Saturday, April 21, 2018

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community Fourth Sunday after Easter – April 21, 2018 Co-Presiders: Elena Garcia, ARCWP & Cheryl Brandi Music Minister: Linda Lee Miska Celebration of Earth Day

Elena Garcia ARCWP presides with Cheryl Brandi (front pew) at Mary Mother of Jesus Liturgy to Celebrate Earth day

WELCOME/GATHERING SONG:  Canticle of the Sun -  By Marty Haugen

The heavens are telling the glory of God,
and all creation is shouting for joy.
Come, dance in the forest,
come, play in the field,
and sing, sing to the glory of our God.

Sing to the sun, the bringer of day,
He carries the light of our God in his rays;
The moon and the stars who light up the way
Unto your home.          Refrain.

Praise to the wind that blows through the trees,
The seas mighty storms, the gentlest breeze;
They blow where they will, they blow where they please
To please our God.       Refrain

Sing to the earth who makes life to grow,
The creatures you made to let your life show;
The flowers and trees that help us to know
The heart of love.     Refrain

Presider: As we gather together in this sacred place and share in this banquet of love, let us pray in the name of God, our Creator, of Christ, our liberator, and of the Holy Spirit, our Sanctifier. All: Amen.

Presider: My sisters and brothers, God is with you!     All: And also with you.
All: God of life, wholeness and holiness, you direct all creation to its 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. Loving God, we ask that you impart your wisdom to all people, especially world leaders, to care for and protect our planet Earth. 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 sister Sophia Wisdom. Amen
Presider: Creator 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.

Upon all who seek to care for God’s good creation,                                      God, have mercy.

Upon all who seek to conserve and preserve the earth’s bounty                 God, have mercy.

Upon all who seek to preserve or restore this world’s
beauty,                      God, have mercy.

Upon all those who suffer through pollution and destruction of creation,       God, have mercy.

Upon all whose land has been spoiled by drought or flood or war                 God, have mercy.

Upon all farmers, market gardeners, foresters and all who work the land,   God, have mercy.

Upon ranchers, shepherds, zoo keepers and all who work with animals     God, have mercy.

Upon conservationists, landscape gardeners and environmentalist             God, have mercy.

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, the source of all being, of Jesus, our brother, and of the Holy Spirit, our wisdom. Amen.

 ALL: For the music of our world,
The divine song that sings through all creation,
God our creator, we praise you.
For the beauty of all you have created,
A mirror of the wonders of heaven,
God our creator, we praise you.
For the resounding roar of thunder,
Your awesome majesty revealed,
God our creator, we praise you.
For a clouded sky splashed with sunset colors,
A glimpse of heaven’s glory,
God our creator, we praise you.
For the fragrance of a rose,
Your sweet perfume of grace,
God our creator, we praise you.
For a riotous field of wildflowers,
God’s exuberant laughter unfolded,
God our creator, we praise you.
For a snowflake, an atom, a mathematical formula,
A hint of your unimagined complexity,
God our creator, we praise you.
For the call to steward your creation,
To tend your garden and make it flourish,
God our creator, we praise you, Alleluia

First Reading: Easter Hymn for Earth.
Hallelujah! They have risen!
Snowdrop, crocus, bearded iris. 
Exult and throw your happy arms upward!
The trillium carpet the forest floor.
The tulips, triumphant in rainbow rows,
rise up singing "our cups overflow."

The creatures dress in their feast-day finest,
the loons and penguins in black tie and tux.
Hallelujah ushers forth from lips and beaks
as quacks, warbles, howls and hoots
fill the forests and fields with hymns of joy.

Let the Earth be glad and the sky shower praise
for the riot of color in her cloak of glory:
Purple Martin, Scarlet Tanager,
Red-winged Blackbird, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher,
Great Blue Heron, Snowy Egret,
Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Indigo Bunting.

It is right to give thanks for the endangered,
relatives among us but not for long:
Bengal Tiger, Blue Whale, Leatherback Sea Turtle,
Asian Elephant, Javan Rhinoceros, Mountain Gorilla,
Snow Leopard, Red Wolf, California Condor.

It is fitting that we mourn our relations now extinct-
though the list is long, let us name a few:          
Chinese River Dolphin, Japanese Sea Lion,
Caribbean Monk Seal, Cascade Mountain Wolf, Sardinian Lynx,
Bali Tiger, Mexican Grizzly, Eastern Cougar, Black Rhinoceros,
Koala Lemur, Barbary Lion, Laughing Owl.

