Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.
Rumi, The Diwan of Shawms of Tabriz, number 3090
CALL TO WORSHIP
Leader: Come, people of the Way,
and celebrate the love of God in Christ Jesus.
People: We come, listening for the call,
moved by the breath of Spirit within us.
Leader: Let us search for the Holy One in unexpected places,
in wild shrubs, yeast, and fields.
People: We open our hearts to the Holy One,
for in our brokenness
lies the treasure of the realm of God.
Leader: Called according to God’s purpose, we come.
All: May the Spirit guide our living,
our mission, and our hope.
WORD FOR THE CHILDREN
Leader: Holy One, although your purposes
are often hidden from us,
you have given us light so that we might be light
in a shadowy and frightening world.
People: Too often, we cloak ourselves in shadows,
unable to show our deepest truths,
unwilling to shed light on the path that leads to you.
Leader: You call to us from stormy seas,
keeping us afloat so that we might reach out a hand,
helping others to keep their heads above water.
People: Too often, we cower at the slightest gust of wind,
afraid that the storms of others will overwhelm us,
holding on to the illusion
that doing nothing will save us.
Leader: You offer us a place of rest,
healing our souls so that we might help others
who are broken and hurting.
All: Forgive us, Holy One,
when we lean against the wall of your strength
without offering others a way to climb out of the pit.
Leader: The Holy One knows our shadows,
our fears, our brokenness,
and continues to invite us
into the mystery of God’s purpose.
We are forgiven even before we know we have sinned.
PRAYERS OF THANKSGIVING AND INTERCESSION
PRAYER OF COMMITMENT
All: O Holy One, we come today
to claim our relationship with you.
We pray for the commitment to grow together,
sharing the gifts you give us with others
here and in the wider world.
Forgive us for the hurt we have inflicted,
and help us forgive those who have hurt us.
Give us strength and discipline
to nurture our relationship with you;
to care for every part of your creation;
to foster justice and be in solidarity with those in need;
to work to end all war, and violence, and discord;
and to respond joyfully when you call,
freely giving our selves as you have shown the way.
We open our hearts to you and your creation
in the name of Jesus, who is the Christ. Amen.
Leader 1: This is the table of the Heavenly Feast,
the joyful celebration of the people of God.
Leader 2: We gather now as one body, joined around the table.
Here we celebrate God’s presence among us
united in Christ’s spirit, broken and whole all at once;
All: Nourished and hungry, loved and loving,
sinner and forgiven; we make one circle of knowing,
believing, rejoicing, being,
as God lights and rests among us.
Leader 1: Holy Makerof all that is,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
You have given life to the very cells of being.
People: We give you thanks for your Holy Spirit,
giving voice to sighing prayers,
rejoicing with us as we celebrate your gifts,
offering healing in our broken world.
Leader 2: We give you thanks for your Holy Child, Jesus,
source of hope in times of despair,
binger of peace even as the storm rages.
People: We give you thanks for your Holy Church,
a lamp for our path,
a lifeboat in the raging tempest,
a channel for your healing grace.
BLESSING THE ELEMENTS
Leader 1: Christ invites everyone to eat the bread of life,
to drink the cup of the new covenant.
Leader 2: Jesus said, I am the bread of life.
You who come to me shall never hunger,
You who believe in me shall never thirst.
Leader 1: On the night of his arrest, Jesus took bread,
and after giving thanks to God, broke it and said,
This is my body,
broken for the healing of the world.
Whenever you eat it, do so remembering me.
Leader 2: After supper, Jesus took the cup and said,
This is the cup of the new covenant,
poured out for you and for all.
Whenever you drink it, do so remembering me.
All: O Holy One, send down your Spirit
that these gifts of bread and cup
may be for us the body and blood of Christ.
Unite us with Christ forever
and bring us with the whole creation
to your eternal realm.
SHARE THE ELEMENTS
If you do not wish to receive the elements today you are welcome to join the circle and allow them to pass, or remain in your seat. We serve grape juice in our cups.
PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING AND DEDICATION
All: God of abundance and mercy,
we give joyful thanks
for your eternal love and healing presence
in our celebration of bread and cup.
Bless this body of Christ
that we may attend faithfully
to our call to be your servants,
with each other and throughout the world.
Leader: Go forth with this reminder of God’s eternal love:
You are called by God, and you are not alone.
The Spirit of the Risen Christ is with us,
beside us and within us,
guiding us according to God’s purpose.