September 22, 2019

A peace that surpasses
all understanding

A prayer service for peace

First Mennonite Church
Sugarcreek, Ohio September 22, 2019
Worship: 9:30-10:30
Fellowship Time: 10:30-11:00
Sunday School: 11:00-12:00

We believe in Jesus and take his life, teachings, death and resurrection as the model for how we live and the message we proclaim.
We seek to be a caring and discerning community,
the gathered body of Christ,
that welcomes all to join in worship, study, and service.
We embody God’s transforming and redeeming Spirit in the world through our prophetic witness and action.


A peace that surpasses all understanding

A prayer service for peace


Ringing of the Bell:
Prelude: “Down to the River to Pray”—arr. Mark Hayes
Welcome & Announcements:
Focus Statement:

We are called to pursue peace even if and when it does not make sense. The peace of Christ that surpasses what we may perceive as impossible.

Time of Meditation:
“Like the Murmur of the Dove’s Song” HWB 29
*Call to Worship:
*Prayer of Commitment to peace:
Right side: Thank you, Lord God, for giving us free access to you in prayer. Through prayer, you give us the freedom of expression without fear, because you are our Father of peace, O God, who can be compared to you? From age to age you are God and you reign in absolute peace, Yes, you are Yahweh Shalom, Eternal peace. You are also called the Prince of peace. You are peace and the source of peace, you bathe in eternal peace. And those who obtain peace incarnate your image of peace, because they are called your sons and daughters.
Confession of our sins:
Left side: And yet, God, we have not reflected this image. We have not always obtained this peace, yes, we repent of the sins we have committed against peace. We ask your forgiveness from those we have offended and harmed, those among whom we have caused discord and division. By way of repentance, we offer ourselves anew as a living sacrifice, acceptable to God to promote the divine plan of love, pardon, reconciliation and peace to every human. Give us this grace. God of mercy, give us your eyes of compassion and mercy to see the terrible ordeals of humanity: wars, terrorism, refugees, floods of immigrants, famine. Come and help us in our indifference.

*Gathering Hymn:
“Here, O Lord, Your Servants Gather” Hymnal a Worship Book #7

Scripture: Philippians 4:6-7 (Isaiah 12:2-6; Luke 1:46-55)
Introduction to Prayer Service:
Prayers for Peace:
Prayer for Justice—Jean Flinner
Prayer for the Environment—Julie Gerber
Prayer for Unity—Bruce Stauffer

“Dona Nobis Pacem” Hymnal a Worship Book #346
(in a three-part round)

“Like the Murmur of the Dove’s Song” Hymnal a Worship Book #29

Congregational Prayers:
Ending Prayer:


“For the Healing of the Nations” Hymnal a Worship Book #367

Prayers for Peace:
Prayer for World Peace—Bob Gerber
Prayer for Our Nation—JoAnne Pyle
Prayer for Our Community (guns in school)—
Jeanne Maurer
Prayer for Our Church—Gene Miller
Prayer for Individuals—Janet Maust


Peace Tree Prayers: (Everyone write a short prayer about peace on dove while music is being played.)

“Lord, Listen to Your Children Praying”—Ken Medema arr. By Jack Schrader

Offering Invitation & Prayer:

*Hymn of Response:
“Make Me a Channel of Your Peace” Sing the Journey #56
(Vs. 1, vs. 3, vs. 2, vs. 3, vs. 4—slow down at the end)
(with piano accompaniment)

*Sending Prayer:
All: Lord, God of justice and peace, help us to beat out swords into ploughshares, and our spears into pruning hooks. Guide us from doubt to faith and from death to resurrection. Transform our despair into hope and lead us from fear to confidence. May our hearts, the world and the universe be filled with your love, your peace, your pardon, and your blessing.

*Sending Hymn:
“Let there be Light, Lord God of Hosts” Hymnal a Worship Book #371


“I am a peace builder. I pledge to praise people, to give up put-downs, to seek wise people, to notice and speak up about the hurts I have caused, to right wrongs, to help other.
I will build peace in my home, at school, and in my community each day.”

*Postlude: “I’ve Got Peace Like a River”/”Standin’ in the Need of Prayer”—traditional American spiritual arr. By Mary McDonald

*Stand if you are able:

Coffee and Fellowship: A very warm welcome to all who worshiped with us today. After worship you are invited to a time of fellowship in the Gathering Place just outside the sanctuary. This followed by Sunday School for all ages. Ask an usher for the location of classes.

