Liturgy for Worship

17th Sunday after Pentecost


REMINDER: For the health and safety of all participants, it is imperative that you stay in your car. Thank you for doing your part to keep all of us safe.


Music and Gathering


Welcome and Announcements


L: We begin in the name of the + Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

A: Amen.


L: Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy name, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

A: Amen


L: Let us confess our sins in the presence of God and one another.


Silence for reflection


L: Most merciful God,

A: We confess that we are in bondage to sin, and cannot free ourselves. We have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbor as ourselves. For the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and lead us, so that we may delight in your will and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Holy name.


L: In the mercy of almighty God, Jesus Christ was given to die for us, and for his sake God forgives us all our sins. As a called and ordained minister of the church of Christ, and by his authority, I therefore declare to you the entire forgiveness of all your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the ☩ Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

A: Amen.


L: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

A: And also with you.


L: We join our hearts in prayer. God of love,

A: giver of life, you know our frailties and failings. Give us your grace to overcome them, keep us from those things that harm us, and guide us in the way of salvation, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.



Children’s Message



FIRST READING – Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32

1The word of the Lord came to me: 2What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, “The parents have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge”? 3As I live, says the Lord God, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel. 4Know that all lives are mine; the life of the parent as well as the life of the child is mine: it is only the person who sins that shall die.

  25Yet you say, “The way of the Lord is unfair.” Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair? 26When the righteous turn away from their righteousness and commit iniquity, they shall die for it; for the iniquity that they have committed they shall die. 27Again, when the wicked turn away from the wickedness they have committed and do what is lawful and right, they shall save their life. 28Because they considered and turned away from all the transgressions that they had committed, they shall surely live; they shall not die. 29Yet the house of Israel says, “The way of the Lord is unfair.” O house of Israel, are my ways unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair?

  30Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, all of you according to your ways, says the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions; otherwise iniquity will be your ruin. 31Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed against me, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? 32For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live.

L: The word of the Lord

A: Thanks be to God.


GOSPEL READING – Matthew 21:23-32

L: The Holy Gospel, according to Matthew.

A: Glory to you, O Lord.

23When [Jesus] entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?” 24Jesus said to them, “I will also ask you one question; if you tell me the answer, then I will also tell you by what authority I do these things. 25Did the baptism of John come from heaven, or was it of human origin?” And they argued with one another, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ 26But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ we are afraid of the crowd; for all regard John as a prophet.” 27So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.

  28“What do you think? A man had two sons; he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ 29He answered, ‘I will not’; but later he changed his mind and went. 30The father went to the second and said the same; and he answered, ‘I go, sir’; but he did not go. 31Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are going into the kingdom of God ahead of you. 32For John came to you in the way of righteousness and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him; and even after you saw it, you did not change your minds and believe him.”

L: The Gospel of our Lord.

A: Praise to you, O Christ.


SERMON Pastor James



I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, God's only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried;

he descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again;

he ascended into heaven,

he is seated at the right hand of the Father,

and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting. Amen.






With the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, let us pray for the church, those in need, and all of God’s creation.

After each petition:

L: Lord, in your mercy,

A: Hear our prayer.

L: Into your hands, gracious God, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your mercy; through Jesus Christ, our Savior.

A: Amen.



L:The Lord be with you.

A: And also with you.

L: Lift up your hearts.

A: We lift them to the Lord

L: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

A: It is right to give our thanks and praise.


L: It is indeed right, our duty and our joy, that we should at all times and in all places give thanks and praise to you, almighty and merciful God, through our Savior Jesus Christ. Fulfilling the promise of the resurrection, you pour out the fire of your Spirit, uniting in one body people of every nation and tongue. And so, with Mary Magdalene and Peter and all the witnesses of the resurrection, with earth and sea and all their creatures, and with angels and archangels, cherubim and seraphim, we praise your name and join their unending hymn:


L: In the night in which he was betrayed,

our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks;

broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying:

Take and eat; this is my body, given for you.

Do this for the remembrance of me.

Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks,

and gave it for all to drink, saying:

This cup is the new covenant in my blood,

shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin.

