TrinityB.31.5.2015

Revd Rex A E Hunt

eMail: rexae@optusnet.com.au
Web site:  www.rexaehuntprogressive.com


GATHERING FOR THE CELEBRATION OF LIFE

31 May 2015.  Trinity B/All Heretics Day. (White).
Celebrating Community: Sacrament of Holy Communion


Acknowledgement of Country
(An act towards reconciliation)

For thousands of years Indigenous people have walked
in this land, on their own country.
Their relationship with the land is at the centre of their lives.

We acknowledge the (NN) People and their stewardship
of this land throughout the ages.


(NN) is a safe place for all people to worship regardless of
race, creed, age, cultural background or sexual orientation


GATHERING

Gathering Music

Entry into the Celebration
The gong is sounded three times

Blessed is our God always, now and for ever and to the ages of ages.
 All  
Amen.

Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.
(Silence)

OR

v1   Come, let us gather in this sacred place
Knowing every place is sacred
Where we find peace or energy
Where beauty flourishes
Where we share body, mind and heart…
Come, let us gather in this sacred place (Adapt.Bronwyn Angela White, 2001).

v2   Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.
(Silence)

Lighting of the Community Candle
The candle is lit

Hymn People stand as they are able, to sing
 “
Lithe Spirit You’re Bounding and Leaping(Tune: 9 8 11 8)     85 WNC
 Lithe spirit you’re bounding and leaping,
 stars shimmer and flash from your heels,
 until the whole world burns with pardon and praise,
 until the lost know how love feels.

O harlequin dazzle by dancing,
let joy spring like sparks from a flame,
until every person consumed by your love
comes blithely to join in your game.

Come juggler, spinning and turning
 our chances and dreams like a top,
 until all our values are turned upside down
 whirl on through the world, never stop.
APratt

OR

As The Wind Song(Tune: ‘Wairua Tapu’ – Holy Spirit)      7 HoS
As the wind song through the trees,
as the stirring of the breeze,
so it is with the Spirit of God,
as the heart made strangely warm,
as the voice within the storm,
so it is with the Spirit of God.
Never seen, ever known
where this wind has blown
bringing life, bringing power to the world,
as the dancing tongues of fire,
as the soul’s most deep desire,
so it with the Spirit of God.

As the rainbow after rain,
as the hope that’s born again,
so it is with the Spirit of God,
as the green in the spring,
as a kite on a string,
so it it is with the Spirit of God,
making worlds that are new,
making peace come true,
bringing gifts, bringing love to the world,
as the rising of the yeast,
as the wine at the feast,
so it is with the Spirit of God.
(Shirley E Murray)

Opening Sentences
God beyond all names and images,
All
we worship you in faith.
God in the Christ with human face
All we worship you in truth.
God who moves, draws, forms and enlightens our life,
All we worship you in Spirit.

God in relationship.
God the beginning and God the end,
you are our God. (Adapt/Pitt St. Uniting/eoj)

Act of Awareness
Here, in this space made sacred by our shared lives and yearnings,
may we find new courage,
new generosity of spirit,
forgiveness given and received,
and rededication to the higher purposes of our lives.

OR

We pray:
Source of Life and Love we name God
in you we live and move and have our being.

Jesus, Companion and Liberator,
with you we walk the way of love.

Empowering and Imaginative Spirit,
through you we are made one.

God, trinity of love, we seek you in the dance of life.
We embrace your love.
We would dance.
This is the meaning of the resurrection, that we can dance.

Alleluia.  (Adapt.KGalloway/cw)
Amen.

(Note: A suggested process for introducing new hymns, called Hymn of the Month, can be found HERE)

Hymn O Threefold God(Tune: Unity)    110 AA
O threefold God of tender unity,
life’s great unknown that binds and sets us free:
felt in our loving, greater than our thought,
you are the mystery found, the mystery sought.

O blaze of radiance, source of light that blinds,
the fiery splendour of prophetic minds,
you live in mystery, yet within us dwell;
life springs from you as from a living well.

Most loving Parent, Child of joys and pains,
creative Spirit, life-force that sustains,
in bone and flesh, in blood we touch your hand,
your face we see in water, air and land.

