Sunday, July 7, 2019

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community - Liturgy for Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Presiders: Kathryn Shea and Lee Breyer, Music Minister: Mindy Lou Simmons

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community

Fourteenth Week in Extra-Ordinary Time
July 6, 2019
Presiders:  Kathryn Shea, ARCWP and Lee Breyer
Music Minister:  Mindy Lou Simmons
Theme: Our Mothering God…Our suffering children
Welcome to Mary Mother of Jesus, an inclusive Catholic Community where everyone is welcome to participate in our Eucharistic Celebrations.  We use inclusive language in all our scripture readings and prayers. We also invite your respectful and related comments when we share the homily and, a little later in the liturgy, everyone will have an opportunity to share their own personal intentions in the Prayers of the Community. Everyone, with no exceptions, will be invited to gather around the altar table and take part in praying the Consecration and sharing the Communion. We are delighted to see everyone here today - both the “old timers” and the newcomers - and we are pleased that we join together in this liturgy this afternoon. Lastly, all will be invited to join us for supper at a local restaurant after the liturgy. 
Gathering Hymn:  “We Are Called” by David Haas

Gathering Prayer

Presider: O God, we thank you for our gathering as we share this sacred place and as we will celebrate in it our oneness with you.  Through Jesus, you have told us to “do onto others as we would have them do onto us” and to “love our neighbors as we love ourselves.”  We ask our mothering God  to give us the strength to love ourselves as much as Jesus would like us to -- so that we are able to respond fully to the “you” that is in each one of us and fully commit ourselves to the care of our brothers and sisters, especially the children who are suffering in the migrant camps.  Loving God, bless all of us gathered here now and all those of our community who are not physically with us today.

Presider: This is the day that our God has made ….  All: let us rejoice and be glad in it!

 Community Reconciliation, Healing, and Transformation
Presider:  Compassionate God, to you all hearts are open, no desires unknown, and no secrets hidden.  Our desire is to be continually conscious of your presence in how we live, and to be aware of this in everything we do with our sisters and brothers.
All:  We ask you, through your Spirit, for the grace to realize our continual need to grow in an ever- better understanding, compassion and caring for ourselves, for our brothers and sisters, and for our planet Earth.  We also ask that we may be constantly conscious of your forgiveness in our love-less and hurtful actions to people of other beliefs, nationalities, races and social settings.

May we gather both the strength of your Spirit and the grace of your Divine Presence within us so that we may extend your merciful and forgiving presence that is your gift – through us – to everyone we meet, everywhere.   Amen.

Presider:  Let us give glory to our loving Holy One.
All (Sung):  Glory to God, glory, O praise God, Alleluia.  Glory to God, glory.
O praise the name of our God. (3X)
Liturgy of The Word
First Reading: Isaiah 66:10-14      
Psalm 19:  #740 Your Words, God, are Spirit.  Spirit and Life.   
Second Reading:  Galatians 6:14-18  
Gospel Acclamation:  CELTIC ALLELUIA!  (sung)
Gospel Reading:  A reading from the Gospel according to Luke 10:1-12, 17-20

Shared Homily/Community Reflection

Homily Starter – Kathryn Shea ARCWP

Theme:  Our Mothering God…Our Suffering Children

In today’s first Reading, we hear the beautiful and encouraging words of Isaiah and how our Mother God protects us, comforts us, and fills us with great joy.  We are called to exult with her and know that peace will come upon us and flow like a river.  These must have been such comforting words to those who had been living in exile returning to Jerusalem, uncertain of what they would find or of their future. 
In the second Reading, we hear that it does not matter whether we bother with the external of religions or not, but to know that all that matters is that we are created anew.  And in our Gospel Reading, we hear the story as told by Luke, that Jesus appointed seventy-two OTHER disciples and sent them in pairs to advance to every town and place he intended to visit.  He warned them that they were being sent as lambs in the midst of wolves.  And they departed into the towns, visiting the homes, healing the sick, just as Jesus instructed them to do.  And they returned with great joy, proclaiming the demons obeyed them in Jesus name.  And Jesus replied that their joy lies in the fact that their names are inscribed in Heaven.  And in all of the Readings, we are given the message to spread peace throughout the land, not just with our words, but with our actions and that in spreading peace, peace will be given to us.
So, what does all of this mean and how do we apply these words to our lives and our world today?  In reality, our world is not all that different than it was 2000 years ago.  We still have those who live in exile.  We still have war and hatred, and we still have those who rule through tyranny and greed.  There is much joy in the readings today but also a sense of urgency and a bit of harshness.  We are called to be missionaries to spread the word and works of Jesus for “the harvest is rich, but the workers are few.”

