Revd Rex A E Hunt

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Rex A E Hunt 
When Progressives Gather Together:
Liturgy, Lectionary, Landscape… And Other Explorations

Melbourne: Morning Star Publishing, 2016
(In the USA published by Wipf & Stock)

Suggestion: ’Refresh’ each page before reading to make sure to get my latest edition
Details on the availability of my books, supporting progressive religious thought, HERE

23 October 2016. Pentecost 23C. (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 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 Music

Entry into the Celebration
The gong is sounded three times

'Today is a day the Lord has made',
says an old religious writer,
'let us therefore rejoice and be glad in it'.
It is indeed!

So let us celebrate the richness and diversity of life.

Lighting of the Community Candle
The 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 the 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

Hymn The people stand as they are able, to sing
"God Of All Time"  (Tune: Infinite)    49 AA
God of all time, 
all seasons of our living,
source of our spark, 
protector of our flame,
blazing before our birth, 
beyond our dying,
God of all time,
we come to sing your name.

Here in this place
where others have been building,
we come to claim
the legacy of faith,
take, in our turn
the telling of your story,
and though we tremble,
speak your hope, your truth.

Spirit who draws
our fragile selves together,
Spirit who turns
a stranger to a friend,
be at this table
where we greet each other,
be in the peace
we pass from hand to hand.

Let us not die
from poverty of caring,
let us not starve,
where love is to be shared.
Come, break us
open to receive your healing:
your broken body
be our wine and bread (Shirley Erena Murray).


(For those in the Northern Hemisphere)
Autumn Comes in all its Fullness(Tune: 'Hamilton Avenue', 87 87)  8 HoS

Autumn comes in all its fullness
harvesting both land and hearts

Autumn has its birth in winter

in the stillness where life starts.

Every death brings hope of birthing,

every birth enfolds life's end,
for the seasons of our living
mirror patterns nature penned.

Autumn gives us time for choosing
seeds which bear the richest fruits,

fragile life which we can nurture

into just or vain pursuits.


Buried in autumnal endings

lies the shoot that bursts the tomb
for the letting go in autumn
sows the seed that births the bloom. (William L Wallace)

Remain standing

Opening Sentences
Our suburbs reflect your face, O God.
In wrinkles of kindness
and hands touching hand.

Our suburbs sound with your voice, O God.
In calls for new justice
and laughter in the streets.

Our suburbs breathe with your life, O God.
In green grass in bitumen,
and new hope in the people.

Act of Awareness
May the wonders of this world
stun us with their splendour
until we appreciate
that their goodness is richer than gold
and ought to be preserved as sacred treasure.

They are the original artwork of evolution
and the fingers of God (Norman Habel/rom).


We pray:
Illuminating God, 
each sunrise and sunset
reminds us of your constant presence.

Awaken in each of us
the possibility for new life, new vision
and renewed energy. 
(Trisha Watts/s)
May it be so.

Hymn "From Season to Season"  (Tune: 578TiS,  11 11 11 11 anapaestic)  111 WNC
From season to season, through death and re-birth,
this world, through its phases, shows love has no dearth.
Such love is for sharing, to do good to all,
to nurture well-being, to echo God's call.

Through sensitive reason we fathom the need
of neighbours, of nature; we subjugate greed.
We offer each other the kiss of God's peace,
embracing earth's harmony, hatred will cease.

Through summer and autumn, through winter's release,
we welcome spring's coming with nature's increase.
All praise for the gifting of harvest and life,
all power to the ending of all human strife. 
(Andrew Pratt)
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)

“We Build Temples in the Heart”
By Patrick Murfin.

We have seen the great cathedrals, stone laid upon stone,
carved and cared for by centuries of certain hands;
seen the slender minarets soar from dusty streets
to raise the cry of faith to the One and Only God;
seen the placid pagodas where gilded Buddhas squat
amid the temple bells and incense.

We have seen the tumbled temples half-buried in the sands,
choked with verdant tangles,
sunk in corralled seas, and
old truths toppled and forgotten.

We have even seen the wattled huts,
the sweat lodge hogans,
the wheeled yurts,
and the Ice Age caverns
where unwritten worship
raised its knowing voices.

