a wideness in God's mercy like the wideness of the sea; there's a kindness in God's justice which is more than liberty. 

2There is no place where earth's sorrows are more felt than up in heaven; there is no place where earth's failings have such gracious judgement given. 

3There is plentiful redemption in the blood that Christ has shed; there is joy for all the members in the sorrows of the Head. 

4Troubled souls, why will you scatter like a crowd of frightened sheep? Foolish hearts, why will you wander from a love so true and deep? 

5For the love of God is broader than the measures of the mind, and the heart of the Eternal is most wonderfully kind. 

First Reading: Jeremiah 31:31-34 (NRSV)                        Reader: Mona Smart

I will write my law on their hearts. 

The days are surely coming, says God, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says God: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. No longer shall they teach one another or say to each other, “Know the Lord,” for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, for I will forgive their iniquity and remember their sin no more. 

This is the Word of God. 

Thanks be to God for this word today.  

Gospel Reading                                                         Reader: Pat Armstrong

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

God be with you.  

And also with you  

The Good News of Jesus the Christ according to John.  

Glory to you, Christ Jesus. 

John 12:20-33 (The Message)   A grain of wheat must die. 

There were some Greeks in town who had come up to worship at the Feast. They approached Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee:  

“Sir, we want to see Jesus. Can you help us?” Philip went and told Andrew. Andrew and Philip together told Jesus. Jesus answered, “Time’s up. The time has come for the Human One to be glorified. “Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal. “If any of you wants to serve me, then follow me. Then you’ll be where I am, ready to serve at a moment’s notice. The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves me. “Right now I am shaken. And what am I going to say? ‘Father, get me out of this’? No, this is why I came in the first place. I’ll say, ‘Father, put your glory on display.’” A voice came out of the sky: “I have glorified it, and I’ll glorify it again.” The listening crowd said, “Thunder!” Others said, “An angel spoke to him!” Jesus said, “The voice didn’t come for me but for you. At this moment the world is in crisis. Now Satan, the ruler of this world, will be thrown out. And I, as I am lifted up from the earth, will attract everyone to me and gather them around me.” He put it this way to show how he was going to be put to death. 

This is the Gospel of Christ. 

We give thanks for Good news today! 

Word: The Gift Temptation 

A Time For Reflection 

Meditation: Kindle a Flame                                                         VU #19 

Life & Work of the Church 


Offertory Response: Take, O Take Me As I Am                        MV #85 Take, O take me as I am 
Summon out what I shall be. 

Set your seal upon my heart and live in me.  

Prayers of the People                                                           Betty Schultze 
Loving God              Hear our Prayers. 

Hymn: Now The Green Blade Rises                                         VU #186
1Now the green blade rises from the buried grain, wheat that in dark earth many days has lain; love lives again, that with the dead has been: love is come again, like wheat arising green. 

2In the grave they laid him, love by hatred slain, thinking that he would never wake again, laid in the earth like grain that sleeps unseen; love is come again, like wheat arising green.                                         

3Forth he came at Easter, like the risen grain, he that for three days in the grave had lain; raised from the dead, my living Lord is seen; love is come again, like wheat arising green. 

4When our hearts are wintry, grieving, or in pain, your touch can call us back to life again, fields of our hearts that dead and bare have been; love is come again, like wheat arising green. 

 The peace of Christ be with you always.  

And also with you.  


May the Spirit of the Living God,  

Made known to us most fully within life’s Dark Wood:  

Go before you  to show you the way;  

Go above you  to watch over you;  

Go behind you  to push you into places you may not  

necessarily go yourself;  

Go beneath you  

to uphold and uplift you;  

Go beside you  to be your strong and constant companion;  

And dwell within you to remind you that you are surely not alone,  And may the fire of God’s blessing burn brightly upon you and within you, now and always.  


Benediction Song
There’s a path there’s a path 

and it leads us out together  

To the wood  to the wood 

where the darkness hovers still  

We are sent  we are sent 

and the Spirit goes before us 

God says, “go  

God says, go be my presence in the world.”  

Postlude: Rondo                                     Jean Philippe Rameau (1683 – 1764)