Windsor Park United Church

Bulletin – Sunday, October 11, 2020

Sunday, October 11, 2020
Creation 5
Thanksgiving Sunday
Communion

Approach

Recognition of Territory

Lighting the Christ Candle

We light the Christ candle knowing that Christ’s love shines like a beacon for those of us who are troubled, who are anxious, who are unsure, who are feeling lost, who are questioning, and when we light this candle we know that were we being welcomed into the presence of our God, who loves us into fullness. (adapted from Fern Gibbard, Gathering, Pentecost 2, 2020, page. 32) Call to Worship Approach Lighting the Christ Candle We light the Christ candle knowing that Christ’s love shines like a beacon for those of us who are troubled, who are anxious, who are unsure, who are feeling lost, who are questioning, and when we light this candle we know that were we being welcomed into the presence of our God, who loves us into fullness.

(adapted from Fern Gibbard, Gathering, Pentecost 2, 2020, page. 32)

Call to Worship

Come into the breadth of God’s good creation.
We come to be enveloped by shade and sun, by breeze and stillness, by greens and blues, by life and decay.

Come to be embraced by the wonder of nature as we pray in the four directions; Great Spirit of Light, Come to us out of the east with the power of the rising sun.
We face the east that you may fill us with light in our sharing, that you will illuminate our journeying on the Way of Jesus with the dawn of new life. With your gift of each new day, let us receive you vibrant life as we begin once more.

Great Spirit of Love, come to us with the power of the north.
Make us courageous when the cold wind blows. Give us strength and endurance from everything that is harsh and everything that hurts.

Great Life-Giving Spirit, we face the west, the direction of sundown.
Let us remember every day that the moment will come when our sun will go down. Let us fade into you so we may become a living part of your rainbow promise, a promise that enlivens our present with your breath.

Great Spirit of Creation, send us the warm and soothing winds from the south.
Comfort us and caress us when we are tired and cold. Unfold us like the gentle breezes that unfold the leaves on the trees, that we may grow close to you in warmth.

(written by Gord Dunbar, Gathering, Pentecost 2, 2020, page 26)

Hymn – “We Praise You, O God”

We praise you, O God, our Redeemer, Creator;
In grateful devotion our tribute we bring.
We lay it before you; we kneel and adore you;
We bless your holy name, glad praises we sing.

We worship you, God of our mothers and fathers,
Through trial and tempest, companion and guide.
When perils o’ertake us, you will not forsake us,
But faithful to your promise, you walk by our side.

With voices united our praises we offer
And gladly our songs of thanksgiving we raise.
Our sins now confessing, we pray for your blessing,
To you, our great Redeemer, forever be praise!

Prayer of Approach and Confession

God-of-all, you have set aside this day of thanksgiving, because we sometimes have difficulty remembering to live out thanks-giving. We sometimes have difficulty remembering to be thanks-giving. So – thank you, for everything.

Open our hearts to realize where thanks need to be given. Open our spirits to share the words. Open our live to be your love.

As we gather this day, our nation celebrates its festival of Thanksgiving. Many will feast greatly; many will be unable to feast. Isn’t there a place at the table for everyone? Once the day was focused on giving thanks to you, yet today is there a place for you at the table?

Forgive us for the times we have failed to share the bread of life, in all its forms. Help us to change, to give, to share, that all may know the love you offer and have their hunger filled.

Forgive us for the times we have failed to set a place for you; be welcome again at our tables. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

(adapted from Richard Bott and Ryan McNally, Gathering, Pentecost 2, 2020, pages 46, 47)

Words of Assurance

Time for All Ages

Hymn – “Come, Let Us Sing”

Come, let us sing to the Lord our song,
We have stood silently too long;
Surely the Lord deserves our praise,
So joyfully thank God for our days.

O thirsty soul, come drink at the well;
God’s living waters will never fail.
Sure the Lord will help you to stand,
Strengthened and comforted by God’s hand.

You dwell among us and cause us to pray,
And walk with each other following your way;
Our precious brothers and sisters will grow
In the fulfilling love they know.

Deserts shall bloom and mountains shall sing
To the desire of all living things.
Come, all you creatures, high and low,
Let your praises endlessly flow.

The Word

Scripture Reading:

Deuteronomy 8:7-18

Hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.
Thanks be to God

Meditation – “Offering Thanks on Today’s World”

Anthem – “Thanks Canon”

The Response

Communion

Welcome friends and relations! We meet there in the house of the Creator at the great feasting table. The Holy One who walked with our ancestors, walks with us now, and will walk with our children for years to come. In the very air that we breath, in the sound of whistling wind and in the slap of the waves on the shore,
We give thanks for your presence.

In the sound of children’s laughter, and in the songs of our elders,
We give thanks for your presence.

Lift up your broken hearts:
We lift them up to God.

Let us honour our Creator.
It is right to honour God.

It is right to honour God and to give our thanks.
We give our thanks to God.

Creator and Giver of all life, Source of love. We bless you for all your gifts. You brought creation to birth and sent prophets to awaken us to your great dream—a dream in which everyone is treated with dignity and love, justice and mercy, honour and hospitality. We praise you for elders and prophets, visionaries and leaders, teachers and preachers, all who have shared the great truth for our brother Jesus, Love in Human Form, who showed to us in womb and tomb, in cradle and cross, in tenderness and compassion, your Great Heart of Love. With the flying ones, the swimming ones, the four-legged ones, and the crawling ones, with rocks and trees, mountains and plains, with all creation, we humans raise our voices to you as we sing:

Sanctus and Benedictus

O holy, holy, holy God, O God of time and space.
All earth and sea and sky above bear witness to your grace,
Hosanna in the highest heav’n, creation sings your praise.
And blessed is the one who comes and bears your name always!

