At this time of the year, you invite me to imitate both Mary and Joseph.
You call me to listen carefully to dreams, strangers, intuitions and angels,
You call me to ask questions with an open heart and mind,
