Sunday, July 31, 2016

Proper 20 Ordinary 25 C (September 18): Values/Praying for Peace/Lament


 



















Bible Readings: Jeremiah 8:18-9:1, Psalm 79:1-9, 1 Timothy 2:1-7, Luke 16:1-13

About the Images:
Upper Left:
Coopers Creek at the Dig Tree: such a peaceful place with such an odd history.  For more info, please visit http://www.thargotourism.com.au/the-burke-and-wills-dig-tree. This is my photo - please feel free to use it for worship and related activities.
Upper Right: Ned Kelly the day before his execution by Charles Nettleton. The photo taken in 1880, so is public domain. Image taken from http://www.statelibrary.vic.gov.au/slv/exhibitions/kellyculture/intro1.html
Lower Left: This is a free image from Imagebank  - see my link column at left - with a line from CeCe Winnans song "Comforter".
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: Peacemaker
by Maire Brennan on her album, Whisper to the Wild Water (pictured at right). This is particularly good if played as a background to a series of images portraying war, anger,
fighting etc as an introduction to the Timothy reading.


Listening Song: Comforter
By CeCe Winnans on her album, Alabaster Box (pictured at left).  This goes well with the Jeremiah reading, particularly Jeremiah 8:18.

Kid's Story:
If you have a dramatist or a mime clown in your congregation, ask them to go through a whole lot of different emotions with the children together eg "let's all be happy, sad, angry, sad" etc. They can use all of their body to show the emotion or just a body part such as a face, or a hand or an arm. Kid's love doing this and I often get the whole congregation to do it because everybody enjoys it. Lead this into a discussion about Jeremiah and about how honest we can be with God about how we feel.

Discussion Questions: For the Luke reading
When do we take risks for the gospel?

When do we put people's needs before financial concerns?

What are our priorities?

Film Clip: Wit
(pictured at right) Show the scene right need the end of the film where Vivian's old professor comes in and, through means of a children's story book, prays for her to die in peace. This goes well with the Timothy reading.

Discussion Questions for Film Clip: Wit
1. How does Vivian's old professor pray for her?
2. Why is it important for us to have peace in our lives?
3. How can we give peace to each other?



Story: Good News
Found in Illustrations, Stories and Quotes to Hang your Message On by Jim Burns and Greg McKinnon, Gospel Light, 1997, ISBN 0830718834, page 161 (pictured at left). This story goes well with the Luke reading.

Story: The Prayer of Compassion

by Anthony Bloom and found in Resources for Preaching and Worship - Year C compiled by Hannah Ward and Jennifer Wild, Westminster John Knox Press, 2003, ISBN 066422508X, Page 248 (pictured at right). This story goes well with the Timothy reading.

Quote: Horatius Bonar
Index 3140-3141 from Bible Illustrator for Windows Version 1.0d, Parsons Technology Inc., 1990. This quote goes well with the Timothy reading. You can also find this quote at http://www.jude3.net/bgwh8.htm - fifth paragraph up from the bottom.

Prayer for Others:
Introduce this prayer with 1 Timothy 2:1-2.


Prayer for others: Light a Candle
This is an interactive prayer and can involve the whole congregation. It is written by Roddy Hamilton for Pentecost C 2007 and goes well with any of the readings for today. Roddy's site is call Mucky Paws and there is a link in my link section at left.

Adult Response: For the Luke reading
Give everyone a business card sized picture of a slightly dodgy cultural hero. Robin Hood works well as does Ned Kelly in Australia and Arthur Daly from the TV series, Minder.
Ask: As a result of this rather shady story, what is God asking you to do?......Put God first?....Clean up a dodgy part of your life?.....or.....? Write a prayer on the back.

Adult Response Activities for the Timothy Reading:
Have three separate areas for people to pray
for the world in three different ways. At each place have available multiple copies of the Timothy Bible reading or give everyone a copy of the reading before they start.
1. Write a letter to God.
Equipment needed: Good quality parchment paper and good pens or pencils.
Instructions: Some people find it easier to write down their feelings than to verbalise them. Try writing a letter to God expressing what is going on in your mind with regard to this reading today. You might want to say sorry for something you have not done, or there may be a part of the reading you can't understand or don't agree with and you want to make sure God knows how you feel. Maybe you just want to list the leaders you want to pray for? Writing a letter to god often clarifies
what you really want to pray about.
2. Drawing prayers:
Equipment: Art paper and pencils, crayons etc.
Instructions: In response to the Bible reading, divide a piece of art paper in two. On the left side, draw how you think the world, your country or your community is today - particularly the bits/people you think need praying for. On the right side, draw how you would like it to be and/or how you think God would like it to be.
NB: This is between you and God. It is not an art exam. It will not be marked!!! Nobody will see it. So...enjoy praying.
3. Wallet prayers:

Found in Multi-Sensory Scripture by Sue Wallace, Scripture Union, 2005, ISBN 1844271668, page 14 and 45 (pictured at left).

