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.

Other Resources for the Season:


“There is a need for the religious traditions… to appreciate that the primary sacred community
is the universe itself, and that every other community becomes sacred
by participation in this primary community”

12 September 2021.  Season of Creation 2B/Pentecost 16B. (Green).
Humanity Sunday

Worth Pondering
“A form of religion unfit and unable to bring science into its service
will be unfit to give order, direction, and meaning to human life as now lived”
(Henry Nelson Wieman)

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 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


Refreshment Station/Water Basins
Pottery basins are set on stands near the entrance to the Gathering space. 
Attendees are invited to dip their hands in the cool water in the basins as they arrive. 
Or to rinse each other’s hands. 
That we may relax, be refreshed, and prepare for this time together.

(Note: A small sign is placed above the basin explaining that as they dip their hands in the water, they are invited to relax and try to mindfully set aside or release for a time anything that might be preventing them from being fully present—each traveller rinsing the “dust from the road”).


(A suggestion of other words)
We come together from our separate lives,
each of us bringing our concerns, our preoccupations,
our hopes, and our dreams.

We are not yet fully present.
The traffic, the last-minute cooking, the final details still cling to us.
Our bodies hold the rush of the past few hours.

It is now time to let go of these pressures and really arrive…   

When you are ready, repeat silently to yourself: ‘Hineini’ or ‘Here I am’.
Hineini is used in the Torah to signify being present
in body, mind, and spirit.

It means settling into where we are and simply being “here”. (Adapted/Nan Fink Gene)

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

Entry into the Celebration
The gong is sounded three times

With respect and gratitude for the original custodians of this land,
we gather together this day
to affirm in hope and faith,
that we can create a sacred space of welcome
for all who live in Australia.

So let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.

Lighting of the Community Candle
The Community Candle is lit

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

v1  A planet filled with the presence of God
a living green blue planet,
peoples from every corner of creation,
the vast reaches of space above us,
and the rocks and hills and wonders of the wild.

v2  Together this day,
let us sense the face of God in all creativity.

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 HERE
(iv) On Wonder, Awe, and Nature HERE

Hymn/Song  People stand as they are able, to sing
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
Peoples from every corner of creation,
All  Celebrate with all creatures on Earth!

Young and old across the planet, 
Rejoice in the day that God has made!
Indigenous peoples of every land,
Help us sense the spirit deep in each land!
Black and white and brown and grey,
All  Celebrate with us the colours of creation!
All humanity on Planet Earth,
Praise God for our planet home.

Sing, peoples, sing!
All  Sing, creation, sing!  (Adapt.Norman Habel/soc)

Words of Awareness
We are born to make manifest
the glory of the Sacred that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us;
it’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.  
(Adapt.Marianne Williamson/ep)


We pray:
Creativity God, whose renewing breath fills our planet,
may we discern your vibrant presence among us.
And may our spirits be lifted
as we celebrate the kinship between humanity 
and the rest of creation, this day.
May it be so.

Hymn/Song Children of the Human Race” (Tune: ‘Aberystwyth’, 77.77D)                    302 SLT
Children of the human race,
off-spring of our Mother Earth,
not alone in endless space
has our planet given birth.
Far across the cosmic skies
countless suns in glory blaze,
and from untold planets rise
endless canticles of praise.

Should some sign of others reach
this, our lonely planet Earth,
differences of form and speech
must not hide our common worth.
When at length our minds are free,
and the clouds of fear disperse,
then at last we’ll learn to be
Children of the Universe.  (John A Storey)

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.


Presentation of Water Basins
Words which acknowledge that the dust of many roads and many life experiences has been rinsed into the basins, and calls for the contents of the basins and the gathering to be transformed, renewed, and more fully alive

The dust of many roads and may life experiences
has been washed in this refreshing water.
For this place is a sacred place.

May we
greet one another with open hearts and minds;
inspire each other to consider new questions
and seek deeper meaning;
and cultivate both wisdom and compassion.

And may this time together empower us to take some new steps
so all our living is transforming and the
yearning of our hearts become reality.
The bowls of water are removed from the Gathering space and placed on an outside garden

Take the symbol (rosemary/gum leaf/lavender)
you received at the door, rub it between your fingers,
smell it, and share with the person next to you a memory 
of moving into a new neighbourhood 
and making new friends.

We remember the challenges of moving
to new places and meeting
new people - of all ethnic origins.

We celebrate our kindship one with another
and with the whole of creation.
We remember and rejoice.

Centering Silence
        Centering silence has its roots in the earliest of monastic traditions of the ‘desert Fathers (abbas)/Mothers (ammas)’
        and the Christian mystic tradition… Relaxing into ‘quietness’ creates the space for deep listening and draws you into yourself

Now away from the busyness of life
and in the silence of this place,
let us give thanks
for the gift of one another!

We celebrate the song of all humanity!
All  Sing, peoples, sing!  (Norman Habel/soc)

Music of Celebration


Wisdom from the World/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:  Into this day will break moments of awareness,
tiny shards of light that illumine
the whole reality of existence.
All   May these readings be such a moment
and may we be blessed by their gift. 
(Gretta Vosper/ab)

• "Made from this Earth…”
By Susan Griffin.
Earth Prayers /25.

We know ourselves to be made from this earth.
We know this earth is made from our bodies.
For we see ourselves.
And we are nature.

We are nature seeing nature.
We are nature with a concept of nature.
Nature weeping.
Nature speaking of nature to nature.

The red-winged blackbird flies in us, in our inner sight.
We see the arc of her flight.
We measure the ellipse.
We predict its climax.
We are amazed.
We are moved.
We fly.

We watch her wings negotiate the wind,
the substance of the air, its elements
and the elements of those elements,
and count those elements found in other beings,
the sea urchin's sting,
ink, this paper,
our bones,
the flesh of our tongues with which we make
the sound "blackbird,”
the ear with which we hear,
the eye which travels the arc of her flight.

And yet the blackbird does not fly in us
but in somewhere else free of our minds,
and now even free of our sight,
flying in the path of her own will.

• Mark 7: 24-30 (NRSV)

Jesus set out and went to the region of Tyre.

He entered a house and did not want anyone to know he was there.
Yet he could not escape notice, but a woman
whose little daughter had an unclean spirit immediately heard about him,
and she came and bowed down at his feet.

Now the woman was a Gentile, of Syrophoenician origin.
She begged Jesus to cast the demon out of her daughter.

He said to her,
"Let the children be fed first, for it is not fair
to take the children's food and throw it to the dogs."

But she answered him,
"Sir, even the dogs under the table eat the children's crumbs."

Then Jesus said to her,
"For saying that, you may go. The demon has left your daughter."

So she went home, found the child lying on the bed,
and the demon gone.

• Mark 7:31-37 (Inclusive Text)

Returning from the region of Tyre,
Jesus went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee,
right through the Decapolis region.

And they brought to Jesus a deaf man
who had an impediment in his speech;
and they asked Jesus to lay his hand on him.

Jesus took him aside in private, away from the crowd,
put his fingers into the man's ears,
and touched his tongue with spittle.

Then looking up to heaven, Jesus sighed and said:
'Ephphatha', that is, 'Be opened'.

And the deaf one's ears were opened,
and the ligament on his tongue was loosened,
and he spoke clearly.

And Jesus ordered them to tell no one about it,
but the more he insisted,
the more widely they published it.

Their admiration was unbounded,
'He has done all things well', they said,
'he makes the deaf to hear and the mute speak'.

Alternate - Season of Creation
• Mark 8:27-29, 31-36

Jesus went with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi.
And on the way he asked the disciples,
'Who do people say that I am?'

They answered him,
'John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others,
one of the prophets.'

‘But who do you say that I am?' he asked.
Peter answered him,
'You are the Messiah.'

Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man
must undergo great suffering,
and be rejected by the elders,
the chief priests,
and the scribes, and be killed,
and after three days rise again.

He said all this quite openly.

And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.

But turning and looking at his disciples,
Jesus rebuked Peter and said,
'Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind
not on divine things but on human things.'

And Jesus called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them,
'If any want to become my followers,
let them deny themselves
and take up their cross and follow me.

'For those who want to save their life will lose it,
and those who lose their life for my sake,
and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.

'For what will it profit them to gain the whole world
and forfeit their life?’

Contemporary Exploration

Silence for Personal Reflection


A Celebration of Faith  (Optional)
In response to the word reflected on, let us stand
and share together a celebration of faith.
The people stand as they are able

The people of God have a human face.
We laugh, we weep, we wait in hope.
We lift our eyes
All  and stub our toes,
we love,
and struggle,
we fail,
we stand, and always we stand
on trembling ground.

But God is God and Jesus is our Companion
and the Spirit will lift up our feet.
God is in the centre, God is at our endings.
Nothing lies beyond the love of Creativity God.  (Aadapt./Pitt St. UCA)

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


Facing the person with right hand on your heart and a slight bow of the head…

The Divine in me honours the Divine in you.

The Light in me recognises the Light in you.

The spirit within me sees the spirit within you.

Hymn/Song  People stand as they are able, to sing
God Who Fills the Universe(Tune: ‘Francis David’. 77.66.7)                                          37 SLT
God who fills the universe
from the atom to the stars,
make firm my changeful heart
so I may do my part
and bring joy to all the earth.

God who webs the universe
with amazing mysteries,
make glad my fragile soul
so I can see life whole
and bring hope to all the earth.

God who keeps the universe
by the truths of living love,
make strong that love in me
so I can set it free
and bring peace to all the earth.  (Carl G Seaburg)



Spirit of God,
among the streets of business
and in places of healing and learning:
Renew the face of the earth.

Among the budding orchards 
and in the grassless paddocks:
All  R
enew the face of the earth.

Among the tired and broken families:
Renew the face of the earth.

Among these people and with these gifts:
All  Renew the face of the earth.  (WCC/isit)

Conversation with the Children
Children gather on the conversation mat


"Somewhere someone:"

The kingdom of love is coming because:
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)

In Solidarity
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 the light and beauty of day
We give thanks in awe and wonder.
In the dark and stillness of night
All  We dream of healing and hope  (Gretta Vosper/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 the sacred among us,
and to see 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 appropriate

All  Good caring presence within us, around us, and above us;
Hold us in a sense of mystery and wonder.

Let the fullness of your goodness be within us and around us.
Let all the world know your ways of caring and generosity.
May we find we have all we need
to meet each day without undue anxiety.

Overlook our many stupidities,
and help us to release everyone from their stupidities.
May we know we are accepted.
Strengthen us that we will reach out to the best,
always with the faith
to rise above the ugly realities of our existence.

And we celebrate the gifts you have given us:
the rich kingdom of life’s possibilities,
the power to do good and the triumphs of good,
and the moments when we have seen
the glory and wonder of everything.

You are life’s richness.
You are life’s power.
You are life’s ultimate meaning.
And for everyone.
And for ever more.  Amen.  (Francis Macnab/fwb)


Hymn/Song  People stand as they are able, to sing
The Day Will Come…
(Tune: 'O Waly Waly 2')
The day will come, must come, and soon
when we will sing a song of joy
with sisters, brothers, not like us,
who share the image of one God.
Whatever name, which ever faith,
at heart we share a common bond,
a shared humanity in God,
whose name and character is love.
Remain standing

Parting Words
Let us go in faith to ponder in our hearts
the mystery and the wonder of this season…
The Community Candle is extinguished

Hold again the fragrant symbol in your hands
and go forth to serve.

v2  Will you care for Planet Earth?
We will remember our planet home!
We will nurture our planet!
We will act graciously to all humanity!
We will celebrate life!

Blessing Words
Deep peace of the running wave to you…
Deep peace of the flowing air to you…
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you…
Deep peace of the shining stars to you…
Deep peace of the Son of Peace to you. (Adapt. Gaelic)
All  Amen. May it be so!

Hymn/Song  (Cont).The Day Will Come…(Tune: 'O Waly Waly 2')
That love will drive us to the day
when every wall is broken down,
when love and joy and song are one:
that day will come, must come, and soon.  Andrew Pratt.
The people sit

'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.

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:
(AA) Alleluia Aotearoa. Hymns and Songs For All Churches. Raumati. New Zealand Hymnbook Trust, 1993.
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.
Faith Forever Singing. Songs for a New Day. Raumati. New Zealand Hymnbook Trust, 2000.
Holy Bible. NRSV. Nashville. Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1989.
Inclusive Readings. Year B.  Brisbane. Inclusive Language Project. In private circulation, 2005.
In Spirit and in Truth. A Worship Book. Switzerland: Geneva. World Council of Churches. Seventh Assembly, 1991.
Iona Community.
Iona Abbey Worship Book. Glasgow. Wild Goose Publications, 2001.
Macnab, F.
A Fine Wind Is Blowing: Psalms of the Bible in Words That Blow You Away. Richmond. Spectrum Publications, 2006.
McRae-McMahon, D.
Echoes Of Our Journey. Liturgies of the People. Melbourne. JBCE, 1993.
Roberts, E. & E. Amidon.
Earth Prayers From Around the World. 365 Prayers, Poems, and Invocations for Honoring the Earth. New York. HarperCollins, 1991.
Singing the Living Tradition. Boston. UUA, 1993.
The St Hilda Community.
The New Women Included. A Book of Services and Prayers. London.  SPCK, 1996.
Vosper, G.
With or Without God. Why the Way we Live is more Important than What we Believe. Canada: Toronto. HarperCollins, 2008.

Web Sites/Other:
Norman Habel Creation Liturgies. <>
Andrew Pratt
. "The Day Will Come...". Andrew Pratt Hymns and Words blog site. UK. <>
Refreshment Station.  
Words by Nan Fink Gefen, taken from an Evolutionary Passover Haggadah by Tree Bressen.