|Left to right: Sally Brochu ARCWP and Janet Blakeley ARCWP|
Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community
Trinity Sunday – May 26, 2018
Co-Presiders: Janet Blakeley, ARCWP & Sally Brochu, ARCWP
Lectors: Joan Meehan & Mary Al Gagnon
Music Minister: Linda Lee Miller
“God for us, we call you Creator
God alongside us, we call you Jesus.
God within us, we call you Spirit.”
Richard Rohr, “Gateway to Silence”
GATHERING SONG: #142 – “Jesu, Jesu” verses 2,3,4
Presider: As we gather together in this sacred place and share in this banquet of love, let us pray in the name of our God for us whom we call Creator, in the name of our God alongside us whom we call Jesus, and in the name of our God within us whom we call Spirit.
Presider: My sisters and brothers, our Triune God is with you! ALL: And also with you.
ALL: O Triune God, in this journey into the heart of compassion, we celebrate your love as we see it. Open our eyes and hearts to the message of the Gospel so that your inspiration and peace may rule in our hearts, your justice guide our lives, and your love direct and support us in our concern and care for one another. You call us to recognize and warmly welcome everyone who comes through our doors as your presence among us, which they are. In communion with Jesus, our brother, and with the power of your Spirit, we will try to live the example of your love each day. Amen.
Presider: Magnificent and Compassionate God to whom all hearts are open, no desires unknown, and from whom no secrets can be hidden, cleanse our hearts by the inspiration of Holy Wisdom.
ALL: We take your Word into our minds and hearts. Open them to new understanding.
Presider: We ask for the grace to continually acknowledge our need to grow in goodness and caring for ourselves, for others and for our earth, and all the while to be Jesus for others and to meet Jesus in others.
ALL: We accept your love and understanding of the frailty of our human nature.
Presider: And we join with you, Jesus the Christ, believing the strength and insight of the Holy Spirit will lead us to deeper dedication to justice, equality and peace in our world. ALL: Amen.
(All raise hands extended in blessing over one another)
Presider: God, our Father and Mother of Mercy and Love,
ALL: Through his living, dying and rising, Jesus has revealed that nothing can separate us from your infinite love. May you, Loving God, give us pardon and peace, and may we forgive each other our failures to care for one another and our earth in the name of you, our Creator, of Jesus, our brother, and of the Holy Spirit, our wisdom. Amen.
GLORY TO GOD
ALL: (sung) Glory to God, glory, O praise and alleluia. Glory to God, glory, O praise the name of our God. (3x)
LITURGY OF THE WORD
First Reading: Deuteronomy 4:32-34, 39-40 (Response: Thanks be to God)
Responsorial Psalm 33 (written by Nan Merrill) #767 – “Our God fills the earth with love, with love.
Our God fills the earth with love.”
Second Reading: Romans 8:14-17 (Response: Thanks be to God)
Gospel Acclamation: # 565 - “Alle, Alle, Alleluia!”
Gospel: Matthew 28:16-20 (Response: Glory and praise to Jesus, the Christ)
TRINITY SUNDAY, May 17, 2018 Janet Blakeley
The one thing God imprinted on the minds of the Israelites was that there was one god.
The shema says, “Hear, O Israel. The Lord your God is one.” It was recorded in the Book of Deuteronomy and remains 'til today the statement of faith for all Jews.
How did they come to know this truth? Mainly by experience. One who claimed to be God led them out of slavery, fed them in the desert, gave them the Promised Land, protected them in battle, comforted them in exile, returned them to Israel, and spoke to them through prophets. Someplace along the way they are recorded as saying, “Who else has a god like ours?!” Their lives revolved around this single God and we can say they were familiar with divinity.
It was disconcerting for the Jews to encounter Jesus and sense the nearness of divinity. They accommodated this awareness by saying “this is the Son of God.” When Jesus foretold the coming of the Spirit, it was in terms that described himself (see John). As a result they recognized him in the Spirit. By now, they were experiencing God in three ways but it took early Christians over three centuries to come up with a term for this God. They did try to explain their experiences, however, and in Greek terms they spoke of the “ three persons of God.” This terminology was taken from Greek theater in which an actor put on a different mask to assume his role as a new person. Everyone knew it was the same (one) actor, but he was being a different “person.” So it was one God taking on different roles in different situations.
Hundred of years later, St. Patrick is said to have held up a shamrock to demonstrate something that was, at the same time, one and three. Notice the shift, however, from a dynamic to a static description. This is precisely what was happening in theological discussion. The church moved from describing living experiences of God to doctrine – that is, what we must believe.
Centuries of thinking of the Trinity in static, doctrinal ways led theologian Karl Rahner to comment that the Trinity had little or no impact on the lives of ordinary Christians, and that if it disappeared, no one would notice. The awesome Trinity had been reduced to a theological topic: a description the three persons and speculation about how they related to each other. Reading those descriptions, one could imagine three “somethings” endlessly whirling around in a circle – going nowhere.
Our era is hearing new ideas about the Trinity, however, and it is very exciting! One writer is Cynthia Bourgeault, an Episcopalian priest and theologian, who has applied an old mathematical principal to the Trinity. That principal is called “the power of three.”
As a metaphor, she uses that of a table with two legs. As is, it cannot stand. Add a third leg and it is solid.
Going on, she teaches that the movement between the three legs (transfer of energy) is what keeps this table upright – something like the movement of a bicycle that keeps the bike upright.
She also teaches that the movement, or transfer of energy, is at the same time continuous (around and around) and creative - because when the energy is transmitted from the 2nd to the 3rd leg (think 2nd and 3rd person – Jesus to the Spirit) something new happens. Some energy escapes. Together 2 and 3 form something new. It is to illustrate this idea that Sally chose the picture on your liturgy aids (!)
The principal can be applied not only to the Trinity, but transferred to life situations where it becomes something we can experience!
Example: In a life situation, we have reached an impasse. We identify the two opposing “legs” and know that a life-giving result is not going to come of this. We must be open and wwait for the 3rd, surprise element to come into the picture. Suddenly, the whole scene changes and we find ourselves in a new, creative situation!
Just last week, I experienced this principal by returning to look at a familiar, old, hopeless situation. Without any expectations of what it might be, I opened myself to willingly accept something new. Shortly after that a person who was completely unrelated to the situation gave me a completely new solution to it!!! Why didn't I think of that?!? I was trying to make a two-legged table stand on its own!
There it was! Trinity in action!
We must acknowledge that that God we believe we are a part of, the God into whom we are evolving, is worthwhile knowing! How do we know a Trinitarian God? Through experience.
By noticing the experience.
By naming the experience.
By owning the experience.
Have you experienced the Triune God?
How could we expand our opportunities to experience God this way?
Profession of Faith:
ALL: We believe in one God, a divine mystery beyond all definition and understanding. God the Creator, is the heart of all that has ever existed, that exists now, or that will ever exist. God's divinity infuses the entire cosmos, making everything in it sacred.
We believe in Jesus, the messenger of God's Word, bringer of God's healing and the center of God's compassion. Through his incarnation, we have become a new people, called beyond the consequences of our brokenness.
We believe in the Spirit, the Wisdom that strengthens our call to follow Jesus who is a vehicle of God's love, a source of God's compassion and truth, and the instrument of God's peace in the world.
And we believe that God's kin-dom is here now and will be forever. It is stretched out all around us for those with eyes to recognize it, and hands to share it with everyone.....with no exceptions.
Presider: We are 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, to those who are grieving and need to be comforted in their loss, to those who are facing medical challenges that they be granted hope and healing. We bring the needs of the people throughout our community and our world to our gracious God.
After each intercession, the response is: ALL: Loving God, bless our petitions.
Presider: Presider: That those who are hungry and homeless, especially the children, that they may receive the food and shelter that they so badly need, we pray. ALL: Loving God, bless our petitions.
Presider: For what else shall we pray?
Presider: Healing God, you faithfully listen to our prayers. Strengthen us as we strive to respond to the needs of your people. We make this prayer in the name of Jesus, the Christ, Amen.
Offertory Song: #493 – “Dwelling Place” all verses
PREPARATION OF THE GIFTS
Presider: Blessed are you, gracious God of all life, through your goodness we have this bread, wine, all creation and our own lives to offer. ALL: Blessed be God forever.
Presider: Through this sacred meal may we become your new creation as we respond to your call to use our gifts in loving service to our sisters and brothers. ALL: Blessed be God forever.
Presider: Jesus, who has often sat at our table, now invites all of us to join him at his. There is room and a place for everyone at this table. Please join us in this circle of love that feeds us all on our life’s journey. (Everyone is welcome and has a place at God’s table).
Presider: As we recognize God within each other, let us greet one another at this table.
ALL: Namaste! Namaste! Namaste!
Presider: Pray my friends that as we celebrate this breaking of bread and blessing of wine we accept more fully the mission of our Church by actively living our response to God’s call.
ALL: May our gracious God accept these gifts for the praise and glory of God’s name, for our good, and for the good of all our Church.
Presider: God is always with you. ALL: And also with you.
Presider: Together, we lift up our hearts. ALL: To God and one another we lift them.
Presider: Together, we give thanks to our gracious God. ALL: Indeed it is right to constantly give thanks and praise.
EUCHARISTIC PRAYER – Diarmuid O’Murchu
Voice: Wise and faithful God, you have birthed us in goodness,
gifted us with life and cherished us in love.
