Revd Rex A E Hunt
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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.

CELEBRATION OF LIFE the end the universe can only be explained in terms of celebration.
It is all an exuberant expression of existence itself”

18 September 2022. Season of Creation3/Pentecost 14C. (Green).
Celebrating Community in the Tradition of the Jesus Banquet
Storm Sunday

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, and emerging leaders,
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  

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


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/Video 

Gathering Music

The gong is sounded three times

Lighting of the Community Candle
The Community Candle is lit

This flame is warm as the companionship of friends is warm.
Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.

Entry into the Celebration
v2  Fountain of life…
Pulse of life…Breath of life…
Earth is filled with the presentness of God.

v1  Holy! Holy! Holy!
All the elements are filled with the presentness of God.
Holy! Holy! Holy!
Earth is filled with the presentness of God.
v2  Together this day, let us sense
the face of God in all creativity. (Norman Habel/soc)

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

Hymn/Song  The people stand as they are able, to sing
Let All the Beauty…”  (Tune: ‘Danby’, LM)                                                           326 SLT
Let all beauty we have known
illuminate our hearts and minds.
Rejoice in wonders daily shown,
in faith and joy, and love that binds.

We celebrate with singing hearts
the loveliness of sky and earth,
the inspiration of the arts,
the miracle of ev’ry birth.

Life’s music and its poetry
surround and bless us through our days.
For these we sing in harmony,
together giving thanks and praise. (Dana McLean Greeley)
Remain standing

Opening Sentences
The spirit of Creativity God has hovered over the waters…

This day we invite the elements of the storm to gather with us.
The wild winds and the dark clouds,
the lightning flash and the thunder roll.
We invite the hurricane to join us in wonder:
All  The fierce gales and blinding rains,
the crashing waves and swaying trees.

But with our invitation there are questions.
Where is Creativity God in all of this?
In the storm?
In the cyclone?
In the tsunami?

In the thunder of the storm,
Or in the stillness after the storm?

Act of Awareness
In these early days called Springtime,
we give thanks for the opportunity we have
to worship and celebrate this day.

May we be surrounded with a very real sense
of the sacred as we spend this time together.


We pray:
As we face the storms of this world, we celebrate
the wonders of the wind and the weather.

May we see the presentness of Creativity God
not only in the forces of nature, but also
among those who suffer from natural disasters.

May we continue to care for all life on this Earth,
especially in the face of change or disaster.
May it be so.

Hymn/Song   We Are The Earth…(Tune: ‘Ein’ Feste Burg’,                    30 SLT
We are the earth upright and proud;
in us the earth is knowing.
It’s winds are music in our mouths,
in us its rivers flowing.
The sun is our hearth-fire;
warm with the earth’s desire,
and with its purpose strong,
we sing earth’s pilgrim song;
in us the earth is growing.

We lift our voices, fill the skies
with our exultant singing.
We dedicate our minds and hearts,
to order, beauty bringing.
Our labor is our strength;
our love will win at length;
our minds will find the ways 
to live in peace and praise.
Our day is just beginning. (Kenneth L Patton)
The people sit after the hymn

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.


A warm welcome is extended to all.
Especially those who may be joining us for a first time.

Your presence enriches this gathering and contributes to 
the creative evolution of community. 
Thanks for the gift of you! 
 (Central United, Moncton, Canada)

This morning we continue the Season of Creation.
And the third theme is Storm Sunday.

As you entered the Gathering space this morning
you received a twig of rosemary.
Rub it between your fingers and share with the person next to you
a special memory of a storm or extreme weather
that raised questions for you. 


We remember fierce storms in our lives, moments
when we raised questions about our role
in our changing and sometimes dangerous world.
We remember asking ‘why?’

Now away from the busyness of life
and in the silence of this sacred place,
let us give thanks for the gift of all the elements,
and the mystery of an endless horizon
stretching out across the Earth.

Question, family, question!
Question, family, question.

Music of Reflection


Reading from our broad Biblical Tradition
A story from our biblical tradition will be told by (NN).

Reader:  Into this day will break moments of awareness,
tiny shards of light that illumine
the whole reality of existence.
May this reading be such a moment
and may we be blessed by its gift.  (Gretta Vosper/ab)

Traditional Gospel:
Luke 15: 1-10

The tax collecters and the sinners were all seeking the company of Jesus to hear what he had to say,
and the Pharisees and the scribes complained. 
'This person,' they said, ‘welcomes sinners and eats with them.

