In-person worship to resume March 7

February 25, 2021 by  
Filed under News & Announcements, What's happening

Great news! COVID-19 cases continue to decline in the St. Louis area and across the country. While there is still a need for great caution, the Ivy Chapel Council and Board of Deacons have determined the time is right to resume in-person worship.

You must make a reservation to attend Ivy Chapel’s in-person worship. We will continue to offer virtual worship for those who cannot attend.

To make your reservation, please email Gail Thoele.

An important note: Things will be a little different. Here’s what to expect.

  1. Virtual services will continue.
  2. Masks MUST be worn inside the building; masks will be provided, if needed.
  3. Hand sanitizer will be provided in several areas.
  4. Sign-in is required for contact tracing.
  5. White dry erase boards will give directions to those entering the sanctuary.
  6. The floor will be marked for 6’ social distancing.
  7. Ushers will seat each individual or family group (from front to back.)
  8. Children will be seated and should remain with their family throughout the entire worship service. (There will be no Sunday School or nursery.)
  9. Communion will not be served at this time.
  10. There will be no congregational singing at this time.
  11. Ushers will dismiss the congregation from the pews after the service (from back to front.)
  12. Worshipers will leave the sanctuary by the outside door with safe social distancing.
  13. There will be no gathering in Fellowship Hall before or after services.
  14. Those who are sick, at risk or don’t feel safe are requested to stay at home and worship virtually.
  15. Announcements and prayer requests should be emailed to Pastor Dan at his direct email.
  16. At the present time, there will be no use of fluorescent lights or sound system in the sanctuary, because these interfere with the sound quality of our live stream worship service.
  17. Offering Gifts: A stationary offering plate will be located at the back of the sanctuary for people to offer a gift in person. [Anyone who prefers continuing to give church offering gifts as they have been doing up to now during the pandemic is welcome to continue.] Thank you for giving to support Ivy Chapel UCC ministries.

Questions? Feel free to reach out to Gail Thoele.

Feb. 21 Livestream – Jesus in the Wilderness

February 21, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, News & Announcements

Thank you for joining us for the First Sunday of Lent. Today we also have a special message and mission moment from Kathy Poss of the Baby Blue Pantry.

Prelude – Anna DiVesta

Responsive Call to Worship – Pastor Dan
One: We worship Living God.
All: This week, we have entered into a new season.
One: Our 40-day journey to Christ’s Resurrection Day has begun.
All: As we navigate this wilderness, Gracious God is our compass.
One: This day of worship is an oasis in the desert.
All: Let us draw strength from the love of God our Savior.

Hymn – I Need Thee Every Hour – #169

  1. I need Thee every hour, Most gracious Lord;
    No tender voice like Thine Can peace afford.

REFRAIN
I need Thee, O I need Thee; Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior, I come to Thee.

  1. I need Thee every hour, Stay Thou near by;
    Temptations lose their pow’r When Thou art nigh.

REFRAIN

  1. I need Thee every hour In joy or pain;
    Come quickly and abide Or life is vain.

REFRAIN

  1. I need Thee every hour, Most Holy One;
    O make me Thin indeed, Thou blessed Son!

REFRAIN

Prayer of Invocation – Pastor Dan
One: Let us pray.
All: God of Quiet Strength, we cannot resist evil completely by ourselves. Earthly temptations are everywhere. How do we deal with them? We need you, God. You are always present; living among us; living within us. We are thankful to be in your care.
God of Quiet Strength, help us to be still before you – – leaving behind our every distress. In the stillness and in the beauty of this morning, may we be reminded that you are God. You patiently continue inviting us to follow you. So then, Christ Jesus; come quietly now and bless us with the faith to accept your gift of life eternal. Amen.

Response – You Are My Hiding Place – #53

You are my hiding place, You always fill my heart with songs of deliverance
whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You.
I will trust in You; Let the weak say, “I am strong in the strength of the Lord.”

You are my hiding place, You always fill my heart with songs of deliverance
whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You.

Mission Moment – Baby Blue Pantry – Kathy Poss

God’s Word – Psalm 25:1-10 – Pastor Dan

Children’s Message – Linda Lowry

Special Music – “Narrow Road”

God’s Word – Mark 1:9-15 – Pastor Dan

Sermon – Pastor Dan

Prayers of God’s Church concluding with the Lord’s Prayer – Pastor Dan

Hymn – I Want Jesus to Walk with Me – #480

  1. I want Jesus to walk with me; I want Jesus to walk with me;
    All along my pilgrim journey, Lord, I want Jesus to walk with me.
  2. In my trials, Lord, walk with me; In my trials, Lord, walk with me;
    When my heart is almost breaking, Lord, I want Jesus to walk with me.
  3. When I’m in trouble, Lord, walk with me; When I’m in trouble, Lord, walk with me;
    When my head is bowed in sorrow, Lord, I want Jesus to walk with me.