In the heart of our being, your Spirit dwells;
a Spirit of courage and vision, a Spirit of wisdom and truth.
We Are Holy, Holy, Holy (You, I, We) Karen Drucker
Voice: Creator God, we see around us the work of your hands,
the fruit of your wisdom and love. The unfolding story of
creation witnesses unceasingly to your creative power.
We, your creatures, often deviate from that wisdom,
thus hindering your creative presence in our midst.
Voice: Sending among us Jesus, our brother, you birth afresh
in our world the power of Sophia-Wisdom, and in the
gift of the Spirit, your creative goodness blooms anew,
amid the variety and wonder of life.
Voice: That same Spirit we invoke upon the gifts of this
Eucharistic table, bread of the grain & vine of the grape,
that they may become the body and blood of Jesus –
to nurture afresh in us the discerning gifts of
wisdom, light and truth.
ALL: Gathering the disciples around the table of shared wisdom,
Jesus took bread; blessed you God of all good gifts,
broke the bread and along with the cup
handed to those seeking nourishment,
with these words: Take this all of you, eat and drink:
This is my body.
ALL: After the meal, Jesus took another cup,
poured out in a spirit of solidarity and empowerment.
Jesus gave thanks and shared the cup with his friends,
saying: Take this all of you and drink from it;
this is the cup of my life-blood,
the life of the new and everlasting covenant.
Sustain one another in the power of sacred memory.
Voice: As we celebrate this sacred meal, we recall the wise and gracious
gifts bestowed on us down through the ages; and we look forward
in hope, knowing that you, our wise and faithful God,
will continue to endow us with abundant blessings.
Voice: In the power of this Eucharistic meal, bless us afresh
with the gift of the Spirit, that our hearts may be open
and receptive as you invite us into the fullness of life.
Voice: In union with all peoples living and dead, we unite our thoughts
and prayers, asking wisdom and courage:
- to discern more wisely your call to us in the circumstances
of our daily lives;
- to act justly and courageously in confronting the pain and
suffering that desecrates the Earth and its peoples;
- to take risks in being creative and proactive on behalf
of the poor and marginalized;
- and to love all people with generosity of heart,
beyond the labels of race, creed and color.
Voice: And may we ever be aware and alert to the new things the
Spirit makes possible, as our world unfolds amid pain and beauty,
into the fullness of life to which all are called,
participating in the wise and wonderful work of co-creation.
ALL: In the wisdom of our Triune God, Creator, Liberator, and Holy Spirit,
we are blessed with the gifts of this Eucharistic table, and with all
the good things bestowed upon our world, now and forever. Amen (sung).
THE PRAYER OF JESUS
Presider: Let us join hands and raise our voices as we sing the Prayer Jesus taught us:
ALL: Our Father and Mother…….
Presider: Deliver us, God of Love, from every evil and grant us peace in our day. In your mercy keep us holy in your sight and protect us from all anxiety and fear. We watch and wait, discerning signs that You are continually with us.
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 all and grant us the peace and unity of your kin-dom where you live forever and ever. ALL: Amen.
Presider: May the peace of our gracious and loving God be always with you. ALL: And also with you.
Presider: Let us offer each other the gift of peace.
LITANY FOR THE BREAKING OF BREAD
Presider: Loving God,
ALL: You call us to live the Gospel of peace and justice. We will live justly.
Presider: Loving God,
ALL: You call us to be the presence of Jesus in the world. We will love tenderly.
Presider: Loving God,
ALL: You call us to speak truth to power. We will walk with integrity in your presence.
Presider: This is Jesus, our Brother, who liberates, heals and transforms our world. All are invited to partake of this sacred banquet of love. ALL: We are the Body of Christ.
After Communion Song: # 350 – “Bread of Life” – all verses
PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION
Presider: May love, wonder, gratitude and thanksgiving fill us, may compassion fully fill our hearts, that you may heal the numbness that continues because of our society’s injustices. May we each know that we are loved and may we continue to be the face of God to each other. Amen.
PRAYERS OF GRATITUDE / INTRODUCTIONS / ANNOUNCEMENTS
Presider: May God be with you. ALL: And also with you.
Presider: Let us call upon our gracious God as we share blessings with each other. We bless one another and pledge to live the Gospel of Christ. ALL: Amen.
(Everyone please extend your hands in mutual blessing.)
ALL: May our gracious God, bless us all gathered here, in the name of God our Creator, in the name of Jesus our Light, in the name of the Holy Spirit our Wisdom, as we care and minister to one another in love, for we are the Body of Christ and the face of God to the world. Amen.
Presider: Go in the peace of Christ. Let our service continue!
ALL: Thanks be to God.
CLOSING HYMN: #373 – “Take the Word of God with You” – verses 1,3,4