Sunday, May 29, 2016

Proper 05 Ordinary 10 C (June 05): Dare to Make A Difference/ God is Forever Faithful


 


 
Bible Readings: 1 Kings 17:8-16,(17-24), Psalm 146, Galatians 1:11-24,
Luke 7:11-17

About the Images:
Upper Left: This is a free Microsoft clipart image. I think it is a good illustration on of how God brings life from death,
Upper Right: This is a free Microsoft clipart image with my text.
Lower Left:  Bush flowers following a bush fire in the Victorian High Country near the Blue Duck.  Another life from death image. This is my image. Please feel free to use it for worship and related activities.
Lower Right: This image comes from the awesome Church Galleries website which was decimated by hackers last year. At present it is possible to buy these images very cheaply - however this particular one is free on the site this week.  Well worth the subscription!!! Visit the website at www.churchgalleries.com
  

Kid's Story: Elijah and the Widow Stories
Make up a number of white posters with dinner plate sized round faces. Make each face a different emotion - sad, happy, confused or puzzled, delighted, amazed, etc. Tell either story and use the faces to help the children reflect or guess the emotions involved in the story.


 Kid's Story: Elijah
Found in The Picture Strip Bible by Felicity Henderson and Chris Saunderson, Scripture Union, 2001, ISBN 1859994970, page 48 (pictured at left).

 Film Clip: Mr Holland's Opus
(pictured at right) Show the clip very close to the end where Mr Holland is taken to the gym for his surprise celebration which honours the difference he has made in hundreds of students lives. If you have time, run this clip until the credits begin (it is not all that long) but at least make sure you include the speech given by one of the students.

Lots of Good Ideas for all the Readings
Found in Living Stones by Susan Sayers, Kevin Mayhew, 2000, ISBN 1840030097, page 129ff (pictured at left).



Drama: Paul Called By God
A monologue by God found in Mega Drama 5 by Verena Johnson (Ed), Open Book, 2002, ISBN 0859109194, page 68 (pictured at right).


 Discussion: Psalm 146

1. Who or what are the "princes" and powerful people in our world today?
2.Why are they no help to us?
 

Story: Outreach
Story 471 in 750 Engaging Illustrations for Preachers, Teachers and Writers by Craig Brian Larson and Leadership Journal, Baker Books, 2002, ISBN 0801091551 (pictured at left). This story goes very well with the Psalm.

Story: God - His Care

Found in Your Point Being? by Graham H. Twelftree, Monarch Books, 2003, ISBN 1854245929, Story No. 99 (pictured at right). This story fits well with the 1 Kings reading.

Story: Rosario
As above, Story No 278. This story fits in well with the Psalm.

Story: No Funerals
Index 2407-2416 from Bible Illustrator for Windows Version 1.0d, Parsons Technology Inc., 1990.


Poem: This Time
By Giles David and found in Resources for Preaching and Worship - Year C compile by Hannah Ward and Jennifer Wild, Westminster John Knox Press, 2003, ISBN 066422508X, page 184 (pictured at left). This works really well with projected images and music. I used Lord of All Space by Caim from their album, Sung Prayers in the Celtic Tradition. This poem fits well with all four of the readings.


Meditation Stations: Elijah and the Widow
This mediation is based very roughly on a suggestion made on page 35 of a really beaut book called Multi-Sensory Scripture by Sue Wallace, Scripture Union, 2005, ISBN 1844271668.
Have five separate stations around your worship space and some meditative music playing. Each station will be decorated differently (see below) and will have a short reading to contemplate and some suggestions for prayer and action. Arrange stations and people so that not everybody goes to Station 1 first - although the stations are chronological as far as the story goes, they can be visited in any order without losing a sense of what is happening. Allow around 3-5 minutes for each station and encourage people to visit them all at least once. However, also make it clear that they can revisit some if they wish to.
Station 1:
Have a map of the world, a lit candle and enough tea lights for everybody.
On small cards or note paper, print the following:
1 Kings 17:8-9. Note that the woman is not one of God's chosen people, is a widow, a woman (duh!) and has a son. Both she and the boy are marginalised.
To think and pray about:
Who are the marginalised people in our lives?
Who are the people we assume may be outside God's love because of their lifestyle, occupation, beliefs or ethnicity?
How can we make a difference and reflect God's love?
Light a candle and place it on a part of the world that needs Gods transforming love and life?
Station 2:
Have a simple bowl filled to overflowing with small loaves of (if possible, hot) bread. On small cards or note paper, print the following:
1 Kings 17:10-15 (or summary).
The widow gives away her very last meal to a man she has never met before who she meets at the town gate.
Think of a time when you have mistrusted a request from a stranger.
Think of times when you have been generous to strangers.
What were the results?

Think of the difficulties you face as you try to balance requests for your time and/or money.
As you eat one of the small loaves, pray for the wisdom to know when to say "yes", when to say "no" and how to make a difference.
Station 3:
Have a number of postcards, photos, works of art, mounted magazine pictures of deserts, dry creek beds, angry or hurting faces, dry bones etc - anything that represents hard times, anger, and sadness. On small cards or note paper, print the following:
1 Kings 17:17-18 
Think of a time in your life when you have been fearful, depressed or angry with God.
Choose a picture from the collection that represents your feelings best.
How do you think God can or has make a difference to these feelings.
If you are feeling like this now, tell God about it.
or
If you know someone who may feel like this, pray for them.

Station 4:
Have a simple bowl filled with tiny bulbs or seeds (depending on the season)On small cards or note paper, print the following:
1 Kings 17:19-23
Take a seed/bulb.
Look at the seed and think about what your life be like if God was not a part of it? Imagine the potential of your seed, what it will grow in to, and imagine what God is doing with your potential. If God is continually transforming you, how can you share that with others?

Station 5:
Have this station near a brightly illuminated pertinent painting, window or banner - I used our Pentecost banner and arranged chairs around it. On small cards or note paper, print the following:
1 Kings 17:24
Think of a time when God has used somebody to enable you to "see the light".
How has it helped your faith?
Thank God for the people who have made a difference to your faith.
Ask God to enable you share your faith with others - pray for specific people and/or communities. 

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Proper 4 C (May 29):

 



 
Bible readings: 1 Kings 18: 20-39, Psalm 96, Galatians 1:1-12, Luke 7:1-10


About the Images:
Upper left and right: These free images comes from Heartlight - please see my link column at left.
Lower left: These free images comes from Imagebank - see my link column at left.
Lower right: This image comes from the awesome Church Galleries website which was decimated by hackers last year. At present it is possible to buy these images very cheaply - however this particular one is free on the site this week.  Well worth the subscription!!! Visit the website at www.churchgalleries.com


Service Starter: Power to Amaze.
By Scripture Union, The All Age Service Annual, Volume 4, Scripture Union, London, 2010,  ISBN 9781844275199, page 61 (pictured at left).   This service starter is based on the Kings reading. 

Call to Worship: Praise Him All Creation
By Terry Falla (Ed.), Be Our Freedom, Lord, Lutheran Publishing House, Adelaide, 1981, ISBN 0859101754, page 22 (pictured at right - this is a slightly newer edition).  This call to worship is based on the Psalm.




Lots of Useful Stuff: Please
By Beth Barnett, Welcome Mat, Scripture Union, Melbourne, Pages 72-77, 112-114, 129, 163 (a drama) and 182-188 (pictured at left).  These useful worship aids are all based on the gospel reading. 

Kids' Story: The Water That Caught On Fire
By Joann Scheck and Bob Fanter, Arch Books, St Louis, Missouri, 1969 (pictured below at right). This is based on the 1 Kings reading and is an oldie but a goodie.


Drama: One Under Authority
Found in Mega Drama 5 by Verena Johnson (Ed), Adelaide, Open Book Publishers, Adelaide, 2002, ISBN 0859109194, page 28-30 (pictured at left).  This drama is based on the gospel reading.


