An Australian Eucharist for Lament & Hope

13 Jan

The following service can be used on Sunday 26th January to recognise the history of this country and to instigate the healing of hearts for all.

Permission is given for non-commercial use in worship and similar events.

The Service:

Processional Hymn:

Acknowledgement of Country:

Today, as we gather to worship,
we acknowledge the Werrundjeri people,
who are and always will be
the sovereign custodians of this place.

We acknowledge that through this land,
the First Peoples were nurtured and sustained
by the Spirit alive in this place,
and in a spirit of responsibility and reciprocity,
they cared for it.

We honour them for their custodianship
of the land on which we gather today.

We acknowledge that the First Peoples
already had a sophisticated understanding
of the Great Creator Spirit
before the arrival of the colonisers;
this Spirit was already in the land,
revealing the Way to be on country
through law, language, custom and ceremony.

We acknowledge that this understanding resembles
the love and grace
that was revealed in Jesus Christ,
and that it sustained the First Peoples
and gave them particular insights into God’s ways:
and so we rejoice
in the hope of reconciliation
found in the good news about Jesus the Christ, our Elder.

Acclamation:  

Blessed be God, the Great Creator Being.

Blessed be God, the Breath of All, the Wisdom behind the Dreaming and the Way of Reconciliation and Healing.

Call to Worship:

 Our land is alive with the glory of God;
desert sands hum and gum trees dance.

Brown grasses sing
and mountains breathe their stillness.

All created things add their rhythms of delight
and even stones rap out their praise.

Let our voices mingle with those of the earth;
may our hearts join the beat of her joy,

for our triune God is with us:
the Source of all being surrounds and upholds us.
Christ Jesus walks beside and before us.
The Spirit moves within and between us.
Blessed be God, our wonder and delight. 

Let us pray.

Creator God,
You who know our secrets and walk in our hearts:
Remove the rubbish and the unseen
By the wisdom of your Dreaming
So we can live on country in kinship with you
And make you known to all,
Through Christ our elder. Amen

Hymn of Praise

Glory to God of Holy Dreaming,
and peace to God’s mob on country.
Great Creator Spirit,
almighty and all loving,
we worship you, we give you thanks,
we praise you for your beauty.
Jesus Christ, only child of the Father,
Holy One, elder of God,
you take away the evil of the world:
be understanding of us;
you who are present near to God:
receive our prayer.
For you alone are the Sacred One,
you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are above all things,
Jesus Christ,
with the Dreaming’s Spirit,
in the beauty of God the Father.     Amen.

 Collect

 First Reading:

The Gospel: 

Glory to you Jesus Christ

Hear the Gospel of our God,
Praise to you Jesus Christ.

Please sit

 Sermon

(Please stand)

Affirmation of Faith

 Let us together affirm the hope we share.

 We believe in God, creator and sustainer of life,
creator of the black woman and the white woman
of the black man and the white man
of the woman who is not quite black and not quite white
of the man who is not quite white and not quite black.

We believe in God, the Creator
who gave us the desert pea and the flowering gum,
the Murray cod and the platypus,
the Southern Cross and the Milky Way.
We believe in God,
who gave us a land to keep,
to reverence and to cultivate.

We believe in Jesus, born of a woman,
who was not quite black and not quite white,
a woman who was not quite sure of who she was or who she was to be,
a woman who faithfully struggled to believe.

We believe in Jesus – risen,
liberator of all humanity, Emmanuel, God-with-us, God-for-us.

 We, women and men of the great South Land of the Holy Spirit,
believe in the power of the Spirit to set us free to regenerate our land,
to transform our world, to work for peace,
to listen to the loneliness of ‘the drover’s wife’ and the ‘weeping man.

We believe in the power of the Spirit to transform our dealings with our
sisters and our brothers of other colours and diverse creeds.

Prayers of the People

 Let us pray for the world and for the Church.

Creator, we long for wholeness in our church and our country.
For honest, open communications.
To say what we need to say, in safety and without fear.

Hear our Prayer, O God, and in your love, answer.

Creator, help us to stay close, to never let go of one another, in joy as well as in pain.
To embrace, to feel the physical presence of one another, and to be truly present, one to another.

Hear our Prayer, O God, and in your love, answer.

