Sunday 6th May 2018 – Easter 6B

Call to Worship

Gladly singing of God’s work in creation,

we gather together,

that the story we hold

may be completed

in the words and actions

of those around.

 

Boldly we nestle

into the embrace of God

seeking the assurance of love

for those moments

when we have felt lost,

abandoned,

weighed down with the task of being human.

 

Shouting to the earth,

we cannot keep the news of all we know 

to ourselves,

for God invites us to make

the music of heaven,

in word and whisper,

with instrument and silence,

through voice and the percussion of creation.

 

In this moment of faith

may the melody of justice and hope

inspire us all

to follow Christ.

 

Let us worship God…

 

 

Opening Prayer

Lord of Creation,

the rush of the seas

begins the rolling applause

that appreciates

the wonder of Your hand.

As rivers 

rush to join the heralding praise,

the mountains sour to the highest note

taking their song to the heavens.

In the continuing action of creation

You ensure that the life to be found

is aware of Your presence.

Not some distant deity,

but an interested presence

that reaches out in love

to bring equity

where humanity would insist on heirarchy;

to bring justice and righteousness

where inequality pervades.

These are not some longed for values,

but instead integral characteristics

of the faith You hope to inspire within us.

In Christ,

You offered the assurance

of compassion 

in the midst of life.

 

Bringing the discord to creation’s melody,

our love often stumbles over the hurdles

we have placed

to prevent relationships from forming.

We like our hierarchies

for they give us a sense of purpose

and ambition.

We are not always willing to enjoy 

the equity of friendship,

seeking instead

to be the best.

We do not build up those who have been disenfranchised

and instead enjoy

the superiority of our self-belief.

In bring our faults

into the space of worship,

we seek Your Spirit’s compassion and resolve.

 

Silence

 

Christ of the Gospel,

who bring good news to all,

calls us all to live as those

who believe that we have been redeemed for a purpose.

May we respond in the hope

of all we are invited to be 

in Christ’s name.

Amen.

 

 

Offertory Prayer

God of enduring love,

in the wonder of each day,

in the promise of the morning,

and the restfulness of evening,

we have found Your presence 

healing the flaws and wounds 

of the challenges we have faced.

In the gifts we share,

may Your Spirit,

sweep away the reluctance and anguish,

and offer the fullness of Your grace and love

to all encounter our offerings.

In Christ’s name.

Amen

 

 

Prayers of the People

Lord, in our world:

let Your love flow.

 

Lord of all,

You choose us,

empowering and enabling us

to reveal Your love

in the activities and words 

of each day.

We thank You 

for the task we have been offered

in the name friends.

Bringing blessing on our lives,

we long to hear Your word

so that we are continual inspired

for the activity of faith.

 

We pray for all

who have responded to Your call

as they live our their vocation of faith.

We recognise this gift within the tasks of ministry and eldership,

and yet Your call is to all

and for some it is found in the fulfilment of the work they do each day.

We remember those who act as friends to the community,

as healthcare workers,

social workers and youth co-ordinators,

social services and law enforcers.

 

Lord, in our world:

let Your love flow.

 

As leaders of industry and commerce

wrestle with the wealth of our world,

may they be given wisdom

so that nothing is hoarded or squandered.

We pray for the fair distribution of wealth.

We remember those who are abused or ill treated

in the work that they do.

Make us aware of the need for justice within workplaces,

and in the choices we make

enable others to be fairly paid and valued.

 

Lord, in our world:

let Your love flow.

 

In a world of anguish and sorrow,

we cannot close our ears to the pain and sadness of others.

We pray for those who have been badly treated at the hands of others;

for the homes where illness and disability bring loneliness;

for those who trouble and grief is overwhelming.

 

Lord, in our world:

let Your love flow.

 

We pray for those we miss from our fellowship,

whose faith marker touched our lives

and encouraged us in faith.

May we follow their light

until Your glory is revealed to all.

Amen.

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Sunday 30th July 2017 – Narrative Lectionary

This week is the second of the Sacraments series of readings, Psalm 84 and Romans 6: 1-11.

Opening Prayer

It was You,

Artist of Creation,

who placed your hands into the seas

and pulled from the depths

the sandy shores and rolling fields,

the bleakest deserts and rumbling jungles.

It was you who used and prodded

at the earth,

until the mountains soared

and the valleys sank beyond unfathomable view.

It was You

formed the human frame

and breathed life within it,

and made a space and place

in which the wonder You were shaping

was to be caressed with care.

It was You

who still offered love,

who kept the gates held wide,

who reframed promises,

always laying new paths that would bring

Your children back to Your embrace.

It was You

who walked amongst all You had made,

ensuring that those who were ignored

were brought to sight

and seen for the value You had placed within them.

It is You

who has soaked us with Your waters

and in each splash

retells You love

that we might meet You nestled

at the heart of who we are.

 

Choosing to live

as those who are still cast out,

we run and hide

unless You see the naked cruelty of our actions,

unless You hear the temptations we declare with our words.

 

Life-giving Spirit,
You swoop through our lives

and revive the seeds of hope within us,

replenishing Your world with the presence of Your kingdom.

Amen.

 

 

Prayers of the People

How lovely is Your dwelling place,

O Lord of hosts!

We would boldly sing these words,

for within this precious space

we sense the beauty of Your presence.

Yet You remind us that You are not held within a precious space

but within and outwith the life of the world.

How lovely is Your dwelling place,

You invite us to sing,

and to see ourselves

and the world in which we live

in new light.

To recognise Your beauty

as You rest within each one of us

and stir within

sharing with and meeting that beauty

in others.

 

It can be difficult to see the beauty

of a war-torn land,

or famine starved people.

The images of women, men and children

settled in ramshackle dwellings,

and scrapping at bowls and the ground

for minuscule amounts of food

remind us of the comfort and wealth in which we live.

You call on the beauty within us

to value all life,

and to seek ways in which small changes

to our daily activities

may make changes for others.

 

Politicians haranguing each other,

journalists point out the weaknesses of those in public view

are not pictures we would hang within our homes.

We prayer for the beauty of respect,

for the valuing of differing viewpoints,

and the building of community.

 

In a world where images matter,

we pray for those who cannot see their own beauty –

for the instagram generation

who do not always recognise the manipulated images of media,

and long to shape themselves

to an unachievable shape or form.

May we offer signs of Your beauty

hidden within us all.

 

How lovely is Your dwelling place,

that offers rest eternal

for those we know and love.

We give thanks for those of who have offered signs of Your beauty

in their living,

and who have encouraged us in our faith.

May our encounters with the community of creation

bring forth the beauty of You

within us all,

and allow Your kingdom to be present in all of life.

Amen.

 

Offertory Prayer

Living God,

with our giving we step into Your living waters,

hoping that our gifts

may challenge conflict and bring peace,

ease hunger and offer signs of growth.

We place them in Your keeping

long for all to live full lives

in the presence of Christ.

Amen.