The Second Sunday of the Easter Season

Also known as Quasi modo geneti Sunday

(“like newborn babies”)

April 07, 2024

Calming the Fears that Trouble us,

Dismissing The Doubts That Distress Us,

And Strengthening Our Feeble Faith….

Through The Word Of Our Living Lord

A man had fallen between the rails in a subway station. People were all crowding around trying to get him out before an oncoming train ran him over.   They were all shouting, “Give me your hand! Give me your hand!” But the man would not reach up.   Joe, elbowed his way through the crowd and leaned toward the man. “Friend,” he asked, “What is your profession?” “I’m an IRS agent,” gasped the man. “Well, in that case,” said Joe, “take my hand!”   The IRS agent immediately grasped Joe’s hand and was hauled to safety.   Joe turned to the amazed crowd and informed them, “Friends, you never ask an IRS agent to “GIVE” you anything.   You always let them TAKE something from you.”
What a contrast with Jesus Christ.    Jesus is the “Giver” or Source of God’s blessings to us.   He gives and gives and gives to us.   And one of the most precious blessings we enjoy is the comforting assurance that the Risen Christ brings His overwhelming, all-encompassing, sins-forgiving, reconciling PEACE into our often-frustrated, doubt-ridden, fear-filled, flawed lives.


I recently read an interesting article about some of the things that Americans are most afraid of.   These results came by way of a scientific poll done a few years back for the newspaper supplement USA Weekend:


54% are afraid or very afraid of being in a car crash.53% are afraid or very afraid of getting cancer.
50% are afraid or very afraid of inadequate support from Social Security and Medicare.
49% are afraid or very afraid of not having enough money for retirement, or running out of retirement funds.
36% are afraid or very afraid of getting food poisoning from contaminated food.
35% are afraid or very afraid of getting Alzheimer’s or some other form of dementia.
34% are afraid or very afraid of pesticides and other chemicals on food.33% are afraid or very afraid of being a victim of individual violence or an act of terrorism
32% are afraid or very afraid of being unable to pay off their current debts.
25% are afraid or very afraid of natural disasters.

Other findings from the poll indicated that:
9 in 10 Americans feel the world is not a safer place now than when they were growing up.
4 in 10 feel unsafe taking a walk alone at night within a few blocks of home.
And 1 in 4 women has the suspicion that she has been followed by a stranger in the past year.

Now…..let me ask you this morning, “what are you afraid of?” What deprives you of the peace of mind and soul that we all so dearly need?    Do you have a fear of failure, or are you afraid of death?   Do you have financial fears, the fear of loneliness, or the fear of any one of so many bad things that are part of life for so many of us?


On that first Easter evening Jesus’ disciples were afraid they were going to die – perhaps run through by a Roman sword, or maybe they’d suffer the fate of their Master….that of being executed on a cross.   In spite of the stories that had circulated that day about Jesus having risen from His grave, the disciples – realists and rationalists, at least at that moment – were not only sure that Jesus was dead and gone, but they also had the sinking feeling that they’d likely be dead soon too.  


Is it any wonder, then, that the first words Jesus uttered to his assembled and frightened disciples when He appeared to them the evening of His resurrection were the words:  “PEACE BE WITH YOU!”   He spoke those wonderful words to the disciples behind locked doors, twice on Easter Sunday when Thomas wasn’t there, and once more one week later when the “Doubter” was finally present and again part of the fellowship.   He wanted His followers to know for certain that He had accomplished His mission of redemption for them and for the world.   That Good News of forgiveness and salvation through Christ crucified and risen brought true peace to the hearts of Jesus’ first disciples…..just as it should bring real and lasting peace to our hearts today.  It’s the divine, forgiving peace that calms sin-troubled consciences that know they’ve failed God and deserve only His wrath eternally.   It’s the true peace of knowing there is now no condemnation for sin for those who believe in Christ, and that we have been reconciled to God forever through the sinless life, sacrificial death and the grave’s conquest by Jesus for us.


It’s true…..Jesus did not remove turmoil from the lives of His first disciples.   In fact, in the years to come the world would rage against them even more than it had in the week of their Lord’s crucifixion.   All except John would die a martyr’s death for Christ (and John would suffer terribly for Jesus’ sake too).    Nor does Jesus remove all the earthly turmoil and troubles from our lives.  Paul writes about the reality of life for Christians in a sinful world in Acts 14:22,  “We must go through many troubles on our way to the kingdom of God.”   But in the middle of all the terrors, trials and troubles of life, our Risen Savior is always with us (Matthew 28:20).   He continually comes to us in His Word and Sacraments, speaking His reassuring words to us, touching us through His body and blood, blessing us with His assurance that in all things He is working for our earthly and everlasting good….and that one day, He will – most assuredly – bless us, through faith, with the gift of eternal life in heaven with Him.   All of that is contained in the words on which we’ll focus our worship today – and our lives for the future…..the same comforting words Jesus shared with His fearful first disciples on that first Easter evening…..“Peace be with you.”