Creator, we need to feel connected to our families, and to the church family.
To learn and to grow. To be part of a web of relationships.
To pass on values, love and a sense of closeness.
To be part of an inner circle of safety.
To spiral out to an open circle that welcomes others in.

Hear our Prayer, O God, and in your love, answer.

Creator, we long for a gentle time of warmth and wholeness.
For time and energy to nourish relationships.
For honest sharing out of genuine love for all members of the church community.

Hear our Prayer, O God, and in your love, answer.

Creator, we long to dance.
To move into the centre of the circle.
To touch and grow together in community into completeness.

Hear our Prayer, O God, and in your love, answer. Amen

Silence

 Almighty God, you have promised to hear our prayers.
Grant that what we have asked in faith
we may by your kindness receive,
through Jesus Christ our Elder and Lord. Amen.

 Lament and Confession

 Jesus said: I came so that you may have life and have it abundantly.

Let us acknowledge our selfishness with honesty and humility.

silence

 Relying on God’s forgiveness, we pray:

Voice 1:

Merciful God,
we, the Second Peoples of this land,
acknowledge and lament
the injustice and abuse
that has so often marked
the treatment of the First Peoples of this land.

We acknowledge and lament
the way in which their land was taken from them
and their language, culture, law and spirituality
despised and suppressed.

We acknowledge and lament
the way in which the Christian church
was so often not only complicit in this process
but actively involved in it.

We acknowledge and lament
that in our own time,
the injustice and abuse have continued.
We have been indifferent
when we should have been outraged,
we have been apathetic
when we should have been active,
we have been silent
when we should have spoken out.

Voice 2:

Merciful God, we the First People of this Nation
Lament and acknowledge pour deep experiences of the past
And the resentment and anger we harbour for those responsible

We acknowledge and lament that this anger and resentment
Has prevented us from returning to our full Aboriginalty
And that we have taken on the role of victims more often than we needed to.

We acknowledge and lament that our outstretched hand from Uluru
Was rejected and not accepted as a symbol of hope for all Australians;
Yet we remain hopeful that both cultures will find ways to repent, forgive and absolve
Each other for our sins of the past.

Priest:

Liberating Jesus, hear our lament and by your Spirit,
bring healing, hope and transformation
to the lives of our First and Second Nations sisters and brothers
and our communities, we pray.

Together:

Gracious God, hear our acknowledgements –
We have not loved you
with our whole heart,
nor have we loved each other
and other neighbours as ourselves.
God of mercy,
forgive us for our failures,
past and present and
give us the grace today to make a fresh start.

Absolution:

This is the best of all:

When we are empty, God Fills us:
When we are disheartened, God is compassionate;
when we are wounded, God brings healing
when we confess our sin, God forgives.

In Christ, through Christ and because of Christ,
Our Elder and Redeemer
our sins are forgiven.

Thanks be to God.
You refill the cup of life, O God.
In Christ, we find refuge, strength and hope. Amen.

Please stand

The Greeting of Peace

We are the body of Christ.
His Spirit is with us.

The peace of the God be always with you.
And also with you.

 Offertory Hymn  

Offertory Prayer

Generous God of Holy Dreaming.
Through your goodness we have these gifts of bread and wine to share.
Accept and use our offerings for your benefit
and for the fulfilment of your purposes.
Wonderful be God for ever.

The Great Thanksgiving

God, you are with us.
           We are never alone.

Our lives are open.
           We know you are here.

 And recognise you in all creation
and in each other
            For this we are thankful.

God of Holy Dreaming,
Thank you for country, this country we share,
For the joy of being here today
and the possibilities of sharing in its wonders
with each other and our kin of all species;

           For this
            We thank you.

We recognise your patience
Remaining ready to welcome us back
after we missed the opportunity
to embrace each other;

We welcome your gift of Jesus,
your child, our elder, our Lord
Who lived for you so we too may live as one.

           For this
           We thank you.

Knowing blood does not cleanse us,
for there has been too much blood spilt on this land
We recognise his obedience to your tradition and language,
Which lead him to be unjustly crucified,
Opens the way for us to remain faithful to
Your way, the ways of our ancestors, your prophets and
Calls us to reconciliation in this land.

            For this
            We thank you.

