Sunday, June 16, 2019

Upper Room Inclusive Catholic Community - Trinity Sunday and Father's Day - Presiders: Kathleen Ryan, ARCWP, and Tim Dunne

Welcome: Today is Father’s Day-We celebrate all the fathers who are with us today and we remember all our fathers. We also remember and are grateful to those who acted “fatherly” towards us.  We are also celebrating the Mystery of the Holy Trinity.  Maybe the Trinity is not so mysterious after all-we will see.

Opening Prayer: Have no fear-Be not afraid are the most commonly repeated words in scripture. Peace be with you is a close second.  Please close your eyes-breathe deeply-----for the moment let all your fears and worries go and rest in the Peace of knowing you are unconditionally loved by the Holy One, Amen

Opening Song: Glory to God by Marty Haugen

First Reading: “Mindful” by Mary Oliver

I see or hear
that more or less
kills me
with delight,
that leaves me
like a needle
in the haystack
of light.
It was what I was born for —
to look, to listen,
to lose myself
inside this soft world —
to instruct myself
over and over
in joy,
and acclamation.
Nor am I talking
about the exceptional,
the fearful, the dreadful,
the very extravagant —
but of the ordinary,
the common, the very drab,
the daily presentations.
Oh, good scholar,
I say to myself,
how can you help
but grow wise
with such teachings
as these —
the untrimmable light
of the world,
the ocean’s shine,
the prayers that are made
out of grass?
These are the inspired words of Mary Oliver.  The community affirms these words with AMEN

A reading from the Gospel of John
Jesus said to his disciples:
"I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now.
When the Spirit of truth comes,
She will guide you to all truth.
She will not speak on her own initiative,
rather she will speak only what she hears,
and will declare to you the things that are coming.
In doing this the Spirit will give glory to me,
because she will take from what is mine and reveal it to you.
Everything that the Abba God has belongs to me;
This is why I said that the Spirit will take what is mine and reveal it to you"

These are the inspired words of John a disciple of Jesus.  The community affirms these words by saying Amen!

Kathie’s Homily Reflection:  Today we celebrate Father’s Day and The
Solemnity of the Holy Trinity. Thinking about Father’s Day started me thinking about our use of inclusive language. We have gotten away from describing God as He or as Father. We more often pray to the “Holy One” instead of God because the word God implies a “male” God. We have tried to be neutral and sensitive. Ironically on Mother’s Day we often make a point of mentioning God as “She”—attempting to gain a balance. We need the balance of both-male and female. We need relationship and balance in our lives and the Trinity shows us a way to balance through relationship.

In today’s Gospel Jesus describes the Spirit of Truth as “She” and then uses the masculine Abba God reminding us we are in relationship with and belong to Abba God. 

On our table there is a picture of a famous icon of the Holy Trinity (Rublev 1425).  This icon has many symbols. I want to point out just a few of those symbols today.  Jesus is in the center-God the Father is on the left and the Holy Spirt (who looks feminine) is on the right. They are sitting at a table and what is really important is that the table is open and has room for more.

When we talk of Trinity we often think of three- a triangle- but this icon shows us something more than a triangle—there is the beginning of a circle. I say beginning of a circle because the circle is not complete- we can expand the circle-add more people- just like we do here many Sunday’s.  Unlike a triangle a circle can be opened and expanded and remain a circle big or small.  From now on when I hear the word Trinity I am going to think of a circle-and you and I are included in that circle. We are at the table.

Another symbol is the tree in the upper part of the icon. This tree is a symbol of the tree of life-the garden of Eden-actually a symbol of all of creation.

Mary Oliver’s beautiful poem reminds us that all of creation is included in this awesome-ever expanding circle.

There is one more detail I want to point out this morning.  The little square box on the front of the table. We have to look closely to see it now. Some scholars believe that originally there was a mirror glued right there on that spot. So when you and I look at the icon-we see our Creator God-Jesus our Brother-the Spirit of Truth, all of creation and in the mirror our own face- proof that forevermore you and I, we belong in the circle.

Sitting at the table in the circle – How will it change us?  What will we do?

Liturgy of Belonging

Statement of Faith

All: We believe in one God, a divine mystery
beyond all definition and rational understanding,
the heart of all that has ever existed,
that exists now, or that ever will exist.

We believe in Jesus, messenger of God's Word,
bringer of God's healing, heart of God's compassion,
bright star in the firmament of God's
prophets, mystics, and saints.

We believe that We are called to follow Jesus
as a vehicle of God's love,
a source of God's wisdom and truth,
and an instrument of God's peace in the world.

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

We believe that God's 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.

Eucharistic Prayer of Belonging

Presider 1: As we prepare for the sacred meal, we lay our stoles upon the table as a sign that just as Jesus is anointed, so is each of us. And we bring to this table our blessings, cares and concerns.  Please feel free to voice your concerns beginning with the words “I bring to the table….”
Presider 1:  We pray for these and all unspoken concerns. Amen.

Presider 2:  We are a priestly people. We are anointed. With open hands let us pray our Eucharistic prayer as one voice:

All: O Nurturing, Mothering one, You are always with us. We are grateful for Your constant loving and unconditional presence. At times we forget that You are holding us, attending to us. We fall and You pick us up. You send strangers, friends and family to our aid. We are never without Your Light and Spirit.

We experience great joy and we experience great pain and suffering. You are with us in the joy and the pain and suffering. When we experience Your presence we long to sing our hymn of praise:

Holy, Holy, Holy
(Words and music by Karen Druker)

We are holy, holy, holy,
We are holy, holy, holy,
We are whole.

Spirit Divine, Come to Me,
healing Love, healing Me.
Open my heart, allow me to see,
Beauty and love, lives in me.

You are holy, holy, holy…

All: Creator and Lover of all beings, we cannot grow in the darkness of this world without Your Light. Our desire to be in Your light is a gift from You. Help us keep our hearts and minds open to You through our love and care for each other and all creation.

Presider 2: Please extend your hands in blessing

All: This bread and wine is a sign of Your nourishment and a sign of Your great love. Your Spirit is upon us and we belong to You and one another.

We thank you for Jesus, simple servant, lifting up the lowly, revealing you as God-With-Us, revealing us as one with you, and all creation.

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. Once again he showed us how to love one another.

Presiders stand at table, Presider 1 lifts bread.

All: Back at the table, he 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 cup as community prays the following:

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.

Bread and wine is transformed by Your Spirit and we are transformed when we open ourselves to Your Spirit. Every time we share this bread and wine we choose to be transformed. We choose to love as You love us.

As we celebrate and recognize You in this bread and wine we love and recognize you in each other. We are filled with gratitude and joy. Glory and Praise to you both now and forever. Amen

Presiders hold bread and cup:

Through him, we have learned how to live.
Through him, we have learned how to love.
Through him, we have learned how to serve.


Presider 1: Let us pray together the prayer of Jesus:

O Holy One, who is within, 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. Amen.
The Prayer of Jesus as interpreted by Miriam Therese Winter

Presider 2: Please join in the prayer for the breaking of the bread:
Presiders break the bread

All: Loving Source of our being, You call us to live the Gospel of peace and justice. We live justly, we love tenderly, we walk with integrity in Your Presence.

Presider 1:  Let us pray our communion prayer together: 

All:  What we have heard with our ears, we will live with our lives: as we share communion, we will become communion, both Love’s nourishment and Love’s challenge.

Presider 2:  Our Eucharistic celebration is all-inclusive. We belong to the Loving One and to each other. Everyone is invited to receive at this friendship table.
Please pass the bread and the cup with the words:

Communion Meditation: “Aria” from the Goldberg Variations by J.S. Bach
Played by Tim Dunne

Presider 2:  Please extend your hands and pray our blessing together
May we continue to be the Face of God to each other. May the certainty of our connectedness to one another and all creation ignite us to love more fully.  May we, like Jesus be a shining light and a blessing for all. 
All: Amen.

Closing Song: Canticle of the Sun by Marty Haugen

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