Sunday, October 18
The Lord’s Day
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Minute for Mission: Children’s Sabbath
“Whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all.” (Mark 10:43b–44)
This weekend, churches, synagogues, mosques, and other places of worship across the nation are joining in the 24th annual National Observance of Children’s Sabbaths. Through worship, education, and action—over the weekend and throughout the year—people of faith are responding out of concern for children facing poverty, violence, and other crises. They are renewing their commitment to compassionate service to children and prophetic advocacy on their behalf. In serving and seeking justice for children, people of faith are discovering true greatness.
In 2013, Urban Presbyterians Together (UPT), a group of Presbyterian congregations in Rochester, New York, engaged in Children’s Sabbath education, worship, and advocacy as part of its ongoing efforts to improve grade-school education. UPT invited the community to screenings of the PC(USA) film Trigger: The Ripple Effect of Gun Violence. It sponsored an education evening on the theme “Educating the Traumatized Child: What Works.” On These Rochester Presbyterians also were joined in an advocacy campaign by more than 90 different faith communities in the city, including Jewish, Muslim, and Baha’i. Together, they generated hundreds of letters urging legislators to invest in early childhood development and education.
Building on the Children’s Sabbath weekend, throughout the year these diverse communities are serving and advocating for children across their city, state, and nation.
Now that is great.
—Rev. Shannon Daley-Harris: religious affairs adviser, Children’s Defense Fund; member, leadership team, Presbyterian Child Advocacy Network, Presbyterian Health, Education, and Welfare Association
Let us pray
God, help me to follow in the steps of your beloved Son, who came to us as a poor baby, ministered with compassion among children and those in poverty, and left us the Holy Spirit—whom he called the Advocate—to work in and among us for justice. Amen.
Sunday Lectionary and Hymns
Job 38:1–7 (34–41)
“God of Great and God of Small”
Ps. 104:1–9, 24, 35c
“Bless the Lord, My Soul
GTG 34, PH 224
“More Love to Thee, O Christ”
GTG 828, HB 397, PH 359
“Will You Let Me Be Your Servant” /
“The Servant Song”