Today on the Church “Calendar”


This morning is the Second Sunday of the Easter Season.  Traditionally it has been referred to as “Quasi modo geniti” Sunday, which is a Latin term meaning “as newborn infants.”   That phrase comes from the opening line of a centuries’ old dialogue between pastor and people, based on a portion of I Peter 2 and Psalm 81, and customarily read in Christian churches on this Second Sunday of Easter.    Along with select verses from Psalm 16 they will serve as today’s Psalm Reading.  


In the earliest days of the church this day was also known as “Dominica in albis” Sunday (“the Lord’s Day in White”) because those who had been baptized on Easter would receive communion for the first time, and then would be laying aside the white robes which they had worn throughout the week following Easter Sunday.  

Recently this particular day on the church calendar also has come to be known as “Low Sunday” both because of the contrast of this Second Sunday of Easter with the great festival celebrated 7 days earlier, and (sadly) because worship services on this day receive attendances much lower than those found in Christian congregations on Easter Sunday.   


Our Sequence Hymn this morning is # 144, “Christ is Arisen.”  Over nearly 9 centuries this Hymn has been used in Christian churches during the post-Easter season as a “sequence” hymn separating the Epistle and Gospel lessons.  It dates back to  A.D. 1100 and is of German origin.  In fact, it is one of the earliest German hymns of any kind.   Martin Luther’s opinion of this hymn is this: “After a time one tires of singing all other hymns, but the ‘Christ is erstanden’ (“Christ is arisen”) one can always sing again and again.”   In other words, Luther loved it and never got tired of singing it.   The tune we’ll be singing today is as old as the words of this traditional Easter hymn.   It is based on the Gregorian Chant whose Latin name is “Victimae paschali” (“to the Paschal Victim”).


This Morning’s Scripture Lessons


Today’s First Lesson is a portion of a sermon Paul preached to Jews in city of Antioch in Pisidea.  Here he talks about Christ’s crucifixion and death, which fulfilled a number of Scriptural prophecies.  Paul then continues with the fact that God the Father raised up Christ, in fulfillment of prophecy, and that all who believe in Him are justified by faith and can be certain their sins are forgiven. 


This morning’s Children’s Lesson comes to us from the “Great Resurrection Chapter,” I Corinthians 15.   Here the inspired Apostle Paul will ask history’s greatest “What If” question:   “What If Easter had never happened?”   Of course Easter did happen……Christ conquered the grave, proving His deity, assuring that our sins are forgiven, affirming that our faith is valid, and confirming that – as He rose – one day, through His power and promise, we also will rise perfected from our graves.


Our Gospel Lesson/ Sermon Text deals with two of Jesus’ post-resurrection appearances to Ten of His disciples in the upper room on Easter evening, and then – a week later – to the Eleven in the same place.   On Easter evening, Thomas was missing.  As a result, he missed the Lord and the peace of being in the presence of the risen Lord.  Thomas would have to wait another week (and what a long and troubling week it must have been for him!) before he, too, would be able to experience the joy of seeing his risen Lord.   Being certain that Christ, indeed, had risen and was alive gave the Eleven (and the rest of the early church)  the purpose and foundation for their ministry, as well as the source of strength that they needed for their own spiritual lives.   Similarly, knowing that Christ is alive, and that He has conquered sin and death for us, gives you and me the assurance that our forgiveness and salvation are sure.  It also affirms for us that Jesus truly is our God and Lord, and so that He is worthy of our worship and trust.   Finally, we realize that, just as He conquered His grave, He also will enable us to one day conquer our graves (when we will rise on the Last Day with sin-purged bodies perfectly prepared for everlasting life in heaven).



Pre-Service Prayer     In the name of God the Father, and of the Son,  and Holy Spirit. Amen.  I thank You my

 Heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, Your Son, for keeping me through the night from all harm and danger.  Keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings and life may please You.  Into Your hands I commit my body and soul and all things.  Let your holy angel be with me, that the Devil may have no power over me.   Amen.




