Pentecost +15, Year C

Musical Reflection
I Wish My Baby Was Born by Be Good Tanyas

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Invocation

Inviting God,
laying open your table
to the deviant and deranged,
setting a place
for the foreign and unwanted:
overturn our tables of power
and teach us to receive bread
from strange and wounded hands;
through Jesus Christ, the One given for all.

Amen.

First Reading
The Worst Pain

by Gertrude Story

The worst pain in the world,
the men say,
sitting around the kitchen table
and putting away hot coffee
and doughnuts
fresh out of the lard
is, Excuse them for saying it
in front of a lady,
to be kicked in the personals
by a cow pony
with her brains
all in her heels.
And the woman,
her womb torn up and restitched
after the baby was born
dead,
dips more doughnuts,
says,
yes, I can well imagine
that would really
hurt.

Second Reading
Nothing Gold Can Stay
 by Robert Frost

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

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Gospel Reading
Luke 14:1-14

One Sabbath, when Jesus went to share a meal in the home of one of the leaders of the Pharisees, they were watching him closely. A man suffering from an abnormal swelling of the body was there. Jesus asked the lawyers and Pharisees,“Does the Law allow healing on the Sabbath or not?” But they said nothing. Jesus took hold of the sick man, cured him, and then let him go. He said to them,“Suppose your child or ox fell into a ditch on the Sabbath day. Wouldn’t you immediately pull it out?” But they had no response.

When Jesus noticed how the guests sought out the best seats at the table, he told them a parable. “When someone invites you to a wedding celebration, don’t take your seat in the place of honour. Someone more highly regarded than you could have been invited by your host. The host who invited both of you will come and say to you, ‘Give your seat to this other person.’ Embarrassed, you will take your seat in the least important place. Instead, when you receive an invitation, go and sit in the least important place. When your host approaches you, they will say, ‘Friend, move up here to a better seat.’ Then you will be honoured in the presence of all your fellow guests. All who lift themselves up will be brought low, and those who make themselves low will be lifted up.”

Then Jesus said to the person who had invited him, “When you host a lunch or dinner, don’t invite your friends, your brothers and sisters, your relatives, or rich neighbours. If you do, they will invite you in return and that will be your reward. Instead, when you give a banquet, invite the poor, crippled, lame, and blind. And you will be blessed because they can’t repay you. Instead, you will be repaid when the just are resurrected.”

 

Musical Reflection
Car Seat (God’s Presents) by Blind Melon

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Prayer
by George MacDonald, adapted

Creator God,
come now
live in us.
Let us stay in You,
since if we be all in You,
we cannot be far from one another,
though some may be in heaven
and some upon earth. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

O Breathing Life, your Name shines everywhere!
Release a space to plant your Presence here.
Imagine your possibilities now.
Embody your desire in every light and form.
Grow through us this moment’s bread and wisdom.
Untie the knots of failure binding us,
as we release the strands we hold of others’ faults.
Help us not forget our Source,
Yet free us from not being in the Present.
From you arises every Vision, Power and Song
from gathering to gathering.
Amen –
May our future actions grow from here!

 

Musical Reflection
Anthem by Leonard Cohen

 


Blessing

Name Unnamed, whose intriguing presence
is closer to home than we dare imagine,
fill us with wonder of you
that we may be filled with wonder of ourselves.

Name Unnamed, whose creativity is a river running,
startle us with diversity
and surprise us with difference
that we may be filled with wonder of others.

Name Unnamed, whose mystery and concern
is revealed in Jesus,
reshape our perceptions,
reshape our patterns of living,
reshape our politics and prayer,
that we may be filled with wonder of a world made whole.

May the blessing of God – the Memory, the Understanding,
and the Will
,
be with us and remain with us always. Amen.

 

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Sources:

Artwork by Evelyn Bencicova

Invocation from Prayers for an Inclusive Church by Steven Shakespeare

Musical Reflection I Wish My Baby was Born by the Be Good Tanyas

Poem The Worst Pain by Gertrude Story

Poem Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost

Musical Reflection Car Seat (God’s Presents) by Blind Melon

Prayer by George MacDonald

Lord’s Prayer by Mark Berry

Musical Reflection Anthem by Leonard Cohen

Blessing from The Pattern of our Days

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