Benediction – Pastor Dan

Postlude – Anna DiVesta

Lenten Devotional Packets

February 17, 2021 by  
Filed under News & Announcements, What's happening

We are will working hard to create a plan to return to worship in person, hopefully in the next couple of weeks. Please watch this space for more information.

In the meantime, we are entering into the most important six weeks in the Christian faith, the season of lent. The Ivy Chapel board of deacons has assembled devotional packets for each member household. The packets are on the table in the narthex.

If you are unable to make it to church, please reach out to a member of the board.

Feb. 17 Livestream – Ash Wednesday

February 17, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, News & Announcements

Join us as we begin the Lenten journey together.

Prelude – Anna DiVesta

Call to Worship and Prayer of Invocation – Pastor Dan
One: Turn away from evil; and return to your God.
All: God is gracious and merciful;
One: God is slow to anger,
All: And abounding in steadfast love.
One: “Now,” says the Holy One, “return to me with all your heart.”
All: Be still; and know that I am God.
One: Let us pray.
All: God of wisdom and grace; you are the reservoir from whom all people receive life.
We come this night seeking to return to you, O God.
Bless this Ash Wednesday worship; we pray, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Hymn – Jesus, I Come – #369

Responsive Call to Confession – Pastor Dan
One: Holy God, Maker of all;
All: Jesus Christ, Savior of all;
One: Holy Spirit, breath of life;
All: Have mercy on us. Let us confess our sins.

Prayer of Confession – Pastor Dan
One: Let us pray.
All: God of wisdom and grace; you are acquainted with all our ways.
As we take this first step on a crucial Lenten spiritual journey, we turn to you in prayer. Come, O Holy Spirit; in your cleansing power, breathe on us and fill us with life anew. God of forgiveness and grace, we confess that we have sinned in thought, word, and action. We admit that we have failed to live by your Gospel of joy and lovingkindness. Forgive us, we pray.
Lead us to honor you, Jesus, by walking in your way of goodness and compassion. We call on you now, Dear Savior, asking for these blessings:
mend us, fill us,
send us, use us.
This we pray in your holy name, Christ Jesus. Amen.

Silence

Assurance of Pardon – Pastor Dan
We are tempted often to hold on to the past.
But God calls us to leave it behind.

By the grace of our Risen Savior, the past is dead and gone.
The future is open! Let us live in the freedom which God offers.

Through our Savior Jesus Christ, we are forgiven. Thanks be to God! Amen!

Response – Change My Heart, O God – worship booklet, p. 33

Scripture Reading – Joel 2:1-5, 10, 12-13 – Pastor Dan

The Imposition of Ashes – Pastor Dan

Special Music– The Old Rugged Cross – Anna DiVesta and Aaron DiVesta

Scripture Reading – Psalm 51:1-4, 6-12 – Pastor Dan

The Lord’s Prayer (debts… debtors) – Pastor Dan

Hymn – More Love to Thee – #428

Benediction – Pastor Dan

Postlude – Anna DiVesta

Feb. 14 Livestream – Transfiguration

February 13, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, News & Announcements

Join us for our Transfiguration Sunday worship.

Here is this week’s order for worship:

Prelude – Anna DiVesta

Responsive Call to Worship – Pastor Dan Wilson
One: Blessed is the one whose help is the God of Jacob;
whose hope is in God, the Maker of heaven and earth!
All: God lifts up those who are bowed down.
One: God upholds the oppressed and gives food to the hungry.
All: God opens the ears of the deaf and gives sight to the blind.
One: God watches over foreigners.
All: God sets prisoners free!
One: God remains faithful forever!
All: Let us praise the Maker of heaven and earth!

Prayer of Invocation – Pastor Dan
One: Let us pray.
All: Powerful God, your love poured out in Jesus Christ provides us with strength which the world cannot offer. Through your blessing, souls find rest. Through the Sabbath, the foundations of human lives are rebuilt.
God of all; stir within us. Shatter our narrow understandings of who you are. By your grace and power, fill us with courage to serve as your witnesses, we pray. Shape us into your messengers of hope and good news.
God of valleys and of mountaintops; you reveal what true mightiness is!
Fill the lives of all your children with joy and promise. Amen.

