July 30, 2023 – Ninth Sunday after Pentecost / Proper 12

Lectionary Readings   -   Gathering   -  Word  -   Eucharist   -   Sending   -   Music and Art

Lectionary Readings

Genesis 29:15–28
Tricked by Laban, Jacob first marries Leah, then Rachel.

Psalm 105:1–11, 45b
Children of Jacob, give thanks for the promise of the Lord.

or Psalm 128
The one who fears the Lord will enjoy progeny and prosperity.

1 Kings 3:5–12
The young king Solomon asks God for wisdom and discernment.

Psalm 119:129–136
Your law is wonderful; the unfolding of your words gives light.

Romans 8:26–39
The Spirit helps us; nothing can separate us from God’s love.

Matthew 13:31–33, 44–52
God’s kingdom is like a tiny seed, yeast, a treasure, a pearl, a net.

— Gathering —

Opening Sentences

We seek the kin-dom of God:
where the smallest seeds turn into great plants.
We seek the kin-dom of God:
as precious as pearls or treasure.
We seek the kin-dom of God:
where joy and abundance reign.

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song

Thanksgiving For Baptism

At the baptismal font:
The Lord be with you. And also with you.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.
O Lord our God, we give you thanks
for the grace that is at work in us
through the gift of our baptism—
the sign of your threefold name,
the communion of your faithful people,
the promise of your glorious realm.
By the power of your Holy Spirit,
poured out upon us in baptism,
let your grace and peace grow in us,
until we gather at your heavenly throne
to give you thanks and praise forever;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Confession and Pardon​

At the baptismal font:
We love God, and yet . . .
We are Christ’s disciples, and yet . . .
We are guided by the Spirit, and yet . . .
there are many ways we do not live this reality.
Let us call upon the Spirit to intercede for us
in our time of confession.

Spirit, intercede . . .
when we fall short of your glory,
when we do not deserve your promises,
when we do not act like those who have been called your family.
Spirit, intercede . . .
when our words wound,
when our silence speaks volumes,
when our actions are a far cry from what you would have us do.
Spirit, intercede . . .
break forth into our lives,
forming us into the image of your Son,
that we might never feel separate from you again.

Lifting water from the font:
Beloved, hear this good news:
God is for us.
Not even our sins can separate us from the love of God.
Glory be to God for this grace and mercy!

— Word —

Prayer for Illumination

At the lectern or pulpit:
Holy, Holy, Holy One,
guide us by the Spirit of truth
to hear the Word of life you speak,
and to give all glory, honor, and praise
to your threefold name;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Before the readings:
The Lord is our God, the Lord alone.
Listen to the word of the Lord.
Deuteronomy 6:4

After the readings:
Keep these words in your heart.
The Lord is our God, the Lord alone.
Thanks be to God.  
Deuteronomy 6:6


Ascription of Praise

After the sermon:
To the Lord our God, Alpha and Omega,
be all glory and honor forever. Amen.
Revelation 21:6

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song

Affirmation of Faith

The life, death, resurrection,
and promised coming of Jesus Christ
has set the pattern for the church’s mission.
His human life involves the church
in the common life of all people.
His service to men and women
commits the church
to work for every form of human well-being.
His suffering makes the church sensitive
to all human suffering
so that it sees the face of Christ
in the faces of persons in every kind of need.
His crucifixion discloses to the church
God’s judgment on the inhumanity
that marks human relations,
and the awful consequences
of the church’s own complicity in injustice.
In the power of the risen Christ
and the hope of his coming,
the church sees the promise
of God’s renewal of human life in society
and of God’s victory over all wrong.
The church follows this pattern
in the form of its life
and in the method of its action.
So to live and serve
is to confess Christ as Lord.
Adapted from the Confession of 1967, 9.32–33

