Thursday, September 15, 2022

Celebration of the Season of Creation #4


Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community

Celebration of the Season of Creation #4

September 17, 2022


Maryal Gagnon and Elena Garcia presiding

Readers: Mary Montavan, Jack McKillip, Russ Banner, Cathy Alexander

I Team: Peg Bowen and Cheryl Brandi


Theme: DIVINE LOVE CREATES AND SUSTAINS


Liturgy adapted from Season of Creation Ecumenical Prayer Service

by Laudato Si’ Movement


Zoom link for video - 4:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81534075389?pwd=TTdGY2NxS3AzTW13ODJESkdYME9aUT09


Meeting ID: 815 3407 5389

Passcode: 803326

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Welcome. (Elena)

Welcome to Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community in Sarasota, Florida!  Whoever you are, Wherever you are, Just as you are, You are welcome at this table. 

(Integral Christianity by Paul Smith)  

(Have bread and wine/juice on your table)


Greeting: (Maryal),   after a moment of silence.


Creator of All, 

From your communion of Love your Word went forth to create a symphony of life that sings your praise. By your Holy Wisdom you made the Earth to bring forth a diversity of creatures who praise you in their being. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge.

Give us hearts to listen for the good news of your promise to renew the face of the Earth. Enlighten us with the grace to follow the Way of Christ as we learn to walk lightly upon this holy ground. Fill us with the hope to quench the fires of injustice with the light of your healing love that sustains our common home. In the name of the One who came to proclaim good news to all creation, Jesus the Christ. ALL: Amen


Gathering Song:  Burning in my Soul  



 https://youtu.be/MGykYvgQAQI  



Litany of Lament and Repentance:  (Elena), after silence.

By our unwillingness to listen for so long, we are now lamenting  the loss of our fellow species and their habitats that will never speak again. We grieve the loss of human cultures, along with the lives and livelihoods that have been displaced or perished. Creation cries out as forests crackle, and animals alike flee the fires of injustice that we have lit through time. 


We have closed our ears to the counsel of our fellow creatures, who have had so much to teach us.  We fail to listen to the cries of the poor and the needs of the most vulnerable. We silence the voices of those who hold the traditions that teach us to care for the Earth. We close our ears to your creative, reconciling and sustaining Word that calls to us through the Scriptures.


Turn us O Divine LOVE from our desire to turn in upon ourselves and at times refuse to hear the voices of our co-creatures.  Call us again, open our ears.  Gather us in to relationships of mutual care and listening.  Enlighten us by your Spirit that renews the face of your Earth. Amen. 


As we extend a hand over our hearts let us together: 

We are called to acknowledge our contribution, smaller or greater, to the disfigurement and destruction of Creation. For this we ask your forgiveness, while we open our hearts to your Divine Infinite LOVE,  by whom we are embraced and healed.    Let it be so, Yes, Alleluia!


🎵 🎶 Alle, Alle, Alleluia.



https://youtu/ID5UGWcS6Ws 


Liturgy of the Word


(Elena)  Jeremiah is a prophet known for writing what he lived and living what he wrote. This is of importance to note because he is the prophet of choice when we find ourselves having to live through difficult times and seek some trustworthy help in knowing what to think, how to pray, how to carry on. We live in disruptive times. The decades preceding and following the pivotal third millennium are not exactly unprecedented. There have certainly been comparable times of disruption in the past that left everyone reeling, wondering what on earth and in heaven was going on. But whatever their occasion or size, troubles require attention. Listen to that kind of frustration expressed by Jeremiah in this passage which will be read by Mary Montavon.


First Reading – (Mary)    

Jeremiah 8: 18-9:1 

I drown in grief. I’m heartsick. Oh, listen! Please listen!  It’s the cry of my dear people reverberating through the country. 

Is God no longer in Zion? Has the king gone away? Can you tell me why they flaunt their plaything-gods, their silly, imported 

No-gods before me? The crops are in, the summer is over, but for us nothing’s changed. We’re still waiting to be rescued. For my dear broken people I am heartbroken. I weep seized by grief. Are there no healing ointments in Gilead? Isn’t there a doctor in the house? So why can’t something be done. I wish my head were a well of water and my eyes fountains of tears so I could weep day and night for casualties among my dear, dear people. 

These are words of concern for his people as expressed by the Prophet Jeremiah and we who have listened respond:  SO BE IT.


PSALM 79 – (Jack)

HELP US O COMPASSIONATE ONE TO RENEW THE FACE OF THE EARTH!

~O Merciful presence, the ignorant seem unrestrained in the world; they defile the Sacred Altar, your dwelling place within; they leave those weaker than themselves in ruins.

HELP US…………

~Chaos and destruction follow them as they oppress the poor through deception and greed, and kill the faith-filled who resist. Yes, they have poured out their blood like water throughout the world; many have disappeared without a trace. How long will the unjust bring anguish to the loving, to those who seek justice and peace? 

HELP US …………

~How long, O Indwelling Presence? Will your patience last forever? When will you awaken our long dormant spirits? Pour out you Love on every nation, open the hearts of all people; We await a new birth of Consciousness, we call upon your Name!  For the ignorant and the unloving are laying waste to the planet.

HELP US………

~Forgive us for the use and abuse of our Creation; humble us with your steadfast Love, before the world becomes a barren waste. Help us O Compassionate One, to renew the face of the earth; deliver us and forgive our sins, that we might know the joy of co-creation! Let other nations not cry out, “Where is their faith?” Let all who have spilled the blood of the innocent repent and make reparation before the eyes of the world.

HELP US……..

~Let the cries of the victims of injustice come before You; according to your great Power, break the bonds of oppression! Let all that has been garnered through greed be returned in full measure with open hands. Then we your people, those who would companion with You, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will abandon ourselves into your hands with grace-filled, open hearts.

HELP US O COMPASSIONATE ONE TO RENEW THE FACE OF THE EARTH!



Gospel Readings: (Mary Al)  Luke16: 1-13                                                                                                Jesus, said to his disciples, “There was a rich man who had a manager. He got reports that the manager had been taking advantage of his position by running up huge personal expenses. So he called him in and said, ‘What’s this I hear about you? You’re fired and I want a complete audit of your books.’  The manager said to himself,  ‘What am I going to do? I’ve lost my job as manager. I’m not strong enough for a laboring job, and I’m too proud to beg…….Ah, I’ve got a plan. Here’s what I’ll do… then when I’m turned out into the street, people will take me into their houses.’ Then he went at it. One after another he called in the people who were in debt to his master. He said to the first, ‘ How much do you owe my master?  He replied, ‘A hundred jugs of olive oil.’  “The manager said, ‘Here, take your bill, sit down here-- quick now—write fifty.’  “To the next he said, ‘And you, what do you owe?’  “He answered, ‘A hundred sacks of wheat.’  “He said, ‘take your bill, write in eighty.’   “Now here’s a surprise: The master praised the crooked manager! And why? Because he knew how to look out for himself. Streetwise people are smarter in this regard than law-abiding citizens. They are on constant alert, looking for angles, surviving by their wits. I want you to be smart in the same way—but for what is right –using every adversity to stimulate you to creative survival, to concentrate your attention on the bare essentials, so you’ll live, really live, and not complacently just get by on good behavior.   

               Jesus went on to make these comments:                                                                                                                                                                          If you’re honest in small things, you’ll be honest in big things.                                                                                                                                                        If you’re a crook in small things, you’ll be a crook in big things.                                                                                                                                                          If you’re not honest in small jobs, who will put you in charge of the store?                                                                                                                                       No worker can serve two bosses: He’ll either hate the first and love the second or adore the first and despise the second.     You can’t serve both God and the Bank.

