Sunday, September 29, 2019

ARCWP St. Hildegard Retreat Vespers and Eucharistic Liturgy in Albany, New York with Shanon Sterringer ARCWP and Mary Theresa Streck ARCWP

Opening Song:  Caritas Abundant in Omnia – Love Abounds in All Things 
St. Hildegard of Bingen

Hildegard’s Song: Colleen Keating

Autumn deepens, 
Lone deciduous trees
glow muted yellow 
Among the pine forests.

Afternoon light
burns wine-red
on the vineyard-clad mountain, 
its slant of sun shortening
as it prepares to leave.

Dawn mist shrouds the Nahr,
lifts with a sense of melancholy.

Hildegard’s song
sings deeper and deeper in her heart.

It could be her sisters in chapel
singing louder for her
or just her heart in song.

After vespers her sisters
come to her, 
she blesses each in turn.

The end comes dimly,
she senses the light’s darkness, 
close and holy,

She welcomes this land now,
hears it fall, more by note upon her heart, 
craving its rest

Presider:   As we prepare to begin this liturgy, we pray in the name of God, the creator of all that is, Jesus, our brother who incarnated into this world to show us how to love and live, and the Holy Spirit, who sustains and empowers us. May our hearts and minds be infused with the Spirit of God.
All: Amen.


Presider: As we bring our whole self to share at this liturgical celebration, we ask for understanding and forgiveness for the times we have failed to love as Christ loves.  

All: In your love, Holy One, we open our hearts to personal growth and healing. May we truly be agents of light and love in our world.

Presider: We give thanks for being called into a relationship with all that is holy. Fill our hearts and souls with the wisdom and grace to know what true love is.

All: Loving God, Jesus revealed that nothing can separate us from your infinite love. Help us to grow in our love for you, each other, and all of creation.

Presider: We ask all of this in God’s holy name.
All: Amen.

Gospel Reading: John 15:1-5
I am the true vine, and God is the vine grower.  God takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit, and every one that does is pruned so that it bears more fruit. You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you.  Remain in me, as I remain in you. Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in you will bear much fruit.  
The inspired words of the Evangelist John - Amen

Homily – personal reflection 

Intercessions / Prayers of the Faithful  
We pray… Loving God, hear our prayer

Offering of the Gifts
Presider: (lifting the bread) Blessed are You God of all creation, through your goodness we have this bread to offer, which earth has given and human hands have made.  It will become the bread of life.
All:        Blessed be God forever.

Presider:    (lifting the wine) Blessed are You God of all creation, through our goodness we have this wine to offer, fruit of the vine.  It will become our spiritual drink.

All:        Blessed be God forever.

Presider: Holy Mystery, we offer this prayer in union with the whole Church. In this bread and wine, you give us food for body and spirit.  May our strength be renewed by your generous blessings that will bring us health of mind and body
All:   Amen. 

Eucharistic Prayer:
Presider: The Holy One is with us, abounding in Love!

All: We open our hearts in Christ who lives and loves heals and empowers through us! 

Presider: Let us give thanks to the Source of all Life.

All: It is right to offer thanks and praise.

Presider:       I invite you, the People of God, to extend your hands and pray with me:

All: All-loving and ever-living God beyond all imagining, we give you thanks for the gift of awareness that allows us to recognize Your presence and action in our universe. Everything we have, everything we see, everything we do, everyone we love, and everyone who loves us, reveals Your sustaining presence.  We thank You and Your presence which animates life and all that exists.

Presider: You express yourself in human life and through us you sing and dance, speak and write, love and create. In this we never cease to hope, and for this we always thank and praise You. We join with St. Michael, St. Hildegard, and all the angels and saints as they sing your glory forever.

All: Holy, Holy, Holy  

Presider: Loving God, we live and move and have our being in You. We give thanks for those throughout history who have affirmed your loving presence and moved your people to give witness.  They have witnessed your presence in lives characterized by love, mercy, compassion, generosity, and forgiveness.

Presider: We thank you for Jesus, who loved so greatly, taught so clearly, and proclaimed so courageously.  He set people free from images, ideas, and religious practices that bound them in fear and a false sense of separation from You. Through Jesus, we know our loving actions become a share in your life.  In Jesus, we see your Spirit challenging us to make your presence more visible on earth.

