Our blog is filled with recipes we've cooked, poems we've read, sermons we've preached, pictures we like, and recent news. The categories on the left will help you explore.

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Sermons for Lent and Holy Week, 2021

Lent 2
Here are two different sermons from Rick Fabian.
The first is his sermon of 2/28/21.
The second is his sermon of 3/01/21.
The text for both sermons is Luke 4:1-13.

Lent 4
Here is Jack Holloway’s sermon of 3/15/2021.
The text is Luke 6:6-16.

Lent 5
Here is Bob Wollenburg’s sermon of 3/21/2021.
The text is Luke 11:1-13.

Palm Sunday
Here is Liz Edman’s sermon of 3/29/2021.
The text is Mark 11:1-11.

Maundy Thursday
Here is Burke Gerstenschlager’s sermon of 4/01/2021.
The text is Luke 22:1-62.

Easter Vigil
Here is Christian’s sermon of 4/03/2021.
The text is Luke 24:1-12.

Posted in: Sermons

Sermons for Epiphany 2, 3, 4, 5 and Transfiguration, 2021

Epiphany 2
Here is Christian’s sermon of 1/17/2021.
The text is John 1:43-51.

Epiphany 3
Here is Christian’s sermon of 1/24/2021.
The text is Mark 1:14-20.

Epiphany 4
Here is Christian’s sermon of 2/01/2021.
The text is Mark 1:21-28.

Epiphany 5
Here is Christian’s sermon of 2/07/2021.
The text is Mark 1:29-39.

Here is Christian’s sermon of 2/14/2021.
The text is Mark 9:2-10.

The text is Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21.

Posted in: Sermons

Music for Eastertide, 2021

Dear Song Leaders and Voices of the Congregation,

Here is the music we’ll be singing during Eastertide.

Gathering Song: Kiev Allelulia

Candle Lighting Song: The Lord Is My Light

Table Acclamation: Festive Table Acclamation

Prayer Song: Song Leader’s choice (in coordination with the preacher. Choose from our ever expanding list of prayer songs, some of which are listed here, or perhaps a new one to which you would like to introduce us.

Offering Song: Zimbabwe Alleluia

Closing Hymn:

April 11-May 2 — “Now The Green Blade Rises”

May 9 – May 16 — “Jesus Christ Is Risen Today”

Posted in: Songs We Sing

“Jesus Christ Is Risen Today”

“Jesus Christ Is Risen Today” is a centuries old Easter and Eastertide hymn.

We’ve updated the lyrics, which are reflected on this version of the sheet music.

And if you’d like to practice along, here’s a nice recording.

Posted in: Songs We Sing

When Jesus Wept

“When Jesus Wept,” a 1700s musical canon in four parts by William Billings, is a piece that has been sung many years on Good Friday at St Lydia’s.

You can view the sheet music here.

In 2021, due to the continued Covid-19 pandemic, a remote-recorded canon was assembled by Jacob Slichter, Christian Scharen, and Angela Morris. The resulting recording can be heard here.

Posted in: Songs We Sing

St. Lydia’s on Zoom

By Naomi Brenman, St. Lydia’s coordinator

St. Lydia's on ZoomIn March, when St. Lydia’s began doing church on Zoom, there was a lot to figure out. And so, the community adapted quickly and learned a little more every week about how to be St. Lydia’s on Zoom. Originally, the virtual script was almost identical to the script used for in person worship. But, it became clear that some of it did not serve anymore. Pretty quickly the standing portions of the service became sitting ones. As each season begins, St. Lydia’s explores new language, new songs to sing together and new ways to pray, while holding on to the familiar order and feeling of the service. 

Singing together is central to St. Lydia’s. The Zoom platform allows only one voice to speak at a time. Perfect for listening to a sermon, but impractical for a group to sing together. A new role was created: the vox populi, or voice of the people. And so, the song leader leads, and the voice of the people responds. At home, the congregation sings along with the voice of the people while muted. And though it is not the same as singing in a room of people, St. Lydia’s has adapted. Many congregants find holiness in the singing, singing along at home, finding harmonies, or sometimes, staying silent to listen. 

