The Gospel will be performed where two or three are gathered together, listening for the Word of God, feeling the breath of the Spirit dancing in and among and through them, feeding one another so that they can become what they already are: members of the Body of Christ, going out to perform the Good News of God’s love for the healing of the world.
Deborah Sokolove, Performing the Gospel, p. 171
CALL TO WORSHIP
Leader: Hope of all the ends of the earth,
we gather to seek your Good News,
your vision of healing love for the world.
People: We gather to listen to your Word,
to look for your vision of new life.
Leader: We gather to feel the breath of your Spirit
dancing in, among, and through us.
All: We gather so we can see what we already are:
the Body of Christ.
WORD FOR THE CHILDREN
SONG AS THE CHILDREN LEAVE FOR CLASS
Jesus loves us as we grow,
meets us on the paths we go,
keeps us safe and keeps us free,
helps us learn who we should be.
Yes, Jesus loves us,
Yes, Jesus helps us,
Yes, Jesus shows us
the best way we can go.
Leader: Holy One, Holy Three, you invite us
to rejoice in the goodness of your creation,
to give thanks in every moment of our lives.
People: In our fear of disaster and destruction,
we forget to notice the goodness of each new day,
the sweetness of each new breath.
Leader: You call us to listen for your Holy Word
in the voices of everyone we meet.
People: In our insistence that we are right,
we fail to love our enemies,
to remember that they, too, are part of your vision.
Leader: You call us to feel the breath of your Spirit
dancing around us and through us and in us.
All: Forgive us when we forget
that we are the Body of Christ,
called to perform the Good News of your love
wherever we are.
INDIVIDUAL PRAYERS OF CONFESSION
Leader: The Holy One loves and forgives us,
inviting us to live in joy and peace
in each new moment of our lives
THANKSGIVING AND PRAISE
INTERCESSION AND PETITION
All: O Holy One, we come today
to claim our relationship with you.
We pray for the commitment to grow together,
sharing the gifts you give us with others
here and in the wider world.
Forgive us for the hurt we have inflicted,
and help us forgive those who have hurt us.
Give us strength and discipline
to nurture our relationship with you;
to care for every part of your creation;
to foster justice and be in solidarity with those in need;
to work to end all war, and violence, and discord;
and to respond joyfully when you call,
freely giving our selves as you have shown the way.
We open our hearts to you and your creation
in the name of Jesus, who is the Christ. Amen.
Leader 1: This is the table of the Heavenly Feast,
the joyful celebration of the people of God.
Leader 2: We gather now as one body, joined around the table.
Here we celebrate God’s presence among us
united in Christ’s spirit, broken and whole all at once;
All: Nourished and hungry, loved and loving,
sinner and forgiven; we make one circle of knowing,
believing, rejoicing, being,
as God lights and rests among us.
Leader 1: O Holy One, Creator of the vision of love,
we give you thanks for prophets in every age,
bearers of your Word and keepers of your vision.
People: We give you thanks for your child Jesus, the Christ,
who comes announcing the Good News
that your vision is near.
Leader 2: We give you thanks for your Holy Spirit,
breathing and dancing in and among us,
leading us toward your vision of healing love.
All: We give you thanks for your Holy Church,
Christ’s hands and feet
performing the Good News of your love
for the healing of the world.
BLESSING THE ELEMENTS
Leader 1: Christ invites everyone to eat the bread of life,
to drink the cup of the new covenant.
Leader 2: Jesus said, I am the bread of life.
You who come to me shall never hunger,
You who believe in me shall never thirst.
Leader 1: On the night he gave himself up, Jesus took bread,
and after giving thanks to God, broke it and said,
This is my body,
broken for the healing of the world.
Whenever you eat it, do so remembering me.
Leader 2: After supper, Jesus took the cup and said,
This is the cup of the new covenant,
poured out for you and for all.
Whenever you drink it, do so remembering me.
All: O Holy One, send down your Spirit
that these gifts of grain and grape,
and work of human hands
may be for us the body and blood of Christ.
Unite us with Christ forever
and bring us with the whole creation
to your eternal realm.
SHARE THE ELEMENTS
If you do not wish to receive the elements today you are welcome to join the circle and allow them to pass, or remain in your seat. We serve grape juice in our cups.
PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING AND DEDICATION
All: God of abundance and mercy,
we give joyful thanks
for your eternal love and healing presence
in our celebration of bread and cup.
Bless this body of Christ
that we may attend faithfully
to our call to be your servants,
with each other and throughout the world. Amen.
Leader: Send us forth as a called people,
part of your healing vision of love for the world.
As we go, let us bless and encourage one another
with signs of peace.