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A SERVICE OF WORD AND SACRAMENT

Pentecost, Year A
South Sydney Uniting Church
June 8, 2014

The Gathering of the People of God

CALL TO WORSHIP

Alleluia! Christ is risen.
He is risen indeed. Alleluia!

SONG ‘Where the Spirit is ...’ (421)

GREETING

Who does not dream of a day to come
when he or she will no longer be afraid to do the things so long postponed
because the courage to do them was lacking?

Who is not hoping for more enthusiasm to do the everyday tasks with joy,
to take the risk of deeply loving God and others
without conditions and without hesitation?

Who does not wish to be much more inspired and dynamic and creative in life?

Today is the day on which this can begin to happen,
for today is Pentecost, the day of the Spirit,
the day a stormwind renews our love,
the day of a fire that brings us joy and freedom,
the day of the Holy Spirit.

May Jesus be with you and breathe upon you
the Spirit who makes hearts aflame with light and life.
And also with you.

Welcome. Acknowledgement of traditional owners.

PENITENTIAL RITE

We have not used the marvelous gifts
which the Holy Spirit keeps offering us.
Let us ask God to forgive us
and to open our hearts to good gifts.

Jesus, breathe on us the Spirit
who can make us understand one another
and help us to appreciate and support one another:
Show us your compassion, O God.

Jesus Christ, breathe on us the Spirit
who can unite us in one love
and make that love creative and inventive:
Show us your compassion, O Christ.

Jesus, breathe on us your Spirit
to liberate us from all paralysing fears
and to make us serve God and people with joy:
Show us your compassion, O God.

In your great kindness, God,
forgive us all our sins,
open us to the Spirit of love
and lead us to everlasting life.
Amen.

FORGIVENESS

COLLECT

Let us pray to Abba God
to send us the Holy Spirit
as was given to the young Church.

Flowing Spirit,
living water,
Mother of creation:
refresh our hearts,
inspire our gifts,
indwell our gathering
and make us a sign
of all the world's vocation
to communion with you;
through Jesus Christ, who quenches our thirst.
Amen.

The Liturgy of the Word

FIRST READING Acts 2:1-11

PSALM 104: 24-34, 35b

SECOND READING 1 Cor 12:3-7, 12-13

We stand.

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION (720)

GOSPEL John 20:19-23

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

RESPONSE

PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION

Let us pray to God to pour out on us and on the whole world
the Spirit of courage and unity.
Let us say: O God, Let your Spirit renew the face of the earth.

... On those who are gathered here in your name,
on those who have left our communities,
on those newly baptised these days, pour out your Spirit:
O God, Let your Spirit renew the face of the earth.

For all these we pray. Send your Spirit on each of us;
let her put us afire with love today and all our days, for ever.
Amen.

The Liturgy of the Eucharist

OFFERING ‘Come down, O Love divine’ (398)

Abba God,
let your Spirit come down
on this bread and wine
and fill it with the life of Jesus, your Beloved.
Let your Spirit come down on us
who sit at the table of Jesus,
and fill us with the life and joy of your Beloved.
Let her make us truly the Body of Christ,
in which it becomes visible
that we are the heart and the hands
of our Sovereign and Saviour Jesus Christ.

THE PEACE

INVITATION

With the Holy Spirit in our hearts,
let us with joy and gratitude join in the thanksgiving
of Jesus our Saviour.

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.

It is indeed right to give you our thanks and praise, O God,
for you have amazed us with your deeds of power.

V1: With your own hands you shaped the creation
and filled the earth with your wonders.

V2: You breathed into us and we rose from the dust;
the face of the earth came alive.

V3: From the cloud you spoke to Moses
and through your prophets you promised
to pour out your Spirit on all flesh.

V4: In these last days you sent your Child, Jesus the Christ,
to speak your words of mercy and peace.

Though he was killed, you raised him to new life,
and now he comes to all who are thirsty,
pouring out the new wine of the Spirit,
intoxicating us with visions and dreams,
awakening within us your marvelous gifts
of wisdom, faith, healing, prophesy and discernment,
filling our hearts with songs of joy.

Therefore we sing (761):
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 the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.

On the night before he died for us ...

Now gathered at your table, 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

Mother and Father of us all,
may your name be blessed,
may your name be kept safe,
and may all things be made new.
May we all be of a new mind.
Give us today the gift of the day,
the gift of time,
of your own good time.
May your kingdom come,
may your rule come,
and hospitality. Let it happen.
May the wind of your coming
sweep over us as over the deep,
and may it lift us up in the palm of your hand.
Release us from our faults.
Release us from our past,
even as we shall release others
from what they have done against us.
Free us from the evil one
and from the meanness of the world’s calculations.
For the kingdom is yours,
the time of your rule,
and time is yours. Amen.

BREAKING OF THE BREAD

LAMB OF GOD (765)

COMMUNION

PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION

We give thanks for this sacred meal
shared in the Spirit of true friendship with Jesus our Saviour.
Help us, Creator God, to create space
for discerning your call,
and time to listen for your voice.
Be known to us in the sharing of our hearts;
be known to us in the promise of what is yet to be,
grounded in the many promises
you have already fulfilled. Amen.

The Sending Forth of the People of God

Notices.

BLESSING

In this eucharist
God has poured out on us again
the fire and the stormwind of the Spirit.
May the Spirit move us
to take the risk of committing ourselves fully
to God and to others on the Earth.
May she give us the courage to change
ourselves and the Church we love,
that we may be living signs to all the world
of God’s goodness and presence.

May almighty God bless you ...

DISMISSAL

Go, and let the Holy Spirit
keep your hearts afire with God’s love.
Thanks be to God.

SONG ‘Shout for joy! The Lord has let us feast’ (545)


THE DAY OF PENTECOST is a facet of the great diamond which is the one movement of God’s self-emptying in creating the universe, becoming incarnate, dying, rising, sending the Spirit to draw us into divinity. The separation into differing feasts is due to our human time-and-space constrained limitation but it should little surprise us that John’s Gospel has a differing chronology to Luke’s stories for Christ’s ascending and gifting of the Spirit. The risen and ascended Christ, gone from our sight, is still present by the Spirit and we are commissioned to go out into the world to spread the light of Christ.


Acknowledgements:
Based on UIW2; a liturgy by Bosco Peters, New Zealand (online);
and a liturgy by Eden Grace online (www.edengrace.org).
Collect by Steven Shakespeare, Prayers for an Inclusive Church (2009).
Lord’s Prayer translation from John D. Caputo, The Weakness of God (2007).
Prayer After Communion based on prayer by Donna E. Schaper, Prayers for Lent, Easter and Pentecost (2005).
Image: Descent of the Holy Spirit icon (Eastern Orthodox).