In every making, each creative dream
and in the flowing of life’s healing stream,
when love is born or people reconciled,
we share your life, O Parent, Spirit, Child.

O threefold God of tender unity,
life’s great unknown that binds and sets us free:
felt in our loving, greater than our thought,
you are the mystery found, the mystery sought.
(W Wallace)
People sit

Welcome In your own words
A warm welcome is extended to all.
Especially those who are worshipping at (NN) for the first time,
or who have returned after an absence.

Your presence both enriches us and this time of celebration together.
Refer to printed liturgy.
Fellowship hour following worship.
Those visiting, please sign our Visitors book.

CENTERING

Meditation
"Welcome stranger!"
By Susan Hardwick.
Entertaining Angels/3.

Welcome, Stranger!
Place your palm
against my own.

Let us interlace
our fingers.

Then together
we will weave
the threads of our lives
into a wondrous vision;

a bright new
tapestry of dreams,
of times to come.

Centering Silence
May we give thanks for all the silences in our lives:
the silence of sunrise,
the silence of mist on the lake,
the silence at the end of a story,
the silence between notes of music,
the silence between us here…

(Silence) 

Music of Reflection

EXPLORING

Readings from broad Religious Tradition
Two readings from our broad religious tradition shall now be offered.
They will be read by (NN).

The World around us:
"Perspective"
By Bruce Prewer.  Seeing Christ in Others/247-48.

The Spirit knitted
my frayed hopes
and in a moment
set me on a high
but lowly place.

I saw the whole majesty
of the human story
unfolding before me,
from the first wanderings
to Mother Teresa's smile.

Abraham and Sarah passed by,
Nefertiti flowered and died,
Homer recited his verse,
Rome marched triumphant,
and Light exploded in Bethlehem.

John wrote his gospel,
Francis and Clare led the poor,
Leonardo painted Mona Lisa,
Mozart eavesdropped on heaven,
Einstein deciphered a mystery.

In one moment of sight
I beheld your glory,
the unlikely splendour
shining wondrously
from one small planet’s dust.

Yet it was all contained
easily in one drop of dew
on one needle of one sheoak,
caught briefly in the light
of the rising sun.

OR

“Australia Street”
By Brenda Saunders. Eureka Street, Vol 22, No. 10. 21/5/2012

I know it's autumn when exotic imports

lose their cargo of leaves

Empty branches startle the sky

Northern cut-outs curling in the sun

catch on fence wire at the school

flooding gutters after rain

In summer the gumtree
in our yard
slims down, mindful of the dry spell

Oily crescents pressed underfoot
soften the asphalt under the line

Loose bark hangs in strips for weeks

like forgotten underwear
Gum nuts line the pathway to the bin

tiny hulls, our hidden progeny.

Traditional Gospel:
John 3:1-9: (NRSV)

Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews.
He came to Jesus by night and said,
'Rabbi, we know you are a teacher who has come from God;
for no one can do these signs that you do
apart from the presence of God.'

Jesus answered,
'Truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God
without being born from above.'

'But how can anyone be born after having grown old?' Nicodemus said...

'Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?'

Jesus answered,
'Truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God
without being born of water and Spirit.
What is born of the flesh is flesh,
and what is born of the Spirit is spirit.

'Do not be astonished that I said to you,
You must be born from above.

'The wind blows where it chooses,
and you hear the sound of it,
but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes.

'So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.'

Nicodemus said to Jesus,
'How can these things be...?'

Contemporary Word

Contemporary Word2 - Environment Sunday

Silence for Personal Reflection

AFFIRMING

Litany in Praise of the Trinity (Optional)
The people stand as they are able

Worthy of praise from every mouth,
All worthy of confession from every tongue,
worthy of worship from every creature,
All
is your glorious name, O Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

For you created the world in your grace,
All and by your compassion you saved the world.

To your majesty, O God,
ten thousand times ten thousand bow down and adore,
All
singing and praising without ceasing, and saying:
Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts;
All
heaven and earth are full of your praises.
Hosanna in the highest. Nestorian Liturgy, 5th Century/UIW

OR

Litany to Cherish your Doubts (Optional)
People stand as they are able

Cherish your doubts, for doubt
is the attendant of truth.
All  Doubt is the key to the door of knowledge;
it is the servant of discovery.