Proper 19 Ordinary 24 C (September 11): In the Shadow of God's Wings


 
Bible Readings: Jeremiah 4:11-12, 22-28, Psalm 14, 1 Timothy 1:12-17, Luke 15:1-10

About the Images:


Upper Left: This is my photo with text from the Third Day song below which is based on a psalm but which generally speaks about God's love for us and how God wants the best for us. The photo was taken at Rainbow Beach, Queensland, Australia (for more info on this beautiful area, visit http://www.rainbow-beach.org). Please feel free to use this image for worship and related activities.

Upper Right: This is a microsoft free clipart image. I thought it went well with my theme - in the shadow of God's wings.
Lower Left: This is a view of Capernaum.  You can see how dark the building stones are and how dark the inside of a house would have been. You can also see that the floors are cobbled. Consequently there are two reasons to need  a broom.  This is my image - please feel free to use it for worship and related activities.

Listening Song: Your Love O Lord
By Third Day on their album, Time (pictured ay left). This goes well with all of the readings set down for today.

Film Clip: The Holy Man

Show the clip where G tells everybody that even making a difference in one person's life is a big deal. This is that old well known starfish story presented in a slightly different way.  Start at around 1hr 1 -2 minutes with the words "ok, ok, here's the teleprompter....when the red light goes on. .."



Discussion Questions for the Film Clip:

When you hear the starfish story, how does it make you feel?

How does the story relate to you?

Describe someone who has made a difference to you. What did he/she do?

What could we do together to make a difference?

What does it mean to be connected to God?


Skit: The Lost Coin
Found in Let's Make a Scene Too by Verena Johnson, Lutheran Publishing House, 1991, ISBN 085910608X, Page 22 (pictured at left).


Story: It's a Big Ocean to be Lost in
Found in A Guide to the Parables of Jesus by H.H. Staton or at http://jmm.aaa.net.au/articles/20170.htm - scroll down to find the story and see the bottom of the page for copyright info.


Adult Response:
Give everyone a coin (I used chocolate ones) and ask:

Do you believe that there are parties thrown in heaven just for you?



Also:


Story Plus Other Stuff: Wally the Dodgy Trolley

Found in Wally the Dodgy Trolley and other Stories of Faith and Humour by Ian Johnson, Scripture Union Australia, Lidcombe, 2000, ISBN 0949720984, page 5.

Kids: Cecil The Lost Sheep
By Andrew McDonough, Lost Sheep Resources, 2006. Absolutely the best story series around for kids and adults. My whole congregation is delighted every time we use one of these wonderful books.


Kids: Way Home
By Libby Hathorn, Random House,  with lots of ideas for a whole worship service found in Worship is For Everyone by Julie Pinazza, Openbook Publishers, 2000, ISBN 0859109259, page 29. This goes well with the Luke reading.

Kids: The Lost Sheep
By Nick Butterworth and Mick Inkpen, found in Stories Jesus Told  by the above authors, Candle books, 2005, ISBN 101859855881.


Kids: The Ten Silver Coins
By Nick Butterworth and Mick Inkpen, found in Stories Jesus Told  by the above authors, Candle books, 2005, ISBN 101859855881.

All Sorts of Useful Stuff: Shepherd's Delight
By Ian Birkinshaw in Multi-Sensory Parables, Scripture Union, 2006, ISBN 9781844272310, page 39.  This is based on the Gospel. 


Sunday, July 24, 2016

Proper 18 Ordinary 23 C (September 4): Letting Go Letting God


 
 Bible Readings: Jeremiah 18:1-11, Psalm 139 1-6, 13-18, Philemon 1-21, Luke 14:25-33.

About the Images:
Upper Left: Sometimes , in order to appreciate beauty, we have to let go of things that make life comfortable.  This is an image of the Simpson Desert in the Australian outback. Please feel free to use this image for worship and related activities. For more info on the Simpson, visit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simpson_Desert 
Upper Right: This is a free Microsoft clipart image and goes very well with my theme of Letting Go, Letting God.
Lower Left: This goes with the image above - the things we voluntarily let go of in order to appreciate something better - like swapping a house for a swag when we want to enjoy the beauty of an isolated desert.
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've Always Loved You
By Third Day on their album, Time (pictured at left). This makes a great declaration of grace after the prayer of Confession. I made a film clip of this song matching the words with relevant images.



Listening Song: Psalm 139
By Sons of Korah on their album, Rain (pictured at right). I made a film clip of this song putting relevant images up as it played.

Kid's Time: Holidays
Show them some photos of a camping holiday and relate this to the things that they need to leave behind in order to have an exciting time eg you cannot take your bed camping, instead you take a swag, you cannot take your oven, instead you light a fire, you cannot take your electric kettle, instead you take a billy etc etc. Relate this to the gospel reading.



Film Clip: The Apostle
Use the scene right near the end of the film where Sonny lets go of his church and allows himself to be arrested so that he can clean up the wrongs things in his life.






