Trinity United Methodist Church
Sunday, August 18, 2019
Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors

Sunday School Addition

Sunday School Addition
April 13, 2019
Matthew 26:1-13
 The church I serve hosts a food pantry on the third Saturday of the month. With volunteers from other churches, we set up for the pantry ahead of time, and it’s a tiring activity. Two years ago, Easter fell on the third weekend of the month, meaning setup for the pantry occurred on Good Friday. I expressed my concern to a clergy friend about the volunteers working so hard on Friday afternoon and then attending worship later that evening. My friend said, “Setting up the pantry is worship. That is your Good Friday worship. What better way to worship?” I took my friend’s advice and encouraged the congregation to work on the food pantry as our church’s Good Friday worship.
 The student book author writes, “Worship is a form of service. Service is a form of worship . . . God calls disciples who worship and serve.”1 Incorporating service into worship or worship into service can be intentional. If we practice intentional incorporation often enough, then the two will be intertwined, and we may not be able to draw a line to distinguish one from the other.
 This year, Easter once again falls on the third weekend of the month, which means my church’s food pantry will be set up on Good Friday. The church will offer their work on the food pantry Friday afternoon and worship with Scripture and darkness Friday evening. This lesson challenges us to intentionally incorporate the two. In worship, we love the Lord; in service, we love our neighbor. Since both express God’s love in Jesus Christ, it makes sense for worship and service to work together.
 1. How does your faith community incorporate love and service of neighbor into Holy Week?  2. When have you experienced worship as a form of service and service as a form of worship?  3. How are worship and service expressions of God’s love in Jesus Christ? 
Reverend Katie Shockley is a licensed local pastor and serves as pastor of Community United Methodist Church in Copeville, Texas.