A belief which may not be questioned
binds us to error, for there is
incompleteness and imperfection in every belief.
All  Doubt is the touchstone of truth;
it is an acid which eats away the false.

Let no one fear for the truth,
that doubt may consume it;
for doubt is a testing of belief.
All  The truth stands boldly and unafraid;
it is not shaken by the testing:

for truth, if it be truth, arises
from each testing stronger, more secure.
All  Those that would silence doubt are filled with fear;
their houses are built on shifting sands.

But those who do not fear doubt,
and know its use, are founded on rock.
All  They shall walk in the light of growing knowledge;
the work of their hands shall endure.

Therefore let us not fear doubt,
but let us rejoice in its help:
All  It is to be wise as a staff to the blind;
doubt is the attendant of truth
(RTWeston/slt)

Sharing 'The Peace'
God makes peace within us.  Let us claim it.
God makes peace between us.  Let us share it.
(nwi)
Let us greet another as a sign of God's peace.

The peace of God is here... to stay. (Iona)
All Thanks be to God.
You are invited to share the peace with your neighbours.

Hymn   People stand as they are able, to sing
God of Diversity(Tune: ‘Margaret’. By Colin Gibson)    40 HoS
God of diversity, vibrant creation
is bursting with signs of extravagant joy.
In riot of blossom, in species unnumbered
we see that all difference is ours to enjoy.

God of diversity, nations and cultures
tell of the richness life offers to all.
In language and symbol, in story and doctrine
we clothe our experience, respond to your call.

God of diversity, humans embody
the interdependence of ear, eye and hand;
we struggle to learn, in this globe-become-village,
our need of each other in every land.

God of diversity, help us to honour
our different perspectives on things that are true,
as, knowing more deeply the God in Christ Jesus,
we learn how to worship with all who love you. (MBond)

OR

Canyons Heave and Mountains Tumble” (Nepal Lament) (Tune: 88 88)
Canyons heave and mountains tumble,
earth beneath will shift and rumble,
quaking buildings tilting and falling
will God never heed our calling?
Like some hell afire with trouble,
children buried in the rubble:
seems there is no hope or reason,
fear unleashed, death finds its season.

Here in utter desperation
harmed by nature's harsh mutation,
will we ask 'is God against us’,
seeking to deny or test us?
When, O when, as life is rattled
and we feel dislodged, embattled,
will an avalanche of praying
turn a God bent on betraying?

Then when rubble ceases moving,
still God's grace, it seems, needs proving.
All our trust and hope is waning,
faith is taut, near breaking, straining.
Yet, as neighbours, sharing grieving,
let us bring God's love, relieving
fears that leave the world unsleeping
seeding trust, God's grace unceasing. © Stainer & Bell 12/5/2015

CELEBRATING

Reflections and Prayers
Care Candle:
We are people of all ages who enter this space
bringing our joys and concerns.

Joys and concerns shared.

Focused Thoughts:

Listening Response:
As one heart is lifted
All May we share its celebration
As one heart is burdened
All
May we share the pain it knows (GVosper/wwg)

And so we take this flame and light our special care candle.
The Care candle is lit

For ourselves, for those named or remembered,
and in solidarity with those

who have not the freedom to express their concern or celebration
for fear of discrimination or condemnation…

In all our joys and in all our concerns, may we be ever mindful
of the presentness of God among us,
and to see new possibilities of the now.

The 'Abba' Prayer:
You are invited to pray in the spirit of the Lord's Prayer, and in your original language, as appropriate

All Life-Giver, Pain-Bearer, Love-Maker.
Source of all that is and that shall be.

Father and Mother of us all,
Loving God, in whom is heaven:
The hallowing of your name echo
through the universe!
The way of your justice be followed
by all peoples of the world!

Your heavenly will be done
by all created beings!
Your commonwealth of peace and freedom
sustain our hope and come on earth.

With the bread we need for today, feed us.
In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In times of temptation and test, strengthen us.
From trials too great to endure, spare us.
From the grip of all that is evil, free us.