But, how do we reconcile all the pain and suffering we are witnessing in our world with the Mothering God who promises protection, comfort, and peace?  I know there are days we feel overwhelmed by all of it.  I am particularly troubled by the separation of the children from their parents at the border and the harsh and inhumane conditions in which they are living.  From Leviticus 19: “When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them.  The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born.  Love them as yourself for you were foreigners in Egypt.”  
I find for myself, that in order to keep fighting the good fight, I need space and time to pull back from it and renew my own faith and energy.  I need time to reflect on what it means to be a disciple of Jesus and how I spread peace to all I encounter when I feel so angry with the direction of our country.  I need to be with other like-minded missionaries and realize there are so many of us who do work for peace and justice in our world every day and who are light-bearers and bring hope and joy to those in need.   I need to constantly anchor myself in maintaining the vision of peace in our time and hold fervently to the incredible awareness of God’s mothering love and care for us.  God has given us every gift we will ever need to bring change to this chaotic world.  Imagine the power in that!

So what sustains you in these difficult times?  How do you transform your anger into action?  How do you maintain a continued presence of peace?     

Profession of Faith

All:  I believe in you, O Holy One, Source of all, the incomprehensible Mystery of Love beyond imagining.
I believe that I am in you and that you are in me.
I believe that our relationship is transforming my life.
I believe that you surround me with forgiving, abounding kindness in the midst of darkness, injustice, pain, and death.
I believe in Jesus, anointed by Your Spirit, who embodies your ways in his ministry.
I believe that Jesus did not come to die but to live and help others live in abundance on this beautiful earth.
I believe that Your Spirit anoints me to share in the same ministry by living justly, loving tenderly and walking with integrity.
I believe that you nourish and sustain me through prayer.
I believe that you summon my conscience to action on behalf of justice that will change oppressive structures on our suffering children.
I believe that Your Spirit is at work in all of creation.
I believe that you call me to be a co-creator with you and to join with companions on the journey as you beckon us to birth with you a new creation.
Amen. (A personal creed by Mary Theresa Streck, ARCWP)
Prayers of the Community

Presider:  We are people of faith.  We believe in the power of prayer.  We believe that we send blessings to those who are struggling with difficult challenges sand who need to experience hope; to those who are grieving and need to be comforted in their loss, to those who are facing medical challenges that they be granted health and healing. We bring the needs of people throughout our world to our gracious and comforting God.
After each intercession, the response is:  Compassionate God, we know that you hear our prayers. Of this, we have no doubt.   (For what else shall we pray?)
 Presider: Healing God, we know you attend to our prayers and respond with what is best for all.  In you, we place our faith.  ALL: Amen.

Preparation of the Gifts
Offertory Song:   “Prayer of St. Francis”

 Presider:  Blessed are you, Jesus of Nazareth, through your goodness we have this bread and this wine and our own lives to offer.  Through this sacred meal may we remember how to live the new story and follow your examples of love and compassion.   
All:  Blessed be God forever.   
Presider:  Divine Presence, we believe that you are always with us, loving in each of us and healing others through us.
All:  Namaste (with a nod…3x)
Presider:  Lift up your hearts.  
All:  We lift them up in tender love, open to serve.
Presider:  Let us give thanks for all that we have.
All: It is our joy to be grateful for our many blessings as we gather at our family table.                             
                                                   (so… let us “gather at our family table”…)    
Eucharistic Prayer
(Eucharistic prayer adapted from the work of Diarmuid O’Murchu and Jay Murnane)
Voice 1:   O Holy One, we stand at a critical moment in Earth’s history – a time when humanity must choose its future.  As the world becomes increasingly interdependent and fragile, the future holds both peril and great promise. May we recognize that, in the midst of a magnificent diversity of cultures and life forms, we are one human family and one Earth community with a common destiny. United with our vast universe, with our Mother-Planet and her people everywhere, with one another and You, Loving God, our spirits dance as we sing this song of praise:
All: We are holy, holy, holy (3x), we are whole. You are…I am… We are (Karen Drucker Holy, Holy, Holy by Karen Drucker