Story: How Will The Church be Lighted?
Just google the title of this story and you will find it easily in any number of places.

Adult Response:
Ask people to find a partner and discuss the following two questions together:

1. What do you find hard to let go of?
2. What sort of things make it hard for you to be a disciple? Is it time, is it energy, is it doubt about God, is it some sadness or loss?
Afterwards ask each person to write a prayer for their partner (provide paper and pens) and seal it in an envelope (also provided) on which they will put their partner's name and address. Ask everyone to put their letters in the offering plate as it comes around. I collected all the envelopes and posted them about a month later. I received heaps of good feedback on this. People were not only touched by the prayer they received, but they also appreciated the reminder it brought to them of their discussion.



Also:


Story Plus Other Stuff: Wuncy Nicks Off

Found in Wally the Dodgy Trolley and other Stories of Faith and Humour by Ian Johnson, Scripture Union Australia, Lidcombe, 2000, ISBN 0949720984, page 75.

Poem/Meditation: Jonah
By Ruth Burgess in Dandelions and Thistles: Biblical Meditations from the Iona Community by Jan Sutch Pickard (ed.) Wild Goose Publications, 1999, ISBN 1901557146, page 32 (pictured at left). This goes well with the Jeremiah reading.



Kids: Jesse

By Tim Winton, Penguin Books Australia,  with lots of ideas for a whole worship service found in Worship is For Everyone by Julie Pinazza, Openbook Publishers, 2000, ISBN 0859109259, page 49. This goes well with the Psalm reading.


Taize Service: Fearfully and Wonderfully Made
Found in Worship Feast by Taize, Abingdon Press, 2004, page 16. This is based on the Psalm reading.


Prayer Exercise: Silence and Solitude
Found in Prayer: Heart of the Pilgrimage by Jenny Youngman, Upper Room Books, Nashville, 2007, ISBN 0835898369, page 52.  This is based on the Psalm reading.

For Children and Families: God is Forever
Found in Rewind by Beth Barnett, SUVictoria, 2011, ISBN987098710035, navigate from page 5. This is based on the Psalm reading. 


Proper 17 Ordinary 22 C (August 28): Hospitality


 
NB: There is an updated 2019 blog for these readings....1st September

Bible Readings: Jeremiah 2:4-13, Psalm 81:10-16, Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16, Luke 14:1, 7-14. 

About the images:
Upper Left: This is a microsoft free clipart image with my text.
Upper Right: This is a photo of my daughter Kate and her friend Adrian, from Singapore, giving each other cross cultural cooking tips. Please feel free to use this image for worship and other related activities.
Lower Left: Staying in the town of Bethlehem on the West Bank regularly , I am always overwhelmed by the depth and the breadth of the hospitality showered upon us when we are there.  This is ka'ak being cooked - best breakfast ever! Please feel free to use this image for worship and other related activities. 


Listening Song: Come to the Table
by Michael Card on his album, Joy in the Journey, 1984 (pictured at right).

Film Clip: Les Miserables

Use the clip at the very beginning of the film where the bishop invites Valjean in and treats him as an honoured guest. This clip can be sourcesdfrom the excellent Wingclips site - see my link column at left. There is a cost for quality clips but it is minimal and well worth it.



Story: Take As Much As You Can


Index 1602 from Bible Illustrator for Windows Version 1.0d, Parsons Technology Inc., 1990

Story: Robert Coles meets Dorothy Day

A great story which explains the gospel reading beautifully. Found in Dorothy Day: A Radical Devotion by Robert Coles, Addison-Wesley, 1987, ISBN-10: 0201079747 (pictured at left)

History: The Early Church in Rome
A story about the generosity of the early Roman church written by William Willimon and found in Pulpit Resources, July September, 2001, page 41.


Also:
Prayers: 
Found in The Abingdon Worship Annual by Mary J Scifres and B. J. Beu (Eds.), Abingdon Press, Nashville, 2012, ISBN 9781426746796, page 205 (pictured at right). There are plenty of prayers for different parts of the service based on all of the readings. 
 
Story: The Quality of Silence
Found in  Resources for Preaching and Worship - Year C compiled by Hannah Ward and Jennifer Wild, Westminster John Knox Press, 2003, ISBN 066422508X, page 239 (pictured at left).  I think this fits well with any of the readings. 
 
Poem and Prayer: No Such Thing (as a free meal)
Found in Dad and Daughter by Ron Gordon and Jennie Gordon, 2012, ISBN 9780646586601, page 172 (pictured at right).  This lovely poem and prayer connects well with  the gospel reading.



Taize Service: Mutual Love

Found in Worship Feast by Taize, Abingdon Press, 2004, page 26. This is based on the Hebrews reading.


Kids: Chairs and Prayers
Found in Party On Together by Beth Barnett and Dr Keith Dyer, Scripture Union, 2010, page 77. This is based on the Gospel reading. This resource is also available in electronic form through the Baptist Union of Victoria website, www.buv.com.au. where it can be copied freely for non-commercial use.