Sunday, November 1, 2020

Sunday Worship, November 1, 2020 (10:30 a.m. EST) All Saints Day

The livestream may be found here.



Revelation 7:9-17 is an imaginative vision of the eternal worship of the saints. Those of every nation who have borne witness to Jesus as the king on earth, often at the price of their lives, now glorify him as enthroned king of heaven.


Psalm 34 is a triumphant song of trust in God, written after deliverance from a time of trouble.


The first letter of John stresses both the ‘now’ and ‘not yet’ character of our life in Christ. We are God’s children, and yet we are on the way to what we shall be. On the way, we seek to imitate Christ our brother.


In Matthew 5, Jesus sees blessing where others do not. Those who are blessed are not those who are already perfect, but those who recognize their lack and look for God to provide what is truly needed. They also imitate God and his beneficent nature. As in both Revelation and 1 John, ‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.’



‘The honor (given to the saints) is threefold. The first is thanksgiving: we ought to give thanks to God because he has given examples of his mercy, because he has shown that he wants to save humankind, and because he has given teachers and other gifts to the church...The second kind of veneration is the strengthening of our faith. When we see Peter forgiven after his denial, we too, are encouraged to believe that grace truly superabounds much more over sin [Rom. 5:20]. The third honor is imitation: first of their faith, then of their other virtues, which people should imitate according to their callings.’


                                  Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XXI



Preparation for Worship

Upon reaching your place, you may wish to read Psalm 84 in silence:


1 How dear to me is your dwelling, O | Lord of hosts!*

                My soul has a desire and longing for the courts of the Lord;

                my heart and my flesh rejoice in the | living God.

2 The sparrow has found her a house

and the swallow a nest where she may | lay her young,*

                by the side of your altars, O Lord of hosts,

my King | and my God.

3 Happy are they who dwell | in your house!*

                They will always be | praising you.

4 Happy are the people whose strength | is in you,*

                whose hearts are set on the | pilgrims' way.

5 Those who go through the desolate valley

will find it a | place of springs,*

                for the early rains have covered it with | pools of water.

6 They will climb from | height to height,*

                and the God of gods will reveal him- | self in Zion.

7 Lord God of hosts, | hear my prayer;*

                hearken, O | God of Jacob.

8 Behold our defend- | er, O God;*

                and look upon the face of | your anointed.

9 For one day in your courts

is better than a thousand in | my own room,*

                and to stand at the threshold of the house of my God

                than to dwell in the tents | of the wicked.

10 For the Lord God is both | sun and shield;*

                he will give | grace and glory;

11 no good thing will the | Lord withhold*

                from those who walk | with integrity.

12 O | Lord of hosts,*

                happy are they who put their | trust in you!


You may pray the following prayers:


Holy Lord, almighty Father, everlasting God: hear our prayer and send your holy angel from heaven to guard, protect, visit, and defend all those who assemble together in this house; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Most gracious God, incline your merciful ears to our prayers and enlighten our hearts by the grace of your Holy Spirit, that we may approach your Holy Mysteries with believing hearts and love you with an everlasting love.


OPENING MUSIC                                                                        For All the Saints

I.                    Flor Peeters

II.                  Charles Ore








The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God,

and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

  And also with you.

(2 Corinthians 13:13)


INTROIT A Song of the Saints                                                            

These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation;

  They have washed their robes

  and made them white in the blood of the lamb.

In you, O LORD, do I take refuge; let me never be put to shame;

  In your righteousness deliver me.

For you are my rock and my fortress;

  And for your name’s sake you lead me and guide me.

Into your hands I commend my spirit;

  you have redeemed me, O LORD, faithful God.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;

  As it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen

These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation;

  They have washed their robes

  and made them white in the blood of the lamb.

Psalm 31:1, 3, 5; antiphon: Rev. 7:14a


The Lord be with you.

  And also with you.


Almighty God, whose people are knit together in one holy Church,

the body of Christ our Lord:

  Grant us grace to follow your blessed saints in lives of faith and

  commitment, and to know the inexpressible joys you have prepared

  for those who love you;

through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.


Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,

for they will be filled.

  Let us hear the Word of the Lord.