We dance each day
In celebration of his return from the world of the dead
to you and to us ;
celebrating in the new growth of hope and possibility in people of all ages,
cultures and origins
in those who were here first and those who came later,
in the grass and trees,
the eagle and the trout cod
goanna eggs and kangaroo pouches.

And so, with people of every nation, tribe and language, and with the whole Church throughout the ages, we bring ourselves: all that we are, and all that we are not, joyfully giving thanks and singing:

            Holy, holy, holy, God of power and might, Heaven and earth are full of your        glory. Hosanna in the highest. [Blessed is he who comes in the name of tour   God. Hosanna in the highest.]

Glory to the God of Holy Dreaming, we honor you in whom our lives are founded, and in whom our future together lie. We remember and honor our ancestors from all nations searching that perceived your presence in life, and your meaning for all of life.

Above all we honor Jesus, our Christ, Elder and Lord, whose life and death and resurrection shows us your complete nature and the possibilities for us.

We remember that, on the night before his death, Jesus, as he’d always done, gathered his mob for a common meal. He took bread, gave thanks to you, broke the bread and gave some to each one, saying: “Take, eat: This is my body, my country, given for you and for all creation, take, eat and be restored.”

After supper he took a cup of wine, and, when he had given thanks, he gave it to them and said: “Drink this, all of you: This is my life given for you and for all creation, drink joyfully and be renewed.”

In light of this, we proclaim the mystery of our faith:

            Christ has died.
            Christ is risen.
            Christ’s spirit renews our lives.

God of Holy Dreaming; may our hearts and minds be alive to what is sacred in these symbols of bread and wine. May they open us to your guidance and to your love for us, for all humankind, and for all life on this earth. This is our hope and shared desire, the expression of our love and trust in each other and in Jesus, our Christ, our elder and Lord.

And now, in the spirit of Christ’s teaching, we pray:

God of Holy Dreaming, honoured be your name.
Let your Way be known, your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our self-centredness,
as we forgive those that act against us.
Save us in the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.
For the Way, the power, and the glory
are yours forever and ever. Amen.

Christ has died and lives for all. (Breaks the bread)

These are God’s gifts; take Jesus our Christ, Elder and Lord, into your hearts.

This bread: the body of Christ. This wine: the life of Christ.

(Offers communion to all)

Here is the place heaven and earth meet; here is the “everywhere, when” of our dreaming.

Communion of the People

Post Communion Thanksgiving

God of Holy Dreaming, we thank you for this simple community meal where share together on this day of mixed emotions; a meal that brings the spirit and reality of Christ into our hearts, and brings us closer to you and closer to each other.

May our lives be lit up by your love, and may your love light up others through us.

Amen.

Hymn:

The Blessing

Life is short, and we do not have too much time to gladden the hearts of those who travel the way with us. So be swift to love and make haste to be kind, and the blessing of the one who made us and loves us and goes before us be upon you and all those whom you love, this day and always……….

in the name of the God of Holy Dreaming, and of Jesus Christ our elder and of the Creator Spirit. Amen.

Dismissal

Go, walk gently on country to love and serve our God

            In the name of Christ. Amen

 

15 Replies to “An Australian Eucharist for Lament & Hope

  1. This is so beautiful. It would be wonderful to use this liturgy on Australia Day – as a Deacon I will use the dismissal at least.

  2. Glenn, do you recommend any suitable hymns, songs, or even pre-recorded music that would go well with this liturgy? Particularly, with hymns, if it might be words set to well known tunes? M

  3. Hi again Glenn, thank you for the discernment and hard work into this. With your permission, I would like to modify to be inclusive of Torres Strait Islander liturgy as well?

  4. I want to go this liturgy on Sunday.
    I have been going to a Church where Bp Chris normalyl presides; will he allow this on Sunday
    I thank you Glenn for this poetic and insightful liturgy.
    You are a poetic genius!
    Stephan
    ( soon to be a retired priest )

  5. My partner Gerard and I just sat in our lounge room and prayed this beautiful Eucharist together, using some songs of the indigenous choir, ‘Spinifex Gum’ throughout. After the final blessing, we used their gorgeous choral piece, Marliya. Lyrics can be found online, and on YouTube. Thank you, Glenn, for creating this for us and inspiring us to grow prayer and ritual in our communities and churches to both lament our history and to move on in hope.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *