Sunday, January 27, 2019

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community, Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, January 26, 2019 Presiders: Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP and Peg Bowen ARCWP, Music Minister:Linda Lee Miska

Co-Presiders: left to right:  Bridget Mary Meehan and Peg Bowen

Theme: The Spirit reveals the heart of the Holy One in Jesus who shows us how to live healing, wholeness and justice.

Welcome and Greeting
Presider 1: Welcome to Mary Mother of Jesus, an inclusive Catholic Community where all are welcome to share Eucharist at the Banquet Table. We use inclusive language in our scripture readings and prayers. We invite sharing at the homily that is related to our readings and respectful, as well as the prayers of the community Everyone prays the words of Consecration in the Eucharistic Prayer. We welcome our newcomers at the announcement time after Communion.  All are invited to join us for supper after liturgy.

Presider 2: Today we encounter the Spirit resting on Jesus who manifests the heart of God who desires healing, wholeness and justice for all especially the marginalized and oppressed. Today the Spirit rests upon us to manifest the Holy One's All-Embracing Love in our world. 

Opening Song: #413 Sing a New Church

All: We open our hearts to Spirit’s call to live the mission of Jesus of creating unity and harmony within a gifted and diverse community where all are equally blessed and important.

Rite of Communal Forgiveness

Presider 1: We pause now to remember times we have not treated one another as gifted and diverse members of the Body of Christ, equally blessed and important.
 ( Pause for a few moments of silent reflection. ) 

Presider 2: Let us now ask for forgiveness for our failures to love others. (Extend arm over community)
All: Please forgive us, we are sorry, we love you, thank you.

All: Glory to God, glory, O praise God, alleluia, Glory to God, glory, O praise the name of our God (sung 3 times).

Liturgy of the Word
First Reading: Nehemiah 8:2-4a, 5-6, 8-10

Anna Davis

Responsorial Psalm 19
Response: Ubi Caritas, et amo, ubi caritas, deus ibi est.
Second Reading: 1 Letter to Corinthians 12:12-30

Cheryl Brandi

Eightfold Alleluia (Charismatic)

Peg Bowen

Gospel:  Luke 1:1-4, 4:14-21

Homily: Bridget Mary

The Spirit reveals the heart of the Holy One in Jesus who shows us how to live healing, wholeness and justice.

Today the good news is that we are co-creators of a new Church that manifests God’s all embracing love everywhere. 

As we reflect together on our path in 2019 and beyond, we open our hearts to Spirit’s call to live the mission of Jesus of creating unity and harmony within a gifted and diverse community, Church and world where all are equally blessed and important.

My sisters and brothers, our gift and our challenge is to be new wine in new wineskins as Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community right now in Sarasota, Florida and beyond.

In the reading from Nehemiah, the Israelite people had returned from exile in Babylon and were moved to tears as they heard the words of Torah proclaiming the heart of the Holy One’s All-Embracing Love being read. Many in our Church today weep as they witness the pain, suffering and resistance to change and transformation brought about by the worldwide sexual abuse scandal in our Church. How can we reach out with love and healing is a question for us to ponder?  

In our second reading, Paul uses the beautiful metaphor of the human body to describe the unity and harmony within the diverse Christian community where all the many parts are equally important. Here I am conscious of one of the hot button issues in our Church, will Pope Francis accept the Papal Commission's recent endorsement of women deacons in the history of the Church? Then, will he affirm this tradition and ordain women deacons now?

 Last week, at our celebration of Imogene  Rigdon’s life, Michael shared our MMOJ community's vision of Catholic life that is not structured in a pyramid top -down hierarchy model of bishop, priests and people but rather a circle of equals of ordained and non-ordained that is inclusive and always expanding and welcoming.  

In today’s Gospel, Luke sets the scene in the synagogue, describing those present as spell-bound, when he read from the prophet Isaiah: 

“God’s Spirit is on me; God has chosen me to preach the message of good news to the poor, Sent me to announce pardon to prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind to set the burdened and battered free, to announce, This is God’s year to act!”  (The Message, translation by Eugene Peterson) 

Today, the same Spirit resting on Jesus who manifested the heart of God’s desire for healing, wholeness and justice for all especially the marginalized and oppressed rests upon us as individuals and as a community.
In a recent meditation, Richard Rohr reminds us of the challenge of Jesus’ mission to pour new wine into fresh wineskins: “Without new wineskins—changed institutions, systems, and structures—I would argue that transformation cannot be deep or lasting...Christianity has shaped some wonderfully liberated saints, prophets, and mystics. They tried to create some new wineskins, but often the church itself resisted their calls to structural reform. Take for example the father of my own religious community, Saint Francis of Assisi. He was marginalized as a bit of a fanatic or eccentric by mainline Catholicism, as illustrated by no Pope ever taking his name until our present Pope Francis. Even today many Christians keep Jesus on a seeming pedestal, worshiping a caricature on a cross or a bumper-sticker slogan while avoiding what Jesus said and did. We keep saying, “We love Jesus,” but it is more as a God-figure than someone to imitate.”

So, sisters and brothers on the margins, this is God’s year to act through us as we bring our different gifts and perhaps some new ones to promote healing, wholeness and justice in our community here in Sarasota, in our Church and beyond.

Our Homily Reflection Question: How can we live the mission of Jesus that includes both personal and structural transformation in a gifted and diverse community, Church and world where all are equally blessed and important?