'So Jesus spoke this parable to them:
'Who among you with a hundred sheep, losing one, 
would not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the missing one till it was found? 
And having found it, would the shepherd not joyfully take it on his shoulders and then, 
when he got home, call together his friends and neighbours?     
   "Rejoice with me,” the shepherd would say, 'l have found my sheep that was lost.” 

‘In the same way, I tell you, these will be more rejoicing in heaven 
over one repentant sinner than over ninety-nine virtuous who have no need of repentance.‘

‘Or again, what woman with ten drachmas would not, if she lost one,
light a lamp and sweep out the house and search thoroughly till she found it? 
And then, when she had found it, call together friends and neighbours?   
   "Rejoice with me," she would say, "l have found the drachma I lost.”

‘In the same way, l tell you, there is rejoicing among the angels of God 
over one repentant sinner.‘


“Sleeping in the Forest”
Mary Oliver. Sleeping In The Forest  

I thought the earth remembered me,
she took me back so tenderly,
arranging her dark skirts, her pockets
full of lichens and seeds.

I slept as never before, a stone on the river bed,
nothing between me and the white fire of the stars
but my thoughts, and they floated light as moths
among the branches of the perfect trees.

All night I heard the small kingdoms
breathing around me, the insects,
and the birds who do their work in the darkness.
All night I rose and fell, as if in water,
grappling with a luminous doom. By morning
I had vanished at least a dozen times
into something better.

Season of Creation3 Gospel:  (Open English Bible/A New New Testament)
Luke 8: 22-25

One day about that time, Jesus got into a boat with his followers and said to them:
"Let us go across the lake."

So they put off.

While they were sailing, Jesus fell asleep.
A squall swept down the lake,
and their boat was filling and they were in danger.

So they came and roused him. "Master, Master," they cried, "we are lost!”
Jesus rose and rebuked the wind and the rushing waves,
and they fell, and a calm followed.

"Where is your confidence?" he exclaimed.
But in great awe and amazement they said to one another:
"Who can this be, who commands even the winds and the waves,
and they obey him?


New Gospel:
The Thunder: Perfect Mind 1:2-5; 2:7-10

Look to me, all you who contemplate me
Audience, hear me
Those expecting me, receive me
Don't chase me from your sight
Don't let your voice or your hearing hate me
Don't ignore me any place, any time
Be careful.  Do not ignore me
I am the first and the last...

I am both awareness and obliviousness
I am humiliation and pride
I am without shame
I am ashamed
I am security and I am fear
I am war and peace
Pay attention to me...

Contemporary Exploration

Silence for Personal Reflection


A Litany (Optional)
In response to the word reflected on, let us stand
and share together a litany for the Earth.
The people stand as they are able

v1  Earth teach me!
Le  Earth teach me patience
as the plants grow slowly
Earth teach me hope
as the first shoots break through

Le  Earth teach me courage
as the wild animals protect their young
Earth teach me blessing
as the sun rises each day

Le  Earth teach me loving kindness
as the birds migrate for winter
Earth teach me freedom
as the birds who fly alone

Le  Earth teach me celebration
as the apples come to full fruit
Earth teach me yearning
as the rain nourishes the drought.

v1  Earth teach me. (Margie Abbott/sotc)

Sharing 'The Peace
Let us take a moment to celebrate each other.

May a heart of peace rest with you.
  And also with you.  (David Galston/q)
You are invited to share the peace with your neighbours.

Hymn/Song  People stand as they are able, to sing
Wild Waves of Storm(Tune: ‘Wild Waves’,                                          80 SLT
Wild waves of storm,
the wonder of the wind and crashing sea,
nature in power and might and majesty,
yet wonder more in deep tranquility,
sea, calm and still.

Migrating birds,
in flocks intent upon far distant shore
great wonder hold; yet there is wonder more
when lonely eagle, watchful on a post,
sits, calm and still.

All people one
in urgent haste, on some great enterprise,
hearts beating fast, great dreams to realize,
yet in the soul a dream of richer prize,
serene and still.

