Reflections on Friendship

Link to Sermon

 Order of Service

         Let us be as open vessels that God’s spirit may enter.

The Community Gathers:  Experience God’s presence in the assembly. Please greet one another with joy and welcome new friends into our community of love.  You are welcome here…come and worship!

Focus:  “When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.”  Henri Nouwen, Out of Solitude: Three Meditations on the Christian Life


Call To Worship:

One: Christ gives us a new commandment:

Many: “Love one another as I have loved you.”

One: When we love one another as Christ has loved us, we will live lives full of joy.

Many: We will live with God’s love deep in our hearts.

One: Let us worship the one who shows us how to love.

Many: Let us worship with joy.  Alleluia!

Gathering Music:  Shepherd Me, O God (by Marty Haugen)  

                                                                                   -Michelle Currie                                                                             

Opening Prayer: 

Holy One, we hear the comforting ancient poetry of the psalmist but wonder, is it true?Will you really provide for what we need?Will you bring us to a place of rest?

Will you protect us from enemies? We confess that rather than being only filled with holy wonder, we are sometimes filled with skepticism at the ancient words. We may count the times when we didn’t feel provided for or protected from danger. We count the times we could not catch a break when we desperately needed it. So Holy One, shepherd our busy minds back to the here and now, help our spirits forgive the grudges we hold, and invite us to experience You as truly present. In these moments of quiet, offer us rest for a moment.  Amen.

Lord’s Prayer

Opening Hymn:  Servant Song                                                 #727

Readings:  To All My Friends by May Yang,  John 15:9-17      

                     -Anne Murray

Reflections: The Power of Friendship            Rev. Paula Norbert   

                      Celebration of the Lord’s Supper

             Words of Invitation        The Bread and The Cup

  Prayer of Thanksgiving  

Music:   Meditative Instrumental ~ Come and Find the Quiet Center/Make Me A Servant (by Shirley Erena Murray/Kelley Willard)                                                                      -Michelle Currie

Musical call to Prayer:  (two times)  Hush now in quiet peace, be still your mind at ease. The Spirit brings release, so wait upon the Lord.

                               Prayers of the People

               Silent Prayers                    Pastoral Prayer

Offertory:   The Lord’s Prayer (Arnold Strals/arr. by Les Sands)  

    -Michelle Currie

Closing Music:   Blest Be the Ties that Bind     -Michelle Currie


As you depart from this place, go with courage and go with trust that the God who created you is also the One who will sustain you and the One who will show you the way.

Until we meet again, may you be filled with curiosity, wonder, and openness to God’s tender leading.  Amen and amen.

Go In Peace:

Thank you to our wonderful Music Director, Michelle Currie, for her music today and her work for Music Sunday last week. Great thanks to all of the musicians, soloists, who shared their gifts with our community.  It was a joyful celebration.

Thank you also to our “Actors” who shared the reenactment of the story of the founding of Union Church in 1864.  They did a wonderful job.

 Union Church

          Biddeford Pool

 …a place of peace and Presence by the sea

         You are Welcome Here…  

                   May 5, 2024

              Friends Together


Many thanks to Eve and Peter McPheeters and all of the volunteers who helped with the Cinco de Mayo gathering last night.  Thanks to everyone who showed up.  Another wonderful event which also helps raise funds for outreach in our community.  We are richly blessed!

Fellowship Teams:  We are looking for volunteers to help with the fellowship hour on Sundays.  If you can contribute nibbles or greet up to four Sundays for the June, July, and August rotation, please contact Beth Baskin in person or at Flexible scheduling is available to accommodate you.

Yard Sale in downtown Biddeford:  Saturday, June 1, 9-1. We can use your help.  Union Church will partner with Second Congregational Church to hold a Yard Sale at their church.  Please consider contributing gently used items to the sale.  Also, we can use more volunteers to help set up and help on the day of the sale. FMI: Candy Blaxter or members of our Community Outreach Committee.

Union Church Summer Speaker Series:  By now, hopefully everyone has received an email with the upcoming dates for speakers and ticket sales info.  Tix for the Series will go on sale May 15th with all proceeds to benefit our Community Outreach Programs. The Series begins with Maine author Monica Wood on July 18th.   FMI:  Debbie Lamb or Pastor Paula.

                                    Habitat Support:

Ada Goff and Beth Baskin are participating in the 2024 Habitat for Humanity WOMEN BUILD fundraiser. Habitat’s vision is of a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Habitat works toward its vision by building strength, stability, and self-reliance in partnership with families in need of decent and affordable housing. Women Build is a movement that unites and empowers women to make an impact on affordable housing in the local area.

On June 7 th Ada and Beth will be working with other volunteers and Habitat homeowners at a new home construction site. Please support them with your donation by visiting their fundraising page at, or by check payable to Habitat for Humanity Women Build. You may mail it directly to Ada and Beth at PO Box 41 Biddeford Pool, ME 04006 or give it to them directly. Their combined fundraising goal is $2000. Donations must be received by May 29th .

Music  Violinist Patrick Doane (son of Patricia Mulholland) and pianist Andrius Zlabys will be in concert at the UU Church in Kennebunk May 10 at 7 pm.  Tickets are available at the door with a suggested donation of $25.  They will perform works by Schumann, Prokofiev and their own compositions.  

Patricia Mulholland will lead a five week “Sing Your Spirit” Song Circle for the 55 + on Thursday mornings 11 – 12:15 beginning May 30 at River Tree Arts.  Register at