The St. Lydia’s service on Zoom is participatory. The reason St. Lydia’s remains so meaningful to the community on Zoom is because it has worked with Zoom, using functions like the chat box, screen sharing, and breakout groups to enhance the service. Now, the responses to readings in the chat box become found poems, sermons are preached with visual aid, and small dinner groups allow genuine connection, even virtually. The service includes three check-ins. The first is in pairs, the second as the community gathers and the service begins, and the third at the end of the service. The check-ins say to all participants: All ways of feeling are welcome in this moment, and someone is here to listen. 

Using Zoom has also allowed the St. Lydia’s community to meet virtually throughout the week for  prayer, study, and engagement with texts focused on racial justice. Since the pandemic began, Pr. Christian Scharen has led morning meditation and evening compline prayer, allowing those who desire it more ways to explore God. Weekly Oh God! Bible Study meetings allow for personal exploration into the weekly scripture through Lectio Divina and other methods. As part of a commitment to anti-racism work, St. Lydia’s began a monthly book club: St. Lydia’s Reads. The community virtually engaged around deepening understanding of racism and white supremacy in America. through discussion questions on the congregant Facebook group and a Zoom discussion each month. Some of the books included: How To Be An Anti-Racist by Ibram X Kendi, Caste by Isabel Wilkerson, and Minor Feelings by Cathy Park Hong. 

Many months in, some congregants still yearn for a big pot of soup with rosemary ciabatta for dipping. St. Lydia’s is a Dinner Church committed to sharing the meal. That means something different now that the meal is shared only virtually, with each congregant eating their own dinner in their own home. But, as St. Lydia’s meets tirelessly and robustly on Zoom, the Community is sustained by the fact that when able to meet in person again, St. Lydia’s will not be what it was in March. It will be something new, carrying the lessons and opportunities and new faces of Zoom into the next chapter. 

Join St. Lydia’s for Dinner Church at 6:00 on Sunday’s and 7:00 on Monday’s. 

You are very welcome here!

Posted in: Uncategorized
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Pave the Way with Branches (Jesus Is Coming)

“Pave the Way with Branches” is a song by Bret Hesla. As the title suggests, it evokes the Palm Sunday procession.

The music can be heard here.

And here are the lyrics:

Verse 1 (2x)
Jesus is coming.
Pave the way with branches.
Jesus is coming. Hosannah.

Chorus (2x)
Hosannah. Jesus is coming.
Hosannah to the Prince of Peace.

Verse 2 (2x)
Hope for the downtrodden
Pave the way with branches.
Hope for the downtrodden. Hosannah.

Chorus (2x)

Verse 3 (2x)
Land for the landless …

Chorus (2x)

Verse 4 (2x)
Debts are forgiven …

Chorus (2x)

Verse 5 (2x)
Release for the captives …

Chorus (2x)

If you want to sing either the first verse or chorus in Spanish . . . 

Verse 1 (2x)
Cristo ya viene 
con mantos y palmas.
Cristo ya viene hossana.

Chorus (2x)
Hossana cristo ya viene.
Hossana yo lo quiero ver

Posted in: Songs We Sing

Music for Lent 2021

Dear Song Leaders and Voices of the People,

Here are our musical selections for Lent:

Gathering Song: “Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord

Kyrie for Confession: John Bell Kyrie

Candle Lighting Song: “I Am Here in the Heart of God”

Table Acclamation: “Lent Table Acclamation

Cleanup/Offering song: “What We Need Is Here

Final Hymn: “What Wondrous Love Is This

Thank you for holding your community in song. ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

What We Need Is Here

This is a beautiful and simple song written by Amy McCreath. (The words are taken from the final line of Wendell Berry’s poem, “The Wild Geese.”)

Note that the song is two phrases long.

What we need is here.
What we need is here.

The line melodies are nearly identical, but the second line ends on the same note on which the melody starts.

Here’s a recording of the awesome Paul Vasile leading this song.

Posted in: Songs We Sing

John Bell Kyrie

A Kyrie Eleison, which means, “Lord, Have Mercy.”  This Kyrie is written by the Scottish minister and composer John Bell. 

Remember to teach the words . . .

Kyrie eleison
Christe eleison
Kyrie eleison

and provide the English translation . . .

Lord have mercy
Christ have mercy
Lord have mercy

You can hear a recording of it here.

Posted in: Songs We Sing