N.T. Wright, Surprised by Hope:
Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church, p 192
CALL TO WORSHIP
Leader: Alleluia! Christ is risen!
People: Christ is risen indeed!
Leader: Hope emerges from the tomb: God’s promise kept.
Voice 1: God has handed us a mystery:
the one who lived and died on a cross lives again,
calling us to something new.
Voice 2: We may not understand,
but we are not alone.
The air is alive with hints of love emerging.
Art and action point the way.
Leader: We come to pour out our spirits
into this vessel that is the church
so we can offer fresh Good News
of God’s emerging love.
All: : Alleluia! Christ is Risen!
Christ is risen indeed! Amen.
WORD FOR THE CHILDREN
Leader: We are troubled by a future that we cannot see.
People: News of flood and drought,
horror at the sight of torture and death
all contribute to our fear of the times ahead.
Leader: Our own efforts at painting and preaching,
singing and sewing,
justice work and peace advocacy
seem overwhelmed by the angst of what lies ahead.
People: We feel our lives are without value
because we’re doomed to die.
Leader: We fear the garden tomb is sealed and closed.
All: Your Resurrection promise seems empty.
Leader: The Holy One knows our fear and our anxiety.
The future that God promises is open, new and fresh.
The stone is truly rolled away.
The empty tomb beckons us into God‘s future.
THANKSGIVING AND PRAISE
INTERCESSION AND PETITION
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: God of life and death and new life,
we give thanks for the bodies you give us,
for the work you have given each of us to do,
and for the love that sustains us as your future emerges
in us and around us and through us.
People: We give thanks
for the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ,
who taught us all we need to know about love.
Leader 2: We give thanks for the Holy Spirit,
who fills us with visions of loving community,
and gives us the power to bring them to life.
People: We give you thanks for your Holy Church,
the living body of those who give away their lives
in joyful witness to your ever-emerging love.
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: God of life and death and new life,
by your resurrection and sustaining love
you have healed our brokenness.
Send us forth now into the world
to share our emerging joy and love with others
And now, in the spirit of our triune God —
Creator, divine spirit, and resurrected Christ,
let us greet one another with signs of peace.
Christ is risen!
All: Christ is risen indeed! Alleluia!