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Lent 2, Year A
South Sydney Uniting Church
March 16, 2014

The Gathering of the People of God


I look to the mountains but they cannot help me.
The creator of the mountains and the plains
is my guide and my help.
God does not sleep
so is ever watchful of me.
Even the forces of nature cannot harm my soul.
True peace keeps me secure.

SONG ‘Morning has broken’ (156)


In the name of God:
Creator, Redeemer, and Giver of Life. Amen.
Grace and peace to you from God.
God fill you with peace and joy.


We acknowledge the Gadigal people,
the first inhabitants of this place.
We honour them for their care of the land
part of God’s good creation
land on which we gather today.
We pay our respects to their elders, past and present.
God, you granted humanity
the gift of relationship with your creation.
You call us to respond with respect,
caring for the well-being of all you have made.
We give thanks for those who have heeded your call.

Welcome to visitors.
Christ candle is lit.


Silence for personal confession.

Forgive in us what has gone wrong.
Show us compassion, O God.
Repair in us what is wasted.
Show us compassion, O Christ.
Reveal in us what is good.
Show us compassion, O God.

CHANT ‘Come, Holy Spirit’ (710)

Come, Holy Spirit,
gracious heavenly dove;
come, fire of love.


Through the cross of Christ,
God have mercy on you,
pardon you and set you free.

Know that you are forgiven
and be at peace.
You are not condemned,
but accepted, challenged,
renewed and saved.
Thanks be to God!


Holy God,
whose wild Spirit's breath
defies our frozen idols:
take the night time of our fear
and make it a welcoming womb
for us and all the world;
through Jesus Christ,
in whom we are born anew.

The Liturgy of the Word

Your word, O God, is a lamp to our feet:
a light to our path.

FIRST READING Genesis 12:1-5a

EPISTLE READING Romans 4:1-5, 13-17

May your word live in us, O God;
and bear much fruit to your glory.

We stand.


Let us stand to acclaim God’s saving justice,
attested by the Law and the prophets,
and now revealed through faith in Jesus Christ
to all who believe.

GOSPEL John 3:1-17

The Wisdom of God:
God’s word made new.




We declare our faith in God as Creator of the universe:
the world in which we live;
and all living things on the face of the earth.
We believe that creation bears witness
to the power and presence of the Triune God,
and calls us, as God’s people,
to praise, thanksgiving and respect for the earth.
We celebrate the richness and diversity
of culture and language,
knowing that, in God,
we are united in our common humanity,
made in the image and likeness of God.

We declare our faith in God as Spirit, breath of life,
always at work to bring people alive to God.
We believe that this same Spirit
has been present and active in every people and culture,
preparing hearts and minds
to hear and receive the good news of God’s love and grace
revealed uniquely in Jesus Christ.
We celebrate that from the beginning
the Spirit was present and active
in revealing God through the law, custom and ceremony
of the First Peoples of this ancient land.

We declare our faith in Jesus, Saviour and Lord,
who brought the church into being and prayed for its unity.
We believe that in Christ we are brothers and sisters
together in the one great family of God,
called to live in faith, hope and love.
We celebrate the opportunity
to learn, grow and serve together
as a people on the way to God’s promised end in Jesus Christ.


Loving God, you blessed Abraham and Sarah
in order to bless all the families of the earth.
We praise you for the diversity of humanity.
Guide us to be one.
Give us the wisdom to be still and love you and one another.
God of light: teach and renew us.

... God of love, we offer our prayers to you,
confident that you lead us through the forty days.
We pray in the name of the Chosen One lifted like the serpent.

The Liturgy of the Eucharist

OFFERING ‘In water we grow’ (494)

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 of the Chosen One be always with you.
And also with you.


Let us thank our God for giving Jesus who was one of us.
He overcame temptation, and because of him we too can resist evil
and live for all that is good.


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.

Holy God, we praise you:
Father and Mother;
Grace and Truth;
Life and Love;
Giving, forgiving, creating ...
Let the heavens be joyful,
and the earth be glad.

We bless you for creating the whole world,
for your promises to your people Israel,
and for the life we know in Jesus Christ.

Born of Mary,
he shares our life.
Eating with sinners,
he welcomes us.
Leading his followers,
he guides us.
Dying on the cross,
he rescues us.
Risen from the dead,
he gives new life.

You make us your disciples
and call us to deny ourselves,
to take up our cross and follow Jesus.

And so we praise you with the faithful of every time and place,
joining with choirs of angels and the whole creation
in the eternal hymn (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 our God.
Hosanna in the highest.

To you be glory, almighty God,
because on the night before he died ...

With thanksgiving we take this bread and this cup
and proclaim his death and resurrection.

Receive our sacrifice of praise.
Send to us the Holy Spirit that this meal may be holy,
and your people may become one.
Unite us in faith, inspire us to love,
encourage us with hope,
that we may receive Christ as he comes to us
in this holy banquet.
We praise you, almighty God,
through Christ, and in the Holy Spirit.


O God our Mother
and our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your dominion come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.



Jesus, Lamb of God,
show us compassion.
Jesus, bearer of our sins,
show us compassion.
Jesus, redeemer of the world,
grant us peace.



Blessed be God who calls us together.
Praise to God who makes us one people.
Blessed be God who has forgiven our sin.
Praise to God who gives hope and freedom.
Blessed be God whose Word is proclaimed.
Praise to God who is revealed as lover.
Blessed be God who alone has called us.
Therefore we offer all that we are
and all we shall become.

Accept, O God, our sacrifice of praise.
Amen. Accept our thanks for all that we are.
Our hands were empty, and you filled them.

The Sending Forth of the People of God



During our forty days of Lent
we keep looking to Christ
becoming more like Christ,
with the blessing of almighty God,
Creator, Redeemer, and Giver of Life.


Go forth in peace to live your Lenten discipline.
We go in faith and hope. Amen.

During Lent we depart in silence.

Based on UIW2;
Psalm paraphrase by Patricia Stevenson,
Songs from a pierced heart (2003).
Collect by Steven Shakespeare (2009).
Affirmation of Faith: A Destiny Together, Justice for First Peoples (UCA Assembly).
Image: Nicodemus and Jesus (www.sermons4kids.com/nicodemus_colorpg.htm).