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  • David Carlson

1027: Let’s get ready to celebrate our Epiphany - tomorrow, January 8, 2023

Day 1027: Saturday, January 7, 2023

Let’s get ready to celebrate our Epiphany of Jesus tomorrow, January 8, 2023



We’ll open ZOOM at 3:00 for testing of the music and sound connections. Come test with us!

Welcoming at 3:45

Liturgy at 4:00


Join Us In Person:

Knox Presbyterian &Thanksgiving Lutheran Churches

1650 W. Third St. Santa Rosa, CA 95401


Or Join us on Zoom

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/5193158573


Passcode: 1234


Meeting ID: 519 315 8573


Passcode: 1234


One tap mobile

+16699006833,,5193158573# US (San Jose)

+16694449171,,5193158573# US


An Emmaus Celebration for the Epiphany: January 8, 2023 in WORD and PDF formats:


Liturgy Emmaus Celebration for the Epiphany_V2
.docx
Download DOCX • 30KB


Liturgy Emmaus Celebration for the Epiphany_V2
.pdf
Download PDF • 76KB

Opening Song: All Are Welcome


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9bOiAxwi4U


Let us build a house

where love can dwell

and all can safely live,

a place where saints and children tell

how hearts learn to forgive.


Built of hopes and dreams and visions,

rock of faith and vault of grace;

here the love of Christ

shall end divisions.

All are welcome, all are welcome,

all are welcome in this place.


Let us build a house

where prophets speak,

and words are strong and true,

where all God’s children dare to seek

to dream God’s reign anew.

Here the cross shall stand as witness

and as symbol of God’s grace;

here as one we claim the faith of Jesus.

All are welcome, all are welcome,

all are welcome in this place.


Let us build a house where love is found

in water, wine and wheat:

a banquet hall on holy ground

where peace and justice meet.


Here the love of God, through Jesus,

is revealed in time and space;

as we share in Christ

the feast that frees us.

All are welcome, all are welcome,

all are welcome in this place.


Opening Comments:

On Sunday we celebrate Jesus' Epiphany -- his reveal to the world in the form of his visit from three wise men who represent the global nature of goodness and truth. They are out-of-town gentiles and the first to bring gifts. Imagine. They were thinking that would welcome this child into the circle of kings – finally a king to unite Judea – welcome to the boys club Jesus. Those “wise guys” travelling so far to see a baby were gobsmacked and forever changed.


They were shaken to their cores by the mystical experience of the Divine. Did they hold Jesus. Did they smile at him, coo, cry from joy? Who could resist? And having experienced God in the form of the tiny baby their lives were forever transformed


the Child bedded in straw,

The mother kneeling over Him,

The husband standing in belief

Our own white frozen breath hanging

In front of us; and we are here

As we have never been before,

Sighted as not before, our place

Holy, although we knew it not.


– the poet TS Eliot writes in their names: “We returned to our places, these Kingdoms. But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation, With an alien people clutching their gods.


As we go back to “normal days” after celebrating Christmas and this feast of the Jesus recognition, may our lives not be as “normal” as before. Let’s resolve to pay attention and wake up to the fact that we share life and divinity with the whole world.


Let’s resolve to listen more attentively – with our whole hearts – especially to people we may not want to listen to.


Let’s resolve to be empowered by our faith and to act.


The season of Christmas may have come to an end but let its message of hope, love, joy and peacemaking marinate in our hearts. We cannot offer a lot of rich gifts. But we have ourselves. We can create simple acts of kindness to share all year long.



Our first reading Love Alone by Gian Carlo Menotti

The Child we seek doesn’t need our gold.

On love, on love alone he will build his kingdom.


His pierced hand will hold no scepter, his haloed head will wear no crown;

his might will not be built on your toil.


Swifter than lightning he will soon walk among us.

He will bring us new life and receive our death,


and the keys to his city belong to the poor.





The Good News:

When Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, in the days of King Herod, behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem, saying, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star at its rising and have come to do him homage.”


When King Herod heard this, he was greatly troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. Assembling all the chief priests and the scribes, He inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it has been written through the prophet:


And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; since from you shall come a ruler, who is to shepherd my people Israel.”


Then Herod called the magi secretly and ascertained from them the time of the star’s appearance. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search diligently for the child. When you have found him, bring me word, that I too may go and do him homage.”


After their audience with the king they set out. And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the child was.

10 They were overjoyed at seeing the star, and on entering the house they saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated themselves and did him homage. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.


And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed for their country by another way.


James Taylor: Home By Another Way

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7BBFXps6sg&t=1s



Shared Homily:

The season of Christmas may have come to an end but let its message of hope, love, joy and peacemaking marinate in our hearts. We cannot offer a lot of rich gifts. But we have ourselves. We can create simple acts of kindness to share all year long.


What acts of kindness can you see doing in 2023? (alone or with community)



Offering:

It’s important to be mindful that one of our first acts of kindness as a community is to offer our donations which we’ll be doing in the next couple of months. Part of that our funds will go to our various communities, to the nation and to the world which is so broken in so many places: Ukraine, Syria, The border and those seeking asylum and Palestine/Israel which is now being led by the far right wing. Jim McFadden introduced me to this song which is really a cry for Palestine and for all of humanity. Sung to the tune of Oh Little Town of Bethlehem


O broken town of Bethlehem your people long for peace,

But curfews, raids and barricades have brought them to their knees.

Yet still they long for justice, and still they make their stand.

Their hopes and fears still echo true

Come heal this holy land.


O holy child of Bethlehem, a royal refugee,

Your place of birth now hell on earth, through our complicity.

The innocents still suffer, their backs against the wall.

We see the crime, the pain and death

And choose to ignore it all


O holy streets of Bethlehem, where watch towers block our view

With armored cars and tanks and guns so no one can go through

The marketplace stands empty, The fruit rots on the tree.

While loving families strive to build a life of dignity,


O hopeful town of Bethlehem quite soon your day will come

When tanks go back to Israel and prison walls are gone.

Go tell it on the mountain and spread it o’er the plain

The ancient land of Palestine

A nation once again.


What do we bring to the Table?

(After everyone shares what they bring to the table)

Let’s gather these prayers spoken and unspoken, bring them to our heart and send them into the universe.



Eucharistic Prayer:

We are gifts of the universe, bringing us forth to sing, to dance and to be joyful on its behalf, on behalf of all of creation.


We are gifts of the Great Mystery, permeating, penetrating and embracing everything that exists, and coming to human expression in us.


We are gifts of human love, of commitment, of risk, of hope, of trust, of promise, of dreams of what could be.


We are gifts of all the joy that love can bring, of dreams come true, of Divine possibilities.


We are gifts to be opened and shared, called to be co-creators of an evolving humanity, enablers of the “kingdom of God”.


We gather around bread and wine and the story of Jesus who lived the gift of human existence.


We eat and drink today thankful for every person and every influence in our lives that have helped and opened us to live beyond our fearful inner voices and have led us to embrace life wholeheartedly.


On the night before he died, Jesus was at table with his friends.

He took bread, gave thanks to you, broke it, and gave it to his friends saying,


All: “This is my body, broken for you.”


As supper was ending, Jesus took the cup of wine. Again he gave thanks to you, gave it to his friends and said,


All: “This cup is the new celebration of my life offered for you and for all.

And as often as you do this, You do this in memory of me.”


Now gathered at your table, we offer to you our gifts of bread and wine, and ourselves, as living offerings of your love. Pour out your Spirit upon all these gifts and all of us that we may be the Your Living Body, Your Lifeblood. Breathe your Spirit over the whole earth and make us all your new creation.


Now together, as one community, we offer to God,

our prayer, in the name of our brother, Jesus:


All: We come before You, Holy Spirit,

as we gather together in the name of Jesus.

With You to guide us, make Yourself at home in our hearts:

Teach us the way we must go and how we are to pursue it

Do not let us promote disorder.

Do not let ignorance lead us down the wrong path

Nor partiality influence our actions.

Let us find in You our unity in diversity

So that we may journey together to eternal life

And not stray from the way of truth and what is right. Amen


Offering of Peace:

Let us now offer one another some sign of peace and love.


Communion:

Everyone is welcome to this table.

Our God, whom the universe cannot contain is present to us in this bread.

Our God, who redeems us and calls us by name, now meets us in this cup.

So, come, Beloved Friends, and take this bread, Drink this wine,

In them, God comes to us, so that we may come to God.


At This Table

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gs4q_9MrHa0



Final Blessing:

There is a kindness that dwells deep down in things; it presides everywhere, often in the places we least expect. The world can be harsh and negative, but if we remain generous and patient, kindness inevitably reveals itself.


Something deep in the human soul seems to depend on the presence of kindness; something instinctive in us expects it, and once we sense it we are able to trust and open ourselves.


And so may a slow Wind work these words

Of kindness around you, An invisible cloak

To mind your life


– John O’Donohue

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