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God Re-Imagined into "Our Mother Within" In New Age North Texas Annual Conference Communion


The following was one of three Communion services before the regular business session of the Annual Conference on the above date that members of the annual conference could attend.  Please note that neither the name of Jesus Christ nor his atoning sacrifice for sin are mentioned, and God has been re-imagined into "Our Mother, who art within us."


Liturgy for Early Communion Service
North Texas Annual Conference
June 9, 1999

*Call to Prayer:

In this place we are reminded that our best intentions so often go astray. Let us pray to God for God's enlivening grace and presence.

Corporate Prayer of Confession:

Elusive God, we seek to live in your presence and to experience the reality of your promises. We want to keep your commandments and to do what is right, but we wish that were not so costly. We long for your love to reign in the world, yet we want to confine you to our theological understandings and our philosophical precepts, our images of who you are. Free us from ourselves and the barriers we erect through language, tradition, and image. Come dwell in us, we pray, that we may break out of the narrowness of our limited imaginations. Help us to see ourselves as you intend us to be. Fill us with love that surpasses knowledge. Link us with all who seek your will and long to unite as your people. Empower us to be channels of hope to more of your children. Amen.

Words of Assurance:

God loves us and hears our prayers. God is waiting to flood our lives with healing and hope. We are reconciled to one another and to our best selves. Live in gentleness and reverence, as a people released from guilt and shame. Praise be to God. Amen.

*Great Thanksgiving:

God be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them up to God.

Let us give our thanks to God.

It is right to give our thanks and praise.

It is right and a good and joyful thing that we should give thanks to you, Creative God. From the beginning you made the world and gave life to all its creatures; you formed people in your image to live for you and for each other. And when we turned away from you and forgot whose we were, you did not forget that we are yours. And so with all your people on earth and all the company of heaven, we praise your name and join your unending hymn.

Holy, Holy, Holy One, God of Love and Life. Heaven and earth are full of your Glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed are those who come in God's name. Hosanna in the highest.

Holy are you and blessed is the child of your womb who came to dwell among us as your anointed one sent to show how much you love us and to bring us back to you. Through your incarnate love, the despairing received hope, the sick were healed, the rejected were befriended, and the estranged were reconciled. But the world did not accept your love. On the night of betrayal, your anointed child had supper with friends, gave thanks to you for bread to share, and said to them: "Take this, all of you, and eat it. This is God's love in the form of bread. Each time you do this, remember whose you are." And then your child took the cup and gave thanks to you for wine to share, and gave it to each of the friends saying: "This cup is the new promise God has made with you. Each time you share in this cup, remember God's love for you." And so, as we remember these gifts from you, we offer ourselves in praise and thanksgiving as a holy and living sacrifice in keeping with your offering for us, as we proclaim the mystery of faith.

Your anointed one knew death. Your incarnate word is living. The child of your womb will come again bringing peace and justice to the earth.

We ask your blessing on us, gathered here, and on these gifts of bread and wine. May they be for us an incarnation of your gracious love that we may be in the world as a continuing incarnation of your love. Through your Creative Power, revealed in your Incarnate Word, continued by your Holy Spirit, all praise and glory is yours, Loving God, now and forever. Amen.

*THE LORD'S PRAYER

United by our baptism, through God's Holy Spirit, in God's universal Church, let us pray as God's children:

Our Mother, who art within us, many are your names. Your wisdom come, your will be done, unfolding from the depths of us. Each day you give us all that we need. You remind us of our limits, and we let go. You support us in our power, and we act with courage. For you are the dwelling place within us, the empowerment around us, and the celebration among us. As it was in the beginning, so shall it be now. Amen. (Miriam Therese Winter)

THE BREAKING OF THE BREAD AND SHARING THE CUP

THE 23RD PSALM
adapted by Bobby McFerrin

The Lord is my Shepherd,
I have all I need.
She makes me lie down in green meadows,
beside the still water She will lead.
She restores my soul;
She rights my wrongs.
She leads me in a path of good things,
and fills my heart with songs.
Even though I walk through a dark and dreary land,
there is nothing that can shake me;
She has said She won't forsake me,
I'm in Her hand.
She sets a table before me
in the presence of my foes.
She anoints my head with oil,
and my cup overflows.
Surely, surely goodness and kindness will follow me
all the days of my life.
And I will live in Her house forever,
Forever and ever.

Glory be to our Mother and Daughter,
and to the Holy of Holies.
As it was in the beginning,
is now and ever shall be,
World without end, Amen.

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