Hymn – Day By Day – #486

  1. Day by day and with each passing moment, Strength I find to meet my trials here;
    Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment, I’ve no causer for worry or for fear.
    He whose heart is kind beyond all measure Give unto each day what He deems best-
    Lovingly, its part of pain and pleasure, Mingling toil with peace and rest.
  2. Every day the Lord Himself is near me With a special mercy for each hour;
    All my cares He fain would bear, and cheer me,
    He whose name is Counsellor and Pow’r.
    The protection of HIs child and treasure Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
    “As your days, your strength shall be in measure,” This the pledge to me He made.
  3. Help me then in every tribulation So to trust Thy promises, O Lord,
    That I lose not faith’s sweet consolation Offered me within Thy holy Word.
    Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting, E’er to take, as from a father’s hand,
    One by one, the days, the moments fleeting, Till I reach the promised land. Children’s Message – Sarah Heend Scripture Reading – Micah 4 – Pastor Dan Special Music – Nothing Left to Say Scripture Reading – Mark 9:2-9 – Pastor Dan

Sermon –Pastor Dan

Prayers of God’s Church concluding with the Lord’s Prayer – Pastor Dan

Hymn – God of the Ages – #51

  1. God of the ages, HIstory’s Maker, Planning our pathway, Holding us fast,
    Shaping in mercy All that concerns us; Father, we praise You, Lord of the past.
  2. God of this morning, Gladly Your children Worship before You,
    Trustingly bow; Teach us to know You Always among us,
    Quietly sov’reign Lord of our now.
  3. God of tomorrow, Strong Overcomer, Princes of darkness Own Your command;
    What then can harm us? We are Your people,
    Now and forever Kept by Your hand.
  4. Lord of past ages, Lord of this morning, Lord of the future, Help us, we pray.
    Teach us to trust You, Love and obey You, Benediction – Pastor Dan Postlude – Anna DiVesta

The Souper Bowl of Caring

February 7, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, News & Announcements, What's happening

This year is different for many reasons. But, one thing that is the same: the need to tackle hunger with the Souper Bowl of Caring. This year, the need for hunger relief in our country has grown exponentially. Our local food charities need our help!

You can watch the Feb. 7 worship service here.

While we can’t place our donations in soup pots after worship as is our tradition, there are several ways to help those in need this year. You can send donations to Ivy’s financial secretary, Peter LaSalle. Please make checks out to Ivy Chapel and write Souper Bowl of Caring on the memo line.

Or donate directly to the food pantries most in need. Souper Bowl of Caring started their Tackle Hunger Map to respond to this urgent need. The Tackle Hunger Map allows you to see where local food charities are and what they need to do their important work. You can donate right through the map and be a part of the tradition of using the energy of the Big Game to tackle hunger.

What if everyone watching the Big Game gave just one dollar to local charities? What if each person gave what they could to local charities? We would have a lot less food insecurity in our country!

Thank you for helping make a collective impact on hunger!

Feb. 7 Livestream – Source of Strength

February 7, 2021 by  
Filed under News & Announcements

As we all look for strength and peace in this world, today pause with us and remember the light in the darkness, the one true source of strength, God.

As we settle down this afternoon to watch the “big game” keep in mind that this year has been a struggle for many. Donate to the annual Souper Bowl of Caring, and help people right here in our area get the food they need. You can send donations to Ivy’s financial secretary, Peter LaSalle, or use the Souper Bowl’s Tackle Hunger Map to find a food pantry near you.

Here’s this week’s order for worship:
Prelude – Anna DiVesta

Responsive Call to Worship – Pastor Dan Wilson
One: Let your light shine, children of God!
All: God is alive within each one of us!
One: No eye has seen,
All: No ear has heard,
One: No human imagination has envisioned,
All: What God has prepared for those who love God.

Prayer of Invocation – Pastor Dan
One: Let us pray.
All: Amazing God, you are the Creator of all that is! We give you thanks for your sacred gift of life. During this time of worship, help us to accept more fully your gifts of peace and rest which you long for each soul to receive. By your mercy, lead us to continue growing in our relationship with you, God. You are our Source of Strength.
Come, Holy Spirit; wash over us. Come as Light in our darkness. Come as Strength to our weakness. We pray in your blessed name, Christ Jesus.
Fill us with your Spirit now as we worship you. Amen.

Hymn – “Great Is the Lord” – #7

REFRAIN
Great is the Lord, He is holy and just; By His power we trust in His love.
Great is the Lord, He is faithful and true; By His mercy He proves He is love.

  1. Great is the Lord and worthy of glory! Great is the Lord and worthy of praise.
    Great is the Lord; now lift up your voice, now lift up your voice.
    Great is the Lord! Great is the Lord!

