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"After Sunday worship I feel refreshed and ready to start a new week. Worship calms me and makes me want toW be a more giving and forgiving person."

 

 "I am here to share my soul, body, and mind with our bigger family who shares our worship to God and the entire universe.  This is my worship experience at church."

 

Worship at FCC Essex follows a traditional liturgy, but God still speaks to the world today from these ancient words and rituals as if they were new.  Music and spirit and art and words and silence center us and inform us.  Our style of worship brings comfort, soothes the spirit, challenges the mind, strengthens our love of each other, and empowers us for doing good in the world.

 

At The First Congregational Church in Essex, we offer a diverse schedule of worship opportunities on Sunday and at other times in the week.  Check the calendar for all we have to offer.

 

Summer worship is at 9:00 with a brief 35 minute service

 

 

Other special services of worship are celebrated throughout the year during Advent (Christmas) and Lent, as well as ecumenical events with other churches in Essex and within the UCC.

 

 

 

July 16, 2017

Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

 

Genesis 25:19-34Psalm 119:105-112
Romans 8:1-11
Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23

On Genesis 25:19-34

The journey through the book of Genesis continues for the second of five weeks in July. Last week's text focused on the meeting of Isaac and Rebekah, as the story of these descendants of Abraham continues to unfold, and points the way to the promise that the descendants of Abraham would be "as numerous as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore" (Genesis 22:17).

These narratives in Genesis are no easy task, as threats to the promise arise early. The union of Isaac and Rebekah appears to be the avenue by which the next step to the promise will be fulfilled. Isaac himself was a miracle child, born to Sarah and Abraham in their old age (Genesis 21). Both had long surrendered any possibilities of fulfilling the promise of many descendants by the time that the promise was made to them that they would have a son (Genesis 18).

The promise is threatened again

Now the miracle child is married but the theme of barrenness reappears, an impediment to the fulfillment of the promise once again. "The earlier story of Sarah has prepared us to expect a positive resolution and we are not disappointed," Holly Hearon writes: "Isaac's prayer is answered" (New Proclamation Year A 2008).

God resolved this problem once before; it is therefore no surprise that the solution comes quickly for Isaac, with none of the drama surrounding his own conception and birth. "Isaac prayed to the Lord for his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord granted his prayer, and his wife Rebekah conceived" (25:21).

Read this entire reflection here.


To see a sermon, click here