Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community
33rd Week in Extra-ordinary Time
November 12, 2022
Presiders: Lee Breyer & Kathryn Shea
Readers: Mary Al Gagnon & Anna Davis
Prayer Leader: Jerry Bires
Music Minister: Linda Lee and Rick Miller
IT Team: Cheryl Brandi and Peg Bowen
Theme: “Be Not Afraid”
Zoom link for video - 4:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time
Meeting ID: 815 3407 5389
(Note -- if you have a problem with the above link, open your ZOOM app and insert the Meeting ID number and Passcode)
One tap mobile: 1-312-626-6799
Welcome and Gathering
Lee: Welcome to our Zoom liturgy at Mary Mother of Jesus, an inclusive Catholic Community where all are welcome.
-We invite you to pray the liturgy and respond where it says “All.”
-All participants will be muted during the liturgy except for the presiders and readers.
-Please have bread and wine/juice nearby as we pray our Eucharistic prayer.
Whoever you are,
Wherever you are,
Just as you are,
You are welcome at this table. (Integral Christianity by Paul Smith)
Let us now take a few minutes to collect ourselves as we prepare to focus our minds and our hearts on our knowledge that we are all one, brought together at this time to transform ourselves and our world through love; love for our Holy One, love for our neighbors, love for ourselves, and love for our planet. Let us begin our liturgy by expressing this love through song.
Gathering Song: Be Not Afraid by John Michael Talbot
Kathryn: Oh Holy One, we are delighted to gather with you and one another today as we share this sacred space and celebrate this holy sacrament. We hold you close in these dark times, knowing your light is always with us, in us and around us. We know there are lessons to be learned from the darkness and wisdom to be gained. Help us to trust in the dark spaces and to know that the darkness will not overcome us. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” May we live and breathe light and love to one another. And to this, we say, ALL: AMEN.
Rite of Transformation
Lee: We pause now to remember the times we have not born fruit in caring for self and others. Take a moment to recall one missed opportunity, one broken or damaged relationship. (Pause briefly and extend your hand over your heart)
ALL: As we ask for and receive forgiveness, we open our hearts to Infinite Love embracing and healing us. Let it be so, Yes, Alleluia!
A Joyful Gloria: Linda Lee Miller and graphics by Rick Miller
Liturgy of the Word
Mary Al: First Reading – Malachi 3:19-20A
“Lo, the day is coming, blazing like an oven, when all the proud and all evildoers will be stubble, and the day that is coming will set them on fire, leaving them neither root nor branch, says the LORD of hosts.”
These are the inspired words of the prophet Malachi and we affirm them by saying, AMEN!
Anna D: Second Reading: A reading from “Essential Writings on Creation Spirituality” by Matthew Fox
Our Struggle for Wisdom
Hildegard (of Bingen) pictures our life’s journey as a struggle to “set up our tent of wisdom.” This refreshing image is a deeply biblical one deriving from the wisdom tradition of Shekinah, the divine presence that accompanies God’s people. The tent is a feminine, four-sided divine figure which in her understanding comes folded up in us at the time of our birth as original wisdom. Our life journey, therefore, is to set up our tent of wisdom.
But, wisdom does not come easily. Much struggle is demanded; confusion, pain, and opposition place themselves in our path. But the “strong soul” perseveres. The strong soul for Hildegard is the virtuous person-virtues are kinds of strengths. There is a strength to merriment, to constancy, to peace, to compassion, that Hildegard not only finds beautiful to behold but essential for personal and communal survival. “Become strong,” Hildegard admonishes. “Oppose the devil like a strong warrior opposes his enemy and you will delight God in your struggle. Oh, fleeing soul, she counsels, “be strong. Clothe yourself in the armor of light.” Wisdom for Hildegard constitutes the very definition of what church ought to be-a gathering of those rejecting the folly of dualism and corruption and war-like attitudes and what we today would call patriarchy in favor of ways of healing and celebration and cosmos and peace making. “With wisdom I have rightly put the universe in order…I, wisdom, bind together heavenly and earthly things as a unity for the good of the people.”
These are the inspired words of Hildegard of Bingen relayed through the teachings of Matthew Fox and we affirm them by saying, AMEN!
Jerry: Gospel Reading: Luke 21:5-19
While some people were speaking about how the temple was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings, Jesus said, "All that you see here - the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down."
Then they asked him, "Teacher, when will this happen? And what sign will there be when all these things are about to happen?"
He answered, "See that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying, 'I am he,' and 'The time has come.' Do not follow them!
When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for such things must happen first, but it will not immediately be the end."
