Advent3C.16.12.2018

Revd Rex A E Hunt

eMail:  rexae@optusnet.com.au  OR  rexae74@gmail.com
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The Other Lectionary’ - a suggested ‘southern hemisphere’ Lectionary (with a few Resources added)
offered in parallel to, or even replacement of,
the RCL which is in standard use by many.


A GATHERING LITURGY FOR THE
CELEBRATION OF LIFE
16 December 2018. Advent 3C. (Blue).

Worth Pondering
“The creative advance of any generation
rests upon the responsiveness of a pitifully small margin
of human consciousness”
(Bernard E Meland)

Acknowledgement of Country/First Peoples
(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 of the (N) Nation, past and present,
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

Rich and Striking Visuals
          “The function of beauty… is to make us aware of a reality which is richer and deeper
          and more marvellous than anything we can dream or conceive.” (Henry N. Wieman)
          Artwork OR Floral/Symbols display (cloths, candles, stones, wood, leaves, flowers, earth, water) OR projection of Film/Slides 

Gathering Music

Entry into the Celebration
The gong is rung three times

v1  The season of Advent challenges us
to see God's vision of what is yet to be,
to hear God's voice calling anew,
to smell the scent of God in our world.

v2  Peace be upon all who enter this house.
Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.

Music of Celebration

THE ADVENT WREATH WITH THE CHILDREN
Advent 3
The light grows brighter
and the nights are mild;
excitement is building
in every true child.
All  
Come, companion Jesus, walk with us.

v1  Let us prepare a manger in our hearts
for the birth of the sacred.
v3  Why do we light a third candle?
v2  This third candle reminds us of joy.
A third candle is lit.

We give thanks that throughout this season of joy
there are so many opportunities
to lift hearts in celebration.  (Gretta Vosper/ab)

OR

v4  joy
is found in the moment
when the tables turn
and the veil of denial is lifted
displaying vulnerability and fear,
colliding with hope and promise,
mingling together.

a tingle growing warm,
lurching forward is joy.

This is why we light a candle for joy.  Kathy Hawker

Note: (i) A suggested process for introducing new hymns, called Hymn of the Month, can be found HERE
(ii) Additional Special Purpose Hymns that cover major international events or themes can be found HERE  They include these categories: 1. Bush (Brush) Fire, 2. Tsunami, Storms/Cyclones, 3. Earthquakes, 4. War/Remembrance, 5. Caregiving, 6. God as Mother, 7. Human Trafficking, 8. Disabled, 9. Migration/Refugees, 10. Terrorist Attacks, 11. Science/Cosmology
(iii) PLUS some specific resources on Terrorism 
HERE

Hymn   In solidarity with those for whom standing is not easy or possible we will remain seated to sing...
Anna’s Song                                              55(v1-3) ISIT
Lift this child to the sun,
Raise this child to the sky;
God has come from above,
Come to earth from on high.
Lift this child, lift this child to the sun.

Lay this child on the ground,
One with us, one with earth;
Let God know in his son,
Human clay, human birth.
Lay this child, lay this child on the ground.

Place this child in the shade,
Hang this child ‘neath a tree;
With his hand on the wood,
May this child set us free.
Place this child, place this child in the shade.
  © Norman Habel.

Opening Sentences
Let us acknowledge the awesome mystery embodied in every person.
All  
Through us God comes to unique and personal expression.

Let us give thanks
for the abundance of life on this earth.
All  Through it we and all people may be nourished. 
(Michael Morwood/adapt)

Act of Awareness
The earth is blossoming forth colour, and flower.
The earth is blossoming forth newness and creativity.
This is the time of year when nature is full of possibility.

Let us blossom forth colour, creativity, and flair.
Let us break out of old patterns, old moulds,
nd array ourselves in a cloak of many blossoming 
colours.  (Kathleen Glennon/hs)

OR

We pray:
Holy One of many names,
whose presence we most often recognise only in retrospect,
may we be blessed this day.

In this season of Advent,
may we become more aware of your presentness.

May we see you in each other,
hear you in the music,
hold you, as we give and receive gifts of love.
May it be so.

Hymn  People stand as they are able, to sing
Star-Child, Earth-Child”                       40(ii) COC
Star-Child, earth-Child
go-between of God,
love Child, Christ Child,
heaven's lightning rod,
Refrain:
This year, this year,
let the day arrive,
when Christmas comes
for everyone,
everyone alive!

Street child, beat child
no place left to go,
hurt child, used child,
no one wants to know,
Refrain:

Grown child, old child,
mem'ry full of years,
sad child, lost child,
story told in tears,
Refrain:

Spared child, spoiled child,
having, wanting more,
wise child, faith child
knowing joy in store,
Refrain:

Hope-for-peace Child,
God's stupendous sign,
down-to-earth Child,
star of stars that shine,
Refrain:
                       (Shirley Erena Murray)

OR

We Stand in Awe”  (Tune: ‘Crucifer’, 10.10 Refrain)      60 SNS4
Refrain:
We stand in awe; the mystery is supreme;
The cosmos sings aloud the sacred dream.

All time and space proclaim this melody
Of order and chaos, strange complexity.
Refrain:

Stars shine above; our sun gives warmth and light;
We bathe in its gifts and that with great delight.
Refrain:

Earth in its beauty showers us with wealth,
All things that we need for human least and health.
Refrain:

With all of nature in diversity
We are the heirs of endless energy.  (George Stuart)
Refrain:
The people sit after the hymn

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

Reflection
"The Moment of Magic"
By Victoria Safford/
adapted

Now is the moment of magic,
when the whole, round earth sits warm under a summer sun,
and here's a blessing:
the days are longer and brighter now.

Now is the moment of magic,
when people beaten down and broken,
with nothing left but misery and candles
and their own clear voices,
kindle tiny lights and whisper secret music,
and here's a blessing:
the universe is suddenly illuminated by the lights of Christmas,
and the whole world is glad and loud with summer singing.

Now is the moment of magic,
when an eastern star beckons the blazing sunset
to linger a little longer,
and here's a blessing:
they find nothing in the end but an ordinary baby,
born at midnight, born in poverty, and the baby's cry,
like bells ringing, makes people wonder
as they wander through their lives,
what human love might really look like,
sound like,
feel like.

Now is the moment of magic,
and here's a blessing:
we already possess all the gifts we need;