REFRAIN

Great are You, Lord, and worthy of glory! Great are You, Lord, and worthy of praise.
Great are You, Lord; I lift up my voice, I lift umps voice;
Great are You Lord! Great are You Lord!

Children’s Message – Jo Ann Moody

Scripture Reading – Psalm 147 – Pastor Dan

Special Music – “Total Praise”

Scripture Reading – Mark 1:29-39 – Pastor Dan

Sermon – Pastor Dan

Celebrating the Sacrament of Holy Communion – Pastor Dan
Responsive Invitation
One: God be with you.
All: And also with you.
One: Lift up your hearts!
All: We life them up to God!
One: Let us give thanks to God Most High.
All: It is right to give God thanks and praise! Sharing the Bread and the Cup Prayers of God’s Church concluding with the Lord’s Prayer – Pastor Dan

Hymn – “Through It All” – #304

I’ve had many tears and sorrows, I’ve had questions for tomorrow,
There’ve been times I didn’t know right from wrong;
But in every situations God gave blessed consolation
That my trials come to only make me strong.

REFRAIN
Through it all, Through it all, I’ve learned to trust in Jesus, I’ve learned to trust in God;
Through it all, Through it all, I’ve learned to depend upon His Word.

  1. I’ve been to lots of places, And I’ve seen a lot of faces,
    There’ve been times I felt so all alone;
    But in my lonely hours, Yes, those precious lonely hours,
    Jesus let me know that I was His own.

REFRAIN

  1. I thank God for the mountains, And I thank Him for the valleys,
    I thank Him for the storms He brought me through;
    For if I’d never had a problem, I wouldn’t know that He could solve them,
    I’d never know what faith in God could do.

REFRAIN

Benediction – Pastor Dan

Postlude – Anna DiVesta

Praying for the return to in-person worship

January 31, 2021 by  
Filed under News & Announcements, What's happening

Like all of you, we’re looking forward to the day when we can worship together in person again. The Ivy Chapel Board of Deacons – together with our virtual worship team – have been working hard to create a plan to make this all possible.

We’re closely watching case numbers, hospitalizations and vaccination rates so we can do what is right for our members and the community at large.

In addition to the health concerns, there are technical and logistical hurdles to overcome. We are in the process of upgrading the sound system so we can continue to provide a livestream of the worship even once we have people back in the sanctuary.

We’re almost there, with just a few more components to acquire and install. From there, we’ll be testing the new set up. You will likely notice significant changes to the online experience, but we will keep you updated.

Please note that even once we are back in person, the worship experience will be very different. We will strictly enforce the mask requirements and social distancing. We won’t have coffee hour or children in the sanctuary, and will not have congregational singing.

If you need more information, please contact us or reach out to someone from the Board of Deacons or the Ivy Chapel council.

Thank you for your patience and for sticking with us.

Jan. 31 Livestream – Power

January 31, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, News & Announcements

As we pray for the health and safety of our world, we reflect on the peace we can find through God, and how His leadership will show us the way forward.

The Ivy Chapel Board of Deacons, working with the virtual worship team, is continuing to watch case numbers, hospitalizations and vaccination rates across our area to create a strategy for returning to in-person worship. We hope to make an announcement soon with more details.

Here’s this week’s order for worship:

Prelude – Anna DiVesta

Responsive Call to Worship – Pastor Dan Wilson
One: Come to Christ, the Living One,
All: Rejected by the world, but in God’s sight chosen and precious.
One: The Messiah that God promised has arrived!
All: Be glad, and celebrate!
One: New life is rising among us!
All: We rejoice at the miraculous ways God brings creation alive!
One: Come! And hear God’s Word for our day.
All: How majestic is God’s name in all the earth!

Prayer of Invocation – Pastor Dan
One: Let us pray.
All: God of Power and Might; your wisdom is beyond ours. Your patience surpasses ours. Your compassion exceeds ours. We continue finding ourselves amazed by you, Living God. This morning, we join together to praise you.
Christ Jesus, your life, death and resurrection are our model for faithful discipleship. Strengthen us, we pray, as we seek to walk in your ways: living wisely, patiently, and compassionately. Fill us, we pray, with your Spirit of unselfishness and love. Amen.

Hymn – “Holy, Holy, Holy” – #2

Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!
Early in the morning our song shall rise to Thee;
Holy, holy, holy! merciful and might!
God in three persons, blessed Trinity!

Holy, holy, holy! all the saints adore Thee,
Casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea;
Cherubim and seraphim falling down before Thee,
Which wert and art, and evermore shalt be.

