Worship Resources

 
       

HOLY COMMUNION AND EPIPHANY

MUSIC & WORSHIP RESOURCES


Sunday, January 6, 2008

L'Tanya Moore, Guest Lectionary Liturgist

Minister of Music, St. Philip AME Church, Atlanta, GA

*Worship Planning Notes

When and how often Communion is held varies throughout the African American faith community. The frequency of Communion will impact the worship design for this liturgical moment. If your church holds Communion once each month, it is the job of the worship leader/planner to ensure that each service provides an opportunity to teach the members of your church more about the origins and purpose of Communion. It is not recommended that the same service be repeated each month in exactly the same way. Instead, it is recommended that only those aspects of the Communion ritual that are absolutely necessary be repeated because they serve as theological tradition markers and help members of your congregation learn the basic elements of a Communion service.

If your faith community serves Communion each Sunday, the job of the worship leader/planner is much more difficult. Ultimately, however, the frequency of this important ritual should be viewed as a major opportunity to bring participants closer to Christ and to their neighbor. Worship leaders/planners who prepare weekly for Communion should seek to do at least three specific things throughout the year:
  1. help the congregation gain a historic understanding of Communion, as it has been held in your local church and/or denomination;

  2. allow all members of the congregation to participate in the ritual on more than a spectator basis. Unfortunately, most Communion services are led by a small group of people in the church. Rarely do children participate in the serving of the bread or the wine; rarely do disabled members participate in the serving and blessing of the bread and wine; rarely do persons who are not deacons, deaconesses, stewards, elder mothers, ministers, etc., participate in the blessing of the ritual and the serving of the bread and wine. These exclusions should end. The table is for all and all should feel welcome at the table; and

  3. tie the Communion to the liturgical day being celebrated on the calendar. The worship service in which Communion is celebrated should be viewed holistically: the praying, singing, preaching, and other parts of the worship service are merely components of the service. Explore ways to show that the worship service is a holistic moment. Feel free to use books of services and orders of worship from other congregations, other denominations, and non-denominational churches in the African American faith community.
1. A Litany for Communion
This reading can occur at any time during the worship service.

Leader
: Jesus and his disciples communed together. The Church of old communed together. Our foreparents communed together. As 21st century members of the body Christ we link hearts with believers past and present in this moment of Communion.

People
: As often as we do this we show that we remember Christ; his life, his death, and his resurrection.

Leader:
We do not commune in arrogance, for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. We commune in humility because even when we have overwhelmingly failed you, God, you have never failed us. Your unfailing love humbles us and keeps us ever aware of the work that you have left for our hands to do. We will not take it lightly.

People
: As we take of this bread and drink of this wine, we not only confess, but we covenant. We covenant to spend more time in your Word, to pray more, and to give more of our time, talents, and treasures.

Leader
: Lord, we seek a deeper relationship with you and with each other and all of your creation.

People
: We take of this bread and drink of this cup as a sign to our children and to the world that we are people who believe that Jesusí body was broken for us and that his blood was shed for us and that his return is certain.

Collective
: We eat this bread and we remember you. We drink of this wine and we remember you. After this Communion, we covenant to remember you.

2. Hymn or Anthem

Hymn
(a) Praise Him, Praise Him. By Fanny J. Crosby. Tune by Chester G. Allen

(b) All Hail the Power. By Edward Perronet. Tune, (CORONATION), by Oliver Holding

Anthem
(c) Majesty, Worship His Majesty. By Jack Hayford. Arr. by Eugene Thomas

3. Song or Instrumental for the Period of Prayer

Let Us Break Bread Together. Traditional

4. Offertory Song or Instrumental

At the Table. By Richard Smallwood

5. Spirituals

(a) Were You There?

(b) The Welcome Table.

6. Modern Songs

The suggested modern songs are designated for mid-size to larger ensembles with experienced vocalists.
(a) These Nails. By Donald Lawrence

(b) Precious Is the Blood. By Joe Pace II

(c) He Decided to Die. By Margaret Douroux. Re-Recorded by LíTanya Moore

7. Liturgical Dance Music

Calvary. Arr. by Richard Smallwood

8. Congregational Songs or Songs for Praise Teams or Ensembles

(a) If Jesus Goes with Me Iíll Go. By C. Austin Miles

(b) Down at the Cross. By Elisha A. Hoffman. Tune by John H. Stockton

(c) The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power. By Andrať Crouch

(d) Let Us Break Bread Together. Traditional

9. Invitational Song or Instrumental

Song
(a) Taste and See. By James E. Moore Jr.

Instrumental
(b) He Looked Beyond My Faults. Arr. by Jemuel Anderson

10. Benediction Song or Instrumental

Song
(a) Till We Meet Again. Arr. by Kirk Franklin and the Family

Instrumental
(b) Always Remember. By Andrať Crouch

11.
Audio Visual Suggestions: grapes, bread, images of sheep, communion trays of wine, a chalice

12. Other Recommendations

Congregations might try different ways of observing Holy Communion:
(a) Congregants might come to the table one by one instead of being served in the pew.