As we gather at this feasting table, we remember that on the night before he died, Jesus feasted with his friends. He took a loaf of bread, thanked you as we have thanked you, broke the bread, and gave it to them, saying: “Take, eat. This is my body, given for you. Whenever you feast together, remember me.” Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks, passed it to his friends, saying: “Drink. This cup is the promise of God, the cup of the new covenant. Whenever you drink together, remember me.” Remembering your boundless love shown to us in Jesus Christ, we offer you our praise, as we proclaim the great mystery of our faith:

Memorial Acclamation

Sing Christ has died and Christ is risen,
Christ will come again!
Sing Christ has died and Christ is risen,
Christ will come again!

Holy Spirit, unite us at this feast and may it strengthen us to live the resurrected and reconciled life of Christ in creation.

Prayers of the People

Lift up to you this day God of all people, those in those community whom we hope will feel your comforting presence in their lives today…

But on this day, this day of that we think of as a day to give thanks we must remember more, we must pray for more, we must be challenged to think of this day in a new way and so we continue to pray.

We remember the children of the Indian residential schools. We remember how they were plucked up from their homes by a system of arrogance that denied a good way of life. Their tears, their hunger, their loneliness, and their fears are not forgotten.

The shame that was taught, lingers yet. The pain that was inflicted upon their bodies remains. We remember the parents; the aunties, the uncles; the grandmas and grandpas left to grieve the empty places in their homes and their communities. Mothers were left with tear-stained aprons; fathers suffered in unyielding silence; how was it they were expected to carry on, having lost their joy, their purpose?

And how was it that their community could continue to come together to celebrate life and move together toward a bright future, when their future was gone? How long will it take to strengthen family, homes, and spirits? How long will it take to heal the memories? Who must we be and what must we do to restore integrity and dignity to your world?

God of all great transformation, in our lament, we cry out to you. God of all healing power, in our pain, we call your name. God of all life, in our hope, we come before you in humble prayer.

We pray that all your children may once again sing and dance the songs planted in their hearts since time immemorial. We pray that in their paly and in their learning they be strengthened in wisdom and truth. May they carry the knowledge of their ancestors—those ways of life that brought abundance and joy to this pilgrimage on earth.

We pray for the children’s health and wholeness; may they reconnect with your unending love that they may once again know who they are, their giftedness and their value. We remember those children who have found their home in you. We acknowledge those who left this earth having heard no words of apology or lament. We are grateful that you hold these ones close and have granted to them eternal peace.

As we move ahead into a time of truth-telling and reconciliation: we pray for parents and extended family. Release them from their feeling of guilt and burden. Lift them from their grief. May their homes once again ring out with laughter and hope. May their communities reflect the joy of their presence. May the come together to work toward reclaiming and renewing minds, bodies, emotions, and spirits.

And finally, we pray that one day this world, your world, will be a place where children are no longer harmed and will never be removed from a mother’s embrace or a father’s helping hand. We pray in the name of Jesus, your Son, who showed us a way to your Kingdom come on earth.

All my relations. Through, with, and in Jesus, united in love by the Holy Spirit, we offer all glory to you, Creator, Source of Love, now and always. Amen.

Great Amen

Amen, amen, O Holy One! Hosanna and Amen!
Amen, amen, O Holy One! Hosanna and Amen!

Prayer of Jesus

Our Mother and Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.

Christ’s body broken and healed for you. The cup of rich blessing poured out for you.

Come, for all things are now ready.
Come to the table with all your kin and share with all in need–

the gift of healing for those of us in pain, the gift of reconciliation for those of us estranged, the gift of assurance for those of us in doubt, and the gift of hope for those of us in tears.
May we who share these gifts, share Christ with one another and with all our kin.

Prayer after Sharing

Loving God, in the power of the Spirit, my you bless what we have partaken of this day. May the bread that we were fed open our eyes, and feed our passion for your justice, equity, and loving-kindness in the world. May the grape juice that we drank empower us to drink deeply of the radical, inclusive, love that you have for all. May the act of coming together, in thanksgiving, at this table motivate us to come together with all peoples in love, justice, compassion, and mercy. Bless us with grace and faith as disciples on the Way. Amen.

Hymn – “Give Thanks, My Soul, for Harvest”

Give thanks, my soul, for harvest, for store of fruit and grain,
But know the owner gives so that we may share again.
When people suffer hunger, or little children cry,
With gifts from God’s rich bounty may thankfulness reply.

Give thanks, my soul, for riches of woodland, mine, and hill,
But know that gold and timber are the Creator’s still.
God lends to us, as stewards, abundance we might share,
And thus provide earth’s children the blessing of God’s care.

Give thanks, my soul, for labours, that strength and days employ,
But know that Maker’s purpose brings toil as well as joy.
Show forth, O God, your purpose; direct our will and hand
To share your love and bounty with all in every land.

Benediction

We offer our thanks on this day to the One who is Creator and Creating. We are challenged to look around and to know that God is with us, in everyone we meet, in water, land, air, and sky. Know that God is continually creating within you a new heart and a new life. Never stop learning about this world, its true history, and our place in it, as God is calling us to continue to be stewards of this world that is God’s gift to us and to all creation. Go into this week knowing that this earth is an expression of God’s love and, as such, live in gratitude for all we have been given. Amen.

Response

For the harvests of the Spirit, thanks be to God.
For the good we all inherit, thanks be to God.
For the wonders that astound us, for the truths that still confound us,
Most of all that love has found us, thanks be to God.

Posted in General News, Sunday Bulletin and Announcements on October 9, 2020.