Do this for the remembrance of me.




L: Gathered into one by the Holy Spirit, let us pray as Jesus taught us.

A: 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: The Lord bless you and keep you.

The Lord’s face shine on you with grace and mercy.

The Lord look upon you with favor and ☩ give you peace.

A: Amen.


L: Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

A: Thanks be to God!



Thanks for being with us today! We hope you are staying safe and well.







Ministry ideas that connect us with each other and our community

  1. Drive-in movie
  2. Driveway delivery of a gift/goodies as a “thinking of you”
  3. Manna house food drive
  4. Invite-a-friend Sunday
  5. Birthday parade group – celebrate birthdays for all members above/below a certain age
  6. Blessing of the healthcare workers (special service? Sunday morning?)
  7. Collecting books for literacy council
  8. Make Summer Memorial mugs or shirts for people
  9. Visits blitz – quick, socially distanced, and masked driveway visits to every member
  10. Prayer partners
  11. Mentorship program for confirmation students
  12. Families adopt a senior or shut-in
  13. Secret buddies for youth
  14. Flamingo people’s yards for a charity
  15. Socktober – collect HUGS for people in need (Hats, underwear, gloves, socks)
  16. Car parade for shut-ins and people who live alone
  17. Collect, compile, and share favorite memories of Summer Memorial
  18. Interview our golden-age members, collecting stories, favorite hymns bible verses, etc.
  19. Sponsor/adopt a school classroom at Newberry Elementary or Boundary Elementary
  20. Deliver devotional booklets
  21. Make signs to post along road outside of church
  22. Random act of kindness bingo (for youth to play, get them to post pictures on social media and turn in their cards for a prize)
  23. Mask-making group to give masks away to people
  24. Surprise small businesses or first responders with coffee or gift courtesy of Summer Memorial
  25. Technology teaching – helping people use Facetime, Zoom, or other technology so they can connect with family
  26. Make Summer Memorial postcards and send out with hand-written notes.
  27. Scavenger hunt – tasks to complete or items to find around town or in people’s yards
  28. Letter writing team – write letters to people in the congregation
  29. Favorite pictures – people submit a picture with a story of a Summer Memorial memory for our social media page
  30. Scrapbooking group to capture what we have done/are doing now to keep in the church library
  31. Put together books of images of our stained-glass windows for people and/or to place in pews to explain the symbols around us in our church.


Got a different idea? Great! All ideas should:

  1. Follow all guidelines and best practices around maintaining distance and wearing masks
  2. Not be dependent on groups using indoor church space


Take the bulletin home, read the list, and pray. If you feel called to lead or help with any ideas, give Pastor James a call and we will make it happen.


Ministry updates:

  • Rev. David Seymour and his wife Marilyn are coordinating with the Literacy council to see what needs they might have and how we at Summer Memorial might help.
  • Rita Cromer, Carol Rowe, and Joyce Kessler will be collecting HUGS (hats, underwear, gloves, and socks) as the weather starts to get colder.
  • Shirley Aughtry and Carol Bickley are putting together a resource about the history of our stained glass windows
  • Two donors have made a gift of school supplies to help classrooms at Newberry Elementary.
  • In lieu of October’s Summertymers meeting, we will be having parking lot bingo! More details to come.
  • We’ve got other volunteers who are finalizing their plans and more will be included in the coming weeks.


We are thankful for all of these people for their initiative and their work in following their call. Thank you for your support and prayers for the work that they are doing!


Literacy Council Benefit

The Newberry County Literacy Council’s mission is to help people “read, write, and speak English…” Reading the written Word of God is foundational to Lutheranism, so Lutheran churches have always done what we can do to encourage reading.

We now have the opportunity to help support the Newberry Literacy Council. The Council is much in need of everyday supplies such as:

  1. Copy paper
  2. Cleaning supplies
  3. Paper towels
  4. Binders
  5. Ruled (lined) paper

Through the month of September, we will be collecting these supplies for the Literacy Council. As you leave worship someone will be available to receive your donations. Thank you in advance.



“Let your light so shine before others, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven.”

Matthew 5:16

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