But here we build temples in our hearts.
Side by side we gather.

Let us take a moment to settle into the silence.

In these brief moments of silence and meditation may we find strength.
May our lives be rich in affection,
deep in understanding and
sympathy for each other.

May the blessings of life be known to all. Bob Holmes/adapted

Music of Celebration


Reading from our Religious Tradition
A story from our religious tradition shall be read by (NN).

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

Traditional Gospel:
Luke 18:9-14  
(Inclusive Text)

Jesus told the following parable to some people
who prided themselves on being virtuous and despised everyone else.

Two people went up to the temple to pray,
one a Pharisee, the other a tax collector.

The Pharisee stood there and said this prayer,
'I thank you, God, that I am not grasping,
unjust, adulterous, like the rest of humankind,
and particularly that I am not like this tax collector here.

'I fast twice a week. I pay tithes on all I get.'

The tax collector stood some distance away,
not daring even to look up to heaven, but in humility said,
'God, be merciful to me, a sinner!'

This one, I tell you, went home again at rights with God; the other did not.
For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, 
but those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Contemporary Exploration HERE and HERE

Silence for Personal Reflection


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

In desert and bushland, mountain and water,
we see the signs that God is with us.
All In grass that grows through cities

of concrete and brick,
we see the signs that God is with us.

In the faces of people whom God so loves,
All we see the signs that God is with us.
In our brokenness,
there is the hope of wholeness.
All In our emptiness, there is the hope of fullness.
In our deaths,
All lies the hope of resurrection life.

This is the Word in Christ to us.
All The flame of the Holy Spirit
lives in this place and travels with us.
 Amen.  (Adapt/ Dorothy McRae-McMahon/eoj)

Sharing 'The Peace'
Let us take some time to celebrate each other.

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 People stand as they are able, to sing
Come Celebrate…(Tune: ‘Gift of life’, CGibson)     17 HoS
Come celebrate the gift of life:
creation’s journey from the star
whose first great flaring forth of light
responded to God’s word of power.
Enable us, O God, to see
your living word is in us still;
this vibrant possibility
within our human lives fulfil.

Come celebrate the gift of love,
potential in each human soul,
revealed by Jesus as he strove
to heal our world and make us whole.
Enable us, O God, to choose
beyond the inborn needs of self;
in loving, be prepared to lose
our boundaries, and find new life.

Come celebrate the gift of power:
the flow of God within each soul,
which calls us in this present hour
to see creation as a whole.
Enable us, O God, to know
your life is present in all things;
and may our lives, within that flow,
reflect the joy creation sings. (Margaret Bond)


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?

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:

May our thoughts be filled with transformation,
All May our words reflect the yearnings of our hearts.
And may the spirit that binds within us as we gather

All Hallow each and every passing moment
we know here together
(Adapt.Gretta Vosper/ab).

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 Lord's Prayer, and in your original language, as that is appropriate

All Life-Giver, Pain-Bearer, Love-Maker.
Source of all that is and that shall be.

Father and Mother of us all,
Loving God, in whom is heaven:
The hallowing of your name echo through the universe!

The way of your justice be followed
by all peoples of the world!
Your heavenly will be done by all created beings!
Your commonwealth of peace and freedom
sustain our hope and come on earth.
With the bread we need for today, feed us.

In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In times of temptation and test, strengthen us.
From trials too great to endure, spare us.
From the grip of all that is evil, free us.

For you reign in the glory of the power that is love,
now and forever. Amen.


Hymn The people stand as they are able, to sing
Celebrate All Human Beauty”  (Tune: Nettleton’, 87 87D. 392 TiS)
Celebrate all human beauty
caught in colour, form and face,
celebrate the human body
made to move with speed and grace.
Celebrate the human spirit
leaping high to reach a goal,
celebrate our Maker's wisdom
crafting body, mind and soul.

Celebrate our own endeavours
to achieve and to arrive
over handicap and hurdle
when against ourselves we strive,
iron will and summoned courage
sweeping obstacles aside,
sweating out our inner conflict
to acquit ourselves with pride.
Remain standing

Parting Words