Sunday Sneak Peek – April 9, 2023

Join us for an Easter Celebration at 915am (in-person and live stream when available)


S4K-color-horiz400“An Easter Surprise”

Thank you for worshiping online with us.  We are so glad that you are spending part of your day with us!

Order of Service

Worship Service Participants

  • Rev. Scott Siefert
  • Organist: Penny Rolf
  • Choir:  YOU!

Ringing of the Church Bell



Rev Scott: Christ has been raised from the dead. “O death, where is your victory? O grave, where is your sting?” Thanks be to God.

One: Resurrected God, you are the God of new beginnings, of new dawns and new mercies. Enter into our presence again. When we move toward the tomb, remind us that you come with life. When we despair at the world unfolding around us, assure of your redemptive power. We long for your voice, speak a word of hope, encouragement, and peace.

All: May we reflect your image as resurrection people in covenant with you. AMEN.

Call to Worship 

One: Give thanks to our God whose steadfast love lasts forever!

All: Give thanks to our Risen God whose steadfast love lasts forever!

One: We gather together in the dawn of a new day. We look toward the tomb.

All: The stone has been rolled away. The tomb is empty! Alleluia!

One: We find God alive in the searching, in the garden, in our hope-filled spaces.

All: Alleluia. Christ lives and fills us with steadfast love!

*Opening Hymn: “The Strife is O’er” (The Hymnal #173)

Prayer of Invocation 

Rev Scott: Jesus, you walked among us and lived fully but in the end, even your friends betrayed you.

All: Give us courage. 

One: Jesus, you who weep as we weep, who ate and drank, who prayed loudly and alone.

All: Grant us strength.

Rev Scott:  Jesus, you who sought sight and life, who calmed storms and fed the masses, you who welcomed all who were excluded – 

All: Give us rest. Guide us to those who will share the load so that when the pain becomes too much to bear, we may lay down knowing the good work will go on.  AMEN.

Prayer of Confession

One: God, we know there is nothing you cannot overcome. We confess to our profound need of your love, strength, and mercy. Too often, we come toward the tomb resigned to the status quo. We anticipate the worst even when you are the provider of every good and perfect thing. We allow despair over the condition of our world to overwhelm us when you call us to follow you. Fortify us to live abundantly in your kingdom on earth.

All: Forgive us, receive us, and give us courage. Transform us and breathe new life into us. AMEN. 

–Time of Silent Confession-

Assurance of Grace

Rev Scott: The one who transformed death can and will certainly transform our lives. Jesus welcomes us on the journey of new life. No matter how many times our steps stray or we hide from hard things, God’s grace meets us with steadfast love to guide us on the path of the abundant and everlasting. Receive the resurrection power of the One who was and is and is to come. 

All: Thanks be to God! 

Scripture Readings

Colossians 3:1-43 and Matthew 28:1-10

Pastoral Meditation

Hymn of Response: “Jesus Lives and So Shall I” (The Hymnal #168)

Prayers and Concerns

Joys – Concerns – Blessings 

Please share any special concerns, joys, and blessings.

Silent Prayer – Pastoral Prayer – Lord’s Prayer 

ALL: 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 debts, as we forgive our debtors.  Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever.  AMEN.

Collection and Presentation of the Offering

Invitation to the Offering

Rev Scott: Colossians says, “So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Chris is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” In the giving of gifts, we seek the kingdom, we trust in the Provider, and we follow in the way of Jesus. 

*Hymn: “Be thou God Exalted High (See Insert #521)

“Praise God from Whom All Blessing Flow” (The Hymnal #551)

*Prayer of Dedication

All: Giving God, receive this portion of the gifts you have given to us. May our time, treasure, and talent be magnified and multiplied for your glory. AMEN. 

Closing and Blessing

*Closing Hymn:  “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today” (The Hymnal #167)

Benediction and Blessing

Ringing of the Church Bell

Upcoming Events & Announcements

  • Wednesdays – Confirmation Class – schedule on website
  • Thursdays – Bible Fellowship – 6pm – Fellowship Hall and ZOOM
  • Apr. 15th – Feed My Starving Children all-ages service activity in Chanhassen at 9am
  • Apr. 16th – Worship and Gather Team Meeting – following worship
  • Apr. 23rd – Consistory Team Meeting – following worship
  • Apr. 30th – Fellowship & Coffee Hour – following worship
  • Apr. 30th – Building & Grounds Team Meeting – following worship

Fruit of the Spirit.   April focuses on world-wide food insecurity with donations to benefit Feed My Starving Children.  A special collection is at the front of the sanctuary.  We also have an all-ages service activity to pack and label meals at FMSC on April 15th.  Sign-up in the Narthex or contact Pastor Scott.

God uses everyone’s talents.  Check out this month’s “Team Up” flier for ways to share your time and talents to inspire and uplift our community.

Bongards Market Helpers Needed.  A variety of opportunities for all abilities are available.  This is our 11th season and our biggest ministry program – Be part of the fun!  Wednesdays, June to September.  You pick dates/times that fit your schedule.  Contact Vicki Moteelall at 612-710-0508.

Find Food Carver County.  Volunteers are needed to pack produce, sort food items, and distribute food into vehicles in NYA the first Friday of the month.  If interested, contact Michelle Bachmann at 952-361-3033 or

Live Streaming:  We want to train others on live-streaming and recording services.  Contact Michelle Bachmann if you’re interested.

Looking for a church community?  If you have been led to St. John’s looking to be more than a visitor, we welcome you openly and would love an opportunity to chat.  Contact Pastor Scott at 804-350-0826 or email

The Word To Go:  Find Sunday morning worship services on our Facebook Page, St. John’s UCC of BongardsWorship will also be live-streamed on Facebook, when available.

Bongards Buzz:  Submit items for the newsletter by the 1st of each month to Michelle Bachmann or

For Pastoral Care.  Please contact Pastor Scott at 804-350-0826 or email  


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