Presider: We thank you for your Spirit of life and love among us.  We are grateful that your Spirit sets us free to discover your presence within us and in all of creation.  And for this we thank and praise You.

Presider: I invite you, the People of God, to extend your hands and pray:

All: Loving God, intensify the present of your Spirit in these our gifts, as they, and we, become the +Body and Blood of Jesus the Christ for our wholeness and the wholeness of all creation.

All: We remember that on the night before he died, while at supper with his friends, Jesus took the Bread, spoke the blessing, broke the bread and offered it to them saying: Take and eat, this is my body.  (pause, bow)

All: When supper was ended, Jesus took the cup of wine, spoke the blessing and offered it to them saying: Take and drink of the covenant made new again through my life in you.  Do this in memory of me. (pause, bow)

Presider: Let us proclaim the mystery of faith.

All: Nurtured by your Word, nourished by your food, called anew to be your people, we acclaim your praise.

Presider: Loving God, through Jesus you entrusted this pledge of love to us.  We celebrate the memory of his life, death, and resurrection, and bring to You the gifts You have given us: reconciliation, justice, and peace.  You fill us with Your Spirit in the sharing of this meal. You keep us in communion with one another and with all living beings. Your Spirit makes us a sign of unity, a model of equality and instruments of Your peace. 

Presider: Inspire our leaders, both religious and political, so that they act without fear to bring your justice. May they become peacemakers who transform your Church and society so that all living beings and our planet may thrive.

Presider: You have gathered us around this table in friendship, with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, the apostles, and all the saints.  May all who are suffering in anyway be strengthened and consoled by your Presence. You bless all who have gone before us and bring them into the everlasting joy and peace of Your presence.

Presider: You gather together women, men, and children of every race, language, religion and way of life to share in one, eternal banquet.  In your presence, we give glory with all of creation and with Jesus through whom your goodness flows.

Raise the bread and cup

All:    Through Christ, with Christ, in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, may all glory and honor be Yours all-loving God, forever and ever. 
All: Amen 

The Communion Rite

Prayer of Jesus

Presider: Let us pray together the Prayer of Jesus (P.M. Mihalic): 
All:   Divine Parent of us all,
May Your name be celebrated as sacred and Your authority be held with respect.  May Your will be put into action on Earth as in heaven.  
Nourish us with what we need each day.  
Make us more forgiving of others so we might know more clearly your mercy to us.  Protect us from being led astray from You and empower us against all forms of evil.  For to You alone belongs all authority, respect, and glory, forever, Amen 

Sign of Peace
Presider:  The peace of Christ be with you always.
All:      And also with you. 
Presider: You are invited to share with one another a sign of Christ’s peace
Peace Song:  Music of Heaven is in All Things

Presider: Please join in prayer for the Breaking of the Bread:
All:  Loving God, You call us to live the Gospel of peace and justice. 
        We will live justly.   
  Loving God, You call us to be Your presence in the world.  
       We will love tenderly.
Loving God, You call us to speak truth to power.  
        We will walk with integrity.

Presider:  This is the Bread of Life and Cup of Blessing.  How blessed are we who are called to
 this Table.
All:  Jesus, you affirm our worthiness and by Your word, we will help heal the world. 

Communion Song: Music of Heaven is in All Things

Prayer Following Communion: Presider
Let us pray.  Loving God, You renew us with spiritual nourishment in this bread and wine. Watch over and inspire us to be word and sacrament for others.  We ask this in the name of Jesus, our brother.  

All: Amen

Final Blessing:  
Presider: Please stand and extend your hands in blessing. 
Loving God, in this moment, You make us aware of our potential to create heaven here on earth. Send your Spirit, the Living Light, to guide us as we seek to creatively love within the context of our homes, communities, places of work, and our world.  Give us the courage to sow seeds of light and love wherever you call us to be. We ask this in your Holy Name; Creator, Christ, and Sanctifier. Amen.
All: Amen.

Closing Song: Sophia, Angel of Wisdom

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