Epiphany 2002: Communion Liturgy for 2002 Christmastide

Epiphany 2002: Communion Liturgy for 2002

 

Seekers Church:
A Christian Community
In the Tradition of the Church of the Saviour
Communion Liturgy

 

SILENT REFLECTION

When we are truly there, dwelling deeply in the present moment, we can see that the bread and the wine are really the Body and Blood of Christ and the priest's words are truly the words of the Lord.  The body of Christ is the body of God, the body of ultimate reality, the ground of all existence.  We do not have to look anywhere else for it.  It resides deep in our own being.  The Eucharistic rite encourages us to be fully aware so that we can touch the body of reality in us.  Bread and wine are not symbols.  They contain the reality, just as we do.

Thich Nhat Hanh.  Living Buddha, Living Christ, pp 31-32.

 Photo of the candles on the alter being lit.

PROCESSIONAL

 

SILENCE

 

CALL TO WORSHIP

CALL FOR THE COMMUNITY

 

CALL BY THE COMMUNITY

All:             My beloved is mine and I am my beloved's.

 

Voice 1:     So came the manna from heaven,

a gift from God-who-loves-us to her people.

 

Voice 2:     So came the miracle of milk and honey

the Holy One inviting us to his table.

 

Leader:      Even in the time of wailing and complaining,

God-with-us reassured us love endures –

beyond hardship, beyond alienation, beyond death.

 

All:             So we come again to our Holy Lover,

receiving the promise of presence and joy

beyond what we could ever desire.

 

INVOCATION

 

HYMN

 

SILENCE

 

PRAYERS

JESUS PRAYER

All:             Eternal Spirit: Earth-maker, Pain-bearer, Life-giver,

                  Source of all that is and all that shall be,

                  Father and Mother of us all, creation resonates

                  with celebration of your nameless name.

 

                  Let justice and mercy flood the earth;

                  let all creation harmonize in your imagination;

                  and let us recognize

                  that every thought and thing belongs to you.

 

      With the bread we need for today, feed us;

      in the hurts we absorb from each other

      and those we inflict on others, forgive us;

      in times of test and temptation, stand with us;

      from the grip of all that is evil, free us.

 

      For you alone are creating our universe,

      now and forever.  Amen.

 

COMMON CONFESSION

Leader:      Jesus was born in Bethlehem —

helpless infant, Wisdom of God,

Word made flesh and flesh made word.

 

People:      How can we see?  How can we hear?

Our hearts are like well-trodden paths. 

No seeds can grow.

 

Leader:      Jesus taught in Galilee —

healer of the sick, comforter of the poor.

The hungry shall feast and the greedy starve.

 

People:       How can we see?  How can we hear?

Our hearts are choked with brambles. 

No seeds can grow.

 

Leader:      Jesus died in Jerusalem  —

ground into bread, crushed into wine.

"Just as I have loved you, you must love one another."

 

All:             How can we see?  How can we hear?

Our hearts are like stony soil. 

No seeds can grow.

Bulletin Cover of a drawing of a plant with the legend 'Celebrate' 

 

INDIVIDUAL PRAYERS OF CONFESSION

 

ASSURANCE

Leader:      We have denied Jesus three times,

yet seventy times seven, we are forgiven.

By the mercy of God, seeds do grow.

This is the Good News in Christ!  Amen.

 

PRAYERS OF THE COMMUNITY

 

HYMN

   

THE WORD

FIRST LESSON

SILENCE

GOSPEL LESSON

HOMILY

SILENT REFLECTION

 

OFFERING

 

COMMUNION

PREPARATION

Leader 1:   We gather now as one body, joined around the table.

 

Leader 2:   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.

 

INVITATION

Leader 1:  This is the table of the Heavenly Feast,

the joyful celebration of the people of God.

 

Leader 2:  Christ invites everyone to eat the bread of life,

to drink the cup of the new covenant. 

 

Voice 1:     Jesus said, "I am the bread of life.

She who comes to me shall never hunger;

he who believes in me shall never thirst."

 

Voice 2:     In the beginning, God provided every plant yielding seed

and every tree with seed in its fruit for food.

 

Voice 1:     When the Israelites were in the wilderness,

God fed them with miraculous food.

 

Voice 2:     When the crowds were hungry, Jesus fed over five thousand

with two fish and five loaves of bread.

 

All:             When two were walking towards Emmaeus,

they recognized the Anointed One

as they broke bread together.

 

THE MEAL

 

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 which is for you;

do this remembering me."

 

Leader 2:   After supper, Jesus took the cup and said,

"This is the cup of the new covenant;

whenever you drink it,

do this remembering me."

  Photo of Peter pouring the wine. Sonya holds the broken bread.

SHARE THE ELEMENTS

 

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 wine.

Bless this body of Christ

that we may attend faithfully to our call to be your servants

with each other and throughout the world. Amen.

 

SHARED REFLECTIONS

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

HYMN

 

BENEDICTION

Leader:      Go into the world in peace; have courage;

hold onto what is good; return to no one evil for evil;

strengthen the fainthearted; support the weak;

help the suffering; love and serve God,

rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

 

The communion alter

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LITURGY RESOURCES

Jesus’ Prayer: based on the New Zealand Book of Common Prayer

Thanksgiving 2002
Advent 2001: Unknown Territory of Hope