Pentecost +9, Year A

Musical Reflection
Cold Hungry Blues by Po’ Girl



God of compassion,
whose heart goes out
to the hungry and destitute;
who takes our lack
and transforms it into much:
give us the bread that satisfies,
the food without price,
that our lives may be freed
to share your overflowing love;
through Jesus Christ,
the breaker of bread.
First Reading

Aubade with Bread for the Sparrows
by Oliver de la Paz

The snow voids the distance of the road
and the first breath comes from the early morning
ghosts. The sparrows with their hard eyes
glisten in the difficult light. They preen
their feathers and chirp. It’s as though they were one
voice talking to God.
                                    Mornings are a sustained hymn
without the precision of faith. You’ve turned the bag
filled with molding bread inside out and watch
the old crusts fall to the ice. What’s left
but to watch the daylight halved by the glistening ground?
What’s left but an empty bag and the dust of bread
ravaged by songsters?
                                       There are ruins we witness
within the moment of the world’s first awakening
and the birds love you within that moment. They want
to eat the air and the stars they’ve hungered for, little razors.
Little urgent bells, the birds steal from each other’s mouths
which makes you hurt. Don’t ask for more bread.
The world is in haste to waken. Don’t ask for a name
you can surrender, for there are more ghosts to placate.
Don’t hurt for the sparrows, for they love you like a road.

Second Reading
The giver (for 
by James Baldwin

If the hope of giving
is to love the living,
the giver risks madness
in the act of giving.
Some such lesson I seemed to see
in the faces that surrounded me.
Needy and blind, unhopeful, unlifted,
what gift would give them the gift to be gifted?
          The giver is no less adrift
          than those who are clamouring for the gift.
If they cannot claim it, if it is not there,
if their empty fingers beat the empty air
and the giver goes down on his knees in prayer
knows that all of his giving has been for naught
and that nothing was ever what he thought
and turns in his guilty bed to stare
at the starving multitudes standing there
and rises from bed to curse at heaven,
he must yet understand that to whom much is given
much will be taken, and justly so:
I cannot tell how much I owe.
Gospel Reading
Matthew 14:13-21

When Jesus heard about John, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself. When the crowds learned this, they followed him on foot from the cities. When Jesus arrived and saw a large crowd, he had compassion for them and healed those who were sick. That evening his disciples came and said to him, “This is an isolated place and it’s getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go into the villages and buy food for themselves.”

But Jesus said to them, “There’s no need to send them away. You give them something to eat.”

They replied, “We have nothing here except five loaves of bread and two fish.”

He said, “Bring them here to me.” He ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves of bread and the two fish, looked up to heaven, blessed them and broke the loaves apart and gave them to his disciples. Then the disciples gave them to the crowds. Everyone ate until they were full, and they filled twelve baskets with the leftovers. About five thousand adults and children had eaten.

Musical Reflection
What if We Give it Away by R.E.M.

from the Girl Guides

For food when many walk in hunger;
For faith in a world where many walk in fear;
For friends in a world where many walk alone,
We give you humble thanks, O Lord.

The Lord’s Prayer

Loving God, within and around us, we revere you.
We seek to live life as you would want us to do;
with love and respect for all people
and all things in the universe.
May we find each day sufficient for our needs,
and find forgiveness when we do wrong,
just as we forgive those who do wrong to us.
In times of trouble, may we centre our lives in you.
For your being is love,
which comes with strength and with beauty,
throughout eternity. Amen.


Musical Reflection
Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want by The Smiths

Saranam (Refuge) Blessing

Great Creator,
Receive our thanks for night and day,
for food and shelter, rest and play.
Be here our guest and with us stay,
saranam, saranam, saranam.

And may the blessing of God – the Speaker, the Word, and the Speaking,
be with us and remain with us always. Amen.



Artwork by Antoine Bridier-Nahmias

Invocation from Prayers for an Inclusive Church by Steven Shakespeare

Musical Reflection Cold Hungry Blues by Po’ Girl

Poem Aubade with Bread for the Sparrows by Oliver de la Paz

Poem The giver (for Berdis) by James Baldwin

Musical Reflection What if We Give it Away by R.E.M.

Prayer from the Girl Guides

Lord’s Prayer by Margaret Rolfe

Musical Reflection Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want by The Smiths

Blessing from Celtic Daily Prayer

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