Saturday, August 8, 2020

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community “The Body of Christ on the table, The Body of Christ around the table” Maura Howl & Michael Rigdon Presiding Joan Meehan & Cheryl Brandi Reading Linda Lee & Rick Miller, Music August 8, 2020

Welcome! (Maura) We warmly welcome you to the inclusive Catholic community of Mary Mother of Jesus in Sarasota, Florida. All are welcome here. Everyone will be muted during the service. We invite you to pray the liturgy where it says, All. And please sing your heart out! Many of you will unmute yourself to read one of the parts marked Voice#, then mute yourself again. Also during the shared homily and prayers of the community, we invite you to unmute yourself to contribute, then mute yourself again. Please have bread and wine/juice with you as we pray the Eucharistic Prayer.

Theme (Michael): The body of Christ on the table, the body of Christ around the table.

Voice1 & All: We celebrate together ✝️ in the name of God our creator, Jesus the Christ, and the Holy Spirit our wisdom within. Amen. Let us welcome one another with a sign of Christ’s peace! ☮️ The peace of Christ be with us all!

Gathering 🎶 All Sing: Everyday God:

Reconciliation Rite. Voice2 & All: We pause now to remember times when false messages of our unworthiness have clouded our vision of the infinite love within us. Let’s imagine our imperfections, the chaos and messes of our lives all brightly lit by a love that heals and transforms us as we evolve and grow in awareness of our divinity and our humanity. (Pause briefly. Then extend arm over your heart.) I love you. Thank you. I’m sorry. I forgive you. Thank you. I love you.

Opening Prayer. Voice3 & All: Spirit of the Holy One, we gratefully acknowledge your presence within and among us. You have transformed us into the one Body of Christ, making us the face of Christ’s love in the world. Guide us to be present to those who suffer from the two pandemics afflicting our country—the covid-19 pandemic and the pandemic of racism. We pray this in Christ’s name. Amen

Liturgy of the Word
First Reading. (Joan) A reading from Bridget Mary’s Blog.
During this time of pandemic, women priests and inclusive Catholic communities are walking toward the future as we celebrate Eucharistic liturgies on Zoom. Our ordained presiders at Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community, my faith community, invite those who gather each week with us on Zoom to have bread and wine/juice in front of them. We invite everyone to pray the words of consecration and to receive Communion.

After participants have received Communion at their own tables, they share their experiences of thanksgiving. I often hear the Christ Presence speaking though them, offering words of comfort, strength and blessing.

In his book The Future Of Eucharist, Bernard Cooke observes that a new understanding of the resurrection in the Vatican II church has broadened the church's understanding of "real presence" and helped people to appreciate Christ's loving presence in the believing community. According to Cooke, while individuals may have specific functions within the gathered assembly, the entire community performs the eucharistic action (p. 32). 

If this is so, then the gathered assembly is the celebrant of Eucharist. It is the community that "does" the Eucharist, not the presider alone. A community encamps, wherever it happens to rest for this moment in time, around the Christ Presence that infuses our communion, vivifying our One Body. Some apply a both/and” theology and say that the Body of Christ is on the table, at the table and around the table.

Historical scholarship supports this conclusion and goes even farther. Gary Macy, chairperson of the Theology and Religious Studies Department at the University of San Diego, concludes from his research in Middle Ages manuscripts that, in the understanding of the medieval mind, regardless of who spoke the words of consecration—man or woman, ordained or community—the Christ Presence became reality in the midst of the assembly. (Adapted from Walking the Prophetic Journey, Introduction, by Bridget Mary Meehan & Mary Beben.)
These are the inspired words of Bridget Mary, and we respond, 

Reader & All: Thanks be to God.

Second Reading. (Cheryl) Continuation of a reading from Bridget Mary’s Blog.
As groups like women priests' inclusive communities gather during this time of pandemic for the sacred meal, they celebrate a vision of faith, share joys and tears, acknowledge a cosmic citizenship as people of God, and model the equal ministry of women and men. They believe, as Paul did, that in the body of Christ there is no Jew, Greek, slave, citizen, male or female. (Gal.3:20). All are welcome at the eucharistic celebrations, not only families, but single parents and children, the divorced and remarried, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgendered people. Roman Catholic Women Priests and all those who find themselves on the fringes of the institutional church for whatever reason are walking toward a future of embracing the Christ Presence everywhere in all people, beyond all limitations and imagination.

We are, like a pillar of fire guiding the people of the covenant, the Way of love and justice, and we know that our lives are holy; our lives are blessed and broken in the mystery of God's transforming love in service of others, especially to the poor and marginalized and to all those in need. As a community of believers embraced in love and filled with love, we are walking toward the future that brings us across thousands of miles into one community in a digital age.
(Adapted from Walking the Prophetic Journey, Introduction, Bridget Mary Meehan and Mary Beben)
These are the inspired words of Bridget Mary, and we respond:
Reader & All: Thanks be to God!

 🎶 Repeat Alleluia.

Profession of Faith. Voice4 & All:
We believe in the creator of all whose divinity infuses life with the sacred.
We believe in Jesus the Christ who leads us to the fullness of humanity.
We believe in the Spirit of wisdom, the divine breath on earth, who enlightens those living in darkness.
Amen to courage, to hope, to the spirit of truth, to wholeness, to the partnership of all persons in the divine plan.
We believe in justice and peace for all. We surely believe in all this!

Prayers of the Community (Maura) We bring to the table prayers for our community and the world. (Response: Christ, you graciously hear us!)
We bring to the table our MMOJ members who aren’t with us today. In this time of physical distancing may we find ways to remain close and connected to our family, friends, and our community. We pray. R
The covid-19 pandemic continues to rage across the country. We bring to the table government leaders responsible for public health. May they make wise decisions to protect our physical, emotional, and economic health. We pray. R
We bring to the table our fellow citizens who continue their daily protests against the pandemic of racism. May we support their efforts to promote justice for those who suffer the effects of institutional racism. We pray. R
Who and what else shall we bring to the table today?
(Please turn your microphone on to offer a prayer, then mic off.)
(Maura): Christ, we will be your presence in the world today and every day of our lives. All: Amen
We offer our gifts.
🎶 All Sing: Seed Scattered and Sown,

Eucharistic Prayer. (Adapted from communion services in A Wee Worship Book   by Wild Goose Worship Group. The wild goose is a Celtic symbol of the Spirit.)
🎶 We are Holy,

Voice5 & All: Jesus was always the guest.
In the homes of Peter and Jairus,
Martha and Mary, Joanna and Susanna,
he was always the guest.
At the meal tables of the wealthy
where he pled the case of the poor,
he was always the guest.
Upsetting polite company,
Befriending isolated people,
welcoming the stranger,
he was always the guest.

Voice6 & All: But here
at this table,
Jesus is the host.
Those who wish to serve him
must first be served by him,
Those who want to follow him
must first be fed by him,
Those who would wash his feet
must first let him make them clean.

Voice7 & All: For this is the table
where God intends to nourish us;
this is the time when Christ can make us new.
So come, you who hunger and thirst
for a deeper faith,
for a better life,
for a fairer world.
Jesus Christ,
who has sat at our table,
now invites us to be guests at his.

Voice8 & All: For us you were born,
for us you healed,
preached, taught
and showed your way.
You died and rose
to show us the path of transformation.
Jesus Christ, present with us now,
for all that you have done
and all that you have promised,
what have we to offer?

Voice9 & All: Our hands are empty,
our hearts are sometimes full of doubt and fear.
But with you is mercy
and the power to change.

Voice10 & All: So as we do in this place
what you did in an upstairs room,
send down your Spirit
on us
and on these gifts of bread and wine
that they may become for us your body,
healing, forgiving
and making us whole;
and that we may become,
for you,
your body,
loving and caring in the world
until your kindom comes. Amen

(Taking and breaking the bread)
Voice11 & All: Among friends, gathered around the table,
Jesus took bread, broke it and said,
‘This is my body,
It is broken for you.’

(Taking the cup of wine)
Voice12 & All: Later, after they had eaten,
Jesus took a cup of wine and said,
‘This is the new relationship with God,
made possible because of my life and death.
Drink this, all of you, to remember me.’

Prayer of Jesus
Voice13 & All: Let us pray as Jesus taught his companions to pray:
O Holy One, you are 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 we need.
You remind us of our limits, and we let go.
You support us in your 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
(Adapted, Miriam Therese Winter, MMS)

Communion. Voice14 & All:
Look: here is Christ coming to us
in bread and wine.
These are the gifts of God
for the people of God.
We are the Body of Christ.
(All receive Communion)

🎶 We Are Called,

(If you want to sing along)
V1. Come! Live in the light!
Shine your joy and the love of our God

We are called to be light for the kindom,
To live in the freedom of the city of God!

Refrain. We are called to act with justice,
We are called to love tenderly,
We are called to serve one another;
To walk humbly with God.

V3. Sing, Sing a new song!
Sing of that great day when all will be one!
God will reign, and we’ll walk with each other
As sisters and brothers united in love! Refrain

Shared homily. (Michael) As the Spirit moves you, now is your opportunity to share your thoughts about the readings, the liturgy, or anything else. Please turn your microphone on to share, then off when you’re finished.

Final prayer. (Maura) May we go out from here full of Christ’s peace, to love and serve one another, in our community and in our wider world. And let us be thankful. All: Amen
Introductions. Thanksgiving. Announcements. (Michael)

Mutual blessing (Michael) Please raise your hand in blessing and sing:           All sing: Rejoice and be glad! Blessed are we, holy are we! Rejoice and be glad! Ours is the kindom of God! x2

Voice15 & All: Let us go in peace. May we be the face of God to those we meet. Alleluia!

🎶 All Sing: Alle, Alle, Alleluia.

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