Worship Service for May 7, 2023

May 7, 2023 – Fifth Sunday of Easter

A livestream of this service will take place on our YouTube channel on Sunday, May 7, 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, May 7.



Call to Worship

One: God is our Rock and our Fortress.
All: In God, we find refuge and strength.

One: God’s house has many dwelling places.
All: We will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

One: Christ himself has gone to prepare a place for us.
All: For us, Jesus is the way, the truth and the life.

One: So let us worship God in Spirit and in Truth.

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

The church’s one foundation” (Book of Praise 1997 Hymn 479). Words (1866) by English Anglican priest and hymnwriter Samuel John Stone (1839–1900). Music (1864; tune: “Aurelia”) by English organist and composer Samuel Sebastian Wesley (1810–1876). Words and music in the public domain.

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

Steadfast God, you are our refuge in times of trouble our shelter when we are afraid, and our dwelling place forever. In you alone we place our trust for you set the way before in Christ Jesus and your Spirit gives us courage to follow him. And so we offer you our worship and love as the Source of life for the world, as the Son who preached the truth of grace and mercy, and the Spirit who guides us this day and always.

Steadfast God, we confess Jesus as the way, the truth and the life for us, yet we often fail to follow him, too often gone our own way, distorted the truth and led deadly lives. Forgive us for falling short of your purpose for our lives. Give us courage to follow Jesus, who continues to show us the way.

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

Do not let your hearts be troubled. Know that, in Christ, you are forgiven. Accept God’s grace and forgiveness this day, and extend it to others for Jesus’ sake.

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

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

(Practicing faith)

The Life and Work of the Church (Announcements)

We welcome Alyssa Esparaz and Maggie Choy from Compassion Canada

Alyssa Esparaz (Content and Public Relations Manager), Maggie Choy (Regional Relationship Manager GTA), with Compassion Canada.


“When the poor ones” (Book of Praise 1997, Hymn 762). Original Spanish text and music (1973; tune: “El Camino”) by Spanish composer Miguel Manzano Alonso (1934–) and Spanish poet and journalist Jose Antonio Olivar (1939–2019). English translation (1989) by American minister and missionary George Lockwood (1946–). Arrangement by Columbian theologian and musician Alvin Schutmaat (1921–1988). Words and music copyright © 1973 J.A. Olivar, Miguel Manazano, San Pablo International— SSP, US agent OCP Publications; used by permission of One License, license number 722141-A. Translation copyright © 1989 The United Methodist Publishing House; used by permission of One License, license number 722141-A.

Scripture Readings

Matthew 11: 2–5  <– this links to on-line text of the New Living Translation bible

Matthew 25: 31–40  <– this links to on-line text of the NRSV bible

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

Matthew 11: 2–5, New Living Translation

2 John the Baptist, who was in prison, heard about all the things the Messiah was doing. So he sent his disciples to ask Jesus, 3 “Are you the Messiah we’ve been expecting, or should we keep looking for someone else?”

4 Jesus told them, “Go back to John and tell him what you have heard and seen— 5 the blind see, the lame walk, those with leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor.”

Matthew 25: 31–40, NRSV

31 When the Son of Man comes in his glory and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33 and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. 34 Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38 And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you or naked and gave you clothing? 39 And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ 40 And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did it to me.’

The scripture reading is followed by:

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

Message by Alyssa Esparaz from Compassion Canada

Musical Reflection


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

Generous God, we bless you for life renewed through Christ’s love and through springtime growth in fields and gardens. Use the gifts we offer to bring hope and renewal to the world you love in the name of Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord. Amen.

Prayers of Thanksgiving and Hope

Holy One, God with us, We give you thanks for the promises Jesus gave to all his followers, that in him we see your face. He has shown us the face of your mercy and compassion so we thank you for understanding us better than we know ourselves. He has shown us the face of your peace and justice so we thank you for calling us to make a difference in the world for his sake.

Holy One, In Christ, you show us the Way that leads through paths of service. We pray for those who feel lost or alone, those who live with anxiety or doubt their own value, and all who cannot imagine a purpose for themselves.

God of the Way, lead those who are struggling to find the hope you offer through the assurance of your love.

Holy One, In Christ, you show us the Truth that is revealed costly love. In these days when lies are easily disguised, we pray for those who have put their faith in false hope and flimsy promises, those deceived by empty promises from the power hungry, and any misled by conspiracy theories that circulate each day.

God of the Truth, reveal the shallowness of things that distract or mislead us and give us courage to stand for truth, even when it is unpopular.

Holy One, In Christ, you show us the Life that overcomes death through your resurrecting power. We pray for those facing illness or grief, any who live with deep sadness, depression or despair, and those whose lives are diminished by discrimination in action or attitude.

God of Life, Support all those who are suffering and make your justice known in our land.

Holy One, Challenge us to find renewed purpose in following in the footsteps of Christ so that in our living and loving, your kingdom of justice and love is revealed. Amen.

Closing Hymn

Make me a Channel of Your Peace” (Book of Praise 1997, Hymn 740). Words and music (1967; tune: “Make Me a Channel”) by South-African songwriter Sebastian Temple (1928–1997). Words and music copyright © 1967 OCP Publications; used by permission of One License, license number 722141-A.

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 2023-05-05 21:45 – First version.