August 2nd Worship

Order of Service

Confession & Forgiveness
Prayer of the DayHenrik Strandskov
Prayer InterludesHenrik Strandskov
Prayers of IntercessionBarb Kass
CommunionCarolyn Saunders
Closing Prayer


Audio snippets can be found embedded in the text below.

Confession & Forgiveness

In the name of the Father, and of the +Son, and of the Holy Spirit.               Amen

We confess our entanglements with justice, hurts, and greed – and God’s difficult, blessed vision of a very different way. We seek the face of God, confessing our sin.

        Silence for reflection and self-examination.

Holy God,

we have sinned against you and each other. We pray for your forgiveness and healing. The good we want to do, we often fail to do. The harmful actions and thoughts we do not want, we turn to again and again. Deliver us, Gracious God. Save us, save our neighbors, save all your creatures from our lack of imagination and courage. Gird us for the challenges of change needed, called for, overdue. Guide our way in your way.    

We who were once far off have been brought near to God through the cross of Christ. May we forgive one another as God in Christ has first forgiven us.

Prayer of the Day

Across the continent, on the shores of small tributaries, in the shadows of sacred mountains, on the vast expanse of the prairies, or in the safety of the woods, prayers are being repeated, as they have for thousands of years, and common people with uncommon courage and the whispers of their ancestors in their ears continue their struggles to protect the land and water and trees on which their very existence is based. And like small tributaries joining together to form a mighty river, their force and power grows.

~Winona LaDuke

Reading: Genesis 1: 2

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. 


Mike Miles

Water-the Alpha element. Before the first day it was there when the earth was formless, empty, and dark. Water-on the second day it is shaped into the water over the sky (atmosphere?) and the water under the sky.

It is not until the third day that the seas are separated from the land and it is two days later that the waters “teem with living creatures”.

Water-The only element that exists in three forms; liquid,solid and gas, in a natural state. Water-combines a volatile gas, hydrogen, with another gas that is necessary for combustion to happen, oxygen, and the combination of the two atoms extinguishes fire.

Water is the basis of all life on earth, is the most abundant element on, and above, the earth, and yet we know so little about it. All the water on earth has been here from the beginning. We have what we have and must learn to live with it because we can’t live without it.

We are going to reflect on some basic knowledge about water today. While we can’t add to it or take away from it, we can learn about how it moves from here to there creating and maintaining life all over the planet we call home.

As you listen to the readings, think about how the water of the formless void came to make up 90% of a flower and 80% of your lungs. Think about how 75% of Americans live near a polluted water source and how more children die from drinking contaminated water than die from war.

Open your hearts and minds to the deep mystery that water is. There is nothing in the multi-verse more full of wonder than colorless, tasteless H2O and we get to live on a blue planet because of it. Let’s begin.

Water Facts

Amazing water

  • In a 100-year period, a water molecule spends 98 years in the ocean, 20 months as ice, about 2 weeks in lakes and rivers, and less than a week in the atmosphere.
  • A trillion tons of water is evaporated every day by the sun!
  • More than 90% of the world’s supply of fresh water is located in Antarctica.
  • The earth is a closed system that rarely loses or gains extra matter. Essentially, this means that the same water that existed on earth millions of years ago is still present today.                                                                           
  • If the entire world’s water were fit into a 4 liter jug, the fresh water available for us would equal only about one tablespoon.                   
  • There is more fresh water in the atmosphere than in all of the rivers on the planet combined


  • In one year, the average American residence uses over 100,000 gallons (indoors and outside).
  • Approximately 400 billion gallons of water are used in the United States per day.
  • American use 5.7 billion gallons per day from toilet flushes.
  • Household leaks can waste more than 1 trillion gallons annually nationwide. That’s equal to the annual household water use of more than 11 million homes.
  • About 27 trillion gallons of groundwater are withdrawn for use in the U.S. each year.
  • Over 42,000 gallons of water (enough to fill a 30×50 foot swimming pool) are needed to grow and prepare food for a typical Thanksgiving dinner for eight

Everyone else

  • It takes about 12 gallons per day to sustain a human (this figure takes into account all uses for water, like drinking, sanitation and food production)
  • 844 million people lack basic drinking water access, more than 1 of every 10 people on the planet.
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, women and girls spend an estimated 40 billions hours a year collecting water.
  • Every day, more than 800 children under age 5 die from diarrhea attributed to poor water and sanitation.
  • Lost time gathering water significantly reduces productive farming time for women in parts of the developing world. With safe water nearby, it’s estimated that women could feed 150 million of the world’s hungry.
  • For every $1 invested in safe water and sanitation, a yield of $5 to $28 USD is returned in increased economic activity and reduced health care costs

For a list of more facts collected by Mike, look at the document below:


(as you reflect on the facts above)