First READING                                                                    Revelation 7:9-17


9After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. 10They cried out in a loud voice, saying,
 “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”

11And all the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12singing,
 “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom
 and thanksgiving and honor
 and power and might
 be to our God forever and ever! Amen.”

 13Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, “Who are these, robed in white, and where have they come from?” 14I said to him, “Sir, you are the one that knows.” Then he said to me, “These are they who have come out of the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
15For this reason they are before the throne of God,
  and worship him day and night within his temple,
  and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them.
16They will hunger no more, and thirst no more;
  the sun will not strike them,
  nor any scorching heat;
17for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd,
  and he will guide them to springs of the water of life,
 and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”


The Word of the Lord.                                                                                                  

  Thanks be to God.

PSALM 34:1-9, 22

The psalm is read responsively between the pastor and the people.


1 I will bless the Lord | at all times;*

                his praise shall ever be | in my mouth.

2 I will glory | in the Lord;*

                let the humble hear | and rejoice.

3 Proclaim with me the greatness | of the Lord;*

                let us exalt his | name together.

4 I sought the Lord, and he | answered me*

                and delivered me out of | all my terror.

5 Look upon him | and be radiant,*

                and let not your faces | be ashamed.

6 I called in my affliction, and | the Lord heard me*

                and saved me from | all my troubles.

7 The angel of the Lord encompasses | those who fear him,*

                and he will de- | liver them.

8 Taste and see that the | Lord is good;*

                happy are they who | trust in him!

9 Fear the Lord, you that | are his saints,*

                for those who fear | him lack nothing.

22 The Lord ransoms the life | of his servants,*

                and none will be punished who | trust in him.


SECOND READING                                                                  1 John 3:1-3


1See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he\ is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. 3And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.


The Word of the Lord.                                                  

  Thanks be to God.




Alleluia. They are before the throne of God,

  and he who sits upon the throne

  will shelter them with his presence. Alleluia.

                                                                   Revelation 7:15  

Gospel                                                                                         Matthew 5:1-12


The Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew.

  Glory to you, O Lord.


(Congregation reads bold print)

                When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him.  2Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:


3"Blessed are the poor in spirit,

for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

4"Blessed are those who mourn,

for they will be comforted.                 

5"Blessed are the meek,

for they will inherit the earth.

6"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,

for they will be filled.

7"Blessed are the merciful,

for they will receive mercy.

8"Blessed are the pure in heart,

for they will see God.

9"Blessed are the peacemakers,

for they will be called children of God.

10"Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake,

for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11"Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account 

12Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.


The Gospel of the Lord.                                

  Praise to you, O Christ.





HYMN OF THE DAY                                            Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones



Please meditate on the text of the hymn as it is played.


1      Ye watchers and ye holy ones,

        bright seraphs, cherubim, and thrones,

        raise the glad strain: "Alleluia!"

        Cry out, dominions, princedoms, pow'rs,

        archangels, virtues, angel choirs:

        "Alleluia! Alleluia!" Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


2      O higher than the cherubim,

        more glorious than the seraphim,

        lead their praises: "Alleluia!"

        Thou bearer of the eternal Word,

        most gracious, magnify the Lord:

        "Alleluia! Alleluia!" Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


3      Respond, ye souls in endless rest,

        ye patriarchs and prophets blest:

        "Alleluia! Alleluia!"

        Ye holy twelve, ye martyrs strong,

        all saints triumphant, raise the song:

        "Alleluia! Alleluia!" Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


4     O friends, in gladness let us sing,

        supernal anthems echoing:

        "Alleluia! Alleluia!"

        To God the Father, God the Son,

        and God the Spirit, Three in One:

        "Alleluia! Alleluia!" Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


Text: J. Athelstan Riley, 1858-1945




The pastor and people confess the faith of the Church in the words of the Nicene Creed.


We believe in one God,

                the Father, the Almighty,            

                maker of heaven and earth,

                of all that is, seen and unseen.


We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,

                the only Son of God,

                eternally begotten of the Father,

                God from God, Light from Light,

                true God from true God,

                begotten, not made,

                of one Being with the Father.

                Through him all things were made.

