A Little Liturgy of New Beginnings

Opening Sentences
Pray with us Father God.
Take our hands in yours
and place our feet upon the rock of your faithfulness.

Pray with us Jesus Christ.
Enter the depths of our souls
and know the cry of our hearts on the journey.

Pray for us Holy Spirit.
Find the words for our longings and cover us gently
with your warm bright wings.

We Were Not Expecting A Miracle

Most of us were not expecting a miracle, O Lord.
Some of us were expecting a miracle, but not for us.
Yet Lord,  the Tent is a miracle for each one of us
a channel of  your grace, a place of healing and love.
Thank you for laughter and tears, for sharing and trust,
For the knowledge of your presence with us every step of the way.

We take a few moments to thank the Lord for one another.

We would like to expect miracles, O God.
Please give us faith,
and help us in our unbelief.

Assurance

The Word to us in Christ is that
if we have faith as much as a mustard seed,
that will be enough
for the transforming of us and the world.
Thanks be to God.

Readings

Isaiah 42:5-9
Thus says God, the Lord,
who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spread out the earth and what comes from it,
who gives breath to the people upon it
and spirit to those who walk in it:
I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness,
I have taken you by the hand and kept you;
I have given you as a covenant to the people,
a light to the nations, to open the eyes that are blind,
to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon,
from the prison those who sit in darkness.
I am the Lord, that is my name;
my glory I give to no other,
nor my praise to idols.
See, the former things have come to pass,
and new things I now declare;
before they spring forth,
I tell you of them.

John 1:1-5
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

Affirmation Of Faith

We celebrate
the miracles of grace which change us,
born from the womb of God
and the deeply respected struggles
of our bodies, minds, hearts and souls,
surrounded by costliness,
yet free for us
in the journey towards abundant life.

We celebrate
the moments when we are turned around
and look on ourselves and the world
as though we make new entry
and a different start
with living water for our thirst
and life-giving bread for our hunger.

We celebrate
the wonder of a creation
in which nothing is limited
to our horizons of sight
or boundaries of energy, courage or hope
but which leaps forth
in amazing surprises of good
and endless transformations
towards its true fullness
in the imagination of God.

Lighting Of Candles

Everyone is given a candle in a jar and the one handing the candle will say:

The candle is the sign of the light, warmth and power of the Holy Spirit.

When everyone has their candle we all pray together:

See the light for your journey
and believe that the Spirit always
moves ahead of you.
Stretch out your hands
And feel the warmth of the flame.
It is the love of God for you
and our love for you.
That love will surround you wherever you go.
Take into yourself the power of the Holy Spirit
that you may be given courage
for the next step of the journey.

We anoint each other.

Closing Sentences

Come God
come walk with your people
for you alone are our strength and glory.
And we put our trust in you.

Come God
come walk behind us, beside us, before us
for you alone are our shelter and direction.
And we put our trust in you.

Come God
come seek and find and put us right
for you alone are the light in our darkness.
And we put our trust in you.

Come God
we know you are near
the sound of your footsteps sets us dancing.
Help us to praise and worship you.

© Dorothy McRae-McMahon, The Glory of Blood, Sweat and Tears ( Joint Board of Christian Education, Melbourne) & Liturgies for the Journey of Life. (SPCK)

© ed Kathy Galloway, The Pattern of our Days (Wildgoose Publicatins)

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