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God Provides in the Desert

Opening worship for the vital grants event 2021. The service is based on Exodus 17:1-7.

Opening Song: Psalm 42

Text: Psalm 42
Music: Tony Alonso © GIA Publications, Inc.
All rights reserved. A-703303.

Led by 2021 Teacher-Scholar Grant recipient, Tony Alonso

Call to Worship and Opening Prayer 

As we assemble here, from the east and the west, the north and south, 
let us recall with gratitude the many blessings of God.  

Let all the redeemed sing their praise together, 
for God has turned desert experiences into pools of water, 
and made parched souls become like springs of living water. 

God is with us and provides for us in the desert experiences of our lives.  
We are never alone.  

[light candle] 

O give thanks to God, who is always good,  
whose love in Christ Jesus endures forever!  

[light candle]

In this sacred space, in these moments of stillness, our thoughts and silence are like incense. 
Holy God, whose glory touches and transfigures the mind and the material, 
whose intimate, gentle Spirit embraces our vulnerability 
and fills our empty spaces with hope, 
may we know the deep calm that only you can give. 
Through the mystery of absence and presence, 
come, fill us with your emptiness, your eternal silence. Amen.  

Led by Calvin Institute of Christian Worship staff, partners, and their families: Cindy DeBoer, Joan Huyser-Honig, Paul Ryan, Sean Ryan, Joyce Borger, Annalise Borger, and Scott Hoezee

Song: "How Long"

Text and Music: Matthew Hochhalter, 2019
Used by permission.

Led by Matthew Hochhalter, Livia Maat, and Kaylie Wierda
2019 Worshiping Communities Grant, Calvary Church
Holland, Michigan

Testimony: Edwin Gonzalez-Gertz, Light of Hope Presbyterian Church, Marietta GA

Prayer of Lament for Those in the Desert Experiences

Led by Vital Grants Board Member, Leopoldo Sanchez

Song: "Passover Song"

Text and Music: Urban Doxology, Orlando Palmer © 2016 Urban Doxology
Used by permission.

Led by friends of the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, Urban Doxology

Prayer for Illumination

Led by Calvin Institute of Christian Worship staff member, Kathy Smith

Scripture reading: Exodus 17:1-7

Led by John Brogan, Reghan Harms, Hannah Barker Nickolay, Nathaniel and Ellie Ryan, and Dan Stohrer, participants; Karen Barker, narrator; Jackson Nickolay, djembe, low penny whistle, and technical support; Jeff Barker, director and script preparer

Meditation: "Give Us Water to Drink"

Led by Vital Grants Board Member, Janice McLean-Farrell

Song: “Tenemos esperanza / Because We Have Hope”

Text: Federico J. Pagura, 1923-2016, adapt. ©; tr. by Mary Louise Bringle, b. 1953, © 2012 GIA Publications, Inc.
Music: Homero R. Perera, alt. © 1983
All rights reserved. A-703303.

Led by Seminario Internacional Teológicao Bautista, Beunos Aires, Argentina

Prayer for the Event 

Led by Calvin Institute of Christian Worship program affiliate, Kevin Adams


May God go before you to lead you. 
May God go behind you to guard you. 
May God go beneath you to support you. 
May God go beside you to befriend you. 
Do not be afraid. 
Let the blessing of God—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit— 
come upon you today and settle in around you. 
Do not be afraid. 
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord. Amen.  

Led by Calvin Institute of Christian Worship staff member, Cornelius Plantinga, Jr.

Sung Blessing: “You Do Not Walk Alone” 

Text: traditional Irish blessing
Music: Elaine Hagenberg © 2019 Beckenhorst Press, Inc.
Used by permission. CCLI #400063.

Sung by Calvin University Capella
Pearl Shangkuan, conductor
Linda Hoisington, piano

Videography at Calvin University was done by Matchframe Creative.