I’ve known rivers
I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human
blood in human veins
My soul has grown deep like the rivers
I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep
I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it. I heard the
singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans,
and I’ve seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset
I’ve known rivers
Ancient,dusky rivers
My soul has grown deep like the rivers

~ Langston Hughes

What a thing it is to sit absolutely alone,
in the forest, at night, cherished by this
wonderful, unintelligible speech
the most comforting speech in the world,
the talk that rain makes by itself all over the ridges,
and the talk of the watercourses everywhere in the hollows!
Nobody started it, nobody is going to stop it.
It will talk as long as it wants, this rain.
As long as it talks I am going to listen

~Thomas Merton

When trees take over an island and say so all at once
some in pigeon some in pollen with a coniferous hiss
and run to the shore shouting for more light
and the sun drops its soft coverlet over their heads
flash to and fro
like spirits of sight whose work is on the water
where the massless mind undulates the intervening air
shading it blue and thinking
I wish I was there
or there

~Alice Oswald

Prayers of Intercession

The water that God called into being is at the heart of all that lives.
Mindful of the many ways water affects our lives,
let us pray for our waters and for the life of the world around us.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for all people of faith,
and for the transformations in their lives that are marked by the sacredness of water:
at the Red Sea, in the Jordan and the Ganges Rivers,
in ritual baths, in the washing of feet, and in Holy Baptism.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for the leaders of nations, corporations, and communities around the world,
that they may exercise wise stewardship over the waters of their lands,
so that all people may have clean water to drink and live free from waterborne diseases. (silence)
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for the wisdom to shape creative solutions to conflicts over water
in the dry places of our planet, and for justice and peace in desert lands.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for the oceans, seas, rivers, lakes, watersheds, streams,
ponds, deltas, marshes, and swamps of our planet,
for the waters beneath the ground,
and for all creatures that live in the waters of the earth.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for all who suffer from too much water
in the destruction of flood, storm, tsunami, and ice;
and for those people and creatures who suffer as the glaciers and ice floes vanish.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for all who thirst for water, for health, for love, for wisdom, for God,
that their cups may be filled to overflowing.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We ask your prayers for all who have died and for all who mourn,
that their tears of grief may be turned to wellsprings of joy.
Lord, in Your mercy,
hear our prayer.

Blessed God, in your wisdom you uphold creation
and renew it again and again.
Help us to see all water as holy water,
and all our concerns as bathed in the living water Christ gives us,
in whose name we pray. Amen.


Invitation to Celebrate the Sacrament of Holy Communion

The peace of the Lord be with you.
All:  And also with you.

Together, yet distanced, we gather at the table to remember. We remember Jesus who recognized the burdens of our lives and said, “Come to me and I will give you rest.” To those who were parched, he said, “I will quench your thirst.” And to those who hungered, “I will nourish you with the bread of life.”

Through the Sacrament of Holy Communion, we remember the love and compassion of God. We remember God’s goodness.

On this day, not only do we remember, but we are re-membered. Our sins are forgiven, our lives are renewed. We are made whole! We are re-membered and restored to following faithfully the ways of Christ.

All:  Thanks be to God!

We remember on the night before he died, Jesus gathered with his disciples, his closest friends, in an upper room. Around the table, they celebrated by remembering the Passover. They came as they were, accepted for who they were. Their lives were open to the indwelling of God’s Spirit.

Jesus took bread, blessed it and broke it, saying: “This is my body which is broken for you. Take and eat, in remembrance of me.” As the meal came to a close, he took the cup, blessed it and said, “This is my blood, the cup of the new Covenant, which is poured out for you and for all for the forgiveness of sins. Take and drink, as often as you will, in remembrance of me.”

And so, in remembrance of that holy night, we take the bread, break it and eat, remembering Christ’s life was broken so that our lives might be made whole.

And we take the cup and drink, remembering that by this cup of blessing, we are refreshed, restored, renewed.

Praying together, let us give thanks for the bread broken in love for us and the cup of our joy:

All:  Because the broken bread has meant our healing, because the outpoured cup has meant our life, because this time of sharing has meant the communion of our souls, and because we have here been graced by your presence, O God, we give you thanks and pray that our lives may be renewed in the life and the love of Jesus Christ.  Amen. 

Lord’s Prayer

Closing Prayer

You call us,
Wanderer of seashores and sidewalks,
inviting us to sail out of our smug harbors
into the uncharted waters of faith
to wander off from our predictable paths to follow You
into the unpredictable footsteps of the kingdom;
to leave the comfort of our homes and accompany
You into the uncomfortable neighborhoods we usually avoid.

As we wait,
in our simple, sometimes crazy,
constantly uncertain lives,
speak to us, Spirit of Grace:
of that hope which is our anchor;
of that peace which is our rock;
of that grace which is our refuge.


Go with the strength you have.
     Go simply
Go in search of Love.
And know the Spirit of God goes with you. Amen

A couple videos about water