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A SERVICE OF WORD  AND SACRAMENT

Easter Sunday, Year A
South Sydney Uniting Church
April 24, 2011

The Gathering of the People of God

CALL TO WORSHIP

Alleluia! Christ is risen.
He is risen indeed. Alleluia!
This is the day Our God has made
Let us celebrate with joy!

HYMN: ‘Alleluia, alleluia, give thanks to the risen Lord’ (390)

GREETING

The risen Christ meets us at the tomb, and turns our tears to joy.
For your love and goodness
we give you thanks, O God.
Christ comes through our locked doors, and turns our fear to courage.
For your love and goodness
we give you thanks, O God.
Christ comes to daily life and work, and turns our failure to new vision.
For your love and goodness
we give you thanks, O God.
Christ breaks the bread, and turns our despair to hope.
For your love and goodness
we give you thanks, O God.

Acknowledgement of Indigenous custodians; welcome to visitors.

HYMN: ‘Christ is risen! Shout hosanna!’ (394)

CONFESSION & FORGIVENESS

DOXOLOGY

 Gloria, gloria, in excelsis Deo!
 Gloria, gloria, alleluia, alleluia.

COLLECT

Let us pray that we may share Christ’s resurrection.

Almighty God,
through your Child Jesus Christ
You overcame death and opened to us
the gate of everlasting life;
grant us so to die daily to sin,
that we may evermore live with him
in the joy of his resurrection:
who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit,
one God now and for ever. Amen.

The Liturgy of the Word

O God, open our hearts and minds
by the power of your Holy Spirit,
that, as the Scriptures are read and proclaimed,
we may hear your word with joy.
Amen.

PSALM 118:1-2,14-24

I thank you, Adonai, for your goodness!
Your love is everlasting!
Let Israel say it:
Your love is everlasting!”
God is my strength and my song;
God has become my salvation!
Raise shouts of joy and victory
in the tents of the upright:
Our God’s right hand is doing mighty acts!
Our God’s right hand is winning,
Our God’s right hand is doing mighty acts!
No, I will not die
I will live to proclaim the deeds of Our God;
Though our God has disciplined me often,
I am not abandoned to Death.
Open the gates of justice for me,
let me come in and thank you, Adonai!
This is the gate of Our God,
and only the upright can enter!
Thank you for hearing me,
for saving me.
It was the stone which the builders rejected
that became the keystone;
This is Our God’s doing,
and it is wonderful to see.
This is the day Our God has made
Let us celebrate with joy!

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION

We stand.

 Alleluia, Alleluia,
 Praise the Word of truth and life!

GOSPEL John 20:1-18

As the wings of doves over nestlings,
so may the wings of the Spirit be over our hearts.
As the mouths of chicks toward hens,
may our lives be open to God’s Wisdom.

HOMILY

SILENCE

AFFIRMATION OF FAITH

We believe in the power of Christ
to overcome all deaths,
deaths in us and death in the world.

We believe in life which rises in freedom
and carries us in joy towards grace
beyond our imagining,
calling our spirits to soar in freedom
with wings of hope
borne high in the wonder of Easter Day.

The gift of life will never be taken from us.
The costly life of God will be our company
for ever and ever.

PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION

Risen Saviour; Carry us with you.

... Be alive in us this day and every day, Jesus Christ,
for we long to be the people of the living God.
Amen.

The Liturgy of the Eucharist

OFFERING

God of all creation, you bring forth
bread from the earth and fruit from the vine.
By your Holy Spirit, this bread and wine
will be for us the body and blood of Christ.
All you have made is good.
Your love endures for ever.

THE PEACE

The peace of the risen Christ be with you.
And also with you.

INVITATION

GREAT PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING

God is here.
God’s Spirit is with us.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them to God.
Let us give thanks to the God of love.
It is right to offer thanks and praise.

We praise you and we bless you, holy and gracious God,
source of life abundant.

From before time you made ready the creation.
Your Spirit moved over the deep and brought all things into being:
sun, moon, and stars; earth, winds, and waters; and every living thing.

You made us in your image, and taught us to walk in your ways.
But we rebelled against you, and wandered far away;
and yet, as a mother cares for her children, you would not forget us.

Time and again you called us to live in the fullness of your love.
And so this day we join with Saints and Angels in the chorus of praise
that rings through eternity, lifting our voices to magnify you as we sing:

Holy, Holy, Holy God, wisdom, strength and hope,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of our God.
Hosanna in the highest.

L: Glory and honour and praise to you, holy and living God.
 To deliver us from the power of sin and death
 and to reveal the riches of your grace,
 you looked with favour upon Mary, your willing servant,
 that she might conceive and bear a son, Jesus the holy child of God.

R: Living among us, Jesus loved us.
 He broke bread with outcasts and sinners, healed the sick,
 and proclaimed good news to the poor.
 He yearned to draw all the world to himself
 yet we were heedless of his call to walk in love.

Then the time came for him
to complete upon the cross the sacrifice of his life,
and to be glorified by you.

On the night before he died for us ...

Now gathered at your table, O God of all creation,
and remembering Christ crucified and risen,
who was and is and is to come,
we offer to you our gifts of bread and wine,
and ourselves, a living sacrifice.

Pour out your Spirit upon these gifts
that they may be the body and blood of Christ.
Breathe your Spirit over the whole earth
and make us your new creation,
the body of Christ given for the world you have made.

In the fullness of time bring us, with all your saints,
from every tribe and language and people and nation,
to feast at the banquet prepared from the foundation of the world.

Through Christ and with Christ and in Christ,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
to you be honour, glory, and praise,
for ever and ever.
Amen.

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Abba God in heaven,
 
glory to you!
Your rule of love renews the earth.
In your name, we take part in that renewal
 
helping, and not harming,
 
caring, and not coercing ...
We pray that we might receive with thanks
 
the bread we need,
 
the money we need,
 
the warmth we need ...
We pray that forgiveness and freedom
flow through our lives.
Teach us that in sharing life
 
we live life to the full ...
Remind us that evil is real.
Still, we are not afraid of it,
but confident
 
that love is stronger than hate,
 
justice other than revenge,
 
true peace the work of your Spirit.

BREAKING OF THE BREAD

LAMB OF GOD

Jesus, Wisdom of God,
have mercy on us.
Jesus, Word made flesh,
have mercy on us.
Jesus, Liberator of creation,
grant us peace.

COMMUNION

PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION

The Sending Forth of the People of God

CLOSING RESPONSES

Let us go with a song in our hearts,
bringing to all we meet the melody of love
which has been given to us
in the rising of the Christ.

BLESSING

And may the power of life in Christ lift up the life of the world,
the power of love in the Creator swing wide above us like the blue of the sky
and the faithfulness of the Holy Spirit raise our faith to the heights of hope.

DISMISSAL

Go now to love and serve Our God. Go in peace. Alleluia! Alleluia!
Amen. We go in the name of Christ. Alleluia! Alleluia!

SONG: ‘Christ has risen’

Christ has risen while earth slumbers,
Christ has risen where hope died,
as he said and as he promised,
as we doubted and denied.
Let the moon embrace the blessing;
let the sun sustain the cheer;
let the world confirm the rumour:
Christ is risen, God is here!

Christ has risen for the people
whom he died to love and save;
Christ has risen for the women
bringing flowers to grace his grave.
Christ has risen for disciples
huddled in an upstairs room.
He whose word inspired creation
can’t be silenced by the tomb.

Christ has risen to companion
former friends who fear the night,
sensing loss and limitation
where their faith had once burned bright.
They bemoan what is no longer,
they expect no hopeful sign
till Christ ends their conversation,
breaking bread and sharing wine.

Christ has risen and for ever
lives to challenge and to change
all whose lives are messed or mangled,
all who find religion strange.
Christ is risen, Christ is present,
making us what he has been
evidence of transformation
in which God is known and seen.

 

Acknowledgements:
Based on UIW2;
a liturgy by Bosco Peters, New Zealand (online),
and a liturgy by Dorothy McRae-McMahon (Liturgies for High Days, 2006).
Lord’s Prayer translation by Andrew Collis.
‘Christ has risen’ by John L. Bell & Graham Maule, The Courage to Say No (1996).
Image: Resurrection Icon (Byzantine).