Church Stuff-More or less

Does the church make sense or do we make it too hard for people to come in? I think yes and yes and the task then is to make it easier. Maybe for someone out there, this will be the case. I write as a Lutheran (or, perhaps a Lutherpalian) although I might seem out of the mainstream from time to time. That's okay, isn't it? Let's blog on.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Eucharistic Prayer at time of Senseless Tragedy


This morning, I received and email from the Rt. Rev. Ian T. Douglas, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut, asking permission to use this prayer in the churches of his diocese tomorrow. I am deeply honored and profoundly moved to think of this possibility. I wrote this prayer following the VA Tech massacre in 2007. It also saddens me that it might be offered.

 
P: It is truly right and a good and joyful thing that we give you thanks,

at all times and in all places,

in times of gladness and of sadness,

Holy Father, eternal and all-powerful God,

through Christ our Lord.

In him you have brought us through the waters of baptism and

made us one body, the church, the communion of saints.

Therefore with the whole Church on earth,

with angels and all the saints,

we proclaim your glory and with one voice sing (say):

The Sanctus is sung or said.

 

P: You are indeed holy, O God, the fountain of all holiness.

Over the waters of creation, you brought light from darkness.

Out of the waters of the flood, you brought life from death.

Through the waters of the Red Sea, you brought freedom from bondage.

In the waters of baptism, you bring communion from isolation.

With Rachel, you wail for your children because they are no more.

With Jesus, you weep over the death of Lazarus, his friend.

Like a mother hen, you yearn to comfort and protect your chicks.

In the passion of your Son, you bring all our pains and all our sorrows into your very Self.

We thank you for creation, for redemption, and for your love that will reconcile and rule all in all.

 

Especially we thank you for the gift of Jesus,

who is one with you and makes us one in him and one in the faith of your Church.

May we, as insufficient as we are,

be strengthened to offer comfort and forgiveness to those most affected by this tragedy.

 

On the night before he suffered death,

as Jesus gathered his friends around the table he took bread and,

offering thanks to you;

he broke it, and gave it to all of them, saying:

“Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.”

After all of them had eaten, he again took the cup and, offering thanks to you,

he gave it for all to drink, saying:

“This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me.”

For as often as we eat of this bread and drink from this cup, we proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

C: Christ has died. Christ has risen. Christ will come again.

 

P: Therefore, O God, with this bread and cup we remember the incarnation of your Son,

his prayer that we may be one,

his death and resurrection,

his ascension and continual intercession for us,

and his sending of the life giving spirit.

We cry out for the resurrection of our lives and the lives of those untimely taken,

when Christ will come again in beauty and power to share with us the great and promised feast.

C: Amen. Come Lord Jesus.

 

P: Send your Holy Spirit to bless us and these your gifts of bread and wine,

that the bread we break may be a communion in the body of Christ,

and that the cup we share may be a communion in the blood of Christ.

C: Amen. Come, Holy Spirit,

 

P: In the waters of baptism you have made us one with him;

give us unity in the faith in this time of inexplicable death,

and enable us to grow in all things in him.

May we hear Jesus say to us as he said to the widow of Nain and to Jairus “Do not weep” and to her son and his daughter “Rise.”

Join our prayers with those of your servants of every time and every place,

and unite them with the ceaseless petitions of our great high priest until he comes as victorious Lord of all.

C: Through him, with him, in him,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

all honor and glory are yours almighty

God, now and forever. Amen.

 

P: And now with the confidence of children

of God, we boldly pray:

C: Our Father in heaven…

 

Permission granted for one time local use of the Eucharistic Prayer at time of Senseless Tragedy from "In Remembrance of Me-Eucharistic Prayers for the Lesser Feasts and Festivals and other times in the life of the Church" copyright 2012 The Rev. John F. C. Dornheim

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