Prayers of Intercession

Let us pray in the Spirit, who helps us in our weakness,
interceding with sighs too deep for words.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the Spirit, we pray for the church . . .
As nothing can separate us from your love,
let nothing stand between us and our calling
to share the love of Christ with others.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the Spirit, we pray for the earth . . .
Give us a greater respect for smaller things—
the tiny seed, small creature, or subtle event
that plays a vital part in your good creation.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the Spirit, we pray for all nations . . .
Grant our leaders wise and discerning minds,
so that they may live in faithfulness,
and govern with righteousness and justice.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the Spirit, we pray for this community . . .
Help us to deal honestly with one another,
keeping faith and honoring commitments
in public life and in personal affairs.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the Spirit, we pray for loved ones . . .
Remember those in peril, hardship or distress.
Show them that nothing in life or in death
can separate them from your love.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the Spirit, we pray to you, O God,
confident that all things work together for good
for those who love you
and are called according to your purpose.
Above all, we give you thanks, O God,
that nothing can separate us from your love
in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.
Romans 8:26, 28, 39

— Eucharist —

Invitation to Offering

At the communion table:
I appeal to you, brothers and sisters,
to present yourselves as a living sacrifice,
holy and acceptable to God.
Let us offer our lives to the Lord.
Romans 12:1

Prayer of Dedication

At the communion table:
God of unending gifts,
we praise you for your abundant goodness.
As you are generous, we want to be generous too.
May the gifts we bring
extend your generosity into the world,
so that all people may be made whole
by your goodness and grace. Amen.

Great Thanksgiving

The Lord be with you. And also with you.
Lift up your hearts. We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.

Blessed are you, O Lord our God:
Your steadfast love and faithfulness are beyond measure.
You call us to worship and serve you alone,
and reward us with freedom and abundant life.

Therefore we praise you, joining the song
of the universal church and the heavenly choir:
A Sanctus (“Holy, holy, holy”) is sung.

Blessed is Jesus Christ, our Savior:
Jesus taught us to look for the signs of your realm:
a tiny seed that grows into a great, sheltering tree;
a hidden treasure that surpasses the value of all else.
The words of institution are included here.

Remembering your goodness and grace,
we offer ourselves to you with gratitude
as we share this joyful feast.
A Memorial Acclamation (e.g., “Christ has died”) is sung.

Pour out your Holy Spirit upon us and upon this bread and cup;
make us one in the body and blood of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Enter our hearts and lives, by your Holy Spirit,
and work among us, around us, and within us
for the fulfillment of your purpose in the world.

Through the Lord Jesus Christ,
in the unity of the Spirit,
we bless you, God of glory,
now and forever.
An Amen is sung.

Lord’s Prayer


Breaking the Bread


Communion of the People


Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song


Prayer after Communion

At the communion table:
Holy Spirit, you have filled us with your life.
Christ our Savior, you have embraced us in your love. 
God our Mother, you have fed us with your grace.
Now send us out into your beloved world
to share your life, your love, your grace with all.
Blessing and honor and glory to you,
holy, holy, holy Lord. Amen.

— Sending —

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song


Blessing and Charge

At the doors of the church:
May the blessing of the Trinity—
holy, holy, holy Lord—
be with you now and always. Alleluia!
Isaiah 6:3

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying,
“Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here I am; send me!” Amen.
Isaiah 6:8

“The Hidden Treasure”


Additional Materials

Congregational Song


  • God of Great and God of Small (G) GOD OF GREAT AND SMALL GTG 19
  • All Hail to God’s Anointed (O) ROCKPORT GTG 149, PH 205
  • Pelas dores deste mundo / For the Troubles and the Sufferings (E) PELAS DORES DESTE MUNDO GTG 764
  • Bring Forth the Kingdom (G) BRING FORTH THE KINGDOM STF 2190


  • There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy (OE) IN BABILONE GTG 435, PH 298
  • O Word of God Incarnate (G) MUNICH GTG 459, PH 327
  • Healer of Our Every Ill (E) HEALER OF OUR EVERY ILL GTG 795
  • What Are We Searching For? (G) LOVE UNKNOWN Sing No Empty Alleluias, Chris Shelton, GIA


