|Lee Breyer and Kathryn Shea ARCWP- Co-Presiders|
Theme: The Messiah, the dreamer, and the people….
Welcome and Opening Expression
Presider: Welcome everyone. We have come to break bread and share the blessings of this particular day. One month ago, in the third week of Advent, we heard – in John’s gospel – a questioning by some Jewish priests and Levites of John the Baptist…just who was he? Was he the Messiah, Elijah, a Prophet…? No… wrong guy… he was just making straight the road for the holy one! In today’s gospel, we pick up where the earlier John story ended. We continue it at the next day (7 verses later in the gospel) ….and meet Jesus, recognized by Andrew as “the Messiah.”
We may recall that two years ago, Pope Francis addressed the Congress and talked about Martin Luther King, whose birthday we celebrate Monday. He described MLK as “a prophet who awakened us to carry out God’s will for justice and the elimination of all prejudices.”
Today, we celebrate these two people, Messiahs in their own ways and times, in our liturgy. We do so here in this sacred space with our holy brothers and sisters.
Opening Hymn “Gather Us In” #302 vs 1, 2, 3
Presider: Holy God, you not only directed the drama of the creation of the cosmos, you became one of the actors on planet earth in the person of Jesus. Through him, you showed us how to live the lives that you have blessed us with here until we move on to the eternal home you have prepared for us. Open our hearts to the message of the Gospel so that your peace may rule in our hearts and your justice guide our lives. We pray that we may always be conscious of your constant presence within us and that we reflect that to everyone in all we say and do. 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 to cleanse our hearts so that we may live more fully according to your will and that we may be worthy to be called your blessed people. We ask you to instill in us the virtues of understanding, compassion, forgiveness and peace. Give us the courage and strength to extend your merciful concern and care to everyone we meet.
ALL: Christ Jesus, we ask for the grace to recognize our continual need to grow in mercy, compassion and caring for ourselves, for our brothers and sisters, and for our planet earth.
Presider: And we pray…
ALL: God, grant us these graces so that we may – in turn – forgive each other our failures to care for everyone, everywhere without prejudices to any, this day and always.
Liturgy of the Word
First Reading – 1 Samuel 2-10, 19 ALL: Th
|Roman Rodriguez, Lector|
Cantor: Cheri McDonagh
Psalm 72. ALL: Justice shall flourish in this time and fullness of peace forever. #785
Second Reading -(Read by Theresa Rodriguez)1 Corinthians 6:13-20 ALL: Thanks be to God
Gospel Acclamation ALL: (Celtic) Alleluia!
Gospel: John 1: 35-42 ALL: Glory and praise to our God, Proclaimed by Kathryn Shea ARCWP
Shared Homily/Community Reflections, Lee Breyer
Homily Starter: Thoughts — What attracted Andrew and Peter to Jesus at the Jordan River? What attracted millions of people to Martin Luther King at the Washington National Mall? What were they looking for and experience? What teachings and missions did the listeners leave with? Question — What have we learned, integrated, and practiced from the lessons of these two Messiahs? What challenges to them have we met, dealt with and overcome?
Profession of Faith
All: We believe in God, the Creator of the Universe, a divine mystery who infuses all that exists, making everything everywhere in the cosmos sacred. We believe in Jesus, the Christ, who is our hope, our love and our peace. He is the touch of God to humanity; he leads everyone to the fullness of life. It is because of his incarnation that we have become a new people…a holy gathering called beyond the consequences of our brokenness. We believe in the Spirit, the Breath of God, who keeps the Christ-vision present to all those who are searching for meaning and wholeness in their lives. She is the Sustainer who heals and energizes us when our strengths grow weary in our journeys. We believe that God’s kindom is here with us now, everywhere, and will always be present for those with eyes to recognize it, hearts to receive it, and hands to make it known to all.
We say amen to faith, hope, and love. We say amen to the partnership and equality of all people, regardless of gender, race, and beliefs. We say amen to a world of peace and justice 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. Always mindful of God’s unconditional love and care for all of us, we bring the needs of the people to our merciful and gracious God. After each intercession, please respond: Compassionate God, we ask you to bless our petitions. (community intentions)
Presider: Healing God, we ask you to strengthen us in our concerns for one another, here and throughout the world. We ask you to bless our efforts for justice and equality so that, with our sisters and brothers, we may promote cultures of peace and nonviolence. We make these prayers to you, O God, in the names of Jesus, our brother, and the Holy Spirit, our sister. Amen.
Offertory: “Be Not Afraid” #430 All 3 verses
Presider: Blessed are you, God of Creation, through your goodness we have this bread to offer…this grain of the earth that human hands have made for our use. It will become for us the Bread of Life.
ALL: Blessed be God forever.
Presider: Blessed are you, God of Creation, through your goodness we have this wine to offer…this fruit of the vine that human hands have made for our use. It will become for us our Spiritual Drink.
ALL: Blessed be God forever.
Gathering of the Gifted
Presider: Jesus, who has often sat at our tables, now invites all of us to join him at his. Everyone is welcome to share in this blessed meal. (Everyone is welcome at God’s table.)
ALL: Loving and caring God, we – your people – are united in this sacrament by our common love of Jesus. We are in communion with everyone, everywhere, who shares your gift of compassion, especially with all those who are marginalized and oppressed. May we love tenderly, act with justice, and walk humbly with you in solidarity with our sisters and brothers everywhere. And may we always live as prophetic witnesses to the gospel of Jesus. Amen.
Presider: Let us give thanks to the Creator of all that exists.
ALL: With hearts full of love, we give God thanks and praise.
