For Thanksgiving Sunday

Lighting the Christ Candle
One: All creation is made of star-stuff.
From the basic building blocks of the universe,
come fire, air, earth and water.
All: And all creation sings praise
to the Creator of all.

One: Baptized by the waters of the sky,
standing firm on the earth,
breathing deep the breath of life,
warmed by this flame…
All: we go where Christ’s light shines!
One: Alleluia!
All: Alleluia, amen!

Call to Gather
One: Make a joyful noise, all the earth!
Sisters and brothers on two feet and four.
Cousins who sing praise,
with growls and yips,
with birdsong and whistle,
with sound and scent
that human beings cannot understand.
All: Make a joyful noise!
One: Sing your praise with all your life!
All: Make a joyful noise!
Give thanks to God, your God!

One: For you are God’s own,
created in love.
Before humankind you were.
You are God’s own,
created in love!
All: Make a joyful noise!
Give thanks to God, your God!

One: Listen – and join in the song…. (attached sound is played)
Alleluia
All: Alleluia! Amen!

Opening Prayer
All: For life and all its goodness,
we thank you, loving God.
For our friends that fly.
For our friends that swim.
For our friends that burrow and squirm.
For our friends that walk, trot and run,
on feet tiny or huge.

Children:
They are holy. They are yours.
As important to you, as we are.

One: But their voices are going silent.
Women: We confess.
Men: We confess…

All: That we have made a difference in your world,
and not for the better.

One: Even as we give thanks, we know
that in less than 50 years,
we have caused over half of the animals you created
to disappear. To die. To move towards extinction.
All: Let this time of worship,
be a time that opens us to what is right and true.
Help us, O God, to be people of Thanksgiving.
Help us, O God, to live in ways
that restore, rather than destroy.

One: Let our lives truly be –
All: worship of you.
May it be so.

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Christmas Eve

On this Night of nights, God most holy, we give you thanks –
thanks for this time together…
thanks for our families – by blood or by Spirit –
who gather with us to celebrate.
We give you thanks that you created us to be in this world.
Before we were born, you knew us.
You watched as our very bones began to form.
You continue to watch us – and to love us –
each and every day of our lives.
Thank you, loving God.
Thank you, loving God.

Out of that love you have given us an extraordinary gift –
a gift that is difficult to comprehend –
a gift of lived love –
the Christ!
Infant, child, teacher, healer, prophet, saviour –
one of us – one with you!
Thank you, loving God!
Thank you, loving God!

Even as we give thanks for this and all your gifts to us,
we realize that we have not always lived your love.
There are times we have closed our ears
to your messengers’ words.
There are times we have joined with the crowd in condemnation.
There are times we have turned away from real need,
saying, “No room. No room!”
There are times we have buried the presence of the Christ
so deeply within ourselves that our sharing becomes almost impossible.
For these – and all the times –
we have separated ourselves from you, O God –
we ask for your forgiveness.
Even more than forgiveness,
we ask for your wisdom and strength.
That when we face choices which allow us to turn away,
we would choose instead to turn towards you
and your love.

Loving God, hear the prayers of our hearts…
(a time for silent prayer)
Knowing that we are a forgiven and forgiving people,
we lift up our prayers for all who are in need…
* we pray for parents who must make hard decisions;
* we pray for children who are hurting and alone;
* we pray for those whose bodies or spirits are in need of healing;
* we pray for…

God, hear our prayers.
And, in your love, answer.

We pray all these things,
sharing in the words that Jesus gave to his disciples
and gives to us: Our…

(First printed in “gathering: resources for worship planners” Advent/Christmas/Epiphany 2007-2008)

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Proper 28 – Year A (Matthew 25.14-30)

For our playful times and our serious ones –
thank you, God!
For our moments of laughter
and our moments of tears –
thank you, God!
For hopes fulfilled and ones to come,
for pasts unfinished and dreams not yet filled –
thank you, God!
For the time you give us,
and the talents you challenge us to risk –
thank you, God!
For holding what we give you,
and keeping it safe.
For loving us, even when we do not love you…
thank you, God.
Because we don’t always live out our love.
Because we don’t always live out your call.
Because we don’t always use
what you’ve given us, to the best of our ability –
forgive us, God.
Because we are sometimes paralyzed:
by fear, by longing, by anger, by greed,
by ourselves and by others.
Because we are sometimes paralyzing,
those who need to be set free…
forgive us, God.
Forgive us, God.
Show us your wisdom, we pray.
So that, next time, we might live into You.
Hear the prayers of our hearts, beloved God.
(silent prayer)

For all those in need,
we ask your blessing.
For all those in fear,
we ask your blessing.
For all those who have nowhere to turn,
we ask your blessing.
And, more than that,
we ask that we might be your blessing
to them,
using the gifts you have freely given,
to share your Love with all.

Thank you, Loving God.
Thank you, Loving God.
Amen!

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Proper 12 – Year A (Romans 8.26-39)

Your love, God, fills all of creation.
Because we know that, we bring our hopes, our
dreams and our fears to you.
Today, we look deep inside of ourselves,
and recognize all those things for which
we are thankful.
In love, we offer them to you.
(silent prayer)
For all your goodness, God
We give you thanks.
Today, we look deep inside of ourselves,
and recognize all of those things
we do that cause harm.
We recognize those things
we don’t do that cause harm.
We ask for your forgiveness.
We ask for your wisdom.
We ask for your help to heal
the harms we have caused.
For all your goodness, God
We give you thanks.
Today, we look outside of ourselves,
and realize the need that we see.
It can be overwhelming, God.
Help us, we pray,
to be your hands and your heart
in the world.
Help us, we pray,
to show that nothing can come between you
and your creation.
For all your goodness, God
We give you thanks.
Amen.

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