"We Gather here to Celebrate" by Mindy Lou Simmons
Theme: Breakfast on the beach with….Jesus
Welcome and Music Preparation
Greeting and Gathering Hymn: “We Gather Here to Celebrate”
Presider: Let us pray as we come together to break bread and share our blessings in the names of God, our Creator – Jesus, our Liberator – and the Holy Spirit, our Sanctifier. All: Amen.
All: God of life, wholeness and holiness, you who direct all creation to its evolving fulfillment in Jesus, the Christ – open our hearts to the message of the Gospel so that your peace may rule in our hearts and your justice may guide our lives. May we then be able to live in confident hope of our sharing in your resurrection.
Loving God, bless all of us gathered here and all those of our community who are not with us today. We ask this of you, our brother Jesus, and our Wisdom Sophia. Amen.
Penitential Rite and Community Forgiveness
Presider: Creator God, to you all hearts are open, no desires unknown, and no secrets hidden. We ask you to send your Spirit to us so that we may live ever more openly according to your will for us and that we may be worthy to be called your blessed people.
All: Help us to hear your messages, to faithfully understand them, and to receive the strength to follow them.
Presider: Christ Jesus, we ask for the grace to be able, always, to acknowledge our need to grow in goodness and caring for ourselves, for others, and for our planet earth.
All: We accept your love and understanding of the frailty of our human nature. Help us to extend your merciful and forgiving presence given freely to us as we share that with all those with whom we live.
Presider: And we join with you, Jesus the Christ, believing that the insight, direction, and strength of the Holy Spirit will lead us to deeper dedications to justice, equality, peace, and nonviolence.
All: (with an outstretched arm): God, the Father and Mother of love and forgiveness, through Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, he bonded the world to you. He sent the Holy Spirit among us to give us the wisdom to love you – and the strength and compassion to love one another. Merciful God, teach us the virtues of pardon and peace so that we may – in turn – learn to forgive each other for our failures to care for one another, for our planet Earth, and for all of creation. We ask this in the name of Jesus, our brother and of the Holy Spirit, our healer and comforter. Amen.
Glory to God
All: Glory to God in the highest, and peace to all God’s people on earth. Creator God, heart of the universe, we thank you for the breath of the Spirit sustaining everything that exists, everywhere in the cosmos. Through the example and teachings of Jesus, you gave us the grace to realize that you are always present among us – and that we can experience you in our brothers and sisters. We give you glory and praise through Jesus the Christ, our brother, and the Holy Spirit, your Wisdom. Amen.
Liturgy of the Word
First reading: Acts 5: 27-32 40-41 All: Thanks be to God.
Psalm 30 Responsorial: I Will Praise You, my God. #762
Second reading: Revelation 5:11-14 All: Thanks be to God.
Gospel Acclamation: Celtic Alleluia (sung)
Gospel: John 18: 33-37 All: Glory and thanks to our Savior, Jesus the Christ
Shared Homily/Community Reflection
Discussion starter: You’re sitting on the shore with Jesus and seven disciples; the conversation is
quite “different.” What do you want to say to Jesus? How would you respond to the question Jesus asked Peter? What effect, do you think, this experience would have on you? (It got Peter in trouble.)
Profession of Faith
All: We believe in God, the Creator of the universe whose divinity infuses all that exists, making everything, everywhere, sacred. We believe in Jesus, the Christ, who leads us to the fullness of humanity. Through him, we become a new people, called beyond the consequences of our brokenness. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Wisdom who keeps the Christ-vision present to all those who are searching for meaning and wholeness in their lives – and the Sustainer who heals and energizes us when our spirits may grow weary in our journeys. We say: Amen to courage, to hope, and to truth. We say: Amen to the partnership and equality of all people of different genders, races, and faiths. We believe in a world of justice and peace for everyone, everywhere, with no exceptions. In all of this, we surely believe.
Prayers of the Community
Presider: We are a people of faith. We believe in the power of prayer. We believe that we send blessings to those who are struggling and who need to experience hope and healing, to those who are grieving and need comfort in their loss. We bring the needs of people throughout the world to our merciful and gracious God.
After each intercession, the response is” Compassionate God, hear our prayers.
Presider: Healing God, you faithfully listen to our prayers. We ask you to strengthen us in our caring for one another and in our works for justice, equality, and peace in a world without violence. As always, we make this prayer in the names of Jesus, the Christ, and the Holy Spirit, our Wisdom. Amen.
Offertory Procession “Room at the Table”
Preparation of the Gifts
Presider: Blessed are you, gracious God of all creation. Through your goodness we have this bread to offer, grain that earth has given and human hands have made. It will become for us the bread of life.
All: Blessed be God forever.
Presider: Blessed are you, gracious God of all creation. Through your goodness we have this wine to offer, fruit of the vine that earth has given and human hands have made. It will become for us our spiritual drink.
All: Blessed be God forever.
Gathering of the Gifted: All are welcome around our family table
ALL: Gracious God, we are united in this sacrament by our love of Jesus the Christ. We are in communion with all people everywhere who proclaim your healing power and mercy, especially to those who are marginalized and oppressed. May we love tenderly, do justice, and walk humbly with you in solidarity with our brothers and sisters. May we live as prophetic witnesses to the Gospel. We ask this through Jesus, the Christ. Amen.
Presider: God dwells in each one of us. All: Namaste!
Presider: Let us give thanks to the Creator and Sustainer of all that exists.
All: With hearts full of love, we give God thanks and praise.
Presider: Sacred Spirit, we recognize your presence among us as we gather at our family table.
All: Fill us with reverence for you, for one another, and for all your creation.
Presider: Let us lift up our hearts.
All: We lift them up to the Holy One, living in us and loving through us.
Voice 1: Ever present and always caring, loving God, we do well always and everywhere to give you thanks. In you we live and move and have our very being. Your Spirit dwelling in us gives us the hope of unending peace and joy with you. Your gift of the Spirit, who raised Jesus from the dead, is the foretaste and promise of the paschal feast of heaven. We join together with all those who have gone before us and now live in the eternal now, as we sing…
ALL: We are holy, holy, holy X3, we are whole. You are holy…I am holy…we are holy.
Voice 2: We thank you, God, for the gift of Jesus in history – and the gift of Jesus in faith. You raised him up from among your people to baptize us in your Spirit. His life was moved by his vision of your presence among us. He burned with insight and truth, revealing you in his life well lived. He showed us, through his example, not only how we should live, but also for what we may die.
Voice 3: When his time had come, Jesus suffered for what he deeply believed and taught…his conviction that love is stronger than death. And then, as a model of this belief for those people in ages to come, he opened wide his arms and died. The Spirit, who raised Jesus from the dead, showed us that life is eternal and love is immortal. Jesus is with us today and will be through the end of time.
All: O God, let your Spirit of life, healing and wholeness come upon these gifts that we have gathered from the fields and placed on our table — this simple wheat and wine. May she have them become for us the Body and Blood of the resurrected Christ, our brother.
(With an outstretched arm as we pray the consecration together. We remember the gift that Jesus gave us on the night before he died. He gathered with his friends to share a final Passover meal. And it was at that supper that he took bread, said the blessing and shared it with them saying: take this, all of you, and eat it. This bread is you; this bread is me. We are one body, the presence of God in the world. Do this in memory of me. [Pause]
In the same way, he took a cup of wine, said the blessing, and gave it to his friends saying: take this, all of you, and drink it. This wine is you; this wine is me. We are one blood, the presence of God in the world. Do this in memory of me.
Presider: Jesus, who was with God “in the beginning of the creation of the heavens and the earth,” is present to us now in this bread. The Spirit, of whom the prophets spoke in history, is with us now in this cup. Let us proclaim this mystery of faith.
All: Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ lives in us and through us in the world today.
Voice 4: In memory of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, we offer you, God, this life-giving bread, this saving cup. May all who share this sacred meal be brought together in unity by the Holy Spirit. And may that Spirit, that Wisdom, move freely in our lives as she did in the life of Jesus.
Voice 5: God, remember your church throughout the world, help us grow in love, together with Francis, our Pope, Bridget Mary, our Bishop, and all your family everywhere – especially those who live on the margins of church and society. Remember also all those, living and dead, who touched our lives and left their footprints on our hearts. We remember especially….(mention names, if you wish to do so.)
All: And we pray: it is through Christ, with Christ, and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, that all glory and honor is yours, Our Creator God, forever and ever. Amen (sung).
Presider: Let us join hands and raise our voices as we sing the Prayer that Jesus taught us.
All: Our Father and Mother …….. Amen.
All: Lord God, we have prayed that your kindom may come among us. Open our ears to hear it, our hearts to hold it, and our hands to serve it.
The Sign of Peace
Presider: Jesus, you said to your disciples, “My peace I leave you; my peace I give you.” Look on the faith of those gathered here today and ….
All: … grant us your peace. O God, following the example of Jesus and with the strength of the Spirit, help us spread that peace throughout the world, to everyone, everywhere, no exceptions. Amen.
Presider: May the peace of God be always with us, and let us extend that peace to one another by holding hands and singing “Peace is Flowing Like a River.”
Litany for the Breaking of Bread
Presider: Loving God, …. All: you call us to live the Gospel of peace and justice in a world of non-violence. We will live justly.
Presider: Loving God, All: you call us to be your presence in the world and to be bearers of healing and compassion everywhere in your name. We will love tenderly.
Presider: Loving God, All: you call us to speak truth to power. We will walk humbly with you.
Presider: This is Jesus, who liberates, heals, and transforms us and our world. All are invited to partake of this sacred banquet of love. All: We are the Body of Christ.
Presider: Lord God, as we come to share the richness of your table, we cannot forget the poverty of so many of our brothers and sisters.
Men: We cannot eat this bread and forget those who are hungry. O God, our world is one world and we are stewards of its nourishment.
Women: We cannot drink this wine and forget those who are thirsty. O God, the very earth and its parched people cry out for justice.
All: We cannot listen to your words of peace and not grieve for the world in conflict.
During Communion: “Face of God”
Communion Hymn “Song of the Body of Christ #324
Prayer of Thanksgiving after Communion
Presider: Eternal God, may this Eucharist in which we always share Christ’s healing love deepen our oneness with you and our unity with one another. We ask this in the name of Jesus, the Christ, and the Spirit, the Wisdom. All: Amen.
Community Prayers of Gratitude and Announcements
All: May our hearts be glad on our journey as we dream new dreams and see new visions.
May we all live and work for mercy, peace and justice, in our hearts for ourselves and our brothers and sisters – whoever they are and wherever they are.
May we learn to bless, honor, and hold in reverence the Earth and one another.
May we be the face of God to the world. Amen.
Closing Community Blessing
All: (with an outstretched arm): May our nurturing God bless us gathered here and all those in our community – in the name of the Creator, in the name of Jesus the Christ, and in the name of the Spirit, our Wisdom, as we minister to one another as the People of God. Amen.
Closing Community Commisioning and Hymn “Take the Word of God With You” #373
Presiders: As we leave here in the peace of Christ, let our service continue in all that we do.
All: Thanks be to God. Let it be so!