The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington on Aug. 28, 1963. © Hulton Archive/Getty Images

2nd Sunday of Epiphany
Digital Service





All may make the sign of the cross, the sign marked at baptism, as the presiding minister begins.

Blessed be the holy Trinity, ☩ one God, who was in the beginning, who makes a dwelling among us, who covers us with justice and mercy. Amen.

Let us confess our sin in the presence of God and of one another.

Silence is kept for reflection.

God of goodness and lovingkindness, we confess that we have sinned against you and our neighbors. We have turned away from your invitation to new life. We have turned away from the lowly and downtrodden. In your abundant mercy, forgive us our sins, those we know and those known only to you, for the sake of the one who came to live among us, Jesus Christ, our Savior. Amen.

Hear the good news of peace and salvation! God forgives us all our sins, not through our own work, but through ☩ Jesus Christ, made known to all people. With all who come to the manger, rejoice in this amazing gift of grace. Amen.


Break Every Chain

There is power in the name of Jesus (x3)
To break every chain, break every chain, break every chain (x2)
There is power in the name of Jesus (x3)
To break every chain, break every chain, break every chain (x2)
There’s an army rising up (x3)
To break every chain, break every chain, break every chain (x2)
There’s an army rising up (x3)
To break every chain, break every chain, break every chain (x2)
I hear the chains falling (x6)


The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. And also with you.


Let us pray. Thanks be to you, Lord Jesus Christ, most merciful redeemer, for the countless blessings and benefits you give. May we know you more clearly, love you more dearly, and follow you more nearly, day by day praising you, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


FIRST READING 1 Samuel 3:1-20 Kristen McCordick

A reading from First Samuel.

1Now the boy Samuel was ministering to the Lord under Eli. The word of the Lord was rare in those days; visions were not widespread.

2At that time Eli, whose eyesight had begun to grow dim so that he could not see, was lying down in his room; 3the lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the Lord, where the ark of God was. 4Then the Lord called, “Samuel! Samuel!” and he said, “Here I am!” 5and ran to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” So he went and lay down. 6The Lord called again, “Samuel!” Samuel got up and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” 7Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord, and the word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him. 8The Lord called Samuel again, a third time. And he got up and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” Then Eli perceived that the Lord was calling the boy. 9Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and if he calls you, you shall say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’ ” So Samuel went and lay down in his place.

10Now the Lord came and stood there, calling as before, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” 11Then the Lord said to Samuel, “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make both ears of anyone who hears of it tingle. 12On that day I will fulfill against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. 13For I have told him that I am about to punish his house forever, for the iniquity that he knew, because his sons were blaspheming God, and he did not restrain them. 14Therefore I swear to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be expiated by sacrifice or offering forever.”

15Samuel lay there until morning; then he opened the doors of the house of the Lord. Samuel was afraid to tell the vision to Eli. 16But Eli called Samuel and said, “Samuel, my son.” He said, “Here I am.” 17Eli said, “What was it that he told you? Do not hide it from me. May God do so to you and more also, if you hide anything from me of all that he told you.” 18So Samuel told him everything and hid nothing from him. Then he said, “It is the Lord; let him do what seems good to him.”

19As Samuel grew up, the Lord was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground. 20And all Israel from Dan to Beer-sheba knew that Samuel was a trustworthy prophet of the Lord.

Word of God, word of life. Thanks be to God.

SECOND Reading Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18 Rich Adduci

A reading from Psalms.

1Lord, you have searched me out;
O Lord, you have known me.
2You know my sitting down and my rising up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
3You trace my journeys and my resting-places
and are acquainted with all my ways.
4Indeed, there is not a word on my lips,
but you, O Lord, know it altogether.
5You encompass me, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is so high that I cannot attain to it.
13For you yourself created my inmost parts;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14I will thank you because I am marvelously made;
your works are wonderful, and I know it well.
15My body was not hidden from you,
while I was being made in secret and woven in the depths of the earth.
16Your eyes beheld my limbs, yet unfinished in the womb; all of them were written in your book;
my days were fashioned before they came to be.
17How deep I find your thoughts, O God!
How great is the sum of them!
18If I were to count them, they would be more in number than the sand;
to count them all, my life span would need to be like yours.