Drama: The Faith of the Centurion
Found in Mega Drama 5 by Verena Johnson (Ed), Adelaide, Open Book Publishers, Adelaide, 2002, ISBN 0859109194, page 31-33 (pictured at left).  This drama is based on the gospel reading.


Film Clip: Look Beyond Borders: Four minutes by Amnesty International Poland
I think this goes well with the gospel reading in particular


 


Questions to Think About: Elijah on Mount Carmel
By Sue Wallace, Multi-Sensory Scripture, Scripture Union, Bletchley, 2005, ISBN 1844271668, page 74 (pictured at right).

Poem: Sing a New Song
This poem is based on the Psalm and found in The Electric Bible by Peter Dainty, Kevin Mayhew, Suffolk, 2003, ISBN 1844170411, page 66.  

Poem: The Prophets of God
This poem is based on the 1 Kings reading and found in The Electric Bible by Peter Dainty, Kevin Mayhew, Suffolk, 2003, ISBN 1844170411, page 51ff. 


Poem: Go No Further
Also a great prayer and collect based on the gospel reading included on the same page.  Found in Dad and Daughter by Ron Gordon and Jennie Gordon, 2012, ISBN 9780646586601, page 159. To order a copy of this excellent book email jennie.gordon@billanook.vic.edu.au



Response Activity: Love the Reaches Beyond Human Boundaries
Found in Bringing the Word To Life Together: Year C by Andrew Collis and Dorothy McRae-McMahon, Mediacom, Adelaide, 2012, ISBN 9781921945083, page 90.  This is based on the gospel reading.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Trinity C (May 22): You ARE Worth it!!!


 


 


















Readings: Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31, Psalm 8, Romans 5:1-6, John 16:12-15


About the Images: 
Upper Left: This is a free clip art from the excellent as always Heartlight site (use my link to this site in my Link section)
Upper Right: This is my photo on my homemade handout - see response activity below.
Lower Left: This is my photo of the beach at Lake Tyers in East Gippsland.  Please feel free to use it for worship and related activities.  It reminded me of the closeness of God to us even when we do not know it.
Lower Right: This image comes from the awesome Church Galleries website which was decimated by hackers last year. At present it is possible to buy these images very cheaply - however this particular one is free on the site this week.  Well worth the subscription!!! Visit the website at www.churchgalleries.com


Listening Song: I Am 
By Jill Phillips on her self titled album and on WOW 2000. (pictured at left).  This is a beautiful song and I have suggested before, and most likely, will do so again.

Film Clip: Forrest Gump
(pictured at right) The last scene, where Forrest waits at the bus stop for his child, is a great illustration of fatherly love which takes no short cuts and throws dignity to the wind.


Video Clip: The Triune Poet
From Work of the People - see my link column at left.




Drama: I Quit
Found in Lets make Another Scene by Verena Johnson, Open Book, 1995, ISBN 0859107620, page 24 (pictured at left).  This drama is based on the Romans reading.

Comic Strip: Just be Yourself

Found in Micro Messages by Rich Bundschuh and Tom Finley, Gospel Light, 1995, ISBN 08307 15789, page 131 (pictured at rght).This is very much connected to the Psalm but it is also connected to all the readings.  A new look at Mr Potoato Head!

Quote: St Augustine
"People travel everywhere to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the length of rivers, at the vastness of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars in the night sky - and yet they pass by themselves without wondering." 



Story: Major League Grace
Found in In the Grip of Grace by Max Lucado, Word Publishing, 1996, ISBN 0849913241, page 89, (pictured at left). This can be turned into a "what if" story for any popular sporting code.


Discussion: Romans 5:1-5 and/or Psalm 8
 What is it in these verses which convinces you that God thinks you are worth it?

Response Activity:
The Romans reading shows us that God gifts us with peace, joy, hope and love. Ask people to choose the one that they find easiest to understand and to accept. Ask them to discuss with their neighbour how they might share this aspect of God's character with others within the church, and within the community at large.