Holy, holy, holy! though the darkness hide Thee,
Though the eye of sinful man Thy glory may not see,
Only Thou art holy; there is none beside Thee,
Perfect in pow’r, in love, and purity.

Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!
All Thy works shall praise Thy name, in earth and sky, and sea;
Holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty!
God in three persons, blessed Trinity!

Children’s Message – Anna DiVesta Scripture Reading – Psalm – Pastor Dan

Special Music – “All Hail King Jesus with Majesty”

Scripture Reading – Mark 1:21-28 – Pastor Dan

Sermon – Pastor Dan

Prayers of God’s Church concluding with the Lord’s Prayer – Pastor Dan

Hymn – “How Majestic Is Your Name” – #9

O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth.
O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth.

O Lord, we praise Your name. O Lord, we magnify Your name,
Prince of peace, Mighty God’ O Lord God Almighty.

Benediction – Pastor Dan

Postlude – Anna DiVesta

Jan. 24 Livestream – Follow Me

January 24, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, News & Announcements

The warmest of greetings from Ivy Chapel United Church of Christ. Thank you for worshipping with us. We continue to pray for the health and safety of our world, and for brighter days ahead for all.

Do you want to know more about Ivy Chapel or do you have a question about our stream services? Get in touch with us.

Here’s this week’s order for worship:

Third Sunday after Epiphany
“Follow Me”

Prelude – Anna DiVesta

Responsive Call to Worship – Pastor Dan Wilson
One: For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from God.
All: God only is my rock and my salvation. I shall not be shaken.
One: Pour out your hearts before God. Trust in God at all times.
All: Our trust is in God, Maker of heaven and earth!

Prayer of Invocation – Pastor Dan
One: Let us pray.
All: God of all times and places, may we receive your message now. Sometimes we do not like what we hear, but we know we need to listen. Your message is true and universal, although we would like to make distinctions that favor us and our friends. You call us out of our comfort zones to live courageously and to try new things. Rejoice; welcome; forgive; heal; love. These are acts of faith that you want to see us put into practice. You command us to reach out to people with whom we seem to have little in common.
Still-Speaking God, you call us to accompany you on a pathway – your sacred path of living grace. You inspire us, Jesus! Help us to absorb what you are saying and to respond to what you are asking. Then we will follow you by carrying what we have received from you to the places you want us to go, to the people you desire to reach. Amen.

Hymn      “You Have Come Down to the Lakeshore” worship booklet, p. 101

  1. You have come down to the lakeshore seeking neither the wise nor the wealthy,
    But only asking for me to follow.

REFRAIN
O Jesus, you have looked into my eyes; kindly smiling, you’ve called out my name.
On the sand I have abandoned my small boat; now with you I will seek other seas.

  1. You know full well my possessions. neither treasure nor weapons for conquest,
    Just these my fishnets and will for working.

REFRAIN

  1. You need hands, my exhaustion, working love for the rest of the weary
    A love that’s willing to go on loving.

REFRAIN

  1. You who have fished other waters; you, the longing of souls that are yearning;
    As loving Friend, you have come to call me.

REFRAIN

Children’s Message – Sue Wilson

Scripture Reading – Psalm 62:5-12 – Pastor Dan

Special Music – “Come, Follow Me”

Scripture Reading – Mark 1:14-20 – Pastor Dan

Sermon – Pastor Dan

Prayers of God’s Church concluding with the Lord’s Prayer – Pastor Dan

Hymn – “Spirit” – pp. 82-83, worship booklet

REFRAIN
Spirit, Spirit of gentleness, blow through the wilderness, calling and free,
Spirit, Spirit of restlessness, stir me from placidness, wind, wind on the sea.

  1. You move on the waters, you called to the deep,
    Then you coaxed up the mountains from the valleys of sleep,
    and over the eons you called to each thing,
    “Awake from your slumbers and rise on your wings.”

REFRAIN

  1. You swept through the desert, you stung with the sand,
    and you gifted your people with a law and a land,
    When they were confounded with idols and lies,
    then you spoke through your prophets to open their eyes.

REFRAIN

  1. You sang in a stable, you cried from a hill,
    then you whispered in silence when the whole world was still,
    and down in the city you called once again
    when you blew through your people on the rush of the wind.

REFRAIN

  1. You call from tomorrow, you break ancient schemes,
    from the bondage of sorrow the captives dream dreams;
    our women see visions, our men clear their eyes.
    With bold new decisions your people arise.

Benediction – Pastor Dan

Postlude – Anna DiVesta

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