Second after Epiphany, Year A

Musical Reflection
Windowsill by Arcade Fire



You, who teach us a new song,
and train our feet to follow:
meet us in our searching
and turn our eyes and hearts
to the one who gives life to the world;
through Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God.
First Reading

by Muriel Rukeyser

I lived in the first century of world wars.
Most mornings I would be more or less insane,
The newspapers would arrive with their careless stories,
The news would pour out of various devices
Interrupted by attempts to sell products to the unseen.
I would call my friends on other devices;
They would be more or less mad for similar reasons.
Slowly I would get to pen and paper,
Make my poems for others unseen and unborn.
In the day I would be reminded of those men and women,
Brave, setting up signals across vast distances,
Considering a nameless way of living, of almost unimagined values.
As the lights darkened, as the lights of night brightened,
We would try to imagine them, try to find each other,
To construct peace, to make love, to reconcile
Waking with sleeping, ourselves with each other,
Ourselves with ourselves. We would try by any means
To reach the limits of ourselves, to reach beyond ourselves,

To let go the means, to wake.

I lived in the first century of these wars.

Second Reading
Boy Breaking Glass

by Gwendolyn Brooks

Whose broken window is a cry of art
(success, that winks aware
as elegance, as a treasonable faith)
is raw: is sonic: is old-eyed première.
Our beautiful flaw and terrible ornament.
Our barbarous and metal little man.
“I shall create! If not a note, a hole.
If not an overture, a desecration.”

Full of pepper and light
and Salt and night and cargoes.

“Don’t go down the plank
if you see there’s no extension.
Each to his grief, each to
his loneliness and fidgety revenge.
Nobody knew where I was and now I am no longer there.”

The only sanity is a cup of tea.
The music is in minors.

Each one other
is having different weather.

“It was you, it was you who threw away my name!
And this is everything I have for me.”

Who has not Congress, lobster, love, luau,
the Regency Room, the Statue of Liberty,
runs. A sloppy amalgamation.
A mistake.
A cliff.
A hymn, a snare, and an exceeding sun.


Gospel Reading
John 1:29-42

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is the one about whom I said, ‘The one who comes after me ranks ahead of me, for this One existed before I did.’ Even I didn’t recognize him, but I came baptizing with water so that he might be made known to Israel.” John testified, “I saw the Spirit coming down from heaven like a dove, and she rested on him. Even I didn’t recognize him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘The one on whom you see the Spirit coming down and resting is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and testified that this is the Only Begotten of God.”

The next day John was standing again with two of his disciples. When he saw Jesus walking along he said, “Look! The Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard what he said, and they followed Jesus.

When Jesus turned and saw them following, he asked, “What are you looking for?”

They said, “Rabbi (which is translated Teacher), where are you staying?”

He replied, “Come and see.” So they went and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon.

One of the two disciples who heard what John said and followed Jesus was Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter. He first found his own brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated The Anointed One). Andrew led Simon to Jesus.

Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon, son of John. You will be called Cephas” (which is translated Peter).

Musical Reflection

In the River: A Protest Song by Raye Zaragoza


 Prayer for Hard Times 

by Christian Schmidt

Spirit of Life and Love,

Be with us in this time, as people suffer, as parents grieve, as violence rages. Be with us who feel the pain of loss, who feel anger at injustice.

Stand with the oppressed and change the heart of the oppressor, for we know that both are joined in their humanity, no matter how often we forget it.

Help us remember the hope we had, the hope we have, and the hope we will have; help us remember joy in the midst of sadness, success in the midst of challenge, and good things in the midst of bad.

Help us to be better people, to work for better things, and to create a better world.


The Lord’s Prayer

God, heart of the world:
revealed through every aspect of creation:
understood through our awareness.
May we honour the holiness of creation and act accordingly
so that your love is reflected in the way we live.
May we always be thankful for the food we eat
and the friends we have.
May we forgive those who transgress against us
and be forgiven for our own.
In the freedom of love may we live as your heartbeat
and not be compromised by hesitation.
Through our freedom,
may your justice be seen and heard and experienced
forever and ever. Amen.


Musical Reflection
The Revolution will not be Televised by Gil Scott-Heron


Bless us, Lord, this day with vision.
May this place, wherever we are,
be a sacred place,
a telling place,
where heaven and earth meet.

And may the blessing of God – the Abba, the Messiah, and the Paraclete,
be with us and remain with us always. Amen.



Artwork by Ai Weiwei

Invocation from Prayers for an Inclusive Church by Steven Shakespeare

Musical Reflection Windowsill by Arcade Fire

Poem Poem by Muriel Rukeyser

Poem Boy Breaking Glass by Gwendolyn Brooks

Musical Reflection In the River: A Protest Song by Raye Zaragoza

Prayer by Christian Schmidt

Lord’s Prayer by Sherri J Weinberg

Musical Reflection The Revolution will Not be Televised by Gil Scott-Heron

Blessing from Celtic Daily Prayer, adapted

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