Pentecost22B.1.11.2009

Revd Rex A E Hunt



eMail: rexae@optusnet.com.au

Web site:  www.rexaehuntprogressive.com




LITURGY FOR THE 
CELEBRATION OF LIFE

4 November 2012.  Pentecost 22B. (Green/White).

All Saint’s Day

Celebrating Community: Sacrament of Holy (Flower) Communion


Acknowledgement of Land

(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


Let there be joy in our coming together this morning.

Let there be silence for the voice within us and beyond us.

Let there be joy in our coming together. (Adapt.CSeabur)


Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life

in the presentness of God.


Lighting of the Community Candle

The candle is lit


Hymn The people stand, as they are able, to sing

"The Spring Has Come" 140 AA

The spring has come,

let all the church be part of it!

The world has changed,

and God is at the heart of it!

New light, new day,

new colour after winter grey.

New light, new day,

the spring has come,

let all the church be part of it!


The sun is warm,

let all God's children play in it!

The world expands,

let's spread the gospel way in it!

New leaf, new thrust,

new greening for the love of Christ.

New leaf, new thrust,

the sun is warm,

let all God's children play in it!


The spring has come,

new people are the flowers of it!

Through wind and rain,

new life is in the showers of it!

New bud, new shoot,

new hope will bear the Spirit's fruit.

New bud, new shoot,

the spring has come,

new people are the flowers of it! SEMurray

Remain standing


Opening Sentences

Through this celebration and worship,

we leave for a time the daily sequence of events,

to examine life in its eternal dimensions and consequences:

All asking questions about our values

our directions

our goals, and

our relationships.


Let us spend this time in the presentness

of the Sacred One - God.

All Praise be for this gathered community

in this sacred place, for all people.


Act of Awareness

xxx


OR


We pray:

Creating God, extend our vision to perceive

that this is your world.

You are in it.

You pervade it.

You enfold it.

It is immersed in you.

Open our eyes to see in the depth of reality,

your grace

your goodness

your glory.

To see that we dwell in you.

May it be so.


Hymn "We Celebrate The Web Of Life" (Tune: 'French' 86, 86 CM, 76 TiS)    175 SLT

We celebrate the web of life

its magnitude we sing;

for we can see divinity

in every living thing.


A fragment of the perfect whole

in cactus and in quail,

as much in tiny barnacle

as in the great blue whale.


Of ancient dreams we are the sum;

our bones link stone to star,

and bind our future worlds to come

with worlds that were and are.


Respect the water, land, and air

which gave all creatures birth;

protect the lives of all that share

the glory of the earth. (A S Carpenter)

The 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

Reflection

"To the God above God..."

By Gary Kowalski


To the God above God we turn our thoughts in meditation.


To the God above the god of any single nation,

who unites the people of the world

in the bonds of kinship and peace;

To the God above the god of any single ideology,

who knows that one human life

is more valuable than all the systems in the world;

To the God above the god of any single religion,

whose goodness and inspiration

are the possession of people of all faiths;

To the God above God

who brings humility to our minds

and reverence to our hearts...


We dedicate ourselves in work and in prayer. 


Silence

Come apart from the busyness of family and work,

and dwell in the presence of God

who is our source of being.

(Silence)


God calls us to renew ourselves and our life's purpose

as we gather with others who are searching.

Let us be in silence together.

(Silence)


Music of Reflection


EXPLORING

Reading from our Biblical Tradition

A reading from our biblical tradition...


Gospel:

Mark 12:28-34 (Inclusive Text)


One of the scribes came up to Jesus and put a question,

'Which is the first of all the commandments?'


Jesus replied,

'This is the first:

Listen Israel, Our God is the One God,

and you must love your God with all your heart,

with all your soul, with all your mind

and with all your strength.


The second is this:

You must love your neighbor as yourself.

There is no other commandment greater than these.


The scribe said to Jesus,

'Well spoken, teacher; what you have said is true:

that God is one and there is no other.


'To love with all your heart, with all your understanding

and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself,

this is far more important than any 

holocaust or sacrifice.'


Jesus, seeing how wisely the scribe had spoken, said,

'You are not far from the reign of God.'


And after that no one dared to question Jesus any more.


Contemporary Word


Silence for Personal Reflection


AFFIRMING

Litany: For All the Saints...

The people stand as they are able


Through the ages and in many places,

saints of God have witnessed in God's name;

All through the ages, prophets, poets, martyrs, sages,

have witnessed in God's name.

We come together in the cloud of witnesses

as one communion;

All we raise our voices to God, the Source of Life.

We bless the earthly memories 

of those who now shine in God's glory

All and join the whole company on earth and in heaven

singing unending praise...

Doxology The people sing (Tune: 768(i) TiS)

Praise God, the love we all may share;

Praise God, the beauty everywhere;

Praise God, the hope of good to be;

Praise God, the truth that makes us free. (PHewett)


We celebrate the presence of the church in (NN) in our lives,

All which is real when it stands open

to the life of the city,

and bears witness to the love and justice of God.


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 of the Month The people stand, as they are able, to sing

Christ is our peace(Tune: ‘Suantrai’)   16 AA

Christ is our peace, Christ is our health,

he the true Word, his the true wealth –

gifts to be shared by the simple and poor:

peace in your land, peace at your door.


Peace in your mouth, peace in the hands

open to truth, to love's demands;

those who would go with Christ also must bleed -

bright is the flower, burst is the seed.


Who work for peace find the true wealth,

who heal the hurt find their own health

peace will flow on through the hearts that believe:

this may we know, thus may we live (SMurray).

The people sit


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:

In this abundant blessing

All We share the joy.

In this, our time of need,

All May love abound (GVosper/wwg)


And so we take this flame and light our special care candle.

The Care candle is lit


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 O God, you love us like a good parent,

and are present in every aspect of our existence


May your nature become known and respected by all

May your joy, peace, wholeness and justice

be the reality for everyone

as we live by the Jesus Way


Give us all that we really need to live every day for you

And forgive us our failures as we forgive others for their failures

Keep us from doing those things which are not of you,

and cause us always to be centred on your love


For you are the true reality in this our now,

and in all our future.

In the Jesus Way we pray. (DSorril)


CELEBRATING

Conversation with the Children
Children gather on the 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)


CELEBRATING COMMUNITY: SACRAMENT OF HOLY (FLOWER) COMMUNION

The Flower Communion service had its origins in 1923 when Dr Norbert Capek, a former Baptist and founder of the Unitarian Church in Czechoslovakia, introduced it to his congregation.  This liturgy is shaped by sections of two other modern liturgies, written by Dr David Bumbaugh.


Offerings

Our offerings for the celebration of life in this place and beyond,

and our gifts of flowers, bread and wine, shall now be received.


Presentation People stand, as they are able, as the gifts are presented

Creating God, the landscape of life and your presence is near:

a daffodil in bloom,

a single green leaf,

the red and green flash of a parrot.

May we too be a people of adventure and life,

grace-filled companions, offering

courage and hope in unexpected places.

The people sit


Welcome

v1 Enter into this sacred time.

Enter with joyful hearts.

Enter with reverent thoughts.

v2 It has taken long months beneath cold ground

for flowers to prepare their blooming.

It has taken each of us long times of growth,

through sorrow and joy,

to prepare for our living now.


v1 The blooming season is short.

Flowers stay only a brief time.

We are travellers upon the earth:

travellers through all too brief life times.

v2 Therefore let our moments together be bountiful.

And let us rejoice in our unique colours, aromas, and sounds. (EStrong/adapted)


Thanksgiving

Have you considered the flowers, the lilies of the fields?

All They spin not, neither do they sew,

yet Solomon, in all his glory

All was not arrayed as one of these.


Say what you will about the economy of life,

flowers are irrefutable proof

of nature’s extravagance.


Flowers do not bloom for us.

They do not care whether or not we see them.

They grow and bloom

because they are full of life.

They are a gift of grace.

They invite us to seek the beauty in each moment.

They encourage us to find fulfilment in life

and the living of it.


As you came into this sacred place this morning,

you brought with you a flower,

from your yard,

from along your street,

from a florist,

from your neighbour’s flower bed,

from the basket in the entrance.


From many different sources

these many different flowers have come.


Together on this table they symbolise

the extravagance of nature,

for as various as these flowers are,

they do not begin to exhaust

nature's inventiveness

in creating forms

and colours

and beauty.


And what nature has done for flowers,

nature has done for us.


Bread and Wine

v1 In all the colours and scents and tastes and sounds

of the world, we see the beauty of the universe.


v2 In this season of spring it is fitting we should celebrate

the renewal of life and hope using

the symbols of bread and wine and flowers.


Time out of mind we have watched

grain buried in the dark soil.

Time out of mind we have watched sprouting seeds

break through the soil, reaching towards the warm sun.

Time out of mind we have watched grain broken,

ground into dust-like flour.


Yet mixed with water and leavening,

it stirs, rises, becomes bread,

the sustainer of our lives.


For longer than we can remember

the fruit of the vine has been our companion.

It’s clustered fruit is harvested

and crushed, and juice is stored and fermented

saved for festive occasions.


We have shared the fruit of the vine

in moments of joy and sorrow,

and to mark momentous turnings. (DBumbaugh)


Communion

Remembering the tradition surrounding Jesus…

we break this bread and fill this cup.

Bread broken. Wine poured out


We give thanks

All And seek to live in harmony with all about us.

We give thanks

All And take our place in the human story,

struggling for the unity of humankind.

We give thanks

All And join with all in a quest for justice.

We give thanks

All For all that Jesus, human like us, means to us.

Bread and wine served


After Communion

And now we prepare to leave this place.


As you do, you are invited to take one of the flowers.

Take a different one than the flower you brought.

Take it not to keep forever and forever.

Nothing is forever.


Take a flower as a symbol of gratitude

for beauty we did not create,

for joys which come when unexpected.


Take a flower as a symbol of your participation

in the community of this congregation,

in the community of human kind,

in the community of all living things,

in the universal community.


Take a flower as a symbol

that

beauty

and grace

and joy

and love

are not matters of reciprocity.


In this world we cannot earn or deserve

that which is most important.

It comes to us as a gift. (DBumbaugh/hc))


SCATTERING

Hymn The people stand, as they are able, to sing

This hymn was written on the day that the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world's largest and highest-energy particle accelerator complex, intended to collide opposing beams of protons, was put into action.


We Seek The Source Of All(Tune: AMAZING GRACE or other suitable CM tune)

We seek the source of all that was

of all that is to be;

the ground of being, source of life

that set creation free


The cataclysmic cosmic force,

God's rollercoaster ride,

may give a glimpse back into time

as particles collide.


For here we watch, observe, compute

and try to understand

the time before we even thought

what physics might demand.

Remain standing


Words of Mission

Let us go in faith to ponder in our hearts

the mystery and the wonder of this season...

The candle is extinguished


v1 Go in peace.

Live simply, at home in yourself.

Be just in your word, just in deed.

Remember the depth of your own compassion.

v2 Do not forget your power

in the days of your powerlessness.

v3 Do not desire to be wealthier than your peers,

and never stint your hand of charity.

 

v1 Practice forbearance in all you do.

v2 Speak the truth or speak not.

v3 Take care of your body,

be good to it, it is a good gift.

v4 Crave peace for all peoples in this world,

beginning with yourselves,

All and go as you go with the dream of that peace

set firm in your heart.  (Adapt.MBelletini)


Blessing Words

Bless us God

with saints to tell us stories

with angels to surprise us

with friends along the way.


Bless us God

with strength and joy and courage

all the length and breadth

of our nights and days.

All Amen!


Hymn (Cont). We Seek The Source Of All

But even if we comprehend

or wonder at these things,

Higgs boson, quasars, pulsars, quarks,

we need the faith God brings.


The test of all we ought to be

is in the common place,

our depth of kindness, strength of love,

that demonstrate God's grace. © APratt 10/9/2008

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:

Alleluia Aotearoa.  Hymns and songs for all churches. 1993. NZ: 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. CA: Santa Rosa. Polebridge Press.

Inclusive readings. Year B. 2005. Qld: Brisbane. Inclusive Language Project. In private circulation.

Iona Community. 2001.  Iona abbey worship book. GtB: Glasgow. Wild Goose Publications.

Seaburg, C. (ed). 1993.  The communion book. MA: Boston. UUMA.

Singing the living tradition. 1993.  MA: Boston. UUA.

The St Hilda Community. 1996.  The new women included. A book of services and prayers. GtB: London.  SPCK.

Vosper, G. 2008.  With or without God. Why the way we live is more important that what we believe. Canada: Toronto. HarperCollins.


Web sites:

UUA Worship Web. MA: Boston. UUA. www.uua.org/spirituallife/worshipweb/>

Andrew Pratt eMail distribution. UK. From the author.

rexae@optusnet.com.au