Then striving cease:
from troubled turmoil seek an inward goal;
tranquillity shall make the spirit whole.
Be still, and know a Presence in the soul,
serene, alive. (Sydney H Knight/adapt)

With the Children
Children gather on the conversation mat


"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?  (Binkley & McKeel/jke)

Reflections and Prayers
Care Candle:
We are people of all ages who enter this space
bringing our joys and concerns.
Joys and Celebrations; Griefs and Concerns shared

Focused Thoughts:

Listening Response:
In this abundant blessing
We share the joy.
In this, our time of need,
All  May love abound.  (Gretta Vosper/wwg)

And so we take a 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 the sacred among us,
and to see the new possibilities of the now.

The 'Abba' Prayer: (Optional)
You are invited to pray  in the spirit of the Abba/Lord's Prayer, and in your original language, as that is appropriate

All  Loving Presence, luminous in all creation,
hallowed be your name.
Thy kin-dom come.

May we reflect on earth
the yielding perfection of the heavens.
Help us to receive an illumined measure from the earth this day.

Forgive us when we trespass against others,
human and other than human,
as we forgive others who trespass against us.
Keep us on the path of wisdom
when we are tempted to take the selfish path.

May it be your rule we follow,
your power we exercise,
and your radiance that allures.
May this be the truth that guides our lives,
the ground from which our future will grow,
until we meet again.
 (Bruce Sanguin/dddc)



May our hearts be opened, our hands unclenched,
and our ears unclogged, that we may
feel and touch and taste and see
the breath and play of Creativity God around us.

May it be well with you.
All  And also with you.
Life is a gift and we its celebration.
All  May we rejoice in the beauty that we are. Gretta Vosper/wwg

The earth has gone the round of seasons:
from the vibrant green of spring's new life
to the lush richness of warm summer,
to the brilliant fulfillment of riotous autumn,
to the generosity and self-giving of winter.

Now we stand again, touched by the promise
of new life in the spring.

As we celebrate the renewal of life and hope,
we also celebrate the presentness
of the Spirit of Life and Hope and Creativity,
everywhere around and within us.


No matter who you are, or where you are
on life's journey, you are welcome
at this table with it's symbols of God's Creative Presence.
In company with all who seek nourishment at this table,
we come to celebrate community, and to share
these life-giving symbols.  (Jerry Stinson/adapted)

We celebrate the changing mood of nature:
for sunshine and showers of a spring day.
for the nesting and cheerfulness of birds,
and the flowers of bush and garden…
wattle, heath, and bottle brush.
We give thanks, O Holy God.
We give thanks.

We who hold all such good things in trust,
in the company of each other,
and in company with people throughout the world
declare as generations before us have declared:
Holy, holy, holy, hope-breathing God,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is the one who comes in the name of God.
Hosanna in the highest.

And we celebrate our knowledge of Jesus the Companion,
who taught all to care for 
the birds of the air,
and the grass of the paddock;
living expressions of the Spirit of Life in our midst.

We remember that night among friends,
reclined at table... Jesus again shared a meal with his friends.
Through grain and grape, bread and wine,
and in fellowship together,
Jesus spoke of his enduring love for each of them.

So we take this bread and this wine
mindful of the Spirit at work in our lives.
Thus making our living a source of renewal and hope.

Breaking Bread/Pouring Wine
Bread is broken

 We break this bread in celebration of the great truth
that on this tiny planet, hurtling through cold, empty space,
death is made the servant of life,
and out of death, life is forever resurrected.

Wine poured out

This cup with its fruit of the vine,
is a celebration that things are not always as they seem:
that out of faithfulness and steadfastness,
out of suffering and sorrow,
may come unsought blessings.

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.
Bread and Wine served


Hymn/Song  The people stand as they are able, to sing
(Tune: ‘Martyrdom’ 86.86)
The mingled tears of memory,
of present grief and fear,
reminders for humanity
that death is always near.

The hurricane, the tidal wave,
the terrorist attack,
that fracture faith, unsettle hope,
can cause belief to crack.

For where is God? And what is love
within this finite frame,
where life is trampled underfoot,
destroyed by winds that maim?

Can God be found in broken lives,
where chaos seems to rule?
Forsaken on a cross Christ hung,
made wisdom look a fool.
Remain standing

Parting Words
The presentness of God reaches beyond this place…
The Community Candle is extinguished

Remembering again the elements – storm and the silence…

Will you care for Planet Earth?
We will wonder at the elements around us.
We will protect those of our fauna kin.
We will empathise with the Oceans.
We will be sensitive to the cries of creation.
We will celebrate life!