Presider: Let us show our gratitude to Jesus who has shared with us his life-vision.
ALL: Open our hearts to your gospel message through your words and actions while on this earth.
Presider: Let us recognize the presence of the Spirit among us gathered at the family table.
ALL: Fill us with reverence for our Creator, for one another, and for all creation.
Presider: Our God, Emanuel, is not only with us, God dwells in each one of us.
ALL: Namaste! Namaste!
Voice 1: Ever living and ever-loving God, it is through you that we live and move and have our very being. And we know that in the days to come, that Spirit, who raised Jesus from the dead, will fulfill her promise to bring us to the paschal feast of heaven. Her dwelling with us gives us everlasting hope of unending peace and joy with you. And so, we SING with thankful praise….
ALL: Holy, Holy, Holy God, God of power, God of light. Heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed are all who come in the name of our God. Hosanna in the highest. Hosanna in the highest.
Voice 2: We thank you for the gift of Jesus in history – and the gift of Jesus in faith. Through him, you breathe life into us. He was moved by his vision of your constant presence in everyone he met, everywhere he went. He revealed you in everything he did in his life well lived. And he showed us, through his example, not only how we should live, but also for what is worth dying.
Voice 3: And when his time on earth had come to an end, Jesus surrendered his life for a value that he deeply believed, lived and taught…his conviction that love is stronger than death. And then, providing a personal example of this insight for the understanding of people in ages to come, he opened wide his arms on a cross and died. Then the Spirit, one stronger than death, raised Jesus to life, showing everyone that life is eternal and that love is immortal. Jesus is with us – and lives in us – today as he will through the end of time.
ALL: O God, let your Spirit of life, healing and wholeness come upon these gifts – this simple wheat and wine. May She make them holy so that they will become for us the Body and Blood of Jesus, our brother.
ALL (With an outstretched arm, 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 his final Passover meal. And it was at that supper that Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke the bread and gave it to 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, Jesus took a cup of wine. He 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: As we gather around this Eucharistic table, we recall God’s blessing and love from ages past and we celebrate and share those gifts in friendship and peace.
ALL: Jesus, who was with God “in the beginning of the creation of the heavens and the earth,” is with us today in this bread. The Spirit, whom the prophets spoke of centuries ago in history, is with us today in this cup.
Presider: Let us proclaim this mystery of faith.
ALL: Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ lives in 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 everyone who shares this sacred meal be brought together in unity by the Holy Spirit. And may that Spirit, that Wisdom, that moved in Jesus move just as freely in our lives as She did in his.
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 People everywhere – especially those who live on the margins of church and society. We remember, as well, the entire communion of saints, both those living and dead, who touched our lives and left your footprint on our hearts. We remember especially …(pause as names are mentioned).
ALL: Through Christ, with Christ, and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours, Creator God, forever and ever…(and everyone sings)…Amen. (4-5x)
ALL (holding hands): Our Father and Mother, who are in heaven, blessed is your name…..
The Sharing of a 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 through our words and actions to everyone, everywhere, with no exceptions. Amen.
Presider: May the peace of God be always with us, and let us extend that peace to one another as we hold hands and sing…“Let There Be Peace on Earth” #532
Litany for the Breaking of the Bread
Presider: Loving God…. ALL: you call us to Spirit-filled service and to live the Gospel of peace and justice, we will live justly.
Presider: Loving God…. ALL: you call us to be your presence in the world and to be bearers of understanding and compassion, forgiveness and healing 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 all the Body of Christ.
Presider: Gracious God, as we come to share the riches of your table, we cannot forget the poverty of so many of our brothers and sisters, our families and neighbors, in so many places.
Men: We cannot eat this bread and not think of those who are hungry. O God, your world is one world and we are just stewards of its nourishment for all of your people.
Women: We cannot drink this wine and not think of those who are thirsty. O God, this very earth and its people cry out everywhere for environmental justice.
ALL: We cannot listen to your words of peace and not grieve for the world at war’s doors.
Communion Hymn: Instrumental
Post Communion Song/Reflection: Gather The Dreamers – Kathy Sherman
Prayer of Thanksgiving after Communion
Presider: Loving God, may this Eucharist in which we share Christ’s healing love deepen our
oneness with you and with one another. May we reflect, like Mary, your liberating and mothering love for all. And may wonder and thanksgiving fill us with knowledge, understanding and experience of your love and compassion for us, your sacred people. We ask this in the name of Mary’s son, Jesus the Christ. All: Amen.
Introductions, Gratitudes, Announcements
Closing Community Blessing (with an extended arm)
ALL: May our hearts be glad on our journey as we dream new dreams, see new
visions, and create a new heaven and earth.
May we live and work for compassion and peace, justice and non-violence in our hearts and in those of everyone we meet.
May we learn to bless and honor and hold in reverence all creation, the earth, and one another.
Closing Community Commissioning
Presider: Loving God, we have looked for others to save us and to save our world. Yet, we have been called and blessed, and are now commissioned and sent into the world to create cultures of peace and justice. May we always remember, with gratitude, that we are the face of God to the world.
Presider: As we leave here in the peace of Christ, let us be the people that God created us to be. Let us be faithful followers of the Messiah and the Dreamer.
ALL: Thanks be to God. Let it be so!
Closing Community Hymn: “We Shall Overcome”
We shall overcome,
we shall overcome,
we shall overcome some day.
Oh, deep in my heart,
I do believe,
we shall overcome some day.
We shall all be free….some day.
We shall live in peace….some day.
MMOJ Community Celebration of My Birthday