Be a Force for Change (People carrying red ribbon)

World AIDS Day 1998

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Scriptural Selections

Of the 30 million people alive today with HIV infection or AIDS, at least a third are young people aged 10-24. Along with others throughout the world, United Methodists observe World AIDS Day. This year's World AIDS Day observance invites all of us to become a force for change.




Psalm 103: God Is Merciful and Gracious

1 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits--
3 who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
5 who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
6 The LORD works vindication and justice for all who are oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the people of Israel.
8 The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 He will not always accuse, nor will he keep his anger forever.
10 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west, so far he removes our transgressions from us.
13 As a father has compassion for his children, so the LORD has compassion for those who fear him.
14 For he knows how we were made; he remembers that we are dust.
15 As for mortals, their days are like grass; they flourish like a flower of the field;
16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more.
17 But the steadfast love of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children's children,
18 to those who keep his covenant and remember to do his commandments.
19 The LORD has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all.
20 Bless the LORD, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his bidding, obedient to his spoken word.
21 Bless the LORD, all his hosts, his ministers that do his will.
22 Bless the LORD, all his works, in all places of his dominion. Bless the LORD, O my soul.

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Psalm 147: God Heals the Brokenhearted

1 Praise the LORD! How good it is to sing praises to our God; for he is gracious, and a song of praise is fitting.
2 The LORD builds up Jerusalem; he gathers the outcasts of Israel.
3 He heals the brokenhearted, and binds up their wounds.
4 He determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names.
5 Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure.
6 The LORD lifts up the downtrodden; he casts the wicked to the ground.
7 Sing to the LORD with thanksgiving; make melody to our God on the lyre.
8 He covers the heavens with clouds, prepares rain for the earth, makes grass grow on the hills.
9 He gives to the animals their food, and to the young ravens when they cry.
10 His delight is not in the strength of the horse, nor his pleasure in the speed of a runner;
11 but the LORD takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love.

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Matthew 9: The Story of the Paralyzed Man and His Friends

1 And after getting into a boat he crossed the sea and came to his own town.
2 And just then some people were carrying a paralyzed man lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven."
3 Then some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man is blaspheming."
4 But Jesus, perceiving their thoughts, said, "Why do you think evil in your hearts?
5 For which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Stand up and walk'?
6 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins"--he then said to the paralytic--" Stand up, take your bed and go to your home."
7 And he stood up and went to his home.
8 When the crowds saw it, they were filled with awe, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to human beings.

Matthew 9: The Story of the Woman Suffering from Bleeding

20 Then suddenly a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his cloak,
21 for she said to herself, "If I only touch his cloak, I will be made well."
22 Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, "Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well." And instantly the woman was made well.

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The Scripture quotations contained herein are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright (c) 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A., and are used by permission. All rights reserved.


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