May 13, 2020 | No Distinctions

Leader: Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

Psalm 122:1-2

Reader 1: I rejoiced because they said to me, “We will go up to the house of the Lord.”

Reader 2: And now we have set foot within your gates, O Jerusalem.

Reading –       Acts 15:1-6

Reader 3: Some who had come down from Judea were instructing the brothers, “Unless you are circumcised according to the Mosaic practice, you cannot be saved.” Because there arose no little dissension and debate by Paul and Barnabas with them, it was decided that Paul, Barnabas, and some of the others should go up to Jerusalem to the Apostles and presbyters about this question.  … When they arrived in Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the Church, as well as by the Apostles, and the presbyters, and they reported what God had done with them. But some from the party of the Pharisees who had become believers stood up and said, ‘It is necessary to circumcise them and direct them to observe the Mosaic law.”  The Apostles and presbyters met together to see about this matter. 

Reflection:

Leader: Today’s reading introduces the controversy in the early Church over the question of circumcision prior to Baptism for the Gentiles. Paul and his colleagues believed that circumcision was not necessary for those who wanted to become Christians.  Peter had the opposite opinion.  After a discussion among the Apostles and presbyters, it was agreed that circumcision was not necessary for conversion to Christianity.  Paul argued that God can choose anyone, including the Gentiles, for God does not make distinctions between people. We should take this message to heart in our own time.

Intentional Prayer

Leader: Filled with your goodness, O God, we pray:

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader 1: For CommonSpirit Health that we willingly serve all who need our help, we pray:

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader 2: That those who suffer not lose hope and instead find comfort in the kindness of others, we pray:

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader 3: That those who are victims of violence and human trafficking find security and shelter, we pray:

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

All: Personal Petitions:

The Lord’s Prayer

Reader 3: Our Father …

Closing Prayer

Reader 4: God of all creation, you are the source of unity among all peoples.  Hear our cry for unity and peace that all you have created might live in harmony and give you glory.  Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Leader: Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

Peace be with you all and have a wonderful week!