Sunday, October 28, 2018

Proper 27 Ordinary 32 B (November 11): What's really important?

Bible Reading: Ruth 3:1-5, 4:13-17. Psalm 127, Hebrews 9:24-28, Mark 12:38-44

About the above images:
Upper Left: My text on an free image from
Upper Right: This a my photo  of Aussie money - you might prefer to take a photo of your own currency, however the face on the $20 note is that of John Flynn, missionary to the Outback, Australian pioneer, early aviator, explorer and founder of the Royal Flying Doctor Service. This is my image so please feel free to use this image for worship and related activities.
Middle Left:  This is a scale model of the Temple where the gospel reading is set today. This is my image so please feel free to use this image for worship and related activities.
Middle Right: This is my image with words from the Psalm.
Lower Left: Free photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

Listening Song: Psalm 127: Unless the Lord Builds the House
By Sons of Korah on their album Shelter (pictured at right).

Kid's Story: A Penny is Everything
This story, based on the Gospel reading is by Walter Wangerin Jr, (one of my all time favourite authors - if you can find anything by him, either for children or adult, it is well worth the read) and Jack Glover, Arch Books, 1074, ISBN 0570060842 (pictured at left).

For Youth or as an Introduction to the Gospel Theme:
"Mr. Bagwell dropped a check into the plate and thought, Boy, I hope next week when they announce the promotions, God remembers that I gave this money.
Mrs. Bagwell watched their hard-earned money go into the plate and prayed silently: God; thanks for blessing us like you have. Please use this gift to reach more people with the gospel.
Andrew Bagwell reluctantly contributed fifty cents out of his five-dollar pocket money and thought, Why does Mum make me do this? I need this more than the church does!
Little Jessica waited until the plate was right in front of her, then she got out her coin purse and dropped in her five cents. Looking around, she noticed several people staring at her. She got all embarrassed because she just knew she had put in the smallest amount."
From Life Application Family Devotions by Len Woods, Tyndale House, 1997, ISBN 0842337504, page 272 (pictured at right).

Encourage people to answer the following question:
What is important to each of these people?
A discussion on this question goes particularly well if you divide the groups into ages that are roughly the same as the four people in the story - in our case, I divided people up into men, women, teenagers, and kids. To free child carers up, I sat in with the kids. 

Film Clip: Hook
(pictured at left) Show the scenes at the beginning when the father (Robin Williams) is too busy to spend time properly with his kids. This clip goes very well with the Gospel reading. 

Discussion: Hook
What is important to the various characters in the clip?
What is important to you?

Film Clip: 39 Pounds of Love
(pictured at right) Show the scene where Ami talks about his weight being equivalent to that of a large turkey and how he uses just a finger on his left hand to make beautiful animations. I found this clip at and I found some really thought provoking comments about the film, and this clip in particular, at It links well with the gospel reading.

Discussion: 39 Pounds of Love
1. What is important to Ami?
2. How does he make the most with what he has?

Film Clip: Two Copper Coins
By Work of the People - see my link at left

Drama: The Shirt off Your Back
In Mega Drama 4 by Verena Johnson (Ed.) Open Book, 2002, ISBN 0859100186, page 25 (pictured at left). This story is based on the gospel reading. 

When Bart Cummings' horse was scratched in a Melbourne Cup around the time of the Bali bombing, his words were: “Bali is a tragedy, this is just a disappointment”.

Poem: His Widow Complex
By Joseph G Donders in Imaging the Word, Volume 1, Uniting Church Press, 1994, ISBN 0829809708, page 64 (pictured at right). I have put various images related to the gospel reading with this poem and backed it with Look Back In by Moby on his album, 18.

Mention that it is not only money that we can give to God and the church. Talk about our time and talents .... Encourage people to hold the collection plate for a little while longer than they usually do (you may need to use more plates for this if your congregation is large and you want to finish in a reasonable time) and name in their minds something other than money or material possessions that they have that they can give to God and share with their community.

Communion: Nano- Communion
Roddy Hamilton's nano-communion for the 12 November 2006 is excellent and links in with the gospel reading beautifully. You will find it in his Mucky Paws archives (see link above left).


Kids: Let the Celebrations Begin
By Margaret Wild and Julie Vivas, Box Press,  with lots of ideas for a whole worship service found in Worship is For Everyone by Julie Pinazza, Openbook Publishers, 2000, ISBN 0859109259, page 55. This goes well with the Ruth reading.

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