Response Activity:

Give each person a bookmark or card similar to the one above (permission to copy given) and ask them to circle the gift they need most now and to write their response in the space.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Pentecost C (May 15): Contagious Christianity/Inspired by the Spirit


 


























Bible Readings: Acts 2:1-21, Genesis 11:1-9, Psalm 104:24-34, 35b, Romans 8:14-17, John 14:8-17, 25-27.

About the Photos:
Upper Left:
This photo was taken by good friend David Husted when he was taken hot air ballooning over Melbourne by his kids for his 60th birthday. Balloons have always been a symbol for me of the Holy Spirit. Just as a balloon filled with air shows great promise so do we when we are filled with God's Spirit. Hot air balloons, flames and all, over a city are a sign of promise and challenge. Please feel free to use this image for worship and related activities.
Upper Right:
This image is free and come from the excellent ImageBank site (see their address in my Links section).
Lower Left: This is my image so please feel free to use it for worship and related activities.
Lower Right: This image comes from the awesome Church Galleries website which was decimated by hackers last year. At present it is possible to buy these images very cheaply - however this particular one is free on the site this week.  Well worth the subscription!!! Visit the website at www.churchgalleries.com


Whole Service Idea: Spread it Around
Found in Multi-Sensory Seasons by Wendy Raynor and Annie Slade, Scripture Union, 2005, ISBN 1844271757, page 47 (pictured at left). These ideas are based primarily on the Acts reading.



Listening Song: Hands and Feet By Audio Adenalin on WOW 2001 or their album, Underdog (pictured at right). This works well with the Romans reading.

Listening Song: Holy Spirit
By Third Day on their self titled album (pictured at left).  This is a song that goes well with the whole theme of Pentecost.

Listening Song: Burning like Fire.  

By Iona on their album Beyond these Shores (pictured at right).  This also goes well with the whole theme of Pentecost and if you are into Celtic music, then this song is an added bonus. 

Prayer: Feathers
 
In Multi-Sensory Scripture by Sue Wallace, Scripture Union, 2005, ISBN 1844271668, page 34 (pictured at left). This prayer is based primarily on the Acts reading.

Drama: Verbal Symphony for Pentecost

 By M Preugschat in Drama Resources 2 by Lutheran Publishing House, 2000, page 55 (pictured at right). This drama is so much fun.  I turned it into a congregational drama - and everybody participated with great delight.

Drama: But It's Only 9 O'clock.
Found in Mega Drama 5 by Verena Johnson (Ed), Open Book, 2002, ISBN 0859109194, page 109 (pictured at left). This drama is based on the Acts reading.

Quote: Hitler
Hitler used fear to drive his attack on Europe. He said "If the Jews did not exist we would have had to invent them" . 



Film: The Legend of Bagger Vance 
Show this clip where Bagger Vance teaches Junuh how to find his "one truly authentic swing".






Discussion: The Legend of Bagger Vance
 

1. What do you think our "one truly authentic swing" could be?
2
. If Bagger Vance represents the Holy Spirit, how does the Holy Spirit help us to find our "one truly authentic swing"?
3. Have you found your "one truly authentic swing"?

(thanks to someone for this idea - unfortunately I can't remember who - let me know if you know).

Film: Dead Poets Society

Use your discretion as to how much you show of this clip depending on the age and emotional resilience of your congregation. Show the clip prior to the student's suicide when the student, who is a talented actor, is stopped from realising his dreams by his father who thinks that acting is a waste of time. The student tries to explain his fear of a future which does not include acting and which will therefore be devoid of the things that he loves doing best.

Discussion:
What sort of things do we fear today?
What sort of things do we fear for our church?
What sort of things do we fear for ourselves? 



Film Clip: Spirit Wind
From Work of the People- see my link column at left



   
   
   
   
   
   
   


Story: Your Own Experience
Display digitally or have with you some of the more fear evoking headlines which we often see today or relate an experience you have had recently where you came across actions taken by others as a result of fear. eg on our last trip to Tasmania we were intrigued by the official who wanted to look under the bonnet of our car as we waited to drive on to the ferry at Port Melbourne. We were quite amused when he told us he was looking for bombs.... until we realised he was fair dinkum. 