For you reign in the glory of the power that is love,
now and forever.  Amen. (UIW2)

Conversation with the children
Children gather on conversation mat

Conversation:

"Somewhere someone”:
The kingdom of love is coming because... 
All  
somewhere someone is kind when others are unkind,
somewhere someone shares with another in need,
somewhere someone refuses to hate, while others hate,
somewhere someone is patient - and waits in love,
somewhere someone returns good for evil,
somewhere someone serves another, in love,
somewhere someone is calm in a storm,
somewhere someone is loving everybody.
Is that someone you?
(jke)

Offerings
Our offerings for the celebration of life in this place and beyond,
and our gifts of bread and wine, shall now be received
.

Presentation
Eternal Presence of God
may our lives be expanded and enhanced.

Let our gratitude for life be expressed in our generosity.
Let our faith be expressed in good causes.
Let our belief in the future find full expression
in our daily attitude of mind. FMacnab/fwb-adapt

CELEBRATING COMMUNITY: SACRAMENT OF HOLY COMMUNION
Welcome to the Table
At this table we give thanks for
justice, love, peace and freedom.
Mn At this table we give thanks for friends and strangers
together in community in this safe place.
Wm
At this table we welcome old and young.

v2 A place at the table.  And all are invited.

Thanksgiving
We give thanks for the unfolding of matter,
mind,
intelligence,
and life
that has brought us to this moment in time.
All
We celebrate our common origin with everything that exists.

v1 We celebrate the mystery we experience and address as ‘God’.
ground and sustainer of everything that exists,
in whom we live and move and have our being.

v2 And we acknowledge this mystery embodied in every human person,
aware that each one of us gives God unique and personal expression.
All God is everywhere present.
In grace-filled moments of sharing.
In carefully created communities of loving solidarity.

We are one with everything, living and nonliving, on this planet.
Connected.
Interrelated.
Interdependent.

The Story
We remember the stories from our tradition...

How on many occasions Jesus would share a meal with friends.
Bread and wine shared in community.
v2 For everyone born, a place at the table...

How the bread would be taken,
a blessing offered, and then shared between them.
And all of them ate.

How some wine would be poured out,
a blessing offered, and then passed between them.
And all of them drank.

v2 May the passion for life as seen in Jesus,
and in the lives and struggles of many other
committed and faithful people then and now,
enable us to dare and to dream and to risk…

All Together may we re-imagine the world.
Together may we work to make all things new.
All
Together may we celebrate the possibilities and hope
we each have and are called to share.

v1 For everyone born, a place at the table...

Bread and Wine
Bread is broken several times

We break the bread for the broken earth,
ravaged and plundered for greed.
All May there be healing of our beautiful blue and green planet.

We break this bread for our broken humanity,
for the powerful and the powerless
trapped by exploitation and oppression.
All May there be the healing of humanity.

We break this bread for those who follow other paths:
for those who follow the noble path of the Buddha,
the yogic path of the Hindus;
the way of the Eternal Guru of the Sikhs;
and for the children of Abraham and Sarah,
the Jews, and the Muslims.
All May there be healing where there is pain and woundedness.

We break this bread for the unhealed hurts
and wounds that lie within us all.
All May we be healed.

Wine is poured into the cup.
This is the cup of peace and of new life for all.
A sign of love for the community of hope.
All
A reminder of the call to live fully,
to love wastefully, and
to be all that we can be.

Communion
To eat and drink together reminds us
of the deeper aspects of human fellowship,
for from time immemorial
the sharing of bread and wine
has been the most universal of all symbols of community.
The bread and wine will be served

After Communion
Divine Presence in all of life,
we give thanks that we have gathered together
in this sacred place.
All
We rejoice in the giftedness of each person here.
We are grateful for who we are for each other.
May we continue to be truly thankful
in all we do and in all we become.

SCATTERING

Hymn People stand as they are able, to sing
God of Unexplored Tomorrows(Tune: ‘Marching’, 87 87. 165 TiS)   27 (v1-2) FFS
God of unexplored tomorrows,
of today and yesterday,
God of rock and flowing river,
be our refuge, be our way.

Guardian rock above, before us,
strong foundation where we build,
landmark through the haze of doubting,
shelter where our fears are stilled,

Remain standing

Parting Words
As we prepare to leave this sacred space
where we have worshipped together,
let us return to our work and school
enlivened and renewed...
The candle is extinguished

Now may our wisdom show itself
in deeds of compassion and
in acts of understanding.
All
May the fruits of the spirit
be apparent in our lives (Adapt.PR Giles)

Words of Blessing
The blessing of the God of Sarah
and Hagar, as of Abraham…

The blessing of the Son,
born of the woman Mary…

The blessing of the Holy Spirit
who broods over us
as a mother, her children,
be with you all.
(Wilson/cw)
All So be it!.

Hymn (Cont). God of Unexplored Tomorrows”  (Tune: 165 TiS)   27 (v3-4) FFS
Be the cleansing, quenching water,
irrigate, disturb and move,
stir us from our easy shallows,
current of refreshing love.

God of rock and flowing river
now and ever with us stand,
to transform our land of promise
into each one's promised land.
BJones
The people sit

'This Week' at (NN)
Notices
Birthdays and anniversaries
Significant events
Journey candles

Music

Fellowship
Morning tea is now served.
You are invited to share in the moment of fellowship.

You are invited to keep this copy of the liturgy and take it home with you
to share with another member of your family, or with a friend

I recommend the use of LicenSing - Copyright cleared music for churches



Some of the resources used in shaping this liturgy:
(AA) Alleluia Aotearoa. Hymns and Songs for all Churches. 1993. Raumati. New Zealand Hymnbook Trust.
Binkley, C. G. & J. M. McKeel. 2001. 
Jesus and his Kingdom of Equals. An International Curriculum on the Life and Teaching of Jesus. Santa Rosa. Polebridge Press.
Duncan, G. (ed). 2005. 
Entertaining Angels. A Worship Anthology on Sharing Christ’s hospitality. Norwich. The Canterbury Press.
Duncan, G. (ed). 1998. 
Seeing Christ in Others. An Anthology for Worship, Mediation and Mission. Norwich. The Canterbury Press.
(FFS) Faith Forever Singing. Songs for a New Day. 2000. Raumati. New Zealand Hymnbook Trust. 
Holy Bible. NRSV. 1989. Nashville. Thomas Nelson Publishers.
(HoS) Hope Is Our Song. New Hymns and Songs from Aotearoa New Zealand. 2009. Palmerston North. New Zealand Hymnbook Trust.
Iona Community. 2001. 
Iona Abbey Worship Book. Glasgow. Wild Goose Publications.
Macnab, F. 2006. 
A Fine Wind Is Blowing: Psalms of the Bible in Words that Blow You Away. Richmond. Spectrum Publications.
McRae-McMahon, D. 1993. 
Echoes Of Our Journey. Liturgies of the People. Melbourne. JBCE.
(WNC) Pratt, A. 2002. 
Whatever Name or Creed. Hymns and Songs. London. Stainer & Bell Ltd.
(SLT) Singing the Living Tradition. 1993.Boston. UUA.
The St Hilda Community. 1996. 
The New Women Included. A Book of Services and Prayers. London.  SPCK.
Uniting in Worship 2. 2005. Sydney. Uniting Church Press.
Vosper, G. 2008. 
With or Without God. Why the way we Live is more important that what we Believe. Canada: Toronto. HarperCollins.
Ward, H. &  J. Wild, J Morley. (ed). 1995. 
Celebrating Women. New edition. London. SPCK.

Web sites/Other:
Giles. UUA Worship Web. Boston. <www.uua.org/spirituallife/worshipweb/>
"Australia Street". Brenda Saunders is a Koori poet from the Wiradjuri Nation.
Bronwyn Angela White, Wellington, New Zealand. < http://www.spirit-and-faith.com/16346232>
Andrew Pratt
“Canyons Heave and Mountains Tumble”. Direct from the author.

The Communion Liturgy:
Shaped from resources created by and adapted from: Carter Heyward, L Bruce Miller, Michael Morwood, Shirley E Murray, David Bumbaugh, John S Spong,
Rex A E Hunt, the Iona Community. It also appears in "
Why Werent We Told? A Handbook on Progressive Christianity.

rexae74@gmail.com