INVITATION TO WORSHIP
In the midst of life, we are in death. But in the face of death, God’s Spirit comes to bring us life.
Can dry bones live? Can life emerge from death? Only God knows. And yet, Christ promises
just such a miracle through the power of God’s Holy Spirit. Come, Holy Spirit, come.
CALL TO WORSHIP
All who are dwindling and dying….
Come forth to new life.
All who are lying in darkness and despair…
Come out into the light.
All who feel separated and alone …
Come to the presence of God, whose Spirit finds us here.
OPENING PRAYER
God of promise and hope, we come to you feeling dried up, like a valley filled with dry
bones. Share your vision of new life with us, that we might have hope for our future.
Bring us up from the grave, that we might live as people of promise. Put your Spirit within
us, that we might have life everlasting. Amen
SCRIPTURE READING Ezekiel 37:1-14
The hand of the Lord came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the Lord and
set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me all around them; there
were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. He said to me, “Mortal, can these
bones live?” I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these
bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these
bones: I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. I will lay sinews on you, and will
cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live;
and you shall know that I am the Lord.”
So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a
noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. I looked, and there were sinews
on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in
them.
Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath:
Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that

2
they may live.” I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they
lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude. Then he said to me, “Mortal, these bones are the
whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off
completely.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: I am going to open
your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people; and I will bring you back to the
land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and bring you
up from your graves, O my people. I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will
place you on your own soil; then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken and will act,” says
the Lord.
GOSPEL READING John 11:1-45
Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister
Martha. Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair;
her brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, “Lord, he whom you love is
ill.” But when Jesus heard it, he said, “This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s
glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” Accordingly, though Jesus loved
Martha and her sister and Lazarus, after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days
longer in the place where he was. Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea
again.” The disciples said to him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are
you going there again?” Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who
walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. But those who walk
at night stumble, because the light is not in them.” After saying this, he told them, “Our friend
Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him.” The disciples said to him, “Lord,
if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.” Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death,
but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus is
dead. For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to
him.” Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we
may die with him.”
When Jesus arrived, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. Now
Bethany was near Jerusalem, some two miles away, and many of the Jews had come to Martha
and Mary to console them about their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she
went and met him, while Mary stayed at home. Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been
here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever
you ask of him.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha said to him, “I know
that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection
and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives
and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” She said to him, “Yes, Lord, I believe
that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world.” When she had said
this, she went back and called her sister Mary, and told her privately, “The Teacher is here and is
calling for you.” And when she heard it, she got up quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not
yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. The Jews who were
with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her
because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. When Mary came where

3
Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my
brother would not have died.”
When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was
greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to
him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus began to weep. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” But
some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from
dying?” Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was
lying against it. Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to
him, “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did
I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” So they took away the stone.
And Jesus looked upward and said, “Father, I thank you for having heard me. I knew that you
always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may
believe that you sent me.” When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come
out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face
wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”
Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in
him.
SERMON
HYMN “Hymn of Promise” UMH 707

v.1 In the bulb there is a flower; In the seed, an apple tree;
In cocoons, a hidden promise: butterflies will soon be free!
In the cold and snow of winter, There’s a spring that waits to be,
Unrevealed until its season, Something God alone can see.
v. 2 There’s a song in every silence, Seeking word and melody;
There’s a dawn in every darkness, bringing hope to you and me.
From the past will come the future; what it holds, a mystery,
Unrevealed until its season, Something God alone can see.
v. 3 In our end is our beginning; In our time, infinity;
In our doubt there is believing; In our life, eternity,
In our death, a resurrection; At the last, a victory,
Unrevealed until its season, Something God alone can see.
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE { Lord, in your mercy….Hear our prayers}
1. For our churches and the ongoing ministries here, especially Food Pantry. May God grant us
wisdom, discernment, and grace at this time. Prayers especially for our shut ins and homebound
individuals. 2. For the medical professionals and first responders in our community. 3. For
world leaders and their discernment. 4. Please, add your prayers …

4

PASTORAL PRAYER
OUR LORD’S PRAYER ~ Together, we pray…
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. Amen.
OFFERING OF OURSELVES & OUR GIFTS 2 Corinthians 9:6 – 11
HYMN “Spirit of The Living God” UMH 393
BENEDICTION
Let those who were languishing and dying rejoice.
Let those who have lain in the shadows of despair take heart.
Let those who have known the separation of loneliness feel union in life with the Spirit. Amen.

I deeply appreciate you all and
all you do for the ministry

1. The Bishop told us he is following the lead of Governor Cuomo regarding the stay at
home and no public gatherings mandates. Our churches will continue to be closed to
public worship and other gatherings and events until such time as Governor Cuomo lifts
the stay at home mandates.
2. General Conference has been postponed and will be rescheduled to a later date. Annual
Conference also will be rescheduled from June to a date in the fall.