SHABBAT FELLOWSHIP

The following service is especially designed for Lay Leaders and is based on the Jewish traditional observance of the Sabbath (Shabbat) ~ a practice also observed in the early Celtic Church.

The lighting of the Sabbath candles formally ushers in the Sabbath. The candles should be lit by a woman approximately 20 minutes before sundown on Friday. The minimum number of candles is two (symbolizing the two forms of the 4th Commandment found in Exodus 20:8 and Deuteronomy 5:12). White candles are preferred but any festive candles may be used as long as they are intended specifically for the Sabbath and are large enough to burn during the service.

The Sabbath candles should be placed on the table where the fellowship meal is to be eaten or in a space set aside in the same room. The table set for the meal should also contain a covered loaf of bread (unleavened from Advent to Easter; leavened from Easter to Advent) and a Blessing Cup containing Kosher wine (a non-alcoholic wine may be used).

The Male and Female roles are traditional but in the absence of one or the other they may be performed by either gender.

Blessing of the Sabbath Candles
The candles are lit followed by:

Female Leader: Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe who has sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us to kindle the Sabbath lights which remind us of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Light of the world who shines in the darkness.

Congregation: Amen.

The Greeting

Female Leader: Shabbat Shalom.

Congregation: Shabbat Shalom.

Sabbath Hymn

A song appropriate to the Sabbath should be sung; i.e., Shalom Aleichem or Let There Be Peace on Earth.

 

Blessing of the Children
The Male Leader blesses the male children present saying:

Male Leader: May God make you as Patrick, Aidan, and David.

Male Children: Amen.

The Female Leader bless the female children present saying:

Female Leader: May God make you as Brigit, Ide, and Beverly.

Female Children: Amen.

Male & Female Leader: May the Lord bless you and protect you. May the Lord shine His countenance upon you and be gracious to you. May the Lord favor you and grant you peace.

All Children: Amen.

The Sabbath Remembrance

Male Leader: It was evening and it was morning. On the sixth day the heavens and the earth and all their hosts were completed. For by the seventh day God had completed all His work which He had made. Then God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it He rested from all His work which God had created to function thenceforth. Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe, who hast sanctified us with Thy commandments and hast been pleased with us; in love and favor hast given us Thy holy Sabbath, as a heritage, a memorial of the creation ~ that day being also the first among the holy festivals, in remembrance of the exodus from Egypt, Thou hast chosen us and hallowed us above all nations, and in love and favor hast given us thy holy Sabbath as a heritage. Blessed art Thou, O Lord, who hallowed the Sabbath and made it for man.

Congregation: Amen.

The Male Leader uncovers the bread, lifting it momentarily while reciting the following blessing:

Male Leader: Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe who brings forth bread from the earth as a symbol of our Lord Jesus Christ who rose again from the dead.

Congregation: Amen.

The bread is then cut and slices distributed to all at the table. After each have eaten of the bread the following is said by the Male Leader while holding a full cup of wine in his hand:

Male Leader: Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe who creates the fruit of the vine as a symbol of our Lord Jesus Christ, the first fruit of our salvation, and of whom we are the branches.

Congregation: Amen.

The Male Leader drinks from the cup and passes it around the table for all to drink.

 

Fellowship Dinner

 

If no dinner is scheduled a personal testimony of faith, a discussion of a Scriptural reading, silent meditation, singing of hymns or a combination of same may be used here. At the close of the Fellowship Dinner the service continues.

 

The Apostles' Creed

 

All: I believe in God the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and was born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried. He descended into hell. On the third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven, and is seated on the right hand of the Father from whence He shall come again 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.

 

Intercessory Prayers

Prayers for the needs of the congregation may be offered by those assigned beforehand.

 

The Lord's Prayer (preferably sung)

 

All: 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 debts as we forgive our debtors. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

 

Extinguishing of the Candles

 

Female Leader: Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe, who creates the light of the fire to symbolize the fire of the Holy Spirit which burns in all those of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Congregation: Amen.

 

The Female Leader extinguishes the candles.

 

Male Leader: Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe, who makes a division between the sacred and the profane, between light and darkness, between the Church and the world, between the seventh day and the six working days.

Congregation: Blessed art Thou, Lord, who makes a distinction between the eternal and the fleeting. Amen