All Saints Sunday

All Saints Sunday, Year A

all saints butterflyYearly Rhythm

2 November 2014
All Saints Sunday, 
Year A,
Colour: White/Red

On All Saints Sunday we thank God for his touch of love, care and guidance we receive through others.  We remember figures in our shared history as well as those who have been special in our lives and the life of our churches.

Daily Rhythm

Bringing worship into the everyday

       Devotional Diary
27 Oct – 2 Nov 2014

DOWNLOAD THE PDF HERE

This week we are praying for a harvest of fruit in our lives:
love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control!

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for this week from www.gbod.org

Revelation 7:9-17. John observes, inquires about, and reports on “the heavenly liturgy,” a scene of perpetual worship by the saints, the angels and the heavenly creatures before the Divine Throne.

Psalm Response: Psalm 34.

I John 3:1-3. We do not know exactly what the life of the coming age will be like, but we know that we are to be like Christ. So we must focus on purifying ourselves now, pursuing the practices of a holy life.

Matthew 5:1-12. Jesus teaches how God’s kingdom is reordering the life of the world. God is actively blessing those who live this way. Here is the heart of Wesley’s understanding of the possibility of all Christians becoming saints; or, as he would put it, allowing “sanctifying grace” to complete its work in us. Sainthood is not something reserved for a special few, but available to all who let God’s grace align their lives with what God is already blessing.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE READINGS HERE

Monday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 24:1) The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it…

Confession: Ephesians 5:22-23: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”  This week let the Spirit of God examine your heart against the fruit of the Spirit.  Then, where there is a lack, allow the Spirit to fill you with His life and grow His fruit. Today: Self-control

The Word: See readings above or use your own devotional resources.

Seeking the Kingdom

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing, pray!”  This week we pray for God’s harvest of fruit in this world.   Think of the fruit of the Spirit and each day pray a particular fruit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness or self-control) into a situation or person that you lift before God. Today: Self-control.

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

                Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 23:1) The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: Gentleness.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing, pray!”  See Monday’s Shared Focus. Today: Gentleness

Personal Prayers:

               Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

 Wednesday: 

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 22:28) …for dominion belongs to the Lord and he rules over the nations.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.  Today: Faithfulness.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing, pray!”  See Monday’s Shared Focus. Today: Faithfulness.

Personal prayers:

               Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

Thursday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 19:1) The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.  Today: Kindness and goodness.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing, pray!” See Monday’s Shared Focus. Today: Kindness and goodness.

Personal prayers:

               Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

Friday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 18:46) The Lord lives!  Praise be to my Rock!  Exalted be God my Saviour!

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: Patience.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing, pray!” See Monday’s Shared Focus. Today: Patience.

Personal prayers:

                Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

Saturday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 16:11) You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: Peace and joy.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing pray!” See Monday’s Shared Focus.  Today: Peace and joy.

Personal prayers:

               Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

Sunday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 13:6) I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: Love.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Remember: “Pray without ceasing pray!”  See Monday’s Shared Focus. Today: Love.

Personal prayers:

               Dedication: “Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me; break me, melt me, mould me, make me. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.” (Daniel Iverson 1890-1977)

                                                                          

Weekly Rhythm

Exploring Scripture
Joining our stories to the stories of God’s people

(Download the PDF here)

Revised Common Lectionary readings and notes in italics with thanks to www.gbod.org

Revelation 7:9-17. John observes, inquires about, and reports on “the heavenly liturgy,” a scene of perpetual worship by the saints, the angels and the heavenly creatures before the Divine Throne.This great multitude of saint comes from every nation, tribe, peoples, and languages (see also Revelation: 5:9, 13:7, 14:6.)  The point of unity is the slain Lamb of God.  All the saints find their life in the lamb. As we prepare for All Saints Sunday we remember where the life of the saints comes from.

Go further:
What can we learn from the way the saints find their source and centre for life in the lamb?
What can you do that will move you in that direction?