Then he said to them, "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues from place to place; and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky.
"Before all this happens, however, they will seize and persecute you, they will hand you over to the synagogues and to prisons, and they will have you led before kings and governors because of my name. It will lead to your giving testimony. Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand, for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute.
You will even be handed over by parents, brothers, relatives, and friends, and they will put some of you to death. You will be hated by all because of my name, but not a hair on your head will be destroyed. By your perseverance you will secure your lives."
These are the inspired words by the Gospel writer, Luke, and we affirm them by saying, AMEN!
Homily Starter: Kathryn Shea, ARCWP
The readings given to us this week very clearly speak about the end of the world. The end of the world, most likely, will not happen in my lifetime. For two thousand years, some people have been waiting for the end of the world. In every age and time, there are people who expect the end of the world to happen very soon, this year, next year, or very soon. So far, it has not happened. And yet, many of the predictions mentioned in our readings today; earthquakes, wars, plagues, and the word “insurrections” specifically struck me, are happening all around us. It is not surprising that some are fearing the end of the world.
Did early Christians believe in a physical end of the world? Surely they did, and many of them thought it likely to end soon. I’ve often wondered if the book of Revelations was written to keep us all in line; afraid for our lives so that we live in fear rather than love.
I believe there is a more spiritual teaching about the end of the world. The deepest teaching about the end of the world is not about its physical ending, but about how you and I should be living now. I do think the world is undergoing a spiritual destruction. The temple adorned with stones is symbolic of the greed and thirst for power that has overtaken our nation. I read this week a passage written by Soong-Chan Rah, a Milton B. Engebretson Professor of Church Growth and Evangelism at North Park University, Chicago. He writes:
“American Christians may be fearful of the dramatic changes that have already occurred in the world and in American Christianity. Could that fear be rooted in a loss of power as the demographics of world Christianity begin to favor non-Western nations? But these changes in Christianity may be exactly what God intended, requiring American Christians to relinquish a historical dominance and embrace a greater mutuality, equality and reciprocity in twenty-first century world Christianity.”
If these dramatic changes in American Christianity is the destruction our readings are warning us about, I’m all for it! And I must say, I am a bit more optimistic than I was a week ago. The elections have given me hope. Each one of us gives me hope. We are called to be the change we wish to see in the world. Let us live each day as if it is our last with love, compassion, and a fearless determination to make all things right In the world. Amanda Gorman wrote in her inaugural poem, The Hill We Climb, “For there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it; If only we’re brave enough to be it.”
Let us go forth and be brave enough to be it, to be Hildegard’s “strong souls” that persevere, and let’s envision Nevada and Georgia resulting in blue.
Communal Statement of Faith
Mary AL: We believe in the Holy One, 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.
Prayers of and for the Community
Anna: We now bring our prayer intentions to the Table.
Our response is: ALL: You heal us as we awaken to your call.
We pray for the devastated families of all those in Kentucky, California, and elsewhere impacted by deadly floods, wildfires, and other weather related disasters. R
We pray for the people of Ukraine and Russia that they may live in peace without fear and that goodness and sanity will fill the hearts and minds of those that would cause them harm. R
We pray that our government puts children above guns, power, and greed. R
We pray for our MMOJ intentions on our community prayer list. (Joan M shares)
For what else should we pray? Begin with, “I bring to the table..”
Our response is: You heal us as we awaken to your call.
Holy Mystery may we respond to the needs of our sisters and brothers in loving prayer and solidarity. Amen
Liturgy of the Eucharist
Lee: O Holy One, you have been called by many names by many people in the centuries of our planet’s life. Yet, no name truly defines you or describes you. We celebrate you as the marvelous, loving energy of life who caused us and our world to be. We celebrate you as the Source of light and life and love, and we celebrate your presence and all-ways care.
Jerry: Please join in praying the Eucharistic prayer together: (Eucharistic prayer taken from the work of Diarmuid O’Murchu and Jay Murnane)
Jerry: O Holy One, we stand at a critical moment in Earth’s history – a time when humanity must choose its future.
As the world becomes increasingly interdependent and fragile, the future holds both peril and great promise.
May we recognize that, in the midst of a magnificent diversity of cultures and life forms, we are one human family and one Earth community with a common destiny. United with our vast universe, with our Mother-Planet and her people everywhere, with one another and You, Holy One, our spirits dance and sing this song of praise:
Song: Holy, Holy, Holy (Karen Drucker)
Kathryn: We give grateful thanks for those who came before us, for all those who gave from their hearts, who gave from their lives, that there might be a better world, a safer world, a kinder world, we pray for peace in their name.
And for the children, that they may live, that they may have children of their own and that it will go on - this great blossoming that is meant to go on and on – we pray for peace, in their name.
And for all peoples of this earth who have no voice in this,
For the animals that have no voice in this,
For the plants, the trees, the flowers that have no voice in this,
For all who share this earth with us, we pray for peace in their name.
Anna: We thank you for our brother, Jesus. He showed us so simply, so tenderly, how the world is in our hands. He had nothing in this world but your love, companions on the journey, and his very self. Together, that was more than enough, and that remains our clarity in the midst of confusion: the miracle of healing, new hope, nurturance, nourishment, liberation and life.
(Please extend your hands in blessing)
Lee and ALL: We invoke Your Spirit upon the gifts of this Eucharistic table, bread of the grain and wine of the grape, that they may become gifts of wisdom, light and truth which remind us of our call to be the body of Christ to the world.
On the night before he faced his own death and for the sake of living fully, 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 within them, he bent down and washed their feet.
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; this is my very self.
Kathryn and ALL: He then raised high the cup of blessing, spoke the grace, and offered them the wine saying:
Take and drink of the covenant made new again through my life,
for you and for everyone, for liberation from every oppression.
Whenever you do this, Re-member me and all that I have taught you!
Jerry and ALL: Loving Source of All, we have looked for others to save us and to save our world. Yet, we are called, and consecrated and sent into the world to establish justice and show the blessed fulfillment that comes with simplicity and the giving of ourselves in love.
Anna: We will make new our commitment to the harmony of the original vision of creation.
We will open up wide all that has been closed about us, and our small circles. Like Jesus, in all openness, we will be filled with your own Spirit and renew the face of the earth.
Mary Al and ALL: For it is through learning to live as he lived,
And why he lived,
And for whom he lived,
That we awaken to your Spirit within,
Moving us to worship you truly,
O Holy One,
At this time and all time and in all ways.
And we say yes to You!
The Abba Prayer
Kathryn and ALL:
Who loves us like a mother,
Whose realm is blooming among us now.
We pray that your compassion guide us in every action.
Give us what we need for each day,
and help us to be satisfied with the miracle of that alone.
Forgiver, whose embrace brings us to wholeness without our asking,
May we reconcile ourselves to one another in humility.
And may we cancel the crushing debts that imprison our neighbours
So that communities of joy and health may flourish.
May we neither profit from nor ignore evil.
But ever work to thwart it with non-violence
As we co-create the realm of peace in this world.
Now and each day.
Amen. (Bret Hesla/wsj)
Sign of Peace:
Jerry: Jesus said to his disciples, “My peace I leave You. My peace I give You.” Let us now extend a sign of peace to one another by saying, “Namaste, Namaste, Namaste”.
Lee: Please join in praying the Litany for the Breaking of the Bread:
Lee and ALL: Holy One, You call us to speak truth to power; we will do so.
Holy One, You call us to live the Gospel of healing and justice; we will do so.
Holy One, You call us to be Your presence in the world; we will do so.
This is the bread of life and the cup of blessing. Blessed are we who are called to Christ’s table.
Mary Al and ALL: What we have heard with our ears, we will live with our lives. As we share communion, we become communion, both Love’s nourishment and Love’s challenge.
Please receive/share Eucharist now, saying: “You are the bread of life.” And “You are the cup of compassion.”
Communion Song: Holy Darkness by John Michael Talbot
Kathryn: Please extend your hands as we pray the blessing:
Bless Us with Your Spirit of Grace (adapted)
O Holy One,
through your Son, Jesus,
you promised us your Holy Spirit,
and gave us a new commandment of love.
Bless us, your children,
with your Spirit of grace,
and comfort and uphold our hearts
that we may persevere in your Word with joy,
call on you with sincere prayer,
and always serve you with patience;
through Jesus the Christ.
Source: Joachim Mynsinger von Frundeck (1514-1588), translated from from Gebetbuch, enthaltend die sämtlichen Gebete und Seufzer Martin Luther’s, ….Evangelischer Bücher-Verein, 1866, #625 for A Collection of Prayers.
ALL: Thanks be to all that is holy! Go in Peace to be love in the world! Alleluia!
Closing Song: City of God by Dan Schutte
If you would like to add your intercession to our MMOJ Community Prayers book,
Please send an email to email@example.com
If you would like to invite another person to attend our liturgy please refer them to
www.marymotherofJesus.org where the day’s liturgy is found. Zoom instructions are also included there.
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