1063: Our Celebration Theme for Today: The Courage to Love
Day 1062: Sunday, February 12, 2023
Our Celebration Theme: The Courage to Love
Please join us Today (Sunday, February 12, 2023) for our community celebration:
In Person at Knox Presbyterian / Thanksgiving Lutheran
1650 W 3rd St, 95401, Santa Rosa
Or Join us on Zoom by using this link and passcode:
Meeting ID: 519 315 8573
One tap mobile
+16699006833,,5193158573# US (San Jose)
Emmaus Community Order of Service 2/12/23 (files for downloading in WORD and DF formats)
Welcome & Introduction of Theme
Marcie: Acknowledge newcomers.
Our theme this evening is the courage to love. How many different kinds of love are there? Love of parents, spouse, children, friends, God, pets, environment…. This evening we are going to focus on loving when it’s hard and requires some courage…and faith…and hope. What does it mean to connect? to love? to be a friend? I invite you to take a deep breath and relax into the presence of each other in this sacred space as we reflect on what it means to have the courage to love.
Ring Singing Bowl 3 times.
Nancy: What if…What if our religion was each other, if our practice was our life, if prayer our words? What if the temple was the Earth, if forests were our church, if holy waters were the rivers, lakes and oceans. What if meditation was our relationships, if the teacher was life, if wisdom was self-knowledge, if love was the center of our being? —-Canga White
Opening Song: “Open My Eyes” by John Michael Talbot
Liturgy of the Word
Steve: First Reading Ilia Delio speaking of Teilhard de Chardin: We are accustomed to thinking about love as a human sentiment or emotion, but Teilhard saw love as a passionate force at the heart of the Big Bang universe: the fire that breathes life into matter and unifies elements. He wrote “Love is the physical structure of the universe.” It draws together and unites and, in uniting, it differentiates. Love is intrinsically relational. If there was no internal propensity to unite, even at a rudimentary level—indeed, in the molecule itself—it would be physically impossible for love to appear higher up, in the human form. Love is the core of evolution.
Alice: Since love is not always easy, we ask God for the courage to keep loving. Our Response is: Give us the courage to keep loving.
- when our efforts to help don’t seem to make a difference…
- when we are worn out from giving…
- when the suffering of family and friends from illness or misfortune overwhelms us…
- when gun violence, war, hunger and greed threaten to undo our faith in humanity….
- when we need to practice “tough love”….
All: For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.” Psalm 100:5
Jane: Second Reading
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 New Jerusalem Bible
Love is always patient and kind; love is never jealous; love is not boastful or conceited,
5 it is never rude and never seeks its own advantage, it does not take offense or store up grievances.
6 Love does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but finds its joy in the truth.
7 It is always ready to make allowances, to trust, to hope and to endure whatever comes.
8 Love never comes to an end.
We offer these Beatitudes which we have used at Emmaus. They present a somewhat new interpretation, but the essence is unchanged.
We stand with You, the humble in spirit: for your open hearts will be rewarded with radical kinship.
We stand with You humble ones: for you shall learn to laugh, tell stories and listen with open hearts. You will create a joyful disturbance within all of us so that we seek to become meek like you. " You are a light. You are the light. Never let anyone – any person or any force – dampen, dim or diminish your light. Study the path of others to make your way easier and more abundant."- John Lewis
We stand with You when your hearts break and when you mourn: for you will find comfort with your sisters and brothers and communities wherever there is hope. We will comfort you.
We stand with You migrants, those who flee drug cartels, gang violence, war and persecution. It should tell us something about her home country that a mother is willing to travel 2,000 miles with her 4month old son to come here. How we respond when she arrives tells us something about ours.
We stand with You Women - especially you who have been intimidated, sold into slavery, told to be quiet, to get into the kitchen-excluded from so many conversations. Your hunger and thirst for justice and will make a new world in which all of us share equally in preparing the banquet of peace.
We stand with You who suffer for your very identities: gay men, lesbian women, transgender people, queer people, bisexual people, people of color who suffer persecution on a daily basis but who never lose hope. Yours is the kingdom of heaven. " Do not get lost in a sea of despair. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week, a month, or a year, it is the struggle of a lifetime. Never, ever be afraid to make some noise and get in good trouble, necessary trouble." – John Lewis
We stand with You who show loving mercy: for you shall obtain mercy and empower us to be non-violent and merciful. We stand with You who listen to your conscience: for you will challenge the status quo and bring new perceptions to light. You recognize the divine in each person.
We stand with You peacemakers and those who teach non-violence in our prisons and in our world. We call you children of God.
Nancy: Introduction to Shared Homily
Prayers of the Faithful
Nancy: What do you bring to the table this evening?
Sharing of Gifts - the basket in front of our table is for those who wish to contribute.
Liturgy of the Eucharist
Marcie: 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.
Alice: 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 covenant of my lifeblood shed for you and for all. And as often as you do this, you do this in memory of me.
Acclamation by ALL: (sung a cappella)
We remember how you loved us all your life.
And still we celebrate for you are with us here.
And we believe that we will see you when you come,
When you come again. We remember! We celebrate! We believe!
Marcie: Now, gathered at your table, we offer to you our gifts of bread and wine, and ourselves, a living sacrifice. Pour our your Spirit upon all these gifts that they, and we, may be the Body and Blood of Christ. Breathe your Spirit over the whole earth and make us your new creation.
Alice: In the fullness of time bring us with all your saints from every tribe and language, from every people and nation to feast at the banquet prepared from the foundation of the world.
Nancy and Marcie (holding up the bread and wine)
For it is through him, with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy
Spirit, all glory and honor is yours, O Gracious God, now and forever
Nancy: Now together, as one community we offer to you O God, our prayer, in the name of your beloved son and our brother, Jesus.
All: Our Mother, Our Father
Holy and blessed is your true name.
We pray for your reign of peace to come.
We pray that your good will be done.
Let heaven and earth become one. Give us this day the bread we need, Give it to those who have none.
Let forgiveness flow like a river between us, From each one to each one.
Lead us to holy innocence beyond the evil of our days.
Come swiftly Mother, Father, come.
For yours is the power and the glory and the mercy.
Forever your name is All in One.
Offering Our Gift of Peace
Nancy: Let us offer to one another (those physically close to us) a sign of our peace and love.
Invitation to Communion
Alice: 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.
We invite everyone now to partake of this communion we share.
________________________________will come to you with the bread and wine. If you choose, please only dip the bread into the cup.
Communion Song: “The Rose” by Bette Midler (Hum along if you’d like).
Marcie: Martin Luther King in his collection of sermons titled Strength to Love had this to say on the parable of the Good Samaritan: "I imagine that the first question the priest and Levite asked themselves was: 'If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?'
But by the very nature of his concern, the good Samaritan reversed the question: 'If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?”
Lord, we pray for the courage to love when it’s hard, when we’d rather not. We ask your blessing that by our words and actions we are blessings to others.
And the people of this beloved Emmaus Community proclaim: