Due to copyright limitations, we are unable to print the words to the songs.  However, our musicians have chosen music to fit the scriptures.  We invite you to look up the words in your worship book and ponder them.  If you do not have a worship book, ponder the words to one of your favourite hymns and listen for God’s voice. Those who have internet may find the songs on YouTube.

Parts of this worship service are taken from the Worship Resources for the Centennial Anniversary of the March 1st Independence Movement (1919) in Korea: Asian Heritage Month Worship


I had three miscarriages, then, at forty-eight, a child with serious developmental difficulties. He is a blessing and a jewel. He is my teacher. From him I get and give unconditional love.

~Julie Newmar



     From abandonment to homecoming and from a narrow scope to a broader vision of God’s realm, these are the promises proclaimed. The early church and our faith communities are called to engage this reality. A community of Jewish Jesus-followers overcomes fear and expands to include the much larger Gentile world. In the hymnody of the psalm the whole creation and her people are ushered into praise and the trumpeting of a new community. An exiled follower of Jesus sees in the midst of his situation a vision of the Holy One who proclaims a new heaven and earth, stripped of tears and death. Finally, Jesus shares that he will no longer be physically present with his disciples, and points them to a new way of being a community of love for one another. Through the depth of the texts for this day, people are invited to explore the beauty and the messiness of community. The church, like any other human organization, is filled with the challenges of what it means to live together (for example, who is welcome? What rules do people need to follow? How do we care for one another?). Unlike other human institutions, however, we are called to be centered and re-centered in the unapologetic love for others. In our imperfection we are welcomed and called to invite others. We offer, in a spirit of humility, signs of welcome and love to others, just as God in Christ has been revealed to us.


We respectfully acknowledge and honour Treaty 1 Territory and the Peoples and the lands that makeup Turtle Island. Lands which are home to the Anishinabek, Inninewak, Anishininwag, Dakota, Lakota and Dene peoples who, prior to contact with Europeans, created and maintained important trade routes, belonged to the land and respected all life and creation, and thrived in a culture that was celebrated through language, ceremony, tradition and a sustainable economy. Also important is the recognition that Treaty 1 Territory is the homeland of the Metis Nation; a nation of people of mixed Indigenous and European ancestry with its own distinct culture, language and history.

We respect the Treaties formed on these territories, and acknowledge that We Are All Treaty People. We recognize the genocide and colonization endured by Indigenous peoples, and we are committed to working in partnership with Indigenous communities toward justice, equity, and reconciliation.


I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will my help come?

My help comes from God, the maker of heaven and earth. 

The Holy One who watches over us never sleeps or rests,

and will keep us safe days and nights on our journey.

Our God will protect us from all evil,

and will lead us on our journey toward liberation and wholeness. 

CHILDREN’S SONG:  All God’s Critters Got A Place In The Choir


Loving God, we gather to celebrate your presence in our history, your peace in our community, and your love in our lives. We also celebrate the sacrifice for the nation, the courage and wisdom for the oppressed, and the resistance against the tyranny. As we enter into this time of worship, let us feel your light and your truth guiding us into your justice and hope. Thanks be to God. Amen.


We are not alone; we live in God’s world.

We believe in God:  who has created and is creating, who has come in Jesus, the Word made flesh, to reconcile and make new, who works in us and others by the Spirit.

We trust in God.

We are called to be the Church:  to celebrate God’s presence, to live with respect in Creation, to love and serve others, to seek justice and resist evil, to proclaim Jesus, crucified and risen, our judge and our hope.

In life, in death, in life beyond death, God is with us.  We are not alone.  Thanks be to God.


God’s love is always growing, the circle of loving getting bigger and bigger as more people are included in God’s embrace.  The apostle, Peter, had a dream.  In that dream a voice told Peter to kill and eat the animals that he saw in the dream.  Peter said he couldn’t do that because as a Jewish person, he respected the laws God had given the Jewish people regarding what animals were ok to eat, and which ones God considered unclean, not fit for humans to eat.  In the dream, all the animals that the voice told Peter to kill and eat were considered unclean!

Then, God did something really amazing! The voice in Peter’s dream said to Peter, “What God has made clean, you must not call unclean.”  God’s decision had changed about what was clean and unclean to eat so that non-Jewish people could be included in God’s love!

For the Jewish people in Peter’s day, that was impossible!  God couldn’t do that!  God shouldn’t do that!  And God, through Jesus, showed the Jewish people that, indeed, God could, and did, include the non-Jewish people in the love of God!  That includes us!

Want to know how big God’s love is?  To the left is a picture.  If you print it out full size on a piece of paper, then cut along the lines on the page, when you open the page carefully, you can step through it!  What seems impossible is always possible for God – especially when it comes to love!


Nourishing Bodies and Hearts: Ashrafi’s Story

One in nine people around the world are going hungry according to the United Nations. Since the pandemic struck, 40 percent more people in need of a nutritious meal have turned to the Fred Victor Centre, a Mission & Service partner, for help. That’s one of the reasons why the 240 community gardens it runs are so important.

“Every day, we’ll see 250‒300 people standing outside for food. That is all the encouragement we need to keep growing and cooking. We donate most of the fruits and vegetables to our kitchen, and our participants get fresh veggies and support from us,” says Ashrafi, Fred Victor’s garden centre coordinator.

Today, over 200 families, many living in poverty, grow their own nutritious food at Fred Victor’s gardens thanks to generous supporters like you. But there’s more to the gardens than the food.

Ashrafi says children learn where food comes from by gardening, and participants tell her they feel less stress and pain, have more energy, and meet new friends because of the gardens.

“People from different cultural backgrounds share their vegetables and herbs with each other. Through sharing, they come to appreciate each other. At the core, we are all the same,” she says.

The garden has changed Ashrafi’s life, too.

“As an immigrant, I came here feeling isolated. My family didn’t know where to start. But now I feel I’m standing on my own feet and I know the community. Every day when I walk home from work everyone says, ‘Hi Ashrafi, how are you?’ They make my day happier. I feel belonging because of the garden. It has changed my life. Thank you for your support.”


God, the words you speak have power: power to create, power to disturb, power to heal.  Help us to hear your Word for us today.  Amen.

Readings and Psalm

First Reading: Acts 11:1-18

In defense of his earlier baptism of non-Jewish believers, Peter demonstrates to the members of the Jerusalem church that God’s intention to love Gentiles as well as Jews is revealed in Jesus’ testimony. In this way the mission to the Gentiles is officially authorized.

     1Now the apostles and the believers who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also accepted the word of God. 2So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him, 3saying, “Why did you go to uncircumcised men and eat with them?” 4Then Peter began to explain it to them, step by step, saying, 5“I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision. There was something like a large sheet coming down from heaven, being lowered by its four corners; and it came close to me. 6As I looked at it closely I saw four-footed animals, beasts of prey, reptiles, and birds of the air. 7I also heard a voice saying to me, ‘Get up, Peter; kill and eat.’ 8But I replied, ‘By no means, Lord; for nothing profane or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ 9But a second time the voice answered from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, you must not call profane.’ 10This happened three times; then everything was pulled up again to heaven. 11At that very moment three men, sent to me from Caesarea, arrived at the house where we were. 12The Spirit told me to go with them and not to make a distinction between them and us. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house. 13He told us how he had seen the angel standing in his house and saying, ‘Send to Joppa and bring Simon, who is called Peter; 14he will give you a message by which you and your entire household will be saved.’ 15And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as it had upon us at the beginning. 16And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17If then God gave them the same gift that he gave us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could hinder God?” 18When they heard this, they were silenced. And they praised God, saying, “Then God has given even to the Gentiles the repentance that leads to life.”

Psalm 148

The splendor of the Lord is over earth and heaven. (Ps. 148:13)

1Hallelujah! Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise God in the heights.
2Praise the Lord, all you angels; sing praise, all you hosts of heaven.
3Praise the Lord, sun and moon; sing praise, all you shining stars.
4Praise the Lord, heaven of heavens, and you waters above the heavens.
5Let them praise the name of the Lord, who commanded, and they were created,
6who made them stand fast forever and ever, giving them a law that shall not pass away. R
7Praise the Lord from the earth, you sea monsters and all deeps;
8fire and hail, snow and fog, tempestuous wind, doing God’s will;
9mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars;
10wild beasts and all cattle, creeping things and flying birds;
11sovereigns of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the world;
12young men and maidens, old and young together. R
13Let them praise the name of the Lord,
whose name only is exalted, whose splendor is over earth and heaven.
14The Lord has raised up strength for the people and praise for all faithful servants,
the children of Israel, a people who are near the Lord. Hallelujah! R

Second Reading: Revelation 21:1-6

John’s vision shows us that in the resurrection the new age has dawned; God dwells with us already. Yet we wait for the time when the tears that cloud our vision will be wiped away. Then we will see the new heaven, new earth, and new Jerusalem.

1I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,
“See, the home of God is among mortals.
He will dwell with them;
they will be his peoples,
and God himself will be with them;
4he will wipe every tear from their eyes.
Death will be no more;
mourning and crying and pain will be no more,
for the first things have passed away.”
5And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.” 6Then he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life.”

Gospel: John 13:31-35

After washing the disciples’ feet, predicting his betrayal, and then revealing his betrayer, Jesus speaks of his glorification on the cross. This deep complicated love of Jesus, even to death on the cross, will be the distinctive mark of Jesus’ community.

31When had gone out, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. 33Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come.’ 34I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. 35By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

HYMN: VU 296  This Is God’s Wondrous World


She was a woman who had lived a rough life.  As a result, she did not trust people, could be blunt to the point of being rude, and tended to scare people away with her crustiness.  She was also a woman who was ill, in hospital, whose sister was a church member, and someone who loved her unconditionally.  Would I visit Evelyn?  Absolutely.

At that time, I used to wear a full complement of makeup, including lipstick.  I had a favourite colour from Avon.  It was called Magnolius – a shimmery hue that was a cross between hot pink and fucia.  It was glorious!

I walked into the hospital room.  My church member, her husband and another sister were already present.  As I approached the bed, Evelyn looked at me and declared, “God, I hate your lipstick!”  I walked up to the bed, looked at Evelyn and replied, “Well, you don’t have to wear it, do you”, and proceeded to sit down in the vacant chair and join in the conversation.

As we were walking down the hospital corridor upon leaving, my church member turned to me and said, “I think you passed the test!”  The fact that Evelyn had not demanded I leave said a lot!

And so began my friendship with a remarkable woman who was kind, generous, compassionate, loyal to family and friends; who was scarred from a bad relationship, scared, hurting and needing to be loved.

Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another”, says Jesus.  To anyone who thinks loving like Jesus is an easy task, I say, “I dare you!”  If you have any sense at all, you will run in the opposite direction, because to love like Jesus will challenge you to your very core, force you to confront every fear, every prejudice, every excuse and push you to the point of wanting to fall to your knees and either scream, pray or weep.  Think I am being dramatic?  Think again.

I receive news reports from the province.  Recently I received the following:


A standing hearing will take place to determine who can participate in the upcoming inquest into the death of Stewart Kevin Andrews, 22, of Winnipeg.

Under the Fatality Inquiries Act, an inquest has been called by the chief medical examiner. Inquests explore the circumstances and events leading to deaths for finding out what, if anything, might be done to prevent similar deaths in the future.

On April 18, 2020, members of the Winnipeg Police Service (WPS) responded to a 911 robbery call.  Andrews and another individual were accused of using weapons to rob someone. There was a confrontation when WPS arrived and an officer discharged their firearm multiple times, striking Andrews. Emergency medical services responded and Andrews was transported to the Health Sciences Centre, where he was pronounced deceased.[1]

Sadly, this type of situation happens all too frequently.  I am left with the question, “Why do people always go for violence first?!”  True, I wasn’t there.  We are not given the details of how the situation went down.  Yet there is no mention of “having negotiated with Andrews for 20 minutes…” or similar clues that would point to a non-violent first response.

Twenty-two years of age.  As I think about Evelyn, her hard outer shell the reaction to a hard life, and her vulnerability, her true self, I am left wondering about a young man named Stewart Kevin Andrews and how it was that he ended up using a weapon to rob someone in Winnipeg.  What happened to Stewart that he chose the path of violence that led to his death?  He started off as a vulnerable infant, just like the rest of us.  Did he experience neglect or violence from a young age?  What lessons did life teach him so that violence was considered an option to get on in the world?  Was he loved as a child, but then some incident caused him to question love and turn from it?

When you try to love as Jesus loved, it isn’t easy to dismiss another human being.  In Stewart’s life there were many people involved in his education, friendships, perhaps even a faith family.  Surely someone observed him derailing at some point in his youth?!  Did anyone try to help him?  Was he written off as a “bad seed” and left to fend for himself?  What about his parents, siblings, cousins?

And then there is the officer who fired the weapon and killed Stewart.  Was there a need to fire a gun, or would negotiating have worked?  What about after Stewart’s death.  The officer must live with the reality of killing another human being, even if the kill was legitimate in the line of duty.  That reality weighs on a person.

Twenty-two years of age.  My middle daughter will be twenty-two in June.  I feel for Stewart’s parents.  That is too young an age for a child’s life to end.

I believe God directed me to Evelyn.  My ministry with her was a lesson in patience, compassion, a broadening of my understanding of emotional pain and how that pain is lived out in people’s lives.  The more Evelyn shared her life story, the more her desire to protect herself made sense.  I was honoured that she trusted me with her pain.  When her health deteriorated to the point where death was immanent, once again I was humbled when she asked if I would officiate her funeral.  I was also humbled by the people in the community who knew Evelyn’s story, who continued to pray for her and tried to love her as Jesus loves, even if that love was rejected. There were a small group of people who never gave up on Evelyn.  Although she continued with her gruff behaviour, those devout few saw the vulnerable child of God underneath.

Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another”, says Jesus.  And how, exactly, does Jesus love?

Pastor Elisabeth Johnson, Professor at the Lutheran Institute of Theology, Meiganga, Cameroon, writes the following:

The context of this passage, of course, is John’s account of Jesus’ last supper with his disciples.

In this account, we hear about many things that Jesus knows, and about how he responds to the knowledge that he has. He knows that his hour has come to depart from this world and go to his Father (John 13:1a). How does he respond? “Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end” (13:1b). He knows that the Father has given all things into his hands, and that he has come from God and is going to God (13:3). How does he respond? He gets up from the table and takes on the role of a slave, washing his disciples’ dusty, dirty feet.

Jesus also knows who is about to betray him (John 13:11), and he is very troubled by this knowledge (13:21). How does he respond? He announces the imminent betrayal to his disciples, and then proceeds to feed the betrayer:[2]

This is how Jesus loves.  He looks beyond externals to the heart of the person.  He looks beyond human desires to the child of God at the core and loves the person.  Where others might condemn or pass judgement, Jesus serves, feeds and forgives.

We do not live in a vacuum.  We are members of a community, faith family – sisters and brothers in Christ.  If we notice a child or youth derailing, Jesus calls us to get involved.  If our help is rejected, we can still pray.  Jesus loved by keeping his eyes, ears and heart open to people’s pain, loneliness and desire to be loved.  We are called to do the same.  It takes time, effort and a willingness to have our corners rubbed off.  It is also worth every moment of Christ’s love.

I thank God for the Evelyn’s of this world who teach me to look beyond externals, to listen to the pain under the words, to love the vulnerable child within.  I grieve for all the Stewart’s in the world.  I weep for their untimely deaths, their pain, for their families who mourn.  I weep for the lost opportunities to share the love of Jesus with a hurting person, to offer hope and friendship in difficult times, to love as Jesus loved.

Loving people as Jesus loved is not an option.  Jesus used the word “should”.

Lord Jesus, grant us the courage and strength to step out boldly in faith to love without boundaries, to serve others willingly, daring to bring your love to a broken hurting world.  Amen.

HYMN OF THE MONTH:  MV 169   When Hands Reach Out Beyond Divides


Holy God, God of nations, God of history, we give you thanks for your presence and your guidance in people’s struggles for freedom, justice, and peace throughout history.  As we join together to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the March 1st Independence Movement in Korea, we also remember many other peoples and nations around the world, who are suffering from domination and destruction, who are striving for liberation and renewal of their nation and people, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Russia, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen.  Inspire them with your vision of a new heaven and a new earth; encourage them with your mighty power and divine wisdom; walk alongside of them on their journey toward dignity and well-being of all.

Source of Love,

            Hear us, we pray.

Holy God, God of people, God of community, make each one of us an instrument of peace and justice in our home, workplace, and community, and in our relationships with others. Help us follow the way of Jesus Christ who teaches us to choose love and harmony, not hate and revenge.

Source of Love,

Hear us, we pray.

God our creator, our centre, our friend, we thank you for the blessings of life, for those who are dear to us, for those who have died, and for all who have helped and influenced us.  We pray for our family, friends and community members who are in need of your healing touch, your strength and peace.  We raise before you the family of Lawrence Petroni, Robert Codette & family, Bill and Terry Howie, Evie and Brian Watt, Tracy Skoglund, Brooke Alexiuk, Joan, Dwayne, Debbie H., Wendy Bachinsky, Jean Filbert, Audrey and Larry McCrady and all who are recovering from Covid.  Lord God, we pray for healing in body, mind and spirit.

Source of Love,

Hear us, we pray.

Most of all, we thank you for the faith that is in us, for our awareness of you, and our hope in you.  Keep us, we pray, thankful, faithful, and hopeful until our lives shall end.  Amen.


SENDING SONG:  MV 120  My Soul Cries Out


Go into the world

May we all live as disciples of Jesus so that love is practised. 

Go into the world

May we all live as prophets of the Word so that people feel God’s presence. 

Go into the world

May we all live as the people who gathered in the square a hundred years ago so that justice and righteousness are overflowing.

May the grace of almighty God, the love of Jesus Christ + and the power of the Holy Spirit be with you now and always.





Prepared and submitted by the Rev. Hoeun Lee, the Rev. SunDo Hyun, and the Rev. Yongseok Baek.


Copyright © 2016 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #SAS011617.
© 2011 The United Church of Canada/L’Église Unie du Canada. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike Licence. To view a copy of this licence, visit:  http://creativecommons.org/licenses/byncsa/2.5/ca
[1] newsroom@gov.mb.ca via news.manitobagovinfo.ca