Voice 2:  We give grateful thanks for those who came before us, for all those who gave from their hearts and who gave from their lives that there might be a better world, a safer world, a kinder world; we pray for peace in their names. And we pray for the children, that they may live, that they may have children of their own and that it will go on - this great blossoming that is meant to grow and spread in all time – we pray for peace in their names.
And we pray for all the peoples of this earth who have no voice in this, For the animals that have no voice in this, For the plants, the trees, the flowers that have no voice in this, For all who share this earth with us…we pray for peace in their names.
Voice 3:  We thank you for our brother, Jesus. He showed us so simply, so tenderly, how the world is in our hands. He had nothing in this world but your love, companions on the journey, and his very self. Together, that was more than enough, and that remains our clarity in the midst of confusion: the miracle of healing, new hope, nurturance, nourishment, liberation and life.
(Please extend hands toward our gifts as we say together)
All:  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 Jesus 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.  When you do this, remember me and all I have taught you.   (pause a moment, then continue….)

All: In the same way, Jesus took a cup of wine, said the blessing and gave it to his friend 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.  When you do this, remember me and all I have taught you. 

Presider:  Jesus, who was with God “in the beginning of the creation of the heavens and the earth,” is with 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 our faith.

All:  The Anointed One lives in us and through us in the world today. 

Voice 4:  Loving God, we have looked for others to save us and to save our world. Yet, we are called, and blessed and sent into the world to establish justice and show the blessed fulfillment that comes with simplicity and the giving of ourselves in love.  We will make new our commitments to the harmony of the original vision of creation. We will open up wide all that has been closed around us and our small circles. Like Jesus, in all openness, we will be filled with your own Spirit and renew the face of the earth. 
 All:  We believe that the Spirit of God is at work in and among us and will do more than we could ask or imagine.    Amen. (sung, x times) 
The Prayer of Jesus
Presider:  Let us join hands and raise our voices as we say the Prayer Jesus taught us:
ALL:  (sung)  Our Father and Mother…….

The Sign of Peace
Presider:  God, we know that you give us peace and unity beyond what any words can express.  You are here with us as we join hands in a circle of love and sing our prayer:  “Peace is Flowing Like a River“ (#529) (Love, Alleluia)

Litany at the Breaking of the Bread
Presider:  Loving God…All: you call us to Spirit-filled service and to live the Gospel of non-violence for 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 forgiveness and understanding, 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 calls us to open doors that are closed and share our bread and wine on the altar of the world. All are invited to eat and drink at this sacred banquet of love. 

All:  When we share in this meal, we who have always been worthy, commit to live your teachings, dear Jesus, and to tell your stories that allow Spirit to rise up within us and empower us to bring the kin-dom of God to this world.  This is the good news of salvation.  

Presider:  Let us share and spread this good news!  ALL:  Amen.  (As we share this sacred meal, we say to one another with the passing of the bread, “You are the love of God in the world.”  When we share the wine we say, “You are the peace of God in the world.”

Communion Music:  Instrumental  

Post-Communion Meditation and Reflection – All This Joy by John Denver
sung by Mindy Lou SImmons

Prayer of Thanksgiving after Communion
Presider:  May wonder and thanksgiving fill us.  May compassion fully fill our beings, that we may heal the numbness that continues because of our society’s injustices. May we share our many blessings with our sisters and brothers.  ALL:  Amen.


Closing Prayer

All:  May our hearts be glad on our journeys as we dream new dreams and see new visions.
May we 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 one another and the planet Earth.
May we serve as a “mothering God” to all who experience injustice, especially the suffering children.    
And may we be the face of God to the world, reflecting a compassionate and caring presence in us to everyone we meet.
Closing Community Blessing
(Everyone please extend your hands in mutual blessing.) 
ALL:  May our gracious mothering God, bless us all gathered here, in the name of God our Creator, in the name of Jesus our brother, and in the name of the Spirit Sophia, as we care and minister to one another, and all those we meet, in love.  We know that you are with us as we continue on our paths and follow in the footsteps of Jesus, for we ARE your face Oh God, to the world.  Amen.
Presiders:   May we all go in the peace that Jesus gave us and have it flow like a river throughout the world.   
All:   Thanks be to God; let it be so.
Closing Song:  Way Beyond the Blue by Eva Cassidy

Chorus:  Oh do Lord, oh do Lord, oh do you remember me?
Oh do Lord, oh do Lord, oh do you remember me?
Oh Lord, oh do Lord, do you remember me,
Way beyond the blue.

Oh I’ve got a home in Glory Land
That outshines the sun
Oh I’ve got a home in glory land
That outshines the sun
Oh I’ve got a home in glory land
That outshine the sun
Way beyond the blue

Repeat Chorus.    

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