A moment of contemplation for yourself or on behalf of others on everything from the life-altering to the mundane.


Prayer: A conversation with The Higher Other who lives within each of us. An invitation to vent, to re-think, to ask, and to rest.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Prayers of the People, Our World at Peace, Season of Creation V

for Sunday, November 8, 2015, Our World at Peace, Season of Creation V, Readings: Amos 5:21-24, Ps 85:7-14*, Bishop John Hines**, Matthew 5:1-16

...let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream. [Amos 5:24]

Turn, revive us, nourish our joy.
[Ps 85:1a]

I hope for a witnessing community of unquestioned integrity...unashamed of the Gospel. [President Bishop John Hines]

Jesus said, "You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything...you are the light of the world...No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to [God] in heaven." [Matthew 5:13-16] 

World Peace. Of course! Who doesn't want it? Yet the concept is exponentially larger than the comparative size of these letters and seems well beyond the scope of my abilities to achieve. It then remains a mere concept, too big to be a goal, reduced to a conversational platitude. Or, is it? When you think of world peace how do you define it? Is it merely the end of all war on the planet or are there other considerations? A few formal definitions describe it as the absence of war, a cessation of hostilities, and/or tranquility. Whole armies are deployed ostensibly to end war - where am I in that? Tranquility, though, sounds a bit more personal. But a day doesn't go by when my anxiety and frustration levels aren't challenged by the local news, comments on social media, and then, there's traffic! And I even play a game for fun whose name begins with "Angry"... probably not a path to tranquility. But all is not lost, I can make a significant contribution. Let us each return to the tranquil and instructional words attributed to St. Francis - platitudinal? Perhaps. Yet at the very least we each can achieve a measure of peace in our own corner of the world by following the examples in this beautiful prayer:


Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is
hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where
there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where
there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where
there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to
be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; 
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; 
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen. 




LET US, GOD’S PEOPLE, PRAY

Leader:  ~ Glorious God of Love and Justice, fire our hearts with the desire to blaze throughout Creation as beacons of Your righteousness, faithfulness, and mercy, seasoned with the love of Christ Jesus, our Salvation.

Benevolent Lord
RESPONSE:  Salt our souls with the thirst and hunger to work for peace

~ Glorious God of Love and Justice, guide us to be fearless in our audacity, to live into and carry the words and actions of peace and equity, to every hall of government throughout our World, our Nation, and our Community.  We pray especially for: add your own petitions

Benevolent Lord
Salt our souls with the thirst and hunger to work for peace

~ Glorious God of Love and Justice, revive the spirits of and grant healing to all who suffer from physical, emotional, or other life-altering pain, and to all who give them care. We pray especially for: add your own petitions


Benevolent Lord
Salt our souls with the thirst and hunger to work for peace

~ Glorious God of Love and Justice, as You bless and comfort all who mourn, let us rejoice to know that our loved ones have now entered victoriously into their everlasting reward in the kingdom of heaven. We pray especially for: add your own petitions

Benevolent Lord
Salt our souls with the thirst and hunger to work for peace

~ Glorious God of Love and Justice, we pause in this moment to offer You our other heartfelt intentions and petitions, silently or aloud… add your own petitions

Benevolent Lord
Salt our souls with the thirst and hunger to work for peace

~ Glorious God of Love and Justice, help us to navigate the ever-flowing waters of virtue, generosity, and honor together with those who lives are ordained to point our way to You. We pray especially for: add your own petitions

Benevolent Lord
Salt our souls with the thirst and hunger to work for peace

The Celebrant adds:  Unwavering, Steadfast God, nourish our joy as we strive to be Your faithful witnesses with the integrity to unashamedly and openly embrace Christ’s Gospel of peace, truth, and justice. We ask through Jesus, our Divine Example, and through the Holy Spirit, our Heavenly Inspiration, who together with You are One, Infinite, Eternal God, now and forever. Amen.


*PSALM 85:7-14 

Turn, revive us, nourish our joy. 
Show us mercy, save us, Lord.

I listen to God speaking:
 “I, the Lord, speak peace,
peace to my faithful people who turn their hearts to me.”

Salvation is coming near, 
glory is filling our land.

Love and faithfulness embrace, peace and justice kiss.
Fidelity sprouts from the earth, justice leans down from heaven.

The Lord pours out riches, our land springs to life.
Justice clears God’s path,
justice points the way.

From The Psalter: A faithful and inclusive rendering, Liturgy Training Publications
(International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc.), 1994.


**A Reading from the Farewell Sermon of Presiding Bishop John E. Hines:

What I hope for has little to do with growth in communicant strength, though I would rejoice at a multitude of conversions possessing integrity. This has little to do with bigger budgets, nothing to do with maintaining a respected place with the carriage-trade clientele of our society. I hope for a witnessing community of unquestioned integrity. It may - in the future, this Church of ours - be an even smaller Church because of its witness; less powerful, and less influential - as a secular society gauges power and influence. For the essential question is not, “How shall the Episcopal Church grow?” - but rather, “How can the Episcopal Church be faithful?”For that is the heritage worth sacrificing for - worth passing on to our children and grandchildren. God forbid that they should come to a time and place unashamed of the Gospel, but ashamed of us.

Kenneth Kesselus, John E. Hines - Granite on Fire, Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest, Austin, 1995.
Bishop Hines served as the 22nd Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church from 1965-1973







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