“Building Up the Body of Christ”
"In 1997, the General convention of the Episcopal Church designated the last Sunday in Epiphany as World Mission Sunday to increase awareness of and participation in the wider global mission of the Church. It offers an excellent opportunity to learn about companion diocese relationships, parish-to-parish links, mission networks and societies, Episcopal missionaries past and present, and ways to get involved with mission efforts throughout the world."
Lectionary for the Last Sunday after Epiphany
2 Kings 2:1-12 Psalm 50:1-6 I Corinthians 4:3-6 Mark 9:2-9
Ideas with kids: We will spend time talking about what missionaries do and checking out our church's mission webpage to talk about the different types of missionaries there are and that we support. But we will also talk about our call to be missionaries and how we can live out the gospel in our own community.
The gospel story is Jesus' transfiguration. The ECUSA suggests the theme of "receiving the gift and offering the gift" which goes nicely with the idea of missions too.
The menu: We are having friends over on Friday night for a big dinner of roast chicken and apple pie so I'm sure we'll just have leftovers! Nothing too fancy!!
Collect for the Last Sunday after Epiphany
O God, who before the passion of your only begotten Son revealed his glory upon the holy mountain: Grant to us that we, beholding by faith the light of his countenance, may be strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his likeness from glory to glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen
Prayers to meditate on during the week for the Mission of the Church
O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you, bring the nations into your fold, pour out your Spirit upon all flesh, and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, on God, now and for ever. Amen.
O God of all the nations of the earth: Remember the multitudes who have been created in your image but have not known the redeeming work of our Savior Jesus Christ; and grant that, by the prayers and labors of your holy Church, they may be brought to know and worship you as you have been revealed in your Son; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, who didst stretch out thine arms of love upon the hard wood of the Cross, that all men everywhere might come within the reach of thy saving embrace: So clothe us with thy Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know thee to the knowledge and love of thee; for the honor of thy Name. Amen.- Written by Charles Henry Brent, Missionary Bishop of the Philippines, 1901-1918