                For us and for our salvation

                                he came down from heaven;

                                by the power of the Holy Spirit

                                                he became incarnate from the virgin Mary,                                                       and was made man.

                For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

                                he suffered death and was buried.

                                On the third day he rose again

                                                in accordance with the Scriptures;

                                he ascended into heaven

                                                and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

                He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,

                                and his kingdom will have no end.


We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,

                who proceeds from the Father and the Son.

                With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.

                He has spoken through the prophets.

                We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.

                We acknowledge one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins.

                We look for the resurrection of the dead,

                and the life of the world to come. Amen



Let us pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, and for all people according to their needs.


A brief silence is kept.


Father, we rejoice in the promise that even now in the midst of sin, suffering, and brokenness, we are your children. We look with eager longing to what we shall be, when we see you as you are, even as your saints in heaven behold you in your glory.

Lord, in your mercy,
  hear our prayer.


We rejoice to hear your Son Jesus call us ‘blessed.’ Stir up in us the Spirit of faith, hope, and love, that we may purify ourselves just as he is pure. Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


We rejoice in your Word, by which we hear your commands of love and the promises which make us holy and wholly yours. We rejoice in Holy Baptism, which washes us and makes our robes white in the blood of the Lamb. We rejoice in your Holy Communion, the holy manna which sustains us in our journey to you. Help us to cling always to our Lord present in his Word and Sacraments. Lord, in your mercy,
  hear our prayer.


We ask your blessing upon the world that you have made. Where there is violence, bring peace; where there is abuse of power, bring justice; where there is grief, bring comfort; where there is despair, bring hope; where there is disease, bring healing. Inspire us to serve you and to do your will, and never let us grow weary or faint in your service. Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


We rejoice that you have made us worthy to stand before you and serve you as your priestly people, interceding for others before your heavenly throne. Hear now our prayers for those who are in need of them and those who have asked them of us, and give them your blessing.


The People may offer silent or spoken intercessions and thanksgivings.


Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.

We rejoice in the saints and martyrs of the Church, in St Stephen our namesake, and in all of every time and every place, of every tribe, nation and language, who have witnessed to your love in Christ.


Especially this day we give thanks for those we love, and those of our faith family who have died this past year:


                                                Kevin Clause

                                William Gargiulo

                                                Bp. Paull Spring

                                                Ronald Tarullo


Bring us to stand with the saints before your throne, worshiping you with unwearied alleluia. Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


Into your hands, Father, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your steadfast love, through Jesus Christ our Lord.




The peace of the Lord be with you always.

  And also with you.


The people exchange a sign of peace with the simple words, Peace be with you.



The Lord’s Table is prepared.




The Great Thanksgiving begins with the Preface, leading into the Sanctus:


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 him thanks and praise.

  It is indeed right and salutary that we should at all times and in all places offer thanks and praise to you, O Lord, holy Father, through Christ our Lord.

  In the blessedness of your saints you have given us a glorious pledge of the hope of our calling; that, moved by their witness and supported by their fellowship, we may run with perseverance the race that is set before us and with them receive the unfading crown of glory.   

  And so, with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven, we praise your name and join their unending hymn:


Holy, holy, holy LORD, God of power and might!

Heaven and earth are full of your glory;

Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD!

Hosanna in the highest!                                                    (Isaiah 6:3, Matthew 21:9)


The pastor leads the people in praying the Eucharistic canon:


Almighty God, we rejoice in your goodness and your saving grace.


By that grace you chose Abraham and Sarah

                and blessed their descendants as the people of your promise.


You made of them a nation

                by your covenant established on Sinai’s hills;

                and though they often strayed from your commands,

                your remained faithful to them, promising them life and peace.


Then, in love and mercy for all your creation,

                you sent your Son, our Lord Jesus,

                who was faithful in fulfilling your will

                as he reached out to the poor and lonely;

                as he forgave sinners;

                as he blessed those distressed by life;

                and who, as he poured out his life upon the cross,

                sealed the new covenant of life in his kingdom

                for all the saints.


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.


For as often as we eat of this bread and drink from this cup,

                we proclaim our Lord’s death until he comes.

Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.


Gracious Father, we give thanks for our Lord’s life and death,

                and for his glorious resurrection and exaltation

                at your right hand.


We bless you for sealing us in Holy Baptism

                to the promises made to all the saints,

                and for incorporating us into your Church,

                the dwelling place of your Holy Spirit.


Send your Spirit upon these gifts,

                this most holy mystery of our Lord’s body and blood;

                enliven us in the faith we share

                as we partake of this meal of life;

                unite our praises with all those

whom our Lord Jesus calls blessed,

until the new day when the Lamb shall be our light

and when we shall share in his heavenly glory.


                Through Him, with Him, in Him,

 in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

all honor and glory is yours, Almighty Father,

now and forever. 



In the presence of Christ, we pray to his Father using the words he gave us.


Christ is in our midst.

                By the power of the Spirit,

                we pray to his Father, saying:



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                               (Matthew 6:9-15)



We adore Christ with the words of the Agnus Dei (Lamb of God).


Taste and see that the LORD is good;

  Happy are they who put their trust in him!    

Psalm 34:8


Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;           

   have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

  have mercy on us.        

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

  Grant us peace.

(John 1:29, see also Luke 17:13)



Admission to the Sacrament is by invitation of the Lord, presented through the Church to those who are baptized.


They may receive the Lord’s Body and Blood who are baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, who commune in their home churches, and who believe that Jesus Christ, crucified and risen, is truly present in, with, and under the forms of bread and wine for the forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation.


The communicants will be invited forward one family unit at a time. Please do not come forward until the pastor directs you to come forward, do not approach all the way to the table until the pastor has retreated,  and please do not remove your mask until you have reached the table with the elements on it.


 When the pastor says ‘The body of Christ, given for you,’ eat the bread. When the pastor says, ‘The blood of Christ, shed for you,’ drink the wine.  Please take the plate and the glass(es) and place them on the table that is indicated. Please put your mask on before returning to your seat.



Please meditate on the text of the hymn as it is played.



Who Is This Host Arrayed in White


1              Who is this host arrayed in white

                like thousand snow-clad mountains bright,

                that stands with palms and sings its psalms

                before the throne of light?

                These are the saints who kept God’s word;

                they are the honored of the Lord.

                He is their prince who drowned their sins,

                so they were cleansed, restored.

                They now serve God both day and night;

                they sing their songs in endless light.

                Their anthems ring when they all sing

                with angels shining bright.


2              On earth their work was not thought wise,

                but see them now in heaven’s eyes;

                before God’s throne of precious stone

                they shout their vict’ry cries.

                On earth they wept through bitter years;

                now God has wiped away their tears,

                transformed their strife to heav’nly life,

                and freed them from their fears.

                For now they have the best at last;

                they keep their sweet eternal feast.

                At God’s right hand our Lord commands;

                he is both host and guest.


3              O blessed saints, now take your rest;

                a thousand times shall you be blest

                for keeping faith firm unto death

                and scorning worldly trust.

                For now you live at home with God

                and harvest seeds once cast abroad

                in tears and sighs. See with new eyes

                the pattern in the seed.

                The myriad angels raise their song.

                O saints, sing with that happy throng;

                lift up one voice; let heav’n rejoice

                in our redeemer’s song!


Text: Hans A. Brorson, 1694-1764; tr. Gracia Grindal, b. 1943

© 1978 Lutheran Book of Worship, admin. Augsburg Fortress


When all have received, the congregation stands at the direction of the pastor.


The body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ strengthen you and keep you in his grace.    



Lord, now you let your servant go in peace;

your word has been fulfilled.

My own eyes have seen the salvation

which you have prepared in the sight of every people:

A light to reveal you to the nations

and the glory of your people Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son,

and to the Holy Spirit;

as it was in the beginning, is now,

and will be forever. Amen                                       Song of Simeon (Luke 2:29-32)



Almighty Father, you gave your Son

both as a sacrifice for sin and a model of the godly life.

  Enable us to receive him always with thanksgiving,

  and to conform our lives to his;

through the same Jesus Christ our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.




Almighty God, Father, +Son, and Holy Spirit, bless you now and forever.




Go in peace. Serve the Lord.                                          

  Thanks be to God!



CLOSING MUSIC                                                  Crown Him with Many Crowns