Psalm 34. A psalm that thanks the Lords and rejoicing in him as the source of life for the saints.  He will bring us through all things.

I John 3:1-3. Again we see that the source of purity (the God life we are called to) is only through Christ.  Our new lives are shaped by Christ.

Go further:
How is Christ shaping your life?
How can you co-operate with Christ in this work of transformation?

Matthew 5:1-12.Jesus teaches how God’s kingdom is reordering the life of the world. God is actively blessing those who live this way. Here is the heart of Wesley’s understanding of the possibility of all Christians becoming saints; or, as he would put it, allowing “sanctifying grace” to complete its work in us. Sainthood is not something reserved for a special few, but available to all who let God’s grace align their lives with what God is already blessing.” (gbod.org)

Go further:
As you read through this passage see how it calls you to a completely different way of life. What does this look like for you?

 

Praying the Lectionary Readings

A Responsive Call to Worship for All Saints Day

(Hebrews 12: 1)

We remember, O God…

The countless saints of history
who have blazed a trail of courage through time,

We remember, O God…
The tender touch of loved ones,
the example of heroes,
the healing words of comforters,
the remarkable acts of fearless ones.

We remember, O God…
The gentle strength of grandmothers,
the loyalty of friends,
the kindness of strangers,
the joy of children,
the sacrifice of parents.

We remember, O God…
The supreme love of Jesus,
the blessing of his Spirit,
the reminder of his words,
the sharing of his suffering,
the glory of his resurrection:
shown forth in the lives of his disciples,
   young and old,
   dead and living,
   articulate and silent,
   strange and familiar,
   brilliant and ordinary.

We remember in every time and place the saints of God
who have shown us the Lord.

Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses…
let us worship God with joy!

— posted on the Desperate Preacher’s website.


Litany for All Saints Day

O Cosmic Christ, in you and through you
and for you,
all things were created;

in you
all things hold together
and have their being.

Through Teilhard de Chardin,
scientist of the cosmos,
you imagined a new heaven and a new earth.
Through Teresa of Avila,
charismatic leader,
you inspired a church of courage and wisdom.
Through Mahatma Gandhi,
great soul,
you became nonviolent in the struggle for justice.
Through Catherine of Siena,
fearless visionary,
you forged a new path for women.
Through Meister Eckhart,
creative mystic,
you refused to abandon the inner light.
Through Hildegard of Bingen,
greenness of God,
you poured out juicy, rich grace on all creation.
Through Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,
drum major of freedom,
you shattered racial barriers
and freed dreamers to dream.
Through Anne Frank,
writer and witness,
you preserved goodness in the midst of great evil.
Through Cesar Chavez,
noble farmworker,
you transformed the dignity of human labor.
Through Vincent Van Gogh,
artist of light,
you revealed the sacredness
in sunflowers
and in starry nights.
Through Nelson Mandela,
reconciling leader

You birthed a rainbow nation
Through John Wesley,
who’s parish was the world,
you awakened awareness of lives transformed by love.
Through Mother Teresa of Calcutta,
guardian of the unwanted,
you enfleshed a reverence for all life.
Through Thomas Merton,
universal monk,
you explored the sanctity of every human search.
Through Mary Magdalene,
apostle to the apostles,
you ordained women to proclaim the good news.
Through Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,
musician of Holy Mystery,
you bathed the world in beauty.
Through Julian of Norwich,
anchoress and seer,
you showed the Mother image of God.
Through Dom Bede Griffiths,
marriage of East and West,
you unveiled the divine face
at the heart of the world.
Through Joan of Arc,
defender and protector,
you remained true to personal conscience
over institutional law.
Through Rumi,
poet in ecstasy,
you illuminated friendship as mystical union.
Through Maura Clarke and Companions,
martyrs of El Salvador,
you rise again in the hopes of the dispossessed.
Through Rabbi Abraham Heschel,
Hasidic sage,
you answered our search for meaning
with wonder, pathos for the poor, and Sabbath rest.
Through Dorothy Day,
pillar of the poor,
you recognized holiness as bread for the hungry.

