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  • Wandering Aramean...

    If this is Wednesday, then it must Glasgow...

    Lots of travelling around, most of it church-related this week.

    Just back from two days in Larbert, where I had the privilege of meeting people just setting out on the path to acredited ministry, and people who have just completed their pre-acrdecited (NAM-equivalent) period.

    Two days in Glasgow to catch up on the jobs that are now urgent

    Then to Harrogate for the BUGB-BMS Assembly, catching up with friends, listening, learning, reflecting

    Then my monthly day-trip to Irthlingborough

    I relish the diversity and cherish the opportunities; at the same time I know I need to pace myself in all this frenetic busy-ness.

  • This is a Time - A Communion Liturgy

    From time to time I share bits of liturgy here.  This is what I wrote for yesterday's communion, inspired by the JPIT 'This is a Time' material.  If it's helpful, feel free to borrow or adapt it.

    Invitation

    This is a place

    Where Jesus invites his friends to remember his life

     

    This is a time

    Where Jesus’ friends recall his death

     

    This is a time, and this is a place

    Here and now

    We anticipate the heavenly banquet prepared for all

     

    The Story

    Time was running out for Jesus – the authorities had their spies everywhere, watching his every move, trying to trap him with word games and impossible questions.  Knowing this, he made plans for the Passover meal…

     

    The coded signal of a man carrying water

    The borrowed upper room, away from prying eyes

    The familiar prayers and psalms, memories and stories

     

    This was a time for him and those he loved best

    This was a place where, however fleetingly, they could be safe…

     

    This is a story for all time, for our time

    For this place, and for all places.

     

    The apostle Paul recorded it like this:

    For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, ‘This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.’ For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

     

    The Thanksgiving

    God of all times and all places

    We give you thanks that we are able to meet openly and without fear to share together

    God of this time and this place

    We give you thanks for this bread and this wine, and all that they mean to us

    May the sharing nourish our souls and strengthen our faith,

    For we pray in Christ’s name

    Amen

     

    Sharing

    (According to local custom)

     

    Prayer Afterwards

    (Theresa of Avila, adapted)

    Christ has no body but ours,
    No hands, no feet on earth but ours,
    Ours are the eyes with which he looks
    Compassion on this world

    Ours are the feet with which he walks to do good,
    Ours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.
    Ours are the hands, ours are the feet,
    Ours are the eyes, we are his body.

    Christ has no body now but ours,
    No hands, no feet on earth but ours,
    Ours are the eyes with which he looks
    compassion on this world.
    Christ has no body now on earth but ours.

     

  • Would I Lie to You....

    One of my preferred bits of 'junk television' is "Would I Lie to You" in which participants read out statements which may be true or maybe complete fabrications and, based on questioning, the other team has to decide whether or not they are true.  As a precursor to today's sermon, I decided to use a variant of this, whereby I read out a series of statements, each with three parts, and the congregation had to work out whether all were ture, all were false or a mixture.

    So, for anyone reading - who was there this morning - here they are (no answers, you'll have to stick with your guesses!)

    I have conducted weddings in the following venues:

    • a cow shed
    • a library
    • a hospital ward

    I have, at different times, been given the following as Christmas presents:

    • a broken ornament
    • a packet of coffee that was four years out of date
    • a book with pages missing

    I have conducted funerals where the following pieces of music were played on the way out

    • Soul limbo (test match theme)
    • Blue tailed fly
    • Smoke gets in your eyes

    I once owned an Austin Metro called Molly.  During the time I owned it, it was

    • Rear-ended by a white van
    • Hit by a runaway horse
    • Towed away because someone thought it had been abandoned

    It was certainly a bit of fun, and people engaged generously with it.  I think it worked fairly well as illustrating that it isn't always easy to tell truth from lies, distortion from accuracy.

    No service to prepare for next week, as I'll be in Harrogate with BUGB-BMS people, but plenty else to keep me busy in the mean time.