The portions of God’s Word used in this worship flyer have been taken from The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version    Copyright 2019,    The Wartburg Project, Inc.   All rights reserved.   Used with permission Music and lyrics, as needed, are used with permission via #A712831



Silent Prayer upon entering the sanctuary

Pre-service music                                                                                                                                              


We Praise Our God


The Service Introduction and Invitation to Worship   


At the pastor’s invitation, the Congregation will rise for the invocation


The Invocation


We begin this service


In the name of the Father,

Who gave His Son into death for us

and raised Him in glory on the third day;


And of the Son,

Who laid down His life

only to take it up again on the third day;


and of the Holy Spirit

through Whom Christ was made alive,

Who has worked and sustains saving faith in our hearts,

Who lives in us now through the Word,

and Who will one day give life to our mortal bodies.  




The Psalm for This Day                                                                                                   selected verses from

                                                                                                                      I Peter 2, Psalm 81, and Psalm 16



P:         Like newborn infants long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation, – if indeed          you have tasted that the Lord is good!


  • Sing aloud to God our strength;   +    shout for joy to the God of Jacob!   +  Raise a song;   +   sound the        tambourine,   +   the sweet lyre with the harp.


P:         I say to the LORD,  “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from You.”

C:         The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup;  +  You hold my lot.


P:         The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;   indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.

C:         I will bless the LORD, Who gives me counsel;   +   in the night also my heart instructs me.


P:         I have set the LORD always before me.   Because He is at my right hand I shall not be shaken.    

C:         Therefore my heart is glad and my whole being rejoices;   +    my flesh also dwells secure.


P:         For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let Your Holy One see corruption.

C:         You make known to me the path of life:


P:         In Your presence there is fullness of joy;

C:         at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

After which the Congregation will be seated for



  • The Opening Hymn    “Resurrection Medley”


I know that my Redeemer lives

What comfort this sweet sentence gives.

He lives, He lives, Who once was dead.

He lives my ever-living Head.    (CW 152 v1)


* * * * * * *


The Foe was triumphant when on calvary

The Lord of creation was nailed to the tree.

In Satan’s domain did the foes shout and jeer,

For Jesus was slain Whom the evil ones fear.    (CW 143 v2)


But short was their triumph, the Savior arose.

And death, hell and Satan, He vanquished, His foes.

The conquering Lord lifts His banner on high;

He lives, yes, He lives, and will nevermore die.    (CW 143 v3)


 * * * * * * *


Jesus lives!   For me He died;   Hence will I, to Jesus living

Pure in heart and act abide, Praise to Him and glory giving.

All I need God will dispense;    This shall be my confidence.   (CW 145 v3)


* * * * * * *


He lives and grants me daily breath;

He lives, and I shall conquer death.

He lives, my mansion to prepare;

He lives to bring   me safely there.        (CW 152 v7)

* * * * * * *


(The Congregation will rise for the singing of the final verse.)


Hymns of praise then let us sing, Alleluia!

Unto Christ, our heav’nly King,   Alleluia!

Who endured the cross and grave,   Alleluia!

Sinners to redeem and save,    Alleluia!      AMEN       (CW 157 v2)



                                                after which the Congregation will rise as



We Make Confession Of Our Sins To God


Pastor              God, our Heavenly Father, invites us to come into His presence and to worship Him with humble and penitent  hearts.  Therefore, let us now turn to Him, acknowledging our sinfulness and seeking His forgiveness for all our sins.


Congregation  Holy and merciful Father,   I confess that I am by nature sinful   and that I have  disobeyed You in my

                         thoughts,  words, and actions;    I have done what is evil in Your sight   and have failed to do

 what is good.    For this I know that I deserve Your punishment, both now and for eternity.     But I am truly sorry for all my sins    and trusting in the perfect life     and innocent death of my Savior, Jesus Christ,     I plead:    God have mercy on me, a sinner.


(Sung)  Lord have mercy on us.  

Christ Have Mercy on Us

Lord have mercy on us.


Pastor              Our gracious Lord and Master has shown us His mercy:   He has given His one and only Son to save

                         us from all  our  sins.     And now, having humbly and sincerely confessed your sins before Almighty

 God, be strengthened in your faith, mindful that our Lord is not willing that anyone should perish eternally, but that everyone should come to repentance, turning from their evil ways and receiving from Him everlasting life.    God has commanded His ministers to declare His forgiveness of sins to all who are penitent.   Therefore, addressing you as a called servant of Christ,  and according to His command and under His authority,   I forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

            May the peace of God rest upon all of you.    Amen.


(Sung)    Glory be to God on high

and on earth peace good will to men.

We praise You, we bless You, we worship You.

We glorify You,

we give thanks to You for Your great glory.

O Lord God heavenly King,

God the Father almighty.

O Lord, the only begotten Son, Jesus Christ,

O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,

You take away the sin of the world. 

 Have mercy on us.

You take away the sin of the world. 

 Receive our prayer.

You sit at the right hand of God the Father. 

 Have mercy on us.

For You only are holy.   You only are the Lord.

You only, O Christ, with the Holy Spirit.

Are most high in the glory of God the Father.   Amen



The Prayer for Today


Almighty God,  +   through Your only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ,   +   You have overcome death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life,   +    give us the peace for our troubled conscience   +  which comes from knowing that in Christ all our sins are forgiven.     Also grant that,   + as we trust in the merits of Your Son,   +   we might, through Your gracious, enabling power   +   produce the kind of fruits of faith in our daily lives     +   that clearly prove to others  +   the Christian faith which we profess with our lips.   +   And, finally, when our days on earth come to an end   +   grant us the blessing of entering into everlasting life in heaven   +   in all its completeness and bliss,   +   for the sake of Jesus Christ, Your Son our Lord,   +   Who lives and rules  with You and the Holy Spirit,   +   as the one, true  God,   +   now and forever.    +   Amen. 


            after which the Congregation will be seated


We Hear God’s Word


  • The First Lesson Acts 13:26-39


26 “Gentlemen, brothers, sons of Abraham’s family, and those among you who fear God, this message of salvation has been sent to you.   27 The people of Jerusalem and their rulers did not recognize him, and by condemning him they fulfilled the statements of the prophets that are read every Sabbath. 28 Though they found no grounds for a death sentence, they asked Pilate to have him executed. 29 When they carried out everything that was written about him, they took him down from the cross and laid him in a tomb. 30 But God raised him from the dead, 31 and for many days he was seen by those who had come up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem. These same individuals are now his witnesses to the people.


32 “We are preaching to you the good news about the promise that was made to our fathers. 33 God has fulfilled this promise for us, their children, by raising up Jesus. As it is also written in the second Psalm:

‘You are my Son.   Today I have begotten you.’


34 “That God would raise him from the dead never again to be subject to decay, God said in this way:   “I will give you the holy and sure blessings promised to David.’


35 “Therefore he also says in another place:   ‘You will not let your Holy One see decay.’


36 “For David, after he had served God’s purpose in his own generation, fell asleep, was laid to rest with his fathers, and saw decay. 37 But the One God raised did not see decay.


38 “So, gentlemen, brothers, let it be known to you that through this Jesus forgiveness of sins is being proclaimed to you, also forgiveness from everything from which you could not be justified through the law of Moses. 39 In this Jesus, everyone who believes is justified.


  • The Sequence Hymn Hymn 144 “Christ is Arisen”
  • Christ is arisen From the grave’s dark prison.
  • We now rejoice with gladness; Christ will end all sadness. Lord, have mercy.
  • All our hopes were ended
  • Had Jesus not ascended
  • From the grave triumphantly.
  • For this, Lord Christ, our thanks shall be. Lord, have mercy.
  • Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! We now rejoice with gladness;
  • Christ will end all sadness. Lord, have mercy.


After which the Congregation will rise for


  • The Gospel Lesson for the Second Sunday of Easter John 20:19-31


19 On the evening of that first day of the week, the disciples were together behind locked doors because of their fear of the Jews. Jesus came, stood among them, and said to them, “Peace be with you!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. So the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.    21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you! Just as the Father has sent me, I am also sending you.” 22 After saying this, he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 Whenever you forgive people’s sins, they are forgiven. Whenever you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”


24 But Thomas, one of the Twelve, the one called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples kept telling him, “We have seen the Lord!”      But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands, and put my finger into the mark of the nails, and put my hand into his side, I will never believe.”


26 After eight days, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and look at my hands. Take your hand and put it into my side. Do not continue to doubt, but believe.”   28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”   29 Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”


30 Jesus, in the presence of his disciples, did many other miraculous signs that are not written in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

  • The Nicene Creed


We believe in One God, the Father 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,   + was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary, + and became fully human.   + 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, + Who in unity with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified, + who has spoken through the prophets. + We believe in one Holy Christian 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.

After which the Congregation will be seated for


  • The Children’s Lesson I Corinthians 15:12-20


12 Now if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how is it that some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is pointless, and your faith is pointless too. 15 Then we are even guilty of giving false testimony about God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise, if it were true that the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then it also follows that those who fell asleep in Christ perished. 19 If our hope in Christ applies only to this life, we are the most pitiful people of all.    20 But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.


What If Easter Had Never Happened?



  • The Hymn of the Day   Hymn 153   “Alleluia!  Jesus Lives”


1 Alleluia! Jesus lives!   He is now the living one;

From the gloomy house of death   Forth the conqueror has gone,

Bright foreruner to the skies   Of his people, yet to rise.


2 Jesus lives! Let all rejoice;   Praise him, ransomed ones of earth.

Praise him in a nobler song,   Cherubim of heav’nly birth.

Praise the Victor-King, whose sway   Sin and death and hell obey.


3 Jesus lives! Why do you weep?   Why that sad and frequent sigh?

He who died our Brother here   Lives our Brother still on high,

Lives forever to bestow   Blessings on his Church below.


4 Jesus lives! And thus, my soul,   Life is yours eternally;

Joined to him, your living head,   Where he is, you too shall be;

You with him at his right hand   Victor over death shall stand.



after which the Congregation will rise for    

The Pre-Sermon Salutation


Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in Christ!  And grace and peace to you from Him Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come.  Amen.



  • Today’s Sermon based on John 20:19-31
  • today’s Gospel Lesson


Calming the Fears that Trouble us,

Dismissing The Doubts That Distress Us,

And Strengthening Our Feeble Faith….

Through The Word Of Our Living Lord


after the Sermon, the Congregation will REMAIN SEATED for


The Post-Sermon Blessing


May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God our Father, Who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, now encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.  Amen.



We Bring God our Offering and Prayers


Offerings will be received this morning through offering plates passed among those who have gathered here for worship.     However, for those viewing this service online,  we offer you the following suggestions for providing God with Your thank-offerings through our ministry:     

1) You can mail a check (no cash) to the church address:    (415 N. 6th Place, Lowell, AR 72745)

2) You can also donate on our website:


as the offerings are brought forward, the Congregation will rise for

  • Our Prayers for Each Other


    Today’s General Prayer


    The Lord’s Prayer


    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   for ever and ever.    Amen.   



    We Celebrate the Lord’s Supper


    Pastor                       The Lord be with you.


    Congregation (Sung)       And also with You


    Pastor                       Lift up your hearts.


    Congregation (Sung)       We lift them up unto the Lord


    Pastor                       Let us give thanks unto the Lord, our God.


    Congregation  (Sung)       It is good and right so to do.



    Pastor           It is truly good and right that we should at all times and in all places give thanks to You, O Lord, holy

                             Father,  almighty, everlasting God, through Jesus Christ our Lord, and we praise You especially for

     the glorious resurrection of Your Son, the true Passover Lamb, Who by His sacrifice took away the sins of the world, and by His resurrection restored everlasting life.   Therefore with angels and archangel, and all the company of heaven, we praise Your holy name and join their glorious song:




    Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of heavenly hosts.

    Heaven and earth are full of Your glory

    Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna in the highest.

    Blessed is He, Blessed is He, Blessed is He

    Who comes in the name of the Lord.

    Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna in the highest.


    • Consecration of the Communion Elements (Pastor)


    Pastor                       The peace of the Lord be with you always.


    Congregation           (Sung)  Amen.


    O Christ, Lamb of God,   You take away the sin of the world;

    Have mercy on us.  

    O Christ, Lamb of God,   You take away the sin of the world;

    Have mercy on us.

    O Christ, Lamb of God,    You take away the sin of the world;

    Grant us peace.   Amen.


    • The Exhortation Regarding the Lord’s Supper (Pastor)


    The Distribution of the Sacramental Elements






                At Grace Lutheran Church, we practice what is known as “Close Communion.”   That means we are able to offer the Lord’s Supper this morning only to those individuals who have already committed themselves to be members of our fellowship.  In so doing we are endeavoring to express the comprehensive commitment (and unity which we – as a congregation – share with each other) to all the teachings of God’s Word, and to our striving to put them fully and faithfully into practice in our ministry.  

                That “comprehensive commitment” requirement (which our Lord expects of all His children – please see Romans 16:17-18;   2 John 10-11;   I Corinthians 1:10;   I John 4:1-3;   John 8:31-32;   Matthew 28:19-20 …among other portions of Scripture that express this)  allows us only to offer the Lord’s Supper to those persons who are already committed, confirmed, communicant members of Grace Lutheran congregation, or who have become members of one of the congregations of our Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod.   

                To our Guests this morning,  we appreciate your presence among us and celebrate the faith in Christ which we know we share with you.   Please understand that by asking you to refrain from communing with us this morning we are not judging your faith in Christ.   What we are doing is expressing – as a congregation – our unity of faith in Christ, as well as our comprehensive commitment to all the teachings (doctrines) of God’s Word.   Consequently, we ask that you will kindly respect our close communion practice and refrain from taking the Lord’s Supper with us this morning.  

                A brochure further explaining the Biblical basis for this Close Communion practice is available on the entryway tract/brochure rack.    We encourage you to carefully examine it – especially the Biblical references within it –  and also to speak with our Pastor after the service (at your convenience) so that you might better understand and appreciate our Biblically-based “Close Communion” practice.    It is our hope that you – and many others – will one day share with us in the “close” fellowship we enjoy, by your studying God’s Word with us , by committing yourself to membership in our church family and by joining us in this joint, comprehensive commitment to His Biblical teachings that our Lord wants us to have with each other.

                Thank you for your understanding, your patience, and for your presence here among us this morning.




    • The First Distribution Hymn “I Stand Here Before You
    • Sung to the melody of “How Firm A Foundation” (CW 416)


    I stand here before You, O mightiest One

    In need of forgiveness for wrongs I have done.

    Oh, grant me Your pardon, my spirit now pleads

    Forgive my transgressions in thoughts, words, and deeds.


    The Tempter keeps taunting me day after day,

    I often succumb and submit to his way.

    From birth I’ve been evil — my mortal flesh weak,

    I do not abide by the words that You speak.


    I humbly confess with the deepest of shame

    The times I abused Your magnificent Name.

    In spite of Your right to demand faithfulness,

    My life’s often guided by my selfishness.


    I covet, I slander, I look with lust, too.

    I fail to give honor where honor is due.

    I steal and I gossip… far do I fall –

    Your perfect commandments:   I’ve broken them all.


    Right here at Your table forgiveness is found

    In Christ’s holy blood that flowed down to the ground,

    His body and blood in the bread and the wine

    A marvel of love that is truly divine!


    That blood of Your Chosen was shed to erase

    The sins of the world.   How I cherish that grace!

    Dear God I am thankful to be such a one,

    Washed clean by the blood of my Savior, Your Son.



    • Second Distribution Hymn Hymn 315      “Here, O My Lord, I See You Face to Face”


    1 Here, O my Lord, I see you face to face;   Here would I touch and handle things unseen,

    Here grasp with firmer hand eternal grace,   And all my weariness upon you lean.


    2 This is the hour of banquet and of song;   Here is the heav’nly table spread anew.

    Here let me feast and, feasting, still prolong   The brief bright hour of fellowship with you.


    3 I have no help but yours nor do I need   Another arm but yours to lean upon.

    It is enough, O Lord, enough indeed;   My strength is in your might, your might alone.


    4 Mine is the sin but yours the righteousness;   Mine is the guilt but yours the cleansing blood.

    Here is my robe, my refuge, and my peace:   Your blood, your righteousness, O Lord, my God.


    5 Too soon we rise; the vessels disappear.   The feast, though not the love, is past and gone.

    The bread and wine remove, but you are here,   Nearer than ever, still my shield and sun.


    6 Feast after feast thus comes and passes by,   Yet, passing, points to that glad feast above,

    Giving sweet foretaste of the festal joy,   The Lamb’s great marriage feast of bliss and love.



    We Leave With The Lord’s Blessing


    The Closing Prayer


    The Benediction  


    The Lord bless you and keep you.

    The Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you.

    The Lord look on You with favor upon you, and give you peace.  Amen.


    • The Closing Hymn “Because He Lives”
    • (used, with permission, under CCLI 1366699)


    God sent His Son,    they called Him Jesus,    He came to love, heal and forgive;

    He lived and died    To buy my pardon,      An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.

    Because He lives   I can face tomorrow,      Because He lives,   All fear is gone;

    Because I know —-    He holds the future   And life is worth the living   just because He lives.


    And then one day    I’ll cross the river,      I’ll fight life’s final war with pain;

    And then as death   gives way to victory,      I’ll see the lights of glory – and I’ll know He lives.

    Because He lives   I can face tomorrow,      Because He lives,   All fear is gone;

    Because I know —-    He holds the future   And life is worth the living   just because He lives.


    Silent Prayer


    Post-service music