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Sunday, November 5th, 2023 - All Saints'Day. Sermon: "A Great Cloud of Witnesses" by: The Rev. James A. Kabel, Pastor Emeritus


November 5, 2023

The Rev. Joshua Heimbuck, Pastor

The Rev. James A. Kabel, Pastor Emeritus

Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost

“Blessed are they”


A warm welcome to all who worship with us this morning. Today we gather around Word and Sacrament through which God equips, directs, and supports his people in the mission and ministry of his Kingdom. All that God has promised in his Son, Jesus Christ, comes together by the power of the Spirit as we worship. Guests and visitors, please honor us by signing our Guest Book in the entrance hall of the church as you leave this morning’s worship. If you have no church home of your own, we invite you to make Grace Lutheran Church the center of your worship, learning, fellowship, and service. After this morning’s worship, join us for a cup of coffee and let us become better acquainted with you as you get to know us better. Come to worship with us again and often!


Lord God, you have surrounded us with so great a cloud of witnesses. Grant that we, encouraged by their example, may persevere in the way of faith that is set before us, to be living signs of the Gospel and at last, with all your saints, to share in your eternal joy; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen




In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

“Turn to me and be saved,” says the Lord. “For I am God and there is no other.”

If we confess our sins, God, who is faithful and just, will forgive our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Let us confess our sins to God our Father and in the presence of one another.

+ A Brief Silence for Reflection +

Most merciful God, we confess that we are in bondage to sin and cannot free ourselves. We have lived only for ourselves, denied our relationship with you, and excluded ourselves from the family. We are helpless and alone. For the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and let your light shine on upon us, so that we may delight in your will and walk in your ways to the glory of your holy Name. Amen

As the One who trod the winepress alone, Jesus Christ poured out his life for you. In him there is forgiveness, life, and resurrection from the dead. Rejoice in the Lord, your sins are forgiven in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

   Thanks be to God!


[The congregation is encouraged to share the peace of Christ and greet one another with the words, “The Lord’s peace be with you.” The response, “And also with you.”]


The love of God the Father, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord, and the life of the Spirit be with you all. And also, with you.




Almighty God, you have knit your people together in one communion in the mystical body of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Grant us grace to follow your blessed saints in lives of faith and commitment, and to know the inexpressible joys you have prepared for those who love you, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen

FIRST LESSON Revelation 7:9-17

[The book of Revelation is written to seven churches in western Asia Minor during a time of great oppression and persecution. Today’s reading is a response to the question asked in 6:17: “Who is able to stand?” The writer gives the faithful the assurance of God’s protection and a vision of victory.]

After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. They cried out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!” And all the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, singing, “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen.”

Then one of the elders addressed me, saying: “Who are these robed in white and where have they come from?” I said to him, “Sir, you are the one who knows.” Then he said to me: “These are they who have come out of the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason, they are before the throne of God, and worship him day and night within his temple, and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them. They will hunger no more, and thirst no more, the sun will not strike them, nor any scorching heat; for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.

The Word of the Lord.

                    Thanks be to God!

SECOND LESSON 1 John 3:1-3

[A saint is one who has been set apart by God for God’s purposes. God, out of divine love, set us apart to be the children of God. Our only hope is that we shall see God as God really is.]

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God, and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this; when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him will purify themselves, just as he is pure.

The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God!


HOLY GOSPEL Matthew 5:1-12 Please Stand

The gospel according to Matthew, the 5th chapter. Glory to you, O Lord.

[In the Beatitudes, Jesus provides a unique description of those who are blessed with God’s favor. His teaching is surprising and shocking to those who seek wealth, fame, and control over others.]

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, hisdisciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they will be filled.

Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs in the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

The gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, O Christ.

HOMILY            A Great Cloud of Witnesses Text: The Second Lesson Pr. Jim


I believe in God, the Father Almighty,

maker of heaven and earth.

And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried.

He descended into hell.

The third day He rose again from the dead.

He ascended into heaven

and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.

From thence He will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting. Amen.


OFFERINGS are brought forward


Gracious God, you provide us with every gift of creation, and you quench our thirst with living water. Receive these tokens of your goodness to us, together with all we have and are. May our lives be bread for the hungry and streams in the wilderness, signs of the abundance of your grace in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen


The Lord be with you.

And also, with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give him thanks and praise.

It is our duty and delight that we should at all times give thanks to you, O God, through Jesus Christ who calls us to follow his way of humble service and love, and so with the Church on earth and the whole company of heaven we praise your Name and join their unending hymn as we sing …



In the night in which he was betrayed,

our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks;

broke it, and gave it to his disciples saying:

Take and eat; this is my body which is given

for you. Do this in remembrance of me.

Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks,

And gave it for all to drink, saying:

This cup is the new covenant in my blood

shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness

of sin. Do this in remembrance of me.

Now in the words of our Lord, we are bold to pray …

Our Father who art in heaven

hallowed be Thy Name,

Thy kingdom come,

Thy will be done

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread;

and forgive us our trespasses

as we forgive those

who trespass against us;

and lead us not into temptation

but deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom and the power

and the glory forever and ever. Amen


The peace of the Lord be with you always. And also, with you.



Shepherd of Israel, you have gathered us and fed us richly with the bread of life and cup of blessing. Open our eyes to all who hunger and thirst for food and justice, that in them we may care for Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen


The Lord bless you and keep you.

The Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you.

The Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace. Amen

+ With Great Joy … Tell Everyone What He Has Done! +


Grace Note’s

THE PRESENCE of CHRIST is celebrated in The Lord’s Supper. He comes to us in a real and present way with his life-giving body and blood in the bread and wine of The Sacrament to assure us of our forgiveness and to strengthen us in faith and service. All who trust and believe the words “given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins” are welcome. Come, receive Christ’s presence in the meal prepared for you. Enjoy his presence. Children are encouraged to come forward with their parents and/or grandparents and receive a blessing.

BIBLE STUDY - Our newest study continues with the book of Daniel. Two Bible Study sessions are available. One at Starbucks (corner of Ashland and Walker Streets) on Wednesdays at 9:30 AM and of course the Sunday morning bible study, which starts at 8:45 AM. Hope to see you there!

MEN’S BREAKFAST BIBLE STUDY – This month the Men’s Breakfast Bible Study will be held on the third Saturday of the month, November 18th at 8:00 AM. We will meet in the the Fireside Room. The Southern Oregon Music Teachers Association will be holding a meeting in the Sanctuary, so Bible Study participants are encouraged to use the Fireside Room entry way when arriving.

ADULT NEW MEMBER STUDY – There will be a new member study session on Saturday, November 18th at 9:30 AM in the Fireside Room. This study is open for anyone who would like to participate. It’ll be a great opportunity to interact with our soon to be new members as well as, a great refresher class.

This Week at Grace

November 6th – November 12th

Tuesday, November 7th @10:00 AM – Women’s Bible Study

Wednesday, November 8th @ 9:0 AM – Bible Study @ Starbucks

7:00 PM – Choir

Thursday, November 10th – Veteran’s Day

Sunday, November 12th @ 8:45 AM – Bible Study

9:00 AM – Sunday School

10:00 AM – Worship

11:00 AM – Coffee Connection