For all that dies and rises, we bend our knee.
As creatures of the Cosmos, progeny of the Universe,
we give thanks and rejoice for the Flame within us.

With the bald eagles and hairy frogfish,
with the furry kittens and spiny hedgehogs,
with the runny-nosed bison and red-nosed reindeer
we stand in awe as Earth spins, tides change,
hearts beat, eyes see, hands comfort.

We who believe in Life give Life.
This feast marks the life of a prophet
who said more than once,
"What you see me do, you can do, and more."
What rises today and every dawn
are these words that remind us:
There is nothing in the world we cannot do.
Let us take this suffering world into our arms
and heal what we can.

The inspired words of Jan Phillips 2018                     (Response: Thanks be to God)
Responsorial Psalm
A psalm for the Celebration of Creation adapted from Godspace

Response: God, all of life reflects your creative presence and sustaining love

God of wind and storm,
God of trees and flowers,
God of birds and beasts,
God of men and women,
God of all creation,
Come down, come in, come amongst us.
Response: God, all of life reflects your creative presence and sustaining love

God, we see you in the wind and calm.
We see you in the sun and the moon.
God we hear you in the song of birds and bees.
We hear you in the crash of waves and waterfalls.
Response: God, all of life reflects your creative presence and sustaining love

God, we feel you in warmth of sun and cold of ice
We feel you in the richness of soil and softness of fur
God we smell you in the perfume of rose and jasmine
We smell you in a fresh cut apple and peach
Response: God, all of life reflects your creative presence and sustaining love

God, we see you in the rich abundance of the harvest
God we hear you in the voices of those who enjoy its bounty
God, we feel you in the care of those with whom we share its generosity.
Response: God, all of life reflects your creative presence and sustaining love

Second Reading:
Indeed, God calls forth songs of joy from all the earth
and answers us with awesome deeds of righteousness,
Our God is  the hope of all the ends of the earth and
the farthest seas,
When morning dawns and evening fades
God calls forth songs of joy from all the earth.
She cares for the land, waters it
and enriches it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
To provide the people with grain,
For so it is ordained.
God drenches its furrows, levels its ridges
and softens it with showers thus blessing its crops.
The year is crowned with Her bounty,
and our carts overflow with abundance.
The grasslands of the deserts overflow;
The hills are clothed with gladness.
The meadows are covered with flocks
And the valleys are mantled with grain;
They shout for joy and sing because
Our Almighty God is the creator of all life,
and the work of Her hands reflect Her great love and compassion.
Yes, God calls forth songs of joy from all the earth.

Inspired words of a Godspace author and adapted by Elena Garcia for Earth Day. 
(Response: Thanks be to God)

Gospel Acclamation: # 565 - “Alle, Alle, Alleluia!”

Gospel: The Creation – Inspired by James Weldon Johnson and Adapted by MT Streck
 (Response: Glory and praise to Jesus, the Christ)

Living Peacefully on Earth 
Homily: Elena Garcia ARCWP
April 21, 2018. 