Statement of Faith 
Presider 2: Please join in praying our statement of faith.

We believe in the Holy One, a divine mystery
beyond all definition and rational understanding, in whose infinite love all creation exists and evolves.

We believe in Jesus, messenger of the Divine Presence,
bringer of healing, heart of Divine compassion,
bright star in the firmament of the Holy One's
prophets, mystics, and saints.

We believe that we are called to follow Jesus
as a reflection of divine compassion and healing
a source of wisdom and truth,
and an instrument of peace and healing in the world.

We believe in the Spirit of the Holy One,
the life that is our innermost life,
the breath moving in our being,
the depth living in each of us.

We believe that the Divine kin-dom is here and now,
stretched out all around us for those
with eyes to see it, hearts to receive it,
and hands to make it happen. 

Prayers of the Community
Presider 1: As we prepare for the sacred meal, we pray for the needs of the people of God in our community and around the world.
Our response is: Holy One, you hear our prayers.
Please share your spontaneous prayers.

Presider 2: We give thanks for all whom we held in the circle of grace and will continue to pray for and use our spiritual gifts to serve our sisters and brothers with joyful hearts in the coming weeks. Amen.

Preparation of The Gifts (Presiders lift up the bread and wine)

Presider1: Blessed are you, God of all life, through your goodness we have bread, wine, all creation, and our own lives to offer. 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 2: All are welcome to join us around the table.

Liturgy of the Eucharist

Presider 1: God is within you, blessing the world through you
All: And also within you. 
Presider 2: Lift up your hearts.
All: We lift them up in the Holy One. 
All: O God of_____(say your name), we rejoice that You call us beloved. We give thanks for the rich diversity of spiritual gifts we have in this community. We open our lives to serve our sisters and brothers in their needs. We remember the angels and saints and all who have gone before us. Joined with all creation, we lift up our hearts and sing:

We are holy, holy, holy by Karen Drucker 

Voice 1:   We rejoice in Jesus, our brother, who called us to proclaim the Good News of divine healing, wholeness and divine justice. He lifted up the oppressed, and invited us to care for the poor, the marginalized, and to bring release to those who are held captive.

Voice 2: We celebrate our call to use our spiritual gifts to reflect the One Who Embraces All with love in our relationships and actions each day.

(Extend hands in blessing toward bread and wine for Invocation of the Holy Spirit)
All: Now, as we share the bread of life and lift the cup of joy, we pray: Come Holy Spirit, deepen your Presence within us and in these gifts of bread and wine. 

All: On the night before he died, Jesus gathered for the Seder supper with the people closest to him. Like the least of household servants, he washed their feet, so that they would re-member him.

Presider 1: (lifts bread as community prays the following:)

All: When he returned to his place at the table, he lifted the Passover bread, spoke the blessing, broke the bread and offered it to them saying: 
Take and eat of the Bread of Life 
Given to strengthen you  
Whenever you remember me like this  
I am among you. (pause) 

Presider 2: (lifts the cup as community prays the following: )

All: Jesus then raised a cup of blessing, spoke the grace 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.  (pause)

All: Let us share this bread and cup, 
and welcome everyone to the Banquet as we live the gospel of justice and peace in our world.

Voice 3: Like Jesus, who was aware of the power of the Spirit upon him, we are called to do everything Jesus did, to be the living presence of a love that does justice, of a compassion that heals and liberates, of a joy that generates laughter, of a light that illumines right choices and confronts the darkness of every injustice and inequity.

All: So, we trust you to continue to share with us your own Spirit, the Spirit that filled Jesus, for it is through his life and teaching, his loving and healing  that your presence and action is manifested to the world through our lives.
All sing: Amen.

Presider 1: Let us pray as Jesus taught us:
All: Sing Prayer of Jesus: Our Father and Mother

Presider 2: Sign of Peace: Let us hold hands sing “Peace is flowing like a River” as we pray for peace and justice to spread through our world.

Prayer for the Breaking of Bread

Presider 1:  Please join in the prayer for the breaking of the bread:.
(Presiders break the bread)

All: O God of Courage, You call us to live the Gospel of peace and justice.  We will live justly.  O God of Compassion, You call us to be Your presence in the world.  We will love tenderly.  O God of Truth, You call us to speak truth to power.  We will walk with integrity in your presence.

(Presiders hold up bread and wine)

Presider 1: This is the bread of life and the cup of blessing. Through it we are nourished and we nourish each other. All are welcome to the Feast.

All: What we have heard with our ears, we will live with our lives; as we share communion, we will grow in unity and harmony in our blessed diversity.

Communion Song: Spirit of the Living God (me, us, all)
(Sung by Michael Crawford)
Spirit of the Living God
Fall fresh on me
Spirit of the Living God
Fall fresh on me.
Melt me mold me
Fill me use me
Spirit of the Living God
Fall fresh on me.

Presider 1: Prayers of Gratitude, Introductions and Announcements

Presider 2:  Let us raise our hands in blessing and pray together:

All: May we continue to be the face of God as we serve our sisters and brothers. May we call each other to be blessings as we share our diverse gifts with all.  May we walk with an awareness of our call to live as the heart of God and make our world a better place. May we, like Jesus, be a shining light of the presence of the holy in our time!

Closing Song: God Has Chosen Me #378

This liturgy was written by Bridget Mary Meehan and Mary Theresa Streck

Community gathers for dinner

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