Worship Service for April 30, 2023

April 30, 2023 – Fourth Sunday of Easter

A livestream of this service will take place on our YouTube channel on Sunday, April 30, at 11:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time. A video recording of the live stream will be available on our YouTube channel from 6:00 PM EDT on Sunday, April 30.



Call to Worship

One: God, our Shepherd, offers us abundant life.
All: God, you are with us!

One: God, our Shepherd, leads us by still waters.
All: God, restore our souls!

One: God, our Shepherd, walks with us through every dark valley.
All: God, we will not be afraid!

One: God, our Shepherd, we praise for your goodness and mercy with us every day.

Lighting of the Christ Candle

This is the Christ Candle. We light the candle to help us remember that Jesus Christ, the light of the world, is with us in every place and every time.

Opening Hymn

“Christ is alive” (Book of Praise 1997, Hymn 251). Words (1968) by English minister and poet Brian A. Wren (1936–). Music (tune: “Truro”) first published 1789 in the Psalmodia Evangelica. Words copyright © 1975, 1996 Hope Publishing Co.; used by permission of One License, license number 722141-A. Music public domain.

Prayers of Approach and Confession, & Lord’s Prayer (sins)

God of love, we come trusting that your love has the power to defeat evil in the world. Jesus shows us that your love defeats even the power of death. You are with us through the darkest valleys so that we are not afraid. We worship you with glad hearts, praising you in the name of our Risen Lord, praying with the breath of your Spirit in us. Renew our strength and courage to face whatever each day holds, so our lives will bring you honour and glory now and always.

God of love, we confess that too often we let the events around us shatter our trust in your love. When terror strikes and innocents fall, we wonder if love can defeat violence. When truth gets lost among misleading claims, we wonder if love can prevail over lies. Forgive us, God, when we lose our trust in the power of your love so soon after it raised Jesus from death’s grip.

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.

Declaration of Pardon

What will separate us from the love of Christ? Hardship? Distress? Peril or sword? No! he declared. Neither death nor life, nor things present nor things to come can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Let us rejoice that, no matter what is happening around us, God’s gracious and forgiving love will never let us go. Thanks be to God!

The Peace

One: The Peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.
All: And also with you.

Guildwood Senior Choir presents

I have decided to follow Jesus”. Indian missionary Sadhu Sundar Singh (1889–ca. 1929). Music (tune: “Assam”) traditional Indian tune. Words and music public domain.

Fun with the young at heart (children’s story)

(Practicing faith)

The Life and Work of the Church (Announcements)


The Lord’s my shepherd (Psalm 23)”. (Book of Praise 1997, Hymn 11). Words Psalm 23; paraphrase, Scottish Psalter, 1650. Music (1872; tune: “Crimond”) by Scottish amateur hymn composer Jessie Seymour Irvine (1836–1887). Harmony by Thomas Cuthbertson Leithead Pritchard (1885–1960). Descant by W. Baird Ross (1871–1950). Words, music, harmony and descant all public domain.

Scripture Readings

Psalm 23  <– these link to on-line text of the NRSV bible
John 10: 1–10

Click here for additional scripture readings from today’s lectionary. Links courtesy of the Revised Common Lectionary, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library.

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside still waters; he restores my soul. He leads me in right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord my whole life long.

John 10: 1–10

10 “Very truly, I tell you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate but climbs in by another way is a thief and a bandit. 2 The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5 They will not follow a stranger, but they will run from him because they do not know the voice of strangers.” 6 Jesus used this figure of speech with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.

7 So again Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who came before me are thieves and bandits, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9 I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved and will come in and go out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”

The scripture reading is followed by:

One: The Word of God.
People: Thanks be to God.


The sermon text is not available this week.

Musical Reflection

Saviour, like a shepherd lead us”. (Book of Praise 1997, hymn 485). Words (1836) by English hymnwriter Dorothy Ann Thrupp (1779–1847). Music (1859; tune: “Bradbury”) by American composer William Batchelder Bradbury (1816–1868). Harmony by American musician and minister V. Earle Copes (1921–2014). Words and music in the public domain. Harmony copyright © 1964 Abingdon Press; used by permission of One License, license number 722141-A.


May we present our gifts to God in response to what we have received from God?

We remind everyone that we must continue to pay our bills; in the absence of being present at Sunday worship, you may sign up for pre-authorized remittance (PAR), donate online, or drop off your offering envelope in the mailbox at the church. Do not leave a cash donation unattended in the mailbox; instead, please call the office (416.261.4037) to ensure someone will be there to receive it. The building will be checked daily for mail and phone messages. If you are not comfortable leaving an envelope, you are welcome to contact the office (once again, 416.261.4037) and someone will pick up your offering.

Dedication of our Gifts

Doxology 306

“Praise God from whom all blessings flow” (Book of Praise 1997, Hymn 306) Based on the tune “Old 100th” with words (1989) by English hymnwriter Brian A. Wren (1936–). Words copyright © 1989 Hope Publishing Co.; used by permission of One License, license number 722141-A. Music public domain.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
praise God all creatures high and low;
praise God in Jesus fully known,
Creator Word and Spirit One.

Prayer of dedication

God with a tender heart, we thank you for the care you offer to us as our Shepherd. Bless the gifts we offer so they will spread your abundant love to lives in need of caring. Bless our lives so that we may care for the world as we follow Jesus day by day. Amen.

Prayers of Thanksgiving and Hope

Wise and generous God, shepherd of our lives, we are thankful this day for all you provide to sustain us. You call our weary souls to rest when the world seems busy. You bless us with the promise of new life as pastures around us turn green, announcing another spring. You gather us around tables of friendship to draw strength from one another. Thank you for signs of your goodness and mercy we can treasure each day.

Loving and Listening God, shepherd of the world, we bring you our prayers for others, friends and enemies, neighbours and strangers alike. We pray for people who are struggling with illness, loneliness, grief or sadness: Walk with them through dark days and steep valleys.

We pray for people in countries and communities where it is not safe to live out their faith or express their views openly. Walk with them through dark days and steep valleys.

We pray for victims of discrimination and acts of hatred, and those who fear violence day by day. Walk with them through dark days and steep valleys.

We pray for journalists and advocates for justice who live under threat for telling the truth. Walk with them through dark days and steep valleys.

We pray for churches, local organizations and businesses that face difficulty reorganizing and the pressure of economic challenges. Walk with them through dark days and steep valleys.

We pray for our families, friends and for ourselves, as well as those in the news whose situations tug at our hearts. Walk with us all through dark days and steep valleys.

We offer these prayers and our unspoken concerns to you, in the name of the Risen Lord. Amen.

Closing Hymn

Softly and Tenderly” (Book of Praise 1997, Hymn 640). Words and music (1880) by American composer Will Lamartine Thompson (1847–1909). Words and music public domain.

Changing the Light

Now, it is time to change the light. The light that was in one place can now be in every place and every time going with you wherever you go.


May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ (the risen Christ), the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you always. AMEN

Choral Amen

“Go in Peace”. Words and music (1982; tune “Ocean Park”) by Barber L. Waters Kenneth E. White. Words and music copyright © 1982 Barber L. Waters Kenneth E. White; used by permission.


Copyright © 2023 Guildwood Community Presbyterian Church

Last updated 2023-04-30 20:45 – Added Guildwood Senior Choir presents and Musical Reflections info.