A cloud of witnesses 110418

Wisdom of Solomon 3:1-9

The souls of the righteous are in the hand of God,
and no torment will ever touch them. . . .
because God tested them and found them worthy of himself;
like gold in the furnace he tried them,
. . . They will govern nations and rule over peoples,
and the Lord will reign over them forever.
Those who trust in him will understand truth,
and the faithful will abide with him in love,
because grace and mercy are upon his holy ones,
and he watches over his elect.

From sermon4kids.com: “If we could just keep those two commandments [love God; love your neighbor], we wouldn’t have any trouble keeping the rest of them, would we? Let’s go to the Father and ask him to help us.”

Scripture: November 4, 2018—Wisdom of Solomon 3:1-9; Psalm 24; Revelation 21:1-6a; and John 11:32-44.

Collect: Almighty God, you have knit together your elect in one communion and fellowship in the mystical body of your Son Christ our Lord: Give us grace so to follow your blessed saints in all virtuous and godly living, that we may come to those ineffable joys that you have prepared for those who truly love you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Reflection: Tears flow through the readings for All Saints’ Day in Year B of the Revised Common Lectionary: an Old Testament prophet envisions the day when “the Lord GOD will wipe away the tears from all faces” (Isa. 25:8); a New Testament visionary promises the faithful that God “will wipe every
tear from their eyes” (Rev. 21:4); even Jesus weeps at the tomb of his friend Lazarus (John 11:35). What do saints have to do with tears? Does faithfulness demand suffering? Does it require a certain sort of compassion for the pain of the world?

Sunday School—9 am on Sunday

Eye Candy: “River of Life“, by Jan Richardson; “All Saints Day” by Vasilii Kandinsky; “Communion of Saints” by Elise Ritter

Ear Worm: “For all the saints” two ways: Indellible Grace and congregational singing, this is visually appealing too; “I sing a song of the saints of God” sung by kids (forgive the initial seconds when the image is sideways)
Brain Food: “All Saints Day: Facing Death” from Huffington Post; “Blessed“, poem by Steve Garnass-Holmes from Unfolding light weblog; “What is a saint?“, self-guided retreat from At the edge of the enclosure weblog

Lyrics of “Lo! what a cloud of witnesses

Lo! what a cloud of witnesses
Encompass us around!
Men once like us with suffering tried,
But now with glory crown’d.

Let us, with zeal like theirs inspired,
Strive in the Christian race;
And, freed, from every weight of sin,
Their holy footsteps trace.

Behold a Witness nobler still,
Who trod affliction’s path–
Jesus, the Author, Finisher,
Rewarder of our faith.

He, for the joy before Him set,
And moved by pitying love,
Endured the Cross, despised the shame,
And now He reigns above.

Thither, forgetting things behind,
Press we to God’s right hand;
There, with the Saviour and His saints,
Triumphantly to stand.

Hymnal: according to the use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America, 1871

Movies/Videos: “There’s something about Mary“, two suitors who are in love with how Mary makes them feel; “Bedazzled“, “blessed are the persecuted”; “The Cider House Rules“, “blessed are the pure in heart”


Study guide; snack.



: young elementary: activity; bulletin games; coloring books—one, two, three;
older elementary: activity; bulletin games.




We will continue our discussion of the saints last Sunday. We will go over the litany for the 10:30 am worship on Sunday—be sure you have practiced. Bring your saint description so we can put it on the bulletin board. Thank you for making this All Saints’ Celebration special. See you at 9 am in our room in the main building.

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