  • Come, Holy Ghost, Our Souls Inspire (E) VENI CREATOR SPIRITUS GTG 278, PH 125
  • We Gather Together (E) KREMSER GTG 336, PH 559
  • Look Who Gathers at Christ’s Table! (OEG) COPELAND GTG 506
  • Neither Death nor Life (E) Marty Haugen G3 647


  • Hope of the World (E) DONNE SECOURS GTG 734, PH 360
  • Give to the Winds Thy Fears (E) FESTAL SONG, ST. BRIDE GTG 815, PH 286
  • Just a Closer Walk with Thee (OG) CLOSER WALK GTG 835
  • We’ll Work till Jesus Comes (O) O LAND OF REST SON 634

Psalms and Canticles

Psalm 105:1–11, 45b

  • We Give You Thanks, O Lord Our God [CMD]; SGP (sts. 1–3)
  • Praise the Lord, the Day Is Won [GAUDEAMUS PARITER / AVE VIRGO VIRGINUM]; PAS 105C
  • The Steadfast Love of the Lord; GTG 59, PAS 105B (alt. refrain)
  • Remember the Marvels God Has Done [HANOVER]; HTP2 24

Psalm 128

  • Bless All Who Trust in God [FRANCONIA]; GTG 47
  • Whoever Fears the Lord [OLD DOMINION]; PAS 128C, LUYH 313
  • Blest Are They Who Trust [RUSSIAN TUNE OLD]; PAS 128A, PP 260
  • Blest Are Those Who Love You; PAS 128B
  • Blessed Are Those Who Rejoice in the Lord; PSA 133

Psalm 119:129–136

  • I Long for Your Commandments [WOHL DENEN, DIE DA WANDELN]; GTG 64
  • All Your Commandments, Father Almighty [KANCIONAL NEW]; PAS 119 O
  • Here Is the Lamp []; MPS 119a
  • Send Out Your Light; PAS 119L
  • O Lord, You Have the Words of Life [LEONI/YIGDAL]; PP 238
  • Let Me Sing of Your Law; PAS 119A

Organ Music

  • “Offertoire sur les Grands jeux,” Mass for the Parishes, Francois Couperin, KAL (ME)
  • “Come Holy Ghost, Our Souls Inspire,” VENI CREATOR SPIRITUS, Augsburg Organ Library: Easter, Flor Peeters, AF (M)
  • “Healer of Our Every Ill,” Augsburg Organ Library: Healing and Funeral, Franklin D. Ashdown, AF (E)

Anthems for Adult Choirs

  • “Rich in Promise,” Robert Buckley Farlee, HIN, SAB, pno (E)
  • “Psalm 105,” Dominick Diorio, OUP, SATB div, org (A)
  • “The Meditations of My Heart,” Elaine Hagenberg, BP, SATB, pno (M)
  • “If God Is for Us,” Allen Pote, HIN, SATB, pno (M)
  • “Lord of the Small,” Dan Forrest, BP, SATB, keybd (M)
  • “He Never Failed Me Yet,” Robert Ray, HAL, SATB, solo, pno, bass, perc (M)
  • “Neither Death nor Life,” Jonathan Crutchfield, MSM, SATB, solo, org, opt hn, brass qrt (MA)
  • “How Lovely Is Thy Dwelling Place,” Daniel Kallman, MSM, SAB or SATB, pno (M)

Handbell Music

  • “There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy,” Anna Laura Page, 3–5 oct, LOR, 20/2105L, Level 3-
  • “Just a Closer Walk with Thee,” John A. Behnke, 3–6 oct, opt 3–5 hc, JAB Publishing, JAB017, Level 3
  • “Give to the Winds Thy Fears,” Tammy Waldrop, 3–5 oct, opt 3 oct hc, opt windchimes, ALF, 36514, Level 2


  • The Hidden Treasure, JESUS MAFA, Cameroon (VDL)
  • Solomon Praying to the Holy Spirit, Guillaume Vrelant, c. 1460 (VDL)
  • What Wondrous Love Is This, Mike Moyers (VDL)
  • Parable of the Mustard Seed, painted window, Kassel, Germany, c. 2000 (VDL)