Words of Blessing
May God the starmaker cradle and circle you.
May God the storyteller beckon and encourage you.
May God the life changer challenge you and cherish you.

May you walk in the light of God’s love and laughter
all the moments of your nights and days. (Ruth Burgess/bb)
All  Amen! May it be so!

Hymn/Song  (Cont)Hurricane(Tune: ‘Martyrdom’ 86.86)
His broken hands reach out to heal,
through human hands today;
compassion sees the need for love
and God still makes a way.

And so amid these mingled tears
we cling to those who care,
and in the silence come to feel
the love of God is there. © Andrew Pratt 31/8/2005
The people sit after the hymn

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


Morning tea is now served.
You are invited to share in this time of fellowship

Connecting With Nature
Some hints from Kai Siedenburg. Poems of Earth and Spirit

1. In the early morning…

  • Greet the day. Notice the sunrise, sky, and weather. Take a few deep breaths and perhaps give thanks
  • Step outside, breathe in the air, and take in the sights and sounds. Notice if birds or other natural neighbours are out and about
  • If you have a garden, visit your plants and see what they’re up to, and maybe water or tend them a bit
  • Go for a walk or exercise outdoors

2. While walking outside…

  • Turn off your device (mobile phone) or leave it behind and notice your surroundings
  • Open your senses and awareness and explore the world around you. Look up, down, and all around
  • Try on different routes to your usual spots - make it a mini adventure
  • Spot beauty, even in small things or unlikely places. Pause to appreciate a flower, plant, or butterfly
  • Marvel at everyday wonders of the world

3. While you’re driving or travelling…

  • Choose routes with more plants, trees, or water, ideally without increasing your carbon footprint
  • While you’re at a red light or stuck in traffic, see if you can find something natural or beautiful to look at. (Give those median-strip plants some love)
  • When you arrive somewhere, take in your surroundings, noticing the presence of the natural world

4. At mealtimes…

  • Before you enjoy a meal, pause to notice the food on your plate and the abundance it represents.
  • As you eat, appreciate the flavours, textures, and aromas
  • Speak words of thanksgiving for your meal, your day, and your companions

5. Near the end of the day…

  • Notice the sunset, the moon, the night sky. Sit outside to observe them and feel the night air
  • Remember some of the gifts you received from the Earth that day
  • Read a few poems that invite you into the natural world
  • Share with a loved one something you’re grateful for, or a nature experience from your day

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

Please include any reproduction of hymns/songs for local church use
on your Music Licence returns, as appropriate

Some of the Resources used in Shaping this Liturgy:
Abbott, M. Sparks of the Cosmos. Rituals for Seasonal Use. Unley. MediaCom Education, 2001.
Binkley, C. G. & J. M. McKeel. Jesus and his Kingdom of Equals. An International Curriculum on the Life and Teaching of Jesus. Santa Rosa. Polebridge Press, 2001.
Burgess, R.
A Book of Blessings. Glasgow. Wild Goose Publications, 2001.
Sanguin, B. If Darwin Prayed. Prayers for Evolutionary Mystics. Vancouver. EOS, 2010.
Stinson, J. “The encounter of progressive christian theology with the language of prayer and ritual on Sunday morning”. Westar Institute/Westar Leaders Seminar. March 2006.
(SNS2) Stuart, G.
Singing a New Song. Traditional Hymn Tunes with New Century Lyrics. Volume 2. Toronto. G Stuart, 2009.
Singing The Living Tradition. Boston. UUA, 1993.
Taussig, H. (ed).
A New New Testament. A Bible for the 21st Century Combining Traditional and Newly Discovered Texts. NY. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
The St Hilda Community.
The New Women Included. A Book of Services and Prayers. London.  SPCK, 1996.
Tucker, M. E. & J. Grim. (ed). 
Thomas Berry: Selected Writings on the Earth Community. Mary knoll. Orbit Books, 2014.
Vosper, G.
With or Without God. Why the Way we Live is more important than What we Believe. Canada: Toronto. HarperCollins, 2008.
Vosper, G.
Holy Breath. Prayers for worship and reflection. New & Revised edition. Brisbane. The Centre for Progressive Religious Thought Brisbane, 2004/2010.

Web sites/Other:
Norman Habel. Season of Creation.
Andrew Pratt "Hurricane" Hymns and words blog site. UK.