These are the inspiring words by the Gospel writer, Luke, and we affirm them by saying,       All: Let it be so!


Homily Starter:  Elena


Community Sharing:   We welcome your inspired thoughts at this time. Unmute yourself to share and remember to remute yourself again when finished.


Profession of Faith: (Cathy) and All

We believe in God, who creates all things,
who embraces all things, who celebrates all things,
who is present in every part of the fabric of creation.
We believe in God as the source of all life,
who baptizes this planet with living water.
We believe in Jesus Christ, the suffering one, the poor one, the malnourished one, the climate refugee, who loves and cares for this world and who suffers with it.
And we believe in Jesus Christ, the seed of life,
who came to reconcile and renew this world and everything in it. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the breath of God,
who moves with God and who moves among and with us today. We believe in everlasting life in God.
And we believe in the hope that one day
God will put an end to death and all destructive forces. 

(Gurukul Theological college, India / adapted by Keld B. Hansen 2009) 

Our Community Prayers – (Maryal)


Loving God, even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she places her young near your altar. You are attentive to all you have made. 

God, who listens to every living thing, 

All: Help us listen as you do. 

Loving God, help us provide refuge to every animal and plant with whom we live. Help us be attentive to all you have made. 

God, in whom all creation subsists, 

All: Help us listen as you do. 

Loving God, when Jesus cried out and gave up his Spirit, the earth shook and the rocks split. You are known by the whole of creation that listens to you. 

God, to whom all creation responds, 

All: Help us respond to you. 

Loving God, help us hear and know you just as the earth and rocks do. Help us to learn from the way in which we see creation to recognize your glorious beauty. 

God, to whom all creation responds, 

All: Help us respond to you. 

Loving God, you are present in your creation and seek to heal her wounds. You can be found walking in the garden. Open our eyes to see you, the gardener. 

God, who is present with your creation, 

All: Help us be present too. 

Loving God, we often abandon your creation and cause its wounds. Help us to follow in your footsteps and learn to walk in the garden like you. 

God, who is present with your creation, 

All: Help us be present too. 

Loving God, who hears every voice, knows each cry of injustice, and is attentive to the suffering of the earth: teach us to listen. Bring healing to our lives, that we may protect the world and not prey on it, that we may listen to the world you have created and not close ourselves off from it. Reveal to us the ways in which we have failed to hear your voice in how we treat the earth. 

God, who listens to every living thing, 

All:   Help us listen as you do. Amen 

(Maryal):  For what else do we pray?  Joan M share prayer book requests


(Have bread and wine/juice on your table)

Offering: (Cathy)      

O Holy One, we bring you our gifts from creation, bread of the grain and wine  of the grapes.  We recognize that they are holy in you, their creator. And we know that they will make us holy, one with you and one with each other. 


Eucharistic Prayer

(Russ) & All. We commit ourselves to live the ministry of the Gospel as we speak clearly with respect and love, as we challenge the contradictions within our society, especially during these times of division and fear. We remind ourselves daily to remain faithful in our words and actions to our commitment to nonviolence. We are called to the inner life, our spiritual life, to be open to the new beginnings in our lives. We walk with Jesus seeking wisdom and peace.

(Hold your hand over bread and wine) 

(Russ) & All. Jesus, we remember the last meal you had with your followers. We call upon Sacred Spirit, ever and always with us, to bring blessing on this bread and wine as they are made sacred through our faith in the presence of Christ with us. 

During Jesuss life on earth, he lived and died loving the poor, healing the sick and challenging the injustices within society. Because of his ministry, Jesus was feared by the authorities of his day, and they sought out ways to bring him to his death.


(Jack) & All. On the night before he faced his own death, Jesus sat at the Seder supper with his companions and friends. He reminded them of all that he taught them, and to fix that memory clearly with them, he bent down and washed their feet.  


All lift 🥖 and pray:

(Jack)  & All. When he returned to his place at the table, he lifted the bread, spoke the blessing, broke the bread and offered it to them saying: 

Take and eat, this is my very self.

 

Pause, then lift the 🍷 and pray:

(Maryal) & All. Jesus took the cup, spoke the grace, and offered it to them saying: Take and drink. This is the new covenant. Whenever you remember me like this, I am among you.  (pause)


(Cathy) & 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.


(Elena) & All. Let us share this bread and cup to proclaim and live the gospel of justice. We listen to the groaning of creation, remembering that we are bearers of light and hope. We are Christ alive today.


We now share the bread and wine, saying,

“Our gifts of creation make us One”


Communion Song:   Sounds of Silence by Wuauquikuna/Panflute/Toyos        



https://youtu.be/ndUCNnhH03Q       



(Mary): Let us together pray our common prayer taught to us by Christ 

All: Eternal Spirit, Earth-maker, Pain-bearer, Life-giver,
Source of all that is and that shall be,
Father and Mother of us all, 

Loving God, in whom is heaven:
The hallowing of your name echoes through the universe!
The way of your justice be followed by the peoples of the world!
Your heavenly will be done by all created beings!
May your beloved community of peace and freedom sustain our hope and come on earth. 

With the bread we need for today, feed us.
In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In times of temptation and test, strengthen us.
From trials too great to endure, spare us.
From the grip of all that is evil, free us.
For you reign in the glory of the power that is love, now and forever. Amen. 

(Adapted from The New Zealand Book of Prayer | He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa. This version of the Lord’s prayer was influenced by Maori theologians) 

(Maryal): A Prayer for Our Earth 

(Pope Francis in Laudato Si’)


All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe

And in the smallest of your creatures.

You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.

Pour out upon us the power of your love,

that we may protect life and beauty.

Fill us with peace, that we may live

as brothers and sisters, harming no one.

O God of the poor,

help us to rescue the abandoned and

forgotten of this earth, so precious in your eyes.

Bring healing to our lives, that we may protect the

world and not prey on it,

that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction.

Touch the hearts of those who look only for gain

At the expense of the poor and the earth.

Teach us to discover the worth of each thing,

to be filled with awe and contemplation,

to recognize that we are profoundly united

with every creature as we journey towards your

infinite light.

We thank you for being with us each day.

Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle

for justice, love and peace.  All: Amen


Sharing of Peace: (Jack)

If we are in Christ, we are becoming a new creation. 

We see God around us. We see God within us. 

We give thanks to our Creator. 

Let us show the caring nature you have instilled within us by greeting each other as a sign of God’s peace, love, forgiveness and grace. The peace of our Creator be with us in all things. 


All: Namaste 🙏🏿 Namaste 🙏🏼 Namaste 🙏🏻

(adapted from Celebrating Creation: Honoring Indigenous People, Kelly Sherman-Conroy, ELCA) 


Thanksgiving. Introductions. Announcements. 


(Elena) and All: Final Blessing  

May God who established the dance of creation, 

Who marveled at the lilies of the field,
Who transforms chaos to order,
Lead us to protect creation, 

To listen to the voice of all creatures 

That reflect Gods glory. 

(adapted from the CTBI Eco-Congregation Programme) 

Closing Song:      Soul on Fire     



  https://youtu.be/3KihE0j5qe8 


___________________________________


If you want to add an intercession to our MMOJ Community Prayer book, please send an email to jmeehan515@aol.com 


If you want to invite someone to attend our liturgy, please refer them to the day’s liturgy at MaryMotherofJesus.org      


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Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community

St Andrew UCC, 6908 Beneva Rd, Sarasota, FL 34238

Sunday, September 11, 2022

Homily for Ordination of Rosemary Robinson ARCWP two parts - Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP and Rosemary Robinson ARCWP







It is with great joy that we gather to ordain Rosemary Robinson a priest in the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests in San Francisco today!


Rosemary describes her call to ordination as rooted in her relationship with Jesus who invites her to serve at his table of love, friendship and welcome. She has been blessed with the gift of hospitality and will use her gifts to serve the Body of Christ and to welcome everyone to the table of love. 


In many wonderful ways, women priests are following in the footsteps of the earliest followers of Jesus in the first two centuries after his death.  


Recent thrilling discoveries have revealed a major two-hundred- year- old gap between the historical Jesus and Christianity. In 2013, Westar, a research organization dedicated to cutting edge scholarship in history and religion, launched a seminar to explore the unknown two centuries between Jesus and Christianity. 


They did not find a master narrative “that Christianity acted as a unified, continuous early tradition in unbroken line representing a single truth.” Instead, their research pointed to “multiple and different stories of Jesus peoples (not Christian) in the first two centuries. 



The Seminar’s six major discoveries about the Jesus peoples in the first two centuries are published in After Jesus,Before Christianity: A Historical Exploration of the First Two Centuries of Jesus Movements (2021) and will be the subject of a new course offered by People’s Catholic Seminary in October. 


These Anointed Jesus communities bear some striking resemblances to diverse inclusive Catholic communities served by women priests, who were ordained by women bishops in the international Roman Catholic Women Priests Movement.


1, The first similarity is: Jesus peoples were characterized by their opposition to violence and courageous resistance to the Roman Empire. The Gospel of Mary, for instance, offers comfort and strength in a time of trauma, loss and oppression.


Like the Jesus peoples, the RCWP Movement challenges the domination of empires-specifically, male supremacy -in the institutional church.  We claim our spiritual authority to ordain women priests for public ministry in diverse, inclusive communities to promote the full equality of women in the Church and world. We connect racism with sexism, poverty with inequality, hierarchical domination with female subordination, and LGBTQI discrimination and violence with the abuse of women, children and the destruction of the earth. All reflect different  aspects of patriarchal, structural oppression, abuse and domination. 


2. The second similarity is: Jesus peoples practiced gender bending. They experimented with gender and sexual boundaries. They were neither male nor female, but all were “one” through different lived, experienced realities of gender pluralism. 


Our women priest movement affirms all gender identities as holy and every person as an equal image of the Divine. In Christ, there is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female. All are one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:27-28


3. The third similarity is: Jesus peoples lived in chosen families outside of blood or married relationships.  They experimented with new kinds of associations, clubs and wisdom schools. 


In women priests’ inclusive communities, everyone is welcome to receive sacraments - including those ostracized by the institutional Church, the divorced and remarried, LGBTQI. As James Joyce wrote- being Catholic means “here comes everyone!”


4. The fourth similarity is Jesus people treasured their Jewish identity and followed  Jesus, their Jewish born teacher and leader

 

We follow Rabbi Jesus who treated women as disciples and equals. We walk in the footsteps of Mary Magdalene, apostle to the apostles and visionary leader in the Jesus movement. We are leading not leaving the Church.


 According to additional historical research published in the Harvard Theological Review, contemporary scholars believe that Mary whom we call Mary Magdalene is not Mary from Magdala. The word magdala in Aramaic means tower.  It is a title, not.a place. 


In their examination of ancient sources, the story in John 11 is about Lazarus and one sister, Mary. They argue that neither Tertullian nor Egeria’s diary mentions Martha. When Lazarus is raised from the dead, it is Mary who says the same words that Peter uttered in the synoptic Gospels, “Yes, Lord. I believe that you are the Messiah, the son of God, the one who is coming into the world.”  


Rev. Diana Butler Bass raises the provocative question, “Is it really true that the other Christological confession of the New Testament comes from the voice of Mary Magdalene? That  the Gospel of John give the most important statement in the entirety of the New Testament, not to man, but to a really important woman who will show up later as the first witness to the resurrection…Imagine that possibility that is opening before us!...What dos the church look like? What does a Christianity of Mary the Tower look like?”(Article “Mary the Tower: What would Christianity be like if Mary Magdalene hadn’t ben hidden from view?”)


 5. The  fifth similarity between the first two centuries and our movement is that the early Annointed Communities of Jesus peoples had diverse organizational structures with a variety of practices, beliefs and organizational patterns. 


There are two women priests communities formed in the USA : Roman Catholic Womenpriests-USA (RCWP-USA) and the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests (ARCWP). Both organizations share a common vision of ordaining women for a renewed priestly ministry, but, each group has different organizational structures and programs of preparation. Women priests and their local faith communities are autonomous and independent and  reflect a rich diversity of beliefs, practices and organizational patters.  


6. The sixth similarity between the first two centuries and our times is that the Jesus peoples had persisting oral traditions. 

There were “many forms of speaking and writing that were part of boisterous, complicated community dialogue, ritual practice and most of all- intense discussion.”  


During our twenty-year history, members of our women priest movement have engaged in many lively dialogues, and passionate debates topics like our identity as Roman Catholic on the inside edge of the Church.  We use listservs, blogs, videos and social media to communicate with one another and to preach, teach and share liturgical services and resources. 


As we ordain Rosemary today, we are walking in the footsteps of the earliest followers of Jesus. We have come full circle. 

Millions of Catholics are ready for women priests. We are ready and so is Rosemary!


Now, I invite our sister, Rosemary to share... 


I am sitting on my back porch, hand on my growing belly, wondering who is growing inside me.  As I ponder the night sky, I am in awe that a human being is forming inside me.  I long to know who it is.  What will he look like?  What will he sound like?  What gifts will this new person bring to the world?

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I dedicated you, a prophet to the nations I appointed you.” As I sat on that porch in the Fall of 1981, God knew exactly who was about to be born. Scripture tells us this. The God of love calls us into being.  Each new life filled with hopes and dreams and promise.  Each new life blessed with unique gifts and talents. Gifts and talents to be used in the service of love.  

As I stand before you today, on the cusp of being ordained a Roman Catholic Woman Priest, I wonder if my parents had any inkling that ordination would be a part of my life. As a mother, I held each of my newborn sons and wondered, Who will you be in the world?” As a grandmother, I held each of my newborn grandchildren and wondered, What gifts will you bring to a world so in need of love?” 

As God has loved us into being, it is up to each one of us to discern how we are called to use our unique gifts in the service of love.  To do this, we must come to know who we are in God and what gifts we have to share.  Henry, you are gifted with joy and intellect.  How can you use those gifts in the service of love? Ramona, you are gifted with energy and charisma. How can you use those gifts in the service of love? Owen and Layla, I will be watching and supporting you as you come to know your gifts! Cathy, you are gifted with deep faith and culinary skill.  I see how you use those gifts in the service of love as you share your faith with others and share your crab apple butter with us.  Peter, you are gifted with strength and a deep sense of responsibility.  I see how you use those gifts in the service of love to your family, friends and colleagues. I ask each one of you here today, what are your gifts and how is God calling you to share them with the world?

St. Paul reminds us to stir into flame the gift of God” that we have received.  I love that image stir into flame.” Stir into flame! Let us set the world on fire, together, each one of us, using our gifts so that we can be love in the world. We are the salt of the earth! Do we bring flavor and seasoning to a hungry world? Or do we let our gifts whither and lose their flavor by not using them? 

Jesus tells each one of us that we are the light of the world. We are the light of the world! May our light may shine before others that they may see our good deeds and glorify God!

Together, as we move to the table of love, may we pray for the grace to be light, to be love to all we encounter.  Let the people say, Amen!



Clip of Homily- part 1- Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP 


https://youtu.be/HDgsv8i7qAs


Clip of Homily Part 2- Bridget Mary Meehan 


https://youtu.be/ZbFNND1Bf4M