Story: The Big Rock
Found in Hot Illustrations for Youth Talks by Wayne Rice, Youth Specialties, 1994, ISBN 0310402611, page 36.


Response Activity:

Give everyone a sparkler. Light the front row and allow people to touch the ends to light others. Use them as a reminder of the first Pentecost (fire and wind) - they fire up best when they are waved about.....but please be careful!



Also:
Film Clip: The Fear
This film clip was suggested by Rob who visits this blog.  He says the clip "encapsulates how virtually an entire generation often feel. Also, the lyrics are genuinely intelligent and thought-provoking" and "the lyrics to The Fear are here, in case anyone can't make them out clearly - http://www.musicloversgroup.com/lily-allen-the-fear-lyrics-and-video/"
Thanks Rob!

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Easter 7 C (May 8):Freedom/United but Not Homogenous

 

 



















Bible Readings: Acts 16:16-34, Psalm 97, Revelation 22:12-14, 126-17, 20-21, John 17:20-26

About the Images:
Upper Left: This is free clipart from Heartlight - their address is in the column to the left.
Upper Right: This is my image. Please feel free to use it for worship purposes.

Lower Left: This is an Imagebank free clip art - see my link column at left
Lower Right: This image comes from the awesome Church Galleries website which was decimated by hackers last year. At present it is possible to buy these images very cheaply - however this particular one is free on the site this week.  Well worth the subscription!!! Visit the website at www.churchgalleries.com


Bible Reading: Psalm 97
This Psalm lends itself well to being read aloud accompanied by relevant projected images.

Bible Reading: John 17:20-23
Read these verses together replacing the words "these followers" with the name of your congregation the first time and thereafter with the words "this congregation".

Kid's Story: The Jailor Who Changed His Mind
By Carol Granger and Jim Roberts, Arch Books, 1971 (pictured at right).

Introductory Activity/Discussion:

Give everybody a blue card and an orange card. Make a series of statements - some very straightforward such as "You have blue eyes" and some more complicated , such as, " you do not a agree with......." (fill in with a recent political or denominational decision). Get them to hold up the blue card if they agree with the statement and get them to hold up the orange card if they disagree. Encourage them to look around as each statement is read out so that they
see the amazing diversity which makes up any congregation. Then ask them to talk together about or to make a list of all the things that Christians agree on. Finish with a question about ways we can achieve unity within a congregation.



Film Clip: Jesus  Said These Things
By the Work of the People - see my link column at left






Listening Song: One
By U2 ...I got this idea from Singing From the Lectionary (see link at left) and then went looking on the web and found this:








Drama: Six People in One Pew 
Found in Gospel Dramas by Dean Nadasdym Ausburg Publishing, 1985, ISBN 0806621850, page 79 (pictured at left). This play is based on the gospel reading.


Drama: A Man Named Paul 
Found in Mega Drama 5 by Verena Johnson (Ed), Open Book, 2002, ISBN 0859109194, page 66 (pictured at right). This drama is based on the Acts reading.

Story: Testimony
Story No 266 in Your Point Being...? by Graham Twelftree, Monarch Books, 2003, ISBN 1854245929, (pictured at left.) This story fits in very well with the Jailer's question in the Acts reading.

Story: The One Only A Mother Could Love
By John Wilmot and found in the magazine, On Being, June 1997. This story goes well with the Gospel reading.

Story: The Hermit's Gift.

Found in Hot Illustrations for Youth Talks by Wayne Rice, Youth Specialties, 1994, ISBN 0310402611, page 112 (pictured at right). This story fits well with the Gospel reading. 

Responsive Reading: Ring of Faith 
By Ruth Bell and found on the Mucky Paws site (see address at left in my links section) archived under 20th May 2007.  This is a lovely 5 part voice reading connected to the theme of Freedom via the Acts reading.