(b) Holy Communion might be served from stations around the sanctuary.

(c) Holy Communion might be served from tables in the fellowship hall.

(d) Holy Communion might be shared in silence.

(e) The congregation might allow non-baptized children to share Holy Communion as a teaching moment.



Cites and Additional Information for Music and Material Listed


*1. The Worship Planning Notes and the Litany for Communion
were developed by the African American Lectionary Worship Resource Team.

2. Hymn or Anthem

(a) Praise Him, Praise Him. By Fanny J. Crosby. Tune by Chester G. Allen
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. Chicago: GIA Publications, 2001. #178

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition
. Nashville, TN: AME Publishing House, 2000. #92

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition
. Nashville, TN: Triad Publications, 2005. #12

(b) All Hail the Power. By Edward Perronet. Tune, (CORONATION), by Oliver Holding
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #292

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition. #4

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition. #2

(c) Majesty, Worship His Majesty. By Jack Hayford. Arr. by Eugene Thomas
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #171

3. Song or Instrumental for the Period of Prayer

Let Us Break Bread Together. Traditional
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #686

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition. #530

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition. #488

The Presbyterian Hymnal: Hymns, Psalms, and Spiritual Songs. Louisville, KY: Westminster/John Knox Press, 1990. #513

Cleveland, J. Jefferson, and Verolga Nix. Songs of Zion. Supplemental worship resources, 12. Nashville, TN: Abingdon, 1981. #88

Church of God in Christ. Yes, Lord! Church of God in Christ Hymnal. Memphis, TN: Church of God in Christ Pub. Board in association with the Benson Co., 1982. #30

4. Offertory Song
or Instrumental
At the Table. By Richard Smallwood
Location:
Healing Live in Detroit. New York: Verity/Zomba Recording, 1999, with accompanying songbook.

5. Spirituals

(a) Were You There?
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #254

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition. #136

The Presbyterian Hymnal. #102

(b) The Welcome Table.
Location:
Newman, Richard, ed. Go Down Moses: Celebrating the African American Spiritual. New York: Clarkston-Potter Publishing, 1998.

6. Modern Songs

The suggested modern songs are designated for mid-size to large ensembles with experienced vocalists.
(a) These Nails. By Donald Lawrence
Location:
Finale: Act One and Two. Donald Lawrence and The Tri-Center Singers, featuring Blanch McAllister. Brentwood, TN: EMI Gospel, 2006.

(b) Precious Is the Blood. By Joe Pace II
Location:
Joe Pace Presents: Sunday Morning Service. Mobile, AL: Integrity Gospel Music, 2005, with accompanying song book.

(c) He Decided to Die. Margaret Douroux. Re-recoded by L'Tanya Moore.
Location:
Radiant. Atlanta, GA: L'Tanya M. Moore Music Ministries, 2006.

7. Liturgical Dance Music

Calvary. Arr. by Richard Smallwood
Location:
Persuaded: Live in D.C. 2001. New York: Verity Records, re-released 2005.

8. Congregational Songs or Songs for Praise Teams or Ensembles

(a) If Jesus Goes with Me I'll Go. By C. Austin Miles
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #555

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition. #416

Yes, Lord! Church of God in Christ Hymnal. #497

(b) Down at the Cross. By Elisha A. Hoffman. Tune by John H. Stockman
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #248

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition. #243

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition. #191

Songs of Zion. #4

Yes, Lord! Church of God in Christ Hymnal. #245

(c) The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power. By Andrať Crouch
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #256

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition. #137

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition. #97

Songs of Zion. #184

Yes, Lord! Church of God in Christ Hymnal. #250

(d) Let Us Break Bread Together. Traditional
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #686

African Methodist Episcopal Hymnal, revised edition. #530

The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition. #488

The Presbyterian Hymnal. #513

Yes, Lord! Church of God in Christ Hymnal. #30

9. Invitational Song or Instrumental

Song
(a) Taste and See. By James E. Moore Jr.
Location:
GIA Publications, Inc.
7404 South Mason Avenue
Chicago, IL 60638
Phone: 1-800-442-1358

Online location: www.giamusic.com

Instrumental
(b) He Looked Beyond My Faults. Arr. by Jemuel Anderson
Location:
Songs of Praise. Atlanta, GA: Jemuel Anderson Ministries, 2004.

10. Benediction Song or Instrumental

Song
(a) Till We Meet Again. Arr. by Kirk Franklin and the Family
Location:
Kirk Franklin and the Family. Inglewood, CA: Gospocentric, 1993.

Instrumental
(b) Always Remember. By Andrať Crouch
Location:
African American Heritage Hymnal. #640
     

 

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