O Cosmic Christ,
in your heart
all history finds meaning and purpose.
In the new millennium,
in the celebration of jubilee
help us find that which we all seek:
a communion of love
with each other
and with you, the Alpha and Omega,
the first and last,
the yesterday, today, and tomorrow,
the beginning without end.
Amen. (Adapted and shortened)

 

— written by Mary Lou Kownacki, OSB, is executive director of Alliance of International Monasticism, which links 200 Benedictine and Cistercian communities in the developing world with those in the United States. She is also director of development and communications for the Benedictine sisters of Erie, PA. She is the author of Between Two Souls: Conversations with Ryokan. Posted on theSpirituality and Practice website.


Pastoral Prayer

(inspired by Matthew 5:3-12)

 

Jesus went up the mountain, sat before the crowd,
and began to speak.
We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Richness and fullness in wealth, in knowledge, in spirit do not draw us to heaven. May we be filled with an emptiness and poverty that draws us ever closer to you. May we bring an end to emptiness and poverty that leaves any one isolated and without hope. Bless all with the kingdom of heaven. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Clinging to existence we forget to live. Striving for long years we forsake years that are long. May we release those to whoms’ memories, we cling. May we acknowledge our sadness and loss. You are with those who have died, be with all those who mourn, make us the instruments of your comfort. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Longing for power, surety, and the status quo we create systems of privilege, false normals, and stagnation. May we cease to seek privilege and instead long for the dignity of all. May we cease to seek surety and instead long for growth. May we give up stagnation and embrace humility. Make us see the common humanity of all who live on this earth. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Striving for satiation we surround ourselves with false comforts; in trying to be right we ignore the pain of others. Make us aware of the troubles and concerns around us, take away our security so that we might share that discomfort, bring us to hunger and thirst for righteousness so that everyone may be filled in truth. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Anger fills us with a need for vengeance and harsh justice; we seek to lessen our pain by inflicting pain upon others. May we acknowledge our anger but not be held by it. May we seek justice for the wrongs done against us but not be defined by them. Give us the gift to be merciful with ourselves and merciful with others so that all may receive mercy. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Refusing to look inward we carry emotional baggage, we leave parts of ourselves in shadow and darkness, we maintain ingrained habits and reactions. May we acknowledge our immaturity and a need to grow to more full and complete individuals. May we bring light into our inner darkness. Give us pure hearts oh God, so that we might see your face. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Destruction, not creation, becomes the all too easy answer for conflict. May we elect and maintain governments that seek not a cessation of violence but the creation that is the true opposite of war. May we recognize that creating cultures of peace is as much the cumulative action of our day to day lives as it is the acts of those in power. God grant that we might always strive for peace, that we might be called the children of God. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Limited as we are it is impossible to know and understand you fully. May we strive to discern when we are being persecuted for witnessing your truth and when we are being critiqued to know you more fully. May we never claim persecution in order to avoid necessary change. Grant that any adversity we face may bring us only closer to the truth of your kingdom. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

Christians throughout the world seek to walk the path that Jesus set for us. May we never walk the easy path of complacency. May we ever seek to speak your truth. May we never stop on the account of social stigma. May we ever seek to die to the world and live in Christ Crucified. Grant that we will continue to walk the way of the prophets and saints of old. We are the crowd.
May we listen, learn, and do. 

 

~ written by Ben G., and posted on ExtraORDOnary

 

Benediction

(based on Revelation 7: 12, 16-17)

 

Blessing and glory and wisdom
and thanksgiving and honour and power
and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen!
We go out to be God’s people.
Go in strength to be the saints of God
for you will hunger no more, and thirst no more;
the sun will not strike you, nor any scorching heat.
We go out to be God’s people.
Live the way of God with confidence
for God is your shepherd,
and will guide you to the spring of life.
We go out to be God’s people.

 

— from Seasons of the Spirit: All Saints Day—Year A, published by WoodLake Publishing.