For our opportunities to become spiritual friends.
*Julie Gerber: Nancy Yoder is now at home and is recuperating.
Praise God for the beautiful morning and wonderful service.

THE CHURCH PRAYS FOR_____________________
*Julie Gerber: Continued prayers for Nancy Yoder as she heals from surgery.
*Bertie Showers: Sue Ausdale, Bertie’s niece from Eton had a bit of good news her breast cancer is contained and is treatable. Continued prayers for a successful treatment and healing.
*MMN: Today is Peace Sunday. Join Mennonite Mission Network in praying for and working toward A Peace that surpasses all understanding.
*Prayers for Faith and Learning-Goshen College: Pray for the Goshen College community as we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month and recognize the heritage, culture and contributions of Hispanic and Latinx people.


*Next Week’s Texts: Psalm 100:1-5;Psalm 150; Psalm 96:1-3, 11-13a; Psalm 98:1, 4-9a|
*Harbor of Hope: This month’s items are: PB & Jelly and are due on September 25th.
*September Mission Projects: Harbor of Hope items: PB & Jelly; Share-A-Christmas: underwear & Socks.
*Share-A-Christmas: This month we will be collecting underwear and socks for school age children. What a good way to share God’s love by providing new clean underwear and socks for those in need.
*MC-USA: You’re invited to contribute to the Menno Snapshots blog! Are there ways that you have participated in or witnessed the peace of God in you community? Contact if you are willing to share your reflections or recommend someone to share. Visit the blog at
*MC-USA #BringthePeace: “Every day I awake, I know, without a doubt, there is something for me to learn and something for me to do centered on bringing the peace of God.” Read reflections from Greg Battle on the Menno Snapshots blog about learning to bring the peace:

WORSHIP                              9:30-10:30_____________
Greeters:                                    Vi Yoder, Jeanne Maurer
Minister:                                    Mike Gehman
Worship Leader:                      Kristy Keim
Song Leader:                             April Shupe
Organist:                                    Margaret Cheslock
Pianist:                                        Suzanne Stauffer
Head Usher:                               Monk Yoder

THIS WEEK___________________________________
Sept. 23rd First Day of Fall
Sept. 25th Harbor of Hope items due: PB & Jelly
Sept. 25th Set up the tent
Sept. 26-28 Swiss Festival “Fritter Time”
Sept. 27th Janet Maust has a Birthday
Sept. 29th Community Hymn Sing starting at 10:00 a.m.”Tearing Down Tent” casual cloths Sunday
Sept. 29th Tearing Down the Tent

UPCOMING EVENTS__________________________
Oct. 2nd Leadership Team Meeting 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 7th Candlelighters 7:00 p.m., JoAnne Pyle
Oct. 14th Columbus Day
Oct. 14th Community Arts Council 6:00 p.m.
Oct. 21st Candlelighters 7:00 p.m., Jeanne Maurer
Oct. 23rd Harbor of Hope items due: Laundry & Cleaning Supplies
Oct. 23rd Soup-N-Salad Supper 4:30-7:00 p.m.
Oct. 25th Senior Breakfast @ Dutch Valley 9:00 a.m.
Oct. 29th Homeless Shelter Meal 6:00 p.m. Whole Church
Nov. 4th Candlelighters 7:00 p.m., Tally Maust
Nov. 5th Community Election Day Meal
Nov. 6th Leadership Team Meeting 7:00 p.m.
Nov. 11th Community Arts Council 6:00 p.m.
Nov. 18th Candlelighters 7:00 p.m., Janet Maust
Nov. 20th Harbor of Hope items: Canned Veggies & Fruit
Nov. 22nd Senior Breakfast @ Dutch Valley 9:00 a.m.
Nov. 28th Thanksgiving Day

NEXT WEEK__________________________________
Greeters:                              Gene Miller, Janet Maust
Ministers:                            Mike Gehman, Barb Debord
Worship Leader:               Bruce Stauffer
Song Leader:                       April Shupe
Head Usher:                        Monk Yoder

CHURCH LEADERSHIP________________________
Pastor: Mike Gehman:
Pastor’s Hours: Wednesday 9:30a.m.-2:30p.m.
Secretary: Tally Maust
Phone: 1-330-852-2822
Website: http//
113 W. Main St. P.O. Box 250
Sugarcreek, Ohio 44681

Chairperson: Jim Armstrong:
Office Contact: Linda Yoder:
Financial Contact: Mike Keim:
Mission Contact: Reno Stevanus:
Secretary Contact: Jo Anne Pyle: