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

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

16 January 2022. Epiphany 2C. (Green).

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, present, and 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

And we recognise and give thanks that we humans
are creatures of the Earth living in the ecosystem
—flowers, trees and insects; land, waters and mountain range—
that is unique to (NN).
May we honour one another and honour life itself.

(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

Entry into the Celebration
The gong is sounded three times

Each new day is a gift.
Each new phase of life brings generous possibilities.
Each new question brings learning and growth.  (Francis Macnab/h)

Let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.

Lighting of the Community Candle
Community Candle is lit

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
I Pledge to All Humanity(Tune: ‘Thaxted’)
I pledge to all humanity,
the fullness of my heart
that we might build together
love’s greatest work of art.
A world made free from hunger,
a world made free from hate,
a world in which through honour
we each communicate.
A world that never falters,
that binds unto each life
the goals of love and freedom,
the pledge to end all strife.

My vow to all humanity,
that I will never part
from all that’s good and righteous
within my beating heart
demands that I stand stronger
than I have ever stood,
demands that I love better
what serves the common good.
May we find within each other
a true and upright friend
that all we’ve named as worthy
together we’ll defend.

Within the gath’ring darkness
there shines a radiant light.
Once lit by tales of freedom,
it burns for what is right.
We hold its burnished handle,
we lift its flame on high
that all might walk beneath it
upon its hope rely.
For truth must not relinquish
the future to the past
but build a bright tomorrow
where love might reign at last.  (© Gretta Vosper 2014)


Great God of Many Names(Tune: 66.84 + Choru: 444)                                                    39(v1-3) WNC
Great God of many names:
Jehovah, Allah, Lord,
Christ, Brahman, Spirit, Adonai;
We worship you.
Whatever name,
whichever face,
we worship you.

With pomp and pageantry
Beneath an onion dome,
Or in a bare and simple room,
we worship you.

In chapel, mosque or shrine
we wait to praise your name,
through icon, book or choir
we worship you.
Whatever name,
whichever face,
we worship you.

Remain standing

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

Let us give thanks 
for the abundance of life on this earth.
Through it we and all people may be nourished.


v1  A morning mist,
the gleam of a new day,
faintly we discern the possibilities
that are before us.
 Energy rising, plans turning to action,
we build our every yesterday
from the living of our days

v2  May we live our hope into tomorrow.
All  May we wrap our lives around
the challenges of today.

And in the quiet of the sacred space,
may we listen at the centre of our being
for the truth of our inner voice
that sets before us the purpose of this day.  (Adapt.Gretta Vosper/ab)

Words of Awareness
Marvel at life!
Strive to know its ways!
Seek wisdom and truth,
the gateways
to life’s mysteries!

Wondrous indeed is life!  (Adapt. Rabbi Rami M Shapiro/ep)


We pray:
God of surprises,
startle us with truth we do not see,
amaze us with your power and grace,
beckon us, and lead us far above
restricted hope and narrow faith.  (MRose-adapt/sco).
May it be so!

Hymn/Song  "Great God of Many Names“ (Tune: 66.84 + Choru: 444)                           39(v4-6) WNC
With tabla or guitar,
or with a thousand lights,
through fasting, feasting, fellowship
we worship you.
Whatever name,
whichever face,
we worship you

With formal dress or free,
we meditate or dance,
through pesach, hajj or nam simran
we worship you.

Whatever name or creed,
enlightenment or book,
we seek you through our pilgrimage
and worship you.
Whatever name,
whichever face,
we worship you
.   (Andrew Pratt)
The people sit after the hymn


Imagining Stars(Tune: ‘Stuttgart’, 87.87)                                                                        21 SNS2
When, at night, the stars shine on us
Light years from our tiny earth,
Songs and psalms provoke the questions
Of our fragile human worth.

These gigantic specks are burning
Balls of fire, as at play;
Stars in billions share their light and
Thus create a Milky Way.

We still gaze in raw amazement,
Contemplating timeless space;
Numberless, the stars keep stories
Hidden from our human race.

Tiny holes in heaven’s flooring
Letting light beyond shine through;
Stars invite us to imagine
What it is we cannot view.

Myst’ry stride across the canvas
Of the picture we might paint;
Sacredness is grandly present;
Let us praise without restraint.  
(George Stuart)

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.
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)


“What Can I Say”
By Mary Oliver. Swan.

What can I say that I have not said before?
So I’ll say it again.
The leaf has a song in it.
Stone is the face of patience.
Inside the river there is an unfinishable story
and you are somewhere in it
and it will never end until all ends.

Take your busy heart to the art museum and the
chamber of commerce
but take it also to the forest.
The song you heard singing in the leaf when you
were a child
is singing still.
I am of years lived, so far, seventy-four,
and the leaf is singing still.

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

Let us again take a moment to settle into the silence.

God of life
God of peace
God of wonders that will not cease...

Present with us now.

Music of Reflection


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.
 May these readings be such a moment
and may we be blessed by their gift. 
(Gretta Vosper/ab)

• “Quest”
By Kathy Fuson Hurt. (Published in 
The Communion Book/128)

Once I lived in a two-dimensional world.
Things were long and wide - but flat.
My narrow vision did not include depth.

Depth came, but only when I opened my own depths
plunged into their darkness
thrashed about in them
learned them
loved them.

My depths restored, the world regained its missing depths
which, like mine, demanded exploration

Now a fourth dimension rises in life.
Things are long, wide, deep - and rich.
This expanded vision includes meaning.

Meaning comes, but only by grace
given unexpectedly
breaking into a lost life.

Through grace, life acquires meaning
which appears as a fourth dimension
which is God.

• John 2:1-11 (Inclusive Text)

There was a wedding at Cana in Galilee.
The mother of Jesus was there, and Jesus and the disciples
had also been invited.

When they ran out of wine, since the wine provided for the wedding
was all finished, the mother of Jesus said to him, 
‘They have no wine'.

Jesus said, 
‘Woman, why turn to me?  My hour has not come yet.'

His mother said to the servants,
'Do whatever he tells you.'

There were six stone water jars standing there,
meant for the ablutions that are customary among the Jews:
each could hold twenty or thirty gallons.

Jesus said to the servants,
'Fill the jars with water,’
and they filled them to the brim.

'Draw some out now,' Jesus told them,
'and take it to the steward.'

They did this; the steward tasted the water,
and it had turned into wine.

Having no idea where it came from - only the servants
who had drawn the water knew - the steward
called the bridegroom and said,
'People generally serve the best wine first,
and keep the cheaper sort till the guests have had plenty to drink;
but you have kept the best till now.'

This was the first of the signs given by Jesus;
it was given at Cana in Galilee.

Jesus let his glory be seen, and the disciples believed in him.

Contemporary Exploration
• A Sermon suitable for this day can be found in my book, Against the Stream. Progressive Christianity Between Pulpit and Pew.

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

We celebrate our God
who is not afraid of our minds
with all their questions,
and all their doubting searchings
for the truth.

We celebrate our God
who knows and loves our deepest hearts,
whose compassion is always greater than ours
so that the measure of our kindness
is always less than that of God.

We celebrate our God
who engages with our souls,
linking us with the mystery of the universe,
the endlessness of eternity,
yet is as close to us in our beings
as a parent with a child.     © Dorothy McRae-McMahon/plpm

(If celebrating Martin Luther King Jr Day…)
How beautiful are the feet of those…
 Who walk with a sense of purpose and reality,
Who walk unafraid to be challenged and to change,
Who walk with an understanding of people and an open faith,
Who have the courage to tread unknown paths.

How beautiful are the lips of those…
 Who speak aloud the message of Justice,
Who question deeply why poverty exists and why there are poor,
Who dare to choose imagination and live creatively
our universal partnership.

How beautiful are the feet of those…
 Who have the courage to walk through darkness
asking questions about human rights,
Who are to be compassionate leaders – inclusive
of the poor and understanding of them,
Who are willing to enter into humble partnership.

How beautiful are the lips of those…
 Who proclaim aloud that we must never hesitate
to amplify the voice of those who go unheard,
Who recognised the deafness in our land,
the sound of all our people who are dispossessed,
Who celebrate the goodness of the human person
in every race and colour and walk of life.

How beautiful are the feet of those…
 Who walk in compassionate love,
Whose way proclaims a spirituality of action,
Who walk a partnership of justice, peace, love, and friendship,
Who know that every step we take is holy,
Who celebrate the goodness of the human person
in every race and colour and  walk of life.

- Adapted from Litany for the Journey, edited from Solidarity with the Poor; Sharing the Tradition. Shaping the Future Series, Catholic Campaign for Human Development, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. C3Exchange, 2011


We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality,
tied in a single garment of destiny.
All   Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

There are some things in our social system
to which all of us ought to be maladjusted.
All  Hatred and bitterness can never cure
the disease of fear, only love can do that.

We must evolve for all human conflict a method
which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation.
All  The foundation of such a method is love.

Before it is too late, we must narrow the gaping chasm
between our proclamations of peace
and our lowly deeds which precipitate and perpetuate war.
All  One day we must come to see that peace
is not merely a distant goal that we seek
but a means by which we arrive at that goal.

We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.
All  We shall hew out of the mountain of despair,
a stone of hope.
  (Martin Luther King, Jr.)


"Who Can’t Breathe? Three Outcries and a Prayer"
Woven by Rabbi Arthur Waskow. The Shalom Center

I. I Can’t Breathe
v1  Again and again,
With gun or choke-hold.
Police have stolen the breath of Black Americans.
The police are not merely police
For they hold a national authority
To use violence on behalf of the nation:
To serve us all, protect us all.
When they subjugate the Black community
They implicate us all,
They make us all Subjugators
And they subjugate us all.
But their misdeeds have stirred
A great Uprising against racism.
We will let no ruler pretend
The protest is the danger.

II.  We Can’t Breathe
v2  All humanity is choking
From a virus that invades our lungs
We have left no space for other species
And the virus leaps into our lives.
If our rulers minimize the danger
It becomes still worse
Choking our societies, our jobs, our businesses,
Our democracy. Our lives.

III. Earth Can’t Breathe
v3  All life on Earth depends on Interbreathing.
We breathe in what the trees breathe out;
The trees breathe in what we breathe out.
Our Interbreathing is the Breath that keeps all Earth alive.
Our Interbreathing is the very Name we call You,
For YyyyHhhhWwwwHhhh
Is the still small voice of simply breathing.
But the Flood of CO2
That we call the “climate crisis”
Chokes our breathing.
Chokes Your Breathing,
All Earth is scorched by burning fossil fuels
And Carbon Pharaohs burn their way to faster wealth.
Earth can’t breathe and Your Name rattles in our throats.

IV. A Prayer and a Response 
v1  You Who are the Breath of Life,
At Sinai You taught us,
All  You shall not take My Name with an empty heart.
You shall not breathe My Name with empty Spirit.
Every breath we take
is Itself Your Name,

v1  Part of that great Breath that is the Holy One.
All  You Who are the Breath of Life,
Heal us to breathe.

v2  I Speak
I Who free you from choking
In the Tight and Narrow Place:
I Who send you Broad Spaces
Where My breath,
My wind, blows free:
No one shall rob you of My Name,
My Breath, My Holy Spirit.
Embody Me!

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

May a heart of peace rest with you. (David Galston/q)
All  Thanks be to God.
All are invited to greet a neighbour


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  The people stand as they are able, to sing
"The Majesty of Mountains"                                                                                                 139 AA
The majesty of mountains,
the sovereignty of skies,
the regal rock that arch above
where veils of vapour rise,
are gifts of God, the Lord of love,
the worshipful, the wise.

The running of the river,
the surging of the sea,
the grass that grows high on the hill,
the flower and fruiting tree,
our Saviour sends us, by whose will
all creatures came to be.

The Glory of the Godhead,
the Spirit and the Son,
the Father, faithful down the days:
to them, the Three-in-One,
while life shall last, be perfect praise
and highest honour done!   MPerry
The people sit

The Offerings

The Presentation 
Let each person find a window
to see beyond their own enclosure.

Let each person find a door
To open into a new being.


God of splendour,
your goodness sustains us,
and your graciousness gives us hope.

Use us and this money to further the way
of love, hope, and justice in the world.

In Solidarity
Care Candle:
We are people of all ages who enter this space
bringing our
joys and our 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 this flame and light our special care candle…
The Care Candle is lit

When we are grieving or sad,
When we are challenged,
When we need help,
All  This flame guides us out of the darkness.

When we are cheerful,
When we celebrate,
When we accomplish a great task,
When we return to a place that makes us happy,
All   This flame reminds us to share our happiness with others.  (Adapt/APalmer)

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 illumed 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)


Hymn/Song  The people stand as they are able, to sing
Amazing Love(Sung to 'Amazing Grace')  Verses 1-4
Amazing love that Jesus told,
Two thousand years ago,
A story new, a story old,
A love we all can know.

He spoke to crowds in Palestine,
He speaks to us today,
He tells us all of love divine,
To us he shows the way.

The realm of God is one of love,
Of justice and of peace.
It’s not about a realm above -
Through love this world release.

What we want done to us, can be
The rule by which we live;
To follow it will make us free
To share, to love, to give.


Let Justice Roll Down”                                                                                                     85(v1-3) AA
Let justice roll down like a river,
let justice roll down like a sea,
let justice roll down like a river,
let justice begin through me.

Justice for all who go hungry,
crying to God to be fed,
left in a world of abundance
to beg for a morsel of bread.

Justice for those who are homeless,
victims of warfare or need,
trapped on the borders of no-where,
lost in the canyons of greed.

Justice for all who are powerless,
yearning for freedom in vain,
plundered, and robbed of their birth-right,
silently bearing their pain. Colin Gibson

Parting Words
Let us embrace the wonder of this week
with expectation and imagination…
The Community Candle is extinguished

Be assured that God’s presence goes with us.
We face the world 
with renewed faith and hope;
God’s word abides with us.

Let your hearts burn within you
as you dare to trust.
God’s love is real and alive in us.
Live in gratitude each and every day;
All  We will love sincerely and live confidently.

Words of Blessing
Go boldly into the future 
which has been claimed by God.
Know that the God who holds all things will be there,
that Christ who calls us friend will walk beside us,
and the Spirit who makes all things new
will mark our way with light and hope.
All  Amen! 
May it be so!

Hymn/Song (Cont.)Amazing Love(Sung to 'Amazing Grace')  Verses 5-7
The story comes to challenge us,
It’s not the easy road,
For us to love, as Jesus loved,
To bear another’s load.

The realm of God is here with us
When love and peace we share,
Although we fail, we know God’s grace,
It’s love that helps us there.

Amazing love that Jesus told,
Two thousand years ago,
A story new, a story old,
A love for all to know.  Margaret Rolfe


"Let Justice Roll Down”                                                                                                   85(v4) AA
Let justice roll down like a river,
let justice roll down like a sea,
let justice roll down like a river,
let justice begin through me.

Justice for all who are powerless,
yearning for freedom in vain,
plundered, and robbed of their birth-right,
silently bearing their pain.
   Colin Gibson
The people sit after the hymn, then prepare to leave

Recessional Music

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.
Duncan, G. (ed). Seeing Christ in Others. An Anthology for Worship, Mediation and Mission. Norwich: The Canterbury Press, 1998.
Inclusive Readings. Year C. Brisbane: Inclusive Language Project. In private circulation, 2006.
McRae-McMahon, D.
Prayers for Life's Particular Moments. Thornbury: DesBooks, 2001.
Macnab, F.
Hope:  The Deeper Longings of the Mind and Heart. Richmond: Spectrum Publications., 1996
Mitchell, R. C.. & G. A. Ricciuti.
Birthings and Blessings. Liberating Worship Services for the Inclusive Church. New York: Crossroads, 1992.
(WNC) Pratt, A.
Whatever Name or Creed. Hymns and Songs. London: Stainer & Bell Ltd, 2002.
Sanguin, B.
Darwin, Divinity, and the Dance of the Cosmos. An Ecological Christianity. Kelowna: CopperHouse, 2007.
(SNS2) Stuart, G.
Singing a New Song. Traditional Hymn Tunes with New Century Lyrics. Volume 2. Toronto: George Stuart, 2009.
Vosper, G. Another Breath. Prayers for Celebration and Reflection. Brisbane. CPRT. 2009.
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:

Mary Oliver. "The Summer Day" Reprinted from 'The Hopewell Centre Newsletter', 7/10.
"Amazing Love".
Margaret Rolfe. 2004. Canberra ACT.
David Galston. Quest Learning Centre for Religious Literacy. <http://www.questcentre.ca/>
Gretta Vosper. “
I Pledge to All Humanity”. Direct from the author.
UUA Worship Web. Boston. <www.uua.org/spirituallife/worshipweb/>