Pentecost24A.15.11.2020

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
15 November 2020. Pentecost 24A. (Green).

Worth Pondering
“Humans need stories - grand, compelling stories -
that help to orient us in our lives and in the cosmos”
(Ursula Goodenough)

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 (NN) Nation, past, present, emerging,
and their stewardship of this land throughout the ages.

First Peoples Statement to the Nation 2017 called “Uluru Statement from the Heart” HERE
A Response from Common Dreams5 Conference of Religious Progressives,
Australia/South Pacific 2019 HERE

(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)
          Multi-sensory artwork
OR Floral/Symbols display (cloths, candles, stones, wood, leaves, flowers, earth, water) OR projection of Video

Gathering Music

Entry into the Celebration
The gong is sounded three times

As we gather in all our diversity…
Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.

Lighting of the Community Candle
The Community Candle is lit in silence

In the mystery of life about us there is light.
Let the light we kindle go before us,
strong in hope,
wide in good will,
inviting the new day to come.
  (Adapt.GKBeach)

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) Some specific resources on Terrorism HERE
(iv) On Wonder, Awe, and Nature
HERE

Song/Hymn  The people stand as they are able, to sing
Wonder and Radiance”  (Tune: ‘Faithfulness’, 11.10.11.10 & Refrain)                                        7 SNS3 
Sounds and sweet perfumes are here to delight;
Oceans and mountains and flora and fauna -
Too many marvels for us to recite.
Refrain:
Wonder and radiance,
Beauty, extravagance,
All come together in what we can see;
Nature’s abundance can fill all our senses;
We are in awe of these gifts that are free.

Given for everyone, new and the future ;
Given for sharing, not profit nor greed;
Food for the hungry and drink for the thirsty;
There is sufficient for meeting each need.
Refrain:
Wonder and radiance,
Beauty, extravagance,
All come together in what we can see;
Nature’s abundance can fill all our senses;
We stand in awe of these gifts that are free.

Love and respect for the world all around us
Can make a difference; can halt future deem;
Can bring some healing; prevent destruction;
Show our thanksgiving and help nature bloom.
Refrain:
Wonder and radiance,
Beauty, extravagance -
These priceless gifts are for you and for me;
Nature’s abundance can thrill all our senses;
We must protect and preserve all we see.
  (George Stuart)

OR

For the Music of Creation”                                                                                          41 AA
For the music of creation,
for the song your Spirit sings,
for your sound's divine expression,
burst of joy in living things:
God, our God, the worlds composer,
hear us, echoes of your voice:
music is your art, your glory,
let the human heart rejoice!

Psalms and symphonies exalt you,
drum and trumpet, string and reed,
simple melodies acclaim you,
tunes that rise from deepest need,
hymns of longing and belonging,
carols from a cheerful throat,
lilt of lullaby and lovesong
catching heaven in a note.

All the voices of the ages
in transcendent chorus meet,
worship lifting up the senses,
hands that praise and dancing feet;
over discord and division
music speaks your joy and peace,
harmony of earth and heaven,
song of God that cannot cease! 
Shirley Erena Murray
Remain standing after the hymn

Opening Sentences
As the sea gathers its waters
for the next waves on the shore:
All  
So God’s people gather for loving.

As the notes of harmony congregate
for the sound of music:
All  So God’s people cluster in community.

As the wind sweeps the air
into great clouds of beauty:
All  So God’s people wonder at creation.
(Adapt.Dorothy McRae-McMahon/plpm)

Act of Awareness
Within us is the courage of creators,
to make bold plans,
to make wise use of materials and powers.

Progress is not inevitable,
except when we take that which is merely possible,
and by our determination
make it inevitable. (Kenneth L Patton/sscl)

OR

We pray:
Steadfast God, you visit us in our aloneness
but we express you best in our togetherness.

May our time together express
that quality of fellowship, which is a
true expression of your presentness. 
(Adapt. Donald S Harrington/owos)
May it be so.

Song/Hymn  “Keep Wide Your Heart”  (Tune: ‘Trentham’, Breathe on Me, Breath of God)
Keep wide your heart to love,
all it might ever be.
Count not the cost love may impose;
to pay it, our deepest need.

Keep wide your mind to truth,
all it might ever mean.
All self-delusions, let them go
and truth, it will set you free.

Keep wide your life to dreams
easing the fear-filled night,
until each possibility
glows with a persistent light.

Keep wide the road to hope.
Clear off its weed-fill’d way,
that all might walk it, side by side,
toward a more perfect day.  (© 2016 Gretta Vosper)

OR

"Where the Road Runs Out"                                                                                        156 AA
Where the road runs out and the signposts end,
where we come to the edge of today,
be the God of Abraham for us,
send us out upon our way.
Refrain:
Lord, you were our beginning,
the faith that gave us birth.
We look to you, our ending,
our hope for heaven and earth.

When the coast is left and we journey on
to the rim of the sky and the sea,
be the sailor's friend, be the dolphin Christ,
lead us in to eternity.
Refrain:

When the clouds are low and the wind is strong,
when tomorrow's storm draws near,
be the spirit bird hovering overhead
who will take away our fear. 
Colin Gibson
Refrain:
The people sit

Welcome
In your own words

A warm welcome is extended to all.
Especially those who are gathering 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 the Gathering.
Those visiting, please sign our Visitors book.

CENTERING

Centering Silence
We are gathered together in this sacred place
to seek strength and courage for this, and the coming days.
So let this time of silence gently enfold us.
(Silence)

Here may the world's tumultuous demands fall away.
Here may troubled heart finds rest.
(Silence)

And here once more, may we commit ourselves
to the building of a nobler life, for all humankind.
(Silence)

Music of Reflection

EXPLORING

Wisdom from the Religious Traditions
          “Wisdom is not just special knowledge about something. Wisdom is a way of being, a way of inhabiting the world.
          The beauty of wisdom is harmony, belonging and illumination of thought, action, heart and mind.”
(John O’Donohue)

Reader:  May we be struck by the wisdom of these words
and marked by hearing them.
All   For within story lies meaning, and
within meaning, the wisdom for which we seek. 
(Gretta Vosper/ab)

• “The Life of All”
By Miriam Therese Winter. Bread of Tomorrow/137.  (Based on Psalm 104)

God of power,
God of people,
You are the life of all
that lives,
energy
that fills the earth,
vitality
that brings to birth,
the impetus
toward making whole
whatever is bruised
or broken.

In you we grow