Word of God, word of life. Thanks be to God.


GOSPEL John 1:35-51

The Holy Gospel according to John. Glory to you, O Lord.

35The next day John again was standing with two of his disciples, 36and as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, “Look, here is the Lamb of God!”

37The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. 38When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” 39He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon. 40One of the two who heard John speak and followed him was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41He first found his brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated Anointed). 42He brought Simon to Jesus, who looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You are to be called Cephas” (which is translated Peter).

43The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” 44Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. 45Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” 46Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” 47When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said of him, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” 48Nathanael asked him, “Where did you get to know me?” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” 49Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” 50Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” 51And he said to him, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”

The Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, O Christ.

SERMON Pastor Jeff


Here I Am, Lord
verses 1 & 2

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As this week we commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr., let us offer our prayers to God, responding to each with the words, “Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.”

A brief silence.

We remember the conviction of Martin Luther King Jr. that “freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” Therefore let us pray for courage and determination by those who are oppressed.
Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We remember Martin’s warning that “a negative peace which is the absence of tension” is less than “a positive peace which is the presence of justice.” Therefore, let us pray that those who work for peace in our world may cry out first for justice.
Lord in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We remember Martin’s insight that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality tide in a single garment of destiny. Whatever effects one directly affects all indirectly.” Therefore, let us pray that we may see nothing in isolation, but may know ourselves bound to one another and to all people under heaven.
Lord in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We remember Martin’s lament that “the contemporary church is often a weak, ineffectual voice with an uncertain sound. Far from being disturbed by the presence of the church, the power structure of the average community is consoled by the church’s silent and often vocal sanction of things as they are.” Therefore, let us pray that neither this congregation nor any congregation of Christ’s people may be silent in the face of wrong, but that we may be disturbers of the status quo when that is God’s call to us.
Lord in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We remember the prayer behind Martin’s favorite hymn, that God “take my hand, lead me on, let me stand,” though we may be “tired, weak, and worn.” Therefore, let us pray for all in need of God’s healing hands, especially for the countless suffering from the coronavirus, for Arthur, Wendy, Karen, Maria, Susan, Phyllis, Kathy, Jen, Jeanne, Beth, Tarah, Layla, Vila, Brian, Cathy, Jimmy, all those affected by addiction, all those affected by mental illness all military personnel and first responders. Uphold them with your love.
Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We remember Martin’s vision that “when we let freedom ring…we will be able to speed up that day when all God’s children will be able to join hands and sing that old spiritual: free at last free at last thank God almighty, we are free at last!” Therefore let us pray, that we may be brought one day into heavenly communion with Martin and all the saints who have gone before, on that great day of liberation into everlasting life.
Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We remember Martin’s hope that “dark clouds of racial prejudice will soon pass away, and the deep fog of misunderstanding will be lifted from our fear-drenched communities, and in some not-so-distant tomorrow, the radiant stars of love and brotherhood will shine over our great nation with all their scintillating beauty.” Therefore, in faith, we commend ourselves and our work for justice to the goodness of almighty God, trusting in the goodness and mercy shown to us through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.

OFFERING INVITATION – Letter from a Birmingham Jail 


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, forever and ever. Amen.


Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and forever. Amen.



SENDING CHARGE – Joe Davis poem 


You are God’s Church,
founded on God’s Word,
challenged to do more than sing and pray,
challenged to go out and work
as though God has chosen
to make us the very answers
to the prayers that we pray.
Let us go out
walking together
singing together
and living together
until the day when we will rejoice
in one common band of humanity
in the reign of God
who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.


Guide My Feet
verses 1 – 3

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Go in peace, guided by the light of Christ. Thanks be to God.


We Shall Overcome

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From Sundays and © 2021 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #27028. New Revised Standard Version Bible, ©1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. CCLI#1313879. OneLicense # A-716488.