In meditating on the Earth during this month my mind became aware of the awesome power and love of the Holy One. For some years, science and technology have made it possible for us to explore the cosmos and to view much of it on our screens. Although awed at first, I fear that we have become numb to its magnificence and now often take for granted that it is all there. My musings have challenged me to wonderments and a myriad of questions such as how is it that the earth is round, how does it remain round and how does it hang out here in space?  Oh, and these are only a few of the hows and whys. We learned as children that “God is the Supreme Being who made all things” The in-depth realization that our Creator’s presence permeates every living thing has enriched my spiritual journey.
Today we celebrate Earth Day, a day when we are reminded of the power and majesty of   The Holy one who has ordained and permitted us to live and to live here. Yes, if we remove the use of the mere word Earth and replace it with Here, we may be able to make a closer connection to the reality of our existence and the love which surrounds and permeates our beings. All of Creation and its creatures are one.  
Over the decades, we have witnessed the destruction we humans have done to Mother Earth and her creatures. We’ve read about catastrophic climate change and experienced the changes—the droughts, the strange weather, the extreme fires and tornadoes and rainfall. We grieve for Mother Earth and the creatures who die because of our systemic greed, violence, and destructive habits. Our beautiful Earth, our home has cried out in vain for care and attention to its potential for infinite possibilities. And which one of us would not be aware of and attend to the ongoing maintenance needs, upkeep and beautification of our homes? We have only to watch HGTV to understand. Yet only recently have I made or felt the connection between my vision of nonviolence and the ongoing destruction of Mother Earth.
“Blessed are the meek,” Jesus says in the Beatitudes. Thomas Merton wrote that “meekness” is the biblical word for nonviolence. “Blessed are the nonviolent,” Jesus is saying-- “They will inherit the earth.”  A life of nonviolence leads to oneness with creation and her creatures.
A life of violence, of course, leads to an abrupt discord with creation. In a time of permanent warfare, nuclear weapons, and catastrophic climate change, the message couldn’t be clearer. The God of peace, the nonviolent Jesus, and his Holy Spirit call us to practice nonviolence. Only in that way, can we renounce and stop our environmental destruction, tend our Garden of Eden together, and restore creation to its rightful peace. In the process, we will discover peace with one another and all the creatures.
This is the journey we are all called to live, to make the connection between active nonviolence and oneness with creation, so that we all might dwell peacefully in this paradise. I [see] not just the vision of peace and nonviolence, but the vision of a new creation, where we all live as one in peace with one another, Mother Earth and her glorious creatures. It’s that vision of peace, nonviolence, and the new creation, the vision of the promised land before us, the practice of proactive nonviolence, that offers a way out of environmental destruction, as well as permanent war, corporate greed, systemic racism, and extreme poverty.
And how do we live nonviolently?  It requires of both humans and nature a recognition of God’s image in each living thing. We cannot be violent toward someone or something when we see the divine in them!
All we have to do is open our eyes to the reality of creation before us, to be present to it, to take it in and honor it, and welcome its gift of peace—and do so within the boundaries of nonviolence. In that present moment of peace, a new creation is offered to us once again. Amen
In preparation for this brief homily starter I referenced the work of John Dear, a nonviolent activist. His recent book is entitled They Will Inherit the Earth: Peace and Nonviolence in a Time of Climate Change

Questions for Reflection
·      What does Earth Day mean to you?
·      What thoughts do you have on nonviolence?
·      Nonviolence-toward people?  Toward all of creation?


Profession of Faith:
God, we believe all creation waits in anticipation for Christ’s return,
When your creative power will transform all of life,
And you will give birth to a resurrection world of fairness and freedom.
God, we believe the difficult times of pain will be turned into songs of joy.
Scarcity will be transformed into abundance.
Greed will be replaced by generosity.
Oppression will be overcome by justice.
God, we believe that when your new world of wholeness and shalom is born,
Your healing power will be unleashed in its fullness;
The blind will see and the lame leap like deer.
Righteousness and faithfulness will reign,
The voiceless will break into song and streams will flow in the desert. All of creation will find its true purpose in Christ
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: That those who are hungry and homeless, especially the children, 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.         All: Amen.

Offertory Song-
Christ Be Our Light
Lyrics for Christ Be Our Light by Kamahl

Longing for light, we wait in darkness. 
Longing for truth, we turn to you. 
Make us your own, your holy people,
light for the world to see. 

Christ, be our light! Shine in our hearts. 
Shine through the darkness. 
Christ, be our light! Shine in your church 
gathered today. 
Longing for peace, our world is troubled. 
Longing for hope, many despair. 
Your word alone has pow'r to save us. 
Make us your living voice. 

Longing for food, many are hungry. 
Longing for water, many still thirst. 
Make us your bread, broken for others, 
shared until all are fed.

Longing for shelter, many are homeless. 
Longing for warmth, many are cold. 
Make us your building, sheltering others, 
walls made of living stone. 

Many the gifts, many the people, 
many the hearts that yearn to belong. 
Let us be servants to one another, 
making your kingdom come. 

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: 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.
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! (I bow before the presence of God in you!)
Voice: Gracious God, source and sustenance of life, redeeming presence to the pain and brokenness of our world, Holy Spirit who enlivens all that exists, we beseech your healing power upon us and all for whom we pray today. We join together with our community, with all creation everywhere, with all those who have gone before us and live in the eternal now (Names of our loved ones............)
Let us sing:
All: We are holy, holy, holy (x3), we are whole. (You, I, We) By Karen Drucker

Voice: We thank you for our brother, Jesus, who 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. 

Voice: (Place your hand on the shoulder of the person to your right) 
Loving God, let your Holy Spirit rest upon us, your people, converting us from the patterns of the world, until we conform to the shape of him whose food we now share. 

(Extend hands as together we recite the epiclesis and consecration)
All:    O God, let your Spirit of life, healing and wholeness come upon these gifts, gathered from the fields and placed on our table. May She have them become for us the Body and Blood of Jesus, our brother. 
On the night before he died, Jesus gathered for the Seder supper with the people closest to him. Once again he showed us how to love one another.

Presider 1 lifts bread.

All: Having washed the feet of those gathered with him, Jesus took the Passover Bread, spoke the grace, broke the bread and offered it to them saying, Take and eat, this is my very self.

Presider 2 lifts the wine.

All: Then he took the cup of blessing, spoke the grace, and offered it to them saying:
Take and drink of the covenant made new again through my life in you.
Whenever you remember me like this, I am among you.

Presider 1: Let us pray the mystery of faith. 

All: This bread is you, this bread is me. We are one body, a reflection of God’s treasures, in communion with all creation. 

Voice: Christ of the Cosmos, we thank you that there are 18 galaxies for every person, that our bodies are made of stardust. Every place we turn, you are present, loving us. You call us, “beloved” and invite us to join the dance of creation in a mystical celebration of our oneness with all living things in your divine love. 

Voice: Christ of the Cosmos, we rejoice that You, who are more than we can imagine or dream of, dwell in mystery beyond all comprehension. We remember that it was you, who said: “Anything I have done in the name of the Holy One, you can do, too…and even more.”  

Voice: Christ of the Cosmos, we remember Mary, mother of Jesus, faithful disciple and St. Francis who sang canticles to brother sun and sister moon. We remember our sisters and brothers, the great cloud of witnesses who have cared for earth’s creatures and have blessed our world with their loving service to God’s people.   

Presider:  We praise you in union with them.  We awaken to your Spirit within, moving us to worship you truly, O Holy One, at this time and all time and in all ways. Amen. 

Presider: Let us pray together the prayer of Jesus: 
Adapted from Miriam Therese Winter 

O Holy One who is within, around and among us, 
We celebrate your many names. 
Your wisdom come; your will be done, 
unfolding from the depths within us. 
Each day you give us all that we need. 
You remind us of our limits and we let go. 
You support us in our power, and we act with courage. 
For you are the dwelling place within us, 
the empowerment around us, 
and the celebration among us,  
now and forever.  Blessed be!   Amen

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.  All: Amen.
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 join hearts and hands and pray for peace in our world as we sing: “Peace is flowing like a river” love, joy, alleluia
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: Presider: Loving God,
All: You call us to speak truth to power. We will walk with integrity in your presence.

Presiders: (Lift Body and Blood of Jesus the Christ) This is Jesus, our Light, 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.
Communion: Instrumental
After Communion Song: “Loving Kindness” video (lyrics on last page)

Presider: May our hearts overflow with love, wonder, gratitude, and thanksgiving.  May we emulate God’s Divine Heart of compassion, so that the numbness that continues because of our society’s injustices may be healed. May we each know that we are loved and may we continue to be the face of God to each other.   All: Amen.
CONCLUDING RITE 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 caring and ministering to one another in love, for we are the body of Christ and the face of God to the world. All: Amen.
BLESSING (Everyone please extend your hands in mutual blessing.)               
May we share with justice the rich resources of your world,
And ensure that none of your creation will be spoiled or misused.
Unite us through your covenant of peace
So that we may share your generous bounty
And work to ensure that no one will hunger or face oppression.

May God our creator, Jesus our liberator and Holy Spirit Wisdom our sanctifier be among us and remain with us always.  All: Amen
DISMISSAL Presiders: Go in the peace of Christ. Let our service continue!
ALL: Thanks be to God.

CLOSING HYMN:   “Canticle of the Sun” – (Marty Haugen)

                     ***same lyrics as gathering song****

Loving Kindness by Karen Drucker

You are the face of God by Karen Drucker

Loving Kindness-Karen Drucker
May I be filled with loving kindness
May I be well
May I be peaceful and at ease
And may I be happy

May you be filled with loving kindness
May you be well
May you be peaceful and at ease
And may you be happy

May we be filled with loving kindness
May we be well
May we be peaceful and ae ease
And may we be happy

I am filled with loving kindness
I am well
I am peaceful and at ease
And I am happy!