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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

664 Let's Meet on ZOOM today at 4:45

Day 664 Sunday, January 9, 2022

Let's Meet on ZOOM today at 4:45

He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire

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Liturgy in WORD and PDF Formats

Emmaus Celebration for Sunday January 9_v2
Download PDF • 55KB

Emmaus Celebration for Sunday January 9_v2
Download PDF • 55KB

Emmaus Celebration for Sunday January 9, 2022

Welcome everyone to our first celebration of 2022. What can we say about the New Year – I think at a minimum we can say we have endured.

We have endured - and we will get through this.

In our hearts we have held joy – sometimes euphoric joy as in the birth of a new grandchild. We have held sadness and grief – sometimes the deepest grief of a death of a beloved that has touched all of us. We hold these two powerful emotions and so many others in our hearts which expand somehow to hold them all. And all the news and the chaos and the bitterness and the triumph of a world where news is instantaneous and ceaseless. A torrent of words and images constantly flowing over and around us.

And I think we have learned once more that grief and joy and sadness can live together within us at the same time, and afterwards we learn to never despair because of the dark sides of things. The dark side is never the whole, although in the short term it often appears to be.

To accept and live in the whole of things is to be “holy.” The Divine, the Holy Spirit of Wisdom does not blot out all sadness and tragedy entirely, but it somehow and surely co-exists with it.

Joy does not mean living from laugh to laugh. No, it’s not that. Joy is not entertainment. No, it’s not that. It is something else. Christian joy is peace, peace that is deeply rooted, peace in the heart, the peace that flows from the Divine. Joy endures

There is a center in the body where joy, grief, love and spirit are joined, and that center is heart.

It is your heart that aches or fills with love, that feels compassion and trust, and that seems empty or overflowing. Spirit lies beneath the layers of sensations, and to experience it, you must go to the heart.

And so I’d like to begin with a brief meditation that might help us calm our minds and open our hearts.

Opening Meditation:

Let’s Begin by sitting in a comfortable position and close your eyes.

For just this moment, let go of your thoughts and the outside world.

Place you hands on your heart, in the middle of your chest, and be aware of your heart as a space. The heart is a point of awareness where feelings enter. Imagine you heart now as a warm room that is peaceful lit by a subtle light as though through sheer curtains.

This light may appear as white, gold, pale pink, or blue. These are the comforting hues of morning and late afternoon.

Resting your attention easily on your heart center, breathe gently and sense your breath flowing into your heart. You may want to visualize a soft, pastel light or coolness pervading the chest.

Let your breath go in and out, and as it does, ask your heart what it needs to say. Don’t phrase this as an order; just have the faint intention that you want your heart to express itself.

For the next few minutes, sit and listen. Your heart may begin to release emotions, memories, wishes, fears, and dreams long stored inside. As it does, you will find yourself paying attention.

You may have a flash of strong emotion—positive or negative—joy or sadness - or a forgotten memory. Your breathing may change. You may gasp, sigh, or feel tears come into your eyes. Let the experience be what it is. If you daydream or drift off into sleep, don’t worry. Just bring your attention back to your heart center.

The Heart’s Message Is Perfect

Whether it speaks to you in sadness or fear, delight or pleasure, its message is exactly what you need. If voices of anger, worry, or doubt start to arise, allow them to speak and then let them go, easily and comfortably. You are learning to be with your heart in order to heed its spiritual meaning—this is meditation.

You are letting repressed material come up to be released—this is purification.

You are listening to your heart without judgment—this is attention.

As you practice this meditation, spending a few minutes each day to connect with your heart center, you will begin to get glimpses of your heart as it really is: Our heart in silence, Our heart in peace, Our heart as a warm glow, or subtle light.

We too often place defenses around our hearts. But taking a few moments each day to place our hands over our heart and to listen is like being penetrated with light and insight. This is the flow of love that can hold joy and sorrow, chaos and peace.

And now let’s open our eyes and greet the first reading:

A Prayer among Friends By John Daniel

Among other wonders of our lives, we are alive

with one another, we live here

in the light of this unlikely world

that isn’t ours for long.

May we spend generously

the time we are given.

May we enact our responsibilities

as thoroughly as we enjoy

our pleasures. May we see with clarity,

may we seek a vision

that serves all beings, may we honor

the mystery surpassing our sight,

and may we hold in our hands

the gift of good work

and bear it forth whole, as we

were borne forth by a power we praise

to this one Earth, this homeland of all we love.

Meditation: Presence, By Melissa Shaw-Smith

The year has rocked this world to its roots.

What if for one day each being put down

their burdens, their words of hate, their inhumanity

and breathed in the presence?

Stopped fighting for history, for fears, hopes, dreams

and stood facing the morning sun

letting the warmth of the moment

and the next, the next, accumulate like dust at their feet

Listened instead of spoke, acknowledged truth,

embraced silence.

What if for one day each being acknowledged the fear

and let it go? Suspended beliefs

opened their arms, drew strength

through earth, grass, rock, sand

Found the sparrow singing from a lone bush

the small heart-shaped cloud

Felt the currents of air wash over them, mingle

with the breath, and let the seams unravel

borders blend, walls dissolve

and be


Gospel from Luke

The people were filled with expectation, and all were asking in their hearts whether John might be the Christ. John answered them all, saying, “I am baptizing you with water, but one mightier than I is coming. I am not worthy to loosen the thongs of his sandals.

He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”

After all the people had been baptized and Jesus also had been baptized and was praying,

heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

Open Dialogue: How do we hold things in our hearts – the joy and the sorrow and everything in between?

What does it mean to be baptized with the Holy Spirit and fire?


We gather together to share the mystery of the Divine

In every person, In everything we do.

Spirit of Life, Spirit of the Divine, come to us in this celebration and bless these gifts of bread and wine. Encircle us with your love and inspire us to become the transformation we seek to become.

We are on our journey and our road meets with those of everyone who is walking toward freedom and liberation tonight – wherever they come from, whatever the sadness they face. With Mary we keep the human family together, telling them “we must go on, we cannot turn back. We have a role in creating a world of peace for us and all our children. Everyone is welcome in this new world without borders. Lament cannot take hold if gratitude gets there first.”

This is the message of our brother Jesus who baptizes us with the Holy Spirit and fire. Our brother Jesus now invites us to share with him this simple meal which he celebrated the night before he died with his mother and his companions. He knew the hours were precious and the time short. This gave new meaning to his words:


Come to the table and break this bread with me and understand that it is life itself.

And then he raised the cup and looked with love at each of the people in the room and saw everyone who had lived or would ever live and he invited them all saying:


Come and drink this cup of wine which we share together. Remember me and celebrate me by re-creating this meal whenever the Spirit moves you. It is a cup filled with love.

Kiss of Peace:

Let’s offer each other a sign of peace.

The Welcoming to Communion:

All are welcome at our table. And we know that only at the shrine where all are welcome will God sing loud enough to be heard (St. Theresa of Avila)

In the eyes of the Divine we are more than worthy. So beautiful in fact that God enjoys you and says with great passion “You’re here, I found you and you may think you love me but… I love you More!

Communion Song:

Final Blessing:

Like the joy of the sea coming home to shore,

May the relief of laughter rinse through your soul.

As the wind loves to call things to dance,

May your gravity by lightened by grace.

Like the dignity of moonlight restoring the earth,

May your thoughts incline with reverence and respect.

As water takes whatever shape it is in,

So free may you be about who you become.

As silence smiles on the other side of what's said,

May your sense of irony bring perspective.

As time remains free of all that it frames,

May your mind stay clear of all it names.

May your prayer of listening deepen enough

to hear in the depths the laughter of god.”

“For Equilibrium, a Blessing:

― John O'Donohue, To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings

Grace Note from John Poole:

Welcome aboard Flight 2022. I am your flight attendant, and we are preparing for take off into the New Year.

Please make sure that your attitude and blessings are secured and locked in upright position. All self-destructive devices should be turned off at this time.

All negativity, and discouragement should be stored in the overhead compartments. We have removed the excess baggage that has been flying with us on Flight 2021 and are hopeful that our flight to our future destinations will be a smooth one.

Should we lose altitude under pressure during our flight, please reach up and pull down some hope, Faith will automatically be activated by hope, Once your faith is activated you can assist other passengers.

Remember…. there is no return policy on time, so make every mile count!

The new year offers you 365 blank pages, so write the most beautiful chapter of your life! Wishing you great health, happiness, and success in 2022!!


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