It is a still, quiet time these days as the earth prepares to go to sleep for a season. We hear the leaves rustle in the wind, the harvest is in and our larders are filled with what will bring us comfort in the coming months. As we enjoy the still-warm sun and the bright light of the moon, give us that sense of your guiding spirit. Tonight’s lesson reminds us that your spirit will fall on all human beings, irrespective of social status or class. Make us receptive and responsive to your presence in our lives, O God – in our vocations, in the sacred spaces where we invite friendship, enjoy family and embrace community.
Lord of the Loving, Hear Our Prayer.
We welcome you God, however you intersect our lives – in art, in music, in conversation, in silence, in the circle of the sacraments. We pray for the Sisters of the Church in Burlington who pray for us, Agape Table whom we pledge to support, and for reciprocity that represents balance in the giving and taking, the empty and full, the solitary and the collective. As we strive for fulfillment and authenticity in life, we know happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn, or consumed. Give us that sense of happiness being the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude. Make us keen to give and take, to hold close and set free, to see visions and dream dreams.
Lord of the Faithful, Hear Our Prayer.
As we were inundated by media coverage in Belleville, Ontario this week, we pray for victims’ families and the greater community as they move forward from a very dark chapter in their lives. Locally we are saddened by the workplace death this week as we remember the young vibrant life of Brittany Murray and in Belleville, the memories of Jessica Lloyd and Corp. Marie France Comeau. We continue to pray for lost aboriginal woman in this province over the years and pray for recovery and closure to their loved ones.
Lord of the Bereaved, Hear Our Prayer.
Globally, we bring to you our world broken and diminished by greed. We pray for our troops deployed in Afghanistan and other regions, for people displaced by natural disaster and adverse weather conditions, for those who continue to struggle against odds beyond their control. We ask for basic adequate hydration resources to offset the cholera outbreak in Haiti. As we look ahead to our planet’s preservation, please give us an ongoing renewal of commitment as stewards of the earth. Instill in us a consciousness, a sharp awareness, a personal philosophy in our daily use of resources, choice of products and modes of transportation.
Lord of the Nations, Hear Our Prayer.
Our focus moves to those around us and among us needing our love and support. For those suffering from shattered dreams, broken relationships, loss of employment, separation from loved ones, or experiencing any dis-ease of body, mind or spirit, we commit their needs to you. For those who have died, grant them peace. To those who mourn, comfort. Please take a moment to name those in need. We ask for forgiveness of our sins and when we have failed you; for when we put our trust in ourselves and we took our eyes off of you.
Lord of the Brokenhearted, Hear Our Prayer.
Lord of the Suffering, Hear Our Prayer.
It is by your grace that we approach your endless, inclusive table this evening, Lord. Again and again, we are invited to give and receive your peace, to eat and drink at no cost, to reflect on the privilege and freedom we have in worship. As we move into a new week filled with challenges, openness to serve and opportunities to learn, may we be reminded of the words from tonight’s parable that ‘all who exalt themselves will be humbled and all who humble themselves will be exalted’.
Lord of the Compassionate, Hear Our Prayer.
Written by Nancy Constantine, to be offered in worship on the 22nd Sunday after Pentecost, October 24, 2010.