Remembering the Wisdom of our Westport Presbyterian Fathers

Remembering the Wisdom of our Westport Presbyterian Fathers

June 16, 2024

(Video will be posted LIVE on the church’s FB page at 11am and then cross-posted here.  If the video doesn’t load properly here, you should be able to click on the Watch on Facebook link and watch as a guest, even if you don’t have Facebook)

WORDS OF WELCOME                                                                             Pastor Susan Wesley Hartley
PRELUDE:   Sonata in D Major for piano, 4 hands, KV 381: Allegro                                        Mozart
Michael Dolman & Emily Davidson, pianists
OPENING SCRIPTURE:   Mark 4: 26-34                                                               Drew Irwin, Liturgist
OPENING HYMN   For the Fruit of All Creation   GTG#36
RESPONSIVE CALL TO WORSHIP (Based on Ezekiel 17: 22-24):

Leader:     God takes a sprig from the lofty top of a cedar and plants it on a high mountain.
People:    In order that it may produce boughs and bear fruit and become a noble cedar.
Leader:     Under it every kind of bird will live; in the shade of its branches will nest winged creatures of every kind.
People:    God welcomes.  God loves.  God provides. 

CONGREGATIONAL RESPONSE:  Glory Be to the Father   GTG#581

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be.
World without end, Amen.  Amen.


Leader:     God gathers and prepares us for worship. Let us confess the sins that detract us and distract us from God’s path. 


Holy God, you seek to be a blessing to all people, yet often we separate ourselves from you and your intended path. Instead, we choose sides and pit “us” against “them.” Forgive our divisiveness. Forgive our exclusion. Forgive the ways we fail to seek, and share your creation’s abundance. Help us build the Beloved Community you desire for us, where all your children may live in peace, love and mercy. Amen.


Christ has set us free from the attitudes and circumstances that bind us. Let us claim God’s forgiveness, and respond with love with the help of Holy Spirit. Amen.

SUNG RESPONSE: Halle, Halle, Hallelujah!   GTG#591

Pastor:      The grace, peace, love and joy of Jesus Christ be with you.
People:    And also with you.
Pastor:      Let us share the peace of Christ with one another.


Prepare our hearts and minds for the hearing of your Word, Holy God. Open us to your truth. Humble us to your way.  Amen.

SCRIPTURE READING:   2 Corinthians 5: 6-9, 14-21
RESPONSIVE READING FROM THE BELHAR CONFESSION (written in South Africa approved in 2016 for the PCUSA Book of Confessions):

Leader:     We believe:
People:     that God has entrused the church with the message of reconciliation in and through Jesus Christ; that the church is called to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world, that the church is called blessed because it is a peacemaker, that the church is witness both by word and by deed to the new heaven and the new earth in which righteousness dwells.
Leader:     that God’s lifegiving Word and Spirit has conquered the powers of sin and death, and therefore also of irreconciliation and hatred, bitterness and enmity, that God’s lifegiving Word and Spirit will enable the church to live in a new obedience whiceh can open new possibilities of life for society and the world;
People:    that the credibility of this message is seriously affected and its beneficial work obstructed when it is proclaimed in a land which professes to be Christian, but in which the enforced separation of people on a racial basis promotes and perpetuates alienation, hatred and enmity;
Pastor:      that any teaching which attempts to legitimate such forced separation by appeal to the gospel, and is not prepared to venture on the road of obedience and reconciliation, but rather, out of prejudice, fear, selfishness and unbelief, denies in advance the reconciling power of the gospel, must be considered ideology and false doctrine. 

CONGREGATIONAL HYMN:  Faith of Our Fathers!    Insert from The Hymnbook, Red #348

MESSAGE:  Remembering the Wisdom of our Westport Presbyterian Fathers

Message in the Wake of the tragedy of the Church Burning, January 1, 2012
Preached by Rev. Scott Myers, quoting Rev. Howard Thurman

CONGREGATIONAL HYMN:   God of the Fertile Fields   GTG#714
SUNG PREPARATION FOR PRAYER:  Come, Bring Your Burdens to God   GTG#851
THE LORD’S PRAYER (Our Creator, who art in heaven…)
INVITATION TO GIVE to support God’s ministry in and through us, and a special opportunity to support the sabbatical of Rev. Eric Garbison this Sept. & Oct.
                 Offering link

CHORAL OFFERTORY ANTHEM:   King of Glory, King of Peace                         Mark Schweizer

O God, with faith and hope, we offer these gifts. Use them, even as you use us, to accomplish your purposes in Jesus Christ, the Head of the church and the Lord of our lives. Amen.

CLOSING HYMN:   All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name!   GTG#263
BENEDICTION RESPONSE:  We Are Marching in the Light of God/Siyahamba (stanza 1 & Zulu only)   GTG#853
POSTLUDE:   Sonata in D major, KV 381: Allegro Molto                                                           Mozart



  • WELCOME! MEMBERS! NEWCOMERS! FRIENDS! We are so glad you could join us for worship today! VISITORS, please take a moment to let us know you were here by picking up an attendance card (in the pews) and filling out whatever information you would like to share with us.
  • WELCOME FAMILIES! Children’s Sunday School meets in the 2nd floor Children’s Space, Sunday mornings during the 1st half of worship, beginning at 11:00 am. NURSERY care is also available upstairs. Parents are asked to fill out a brief registration form before church begins. (This form only needs to be filled out once).
  • ASSISTIVE LISTENING DEVICES available upon request. Talk to Deanna up in the front of the sanctuary at the livestream table.


  • *We are taking up a Special Offering for Rev. Eric Garbison & his wife Jodi who will be going on a sabatical during the months of September & October after serving 24 years in ministry. Session suggested that some in the congregation may want to help, so over the next few weeks we will be accepting donations for this purpose. If you would like to help, you can make a check out to Westport Presbyterian Church or place money in a giving envelope and include “Sabatical Fund” in the memo line. Thanks!
  • Bread, Buns, Fruit, Water, Meat, Peanut Butter, Cheese are always needed for our INTERRUPT HUNGER work. WESTPORT SHOWERS happens on Sundays & Thursday nights. Men’s boxer brief underwear needed. Men’s and Women’s tennis shoes, pants. Backpacks!
  • WESTPORT SHOWERS is looking for additional volunteers to help with Sunday mornings. With the increase in guests, we would like to have teams of 2 volunteers upstairs working together at the door and 2 downstairs working in the shower/laundry room each Sunday. You would be working with experienced volunteers who can train you in what is needed. If you would like to help, and are willing to volunteer 1 Sunday morning a month, reach out to Drew Irwin or Allison Rozga for more information.
  • *WEEKDAY LUNCH VOLUNTEERS. We could use a few more people to help with making and handing out weekday lunches. Please contact the church office for more information.

INREACH & OUTREACH IN THE COMING WEEK:  (All Events are at the Church, 201 Westport Rd – unless noted)

  • Monday, June 17                6:30 p.m.         Men’s AA Meeting (Storefront)
          • 7:30 p.m.         Boy Scout Troop 60 (Westport Rising Room)
  • Tuesday, June 18                6:00 p.m.         Irish Dance (Westport Rising Room)
  • Wednesday, June 19                                  JUNETEENTH HOLIDAY
          • 7:00 p.m.         Zoom Bible Study – contact church office for link (Online)  *meets every other week*
          • 8:00 p.m.         Mission & Outreach Committee Meeting (Zoom)
  • Thursday, June 20              5:30 p.m.         Westport Showers – For Women, Trans, & Gender Non-conforming people (Basement)
  • Saturday, June 22              8:30 a.m.         Living Integrated (Men’s Support Group) (Storefront)
          • 11:00 a.m.       Holmes Memorial Service Followed by Reception – Peace Church UCC Members
            (Sanctuary & Fellowship Room)
  • Sunday, June 23                 8-9:30 a.m.      Westport Showers (Fellowship Room & Basement)
          • 11:00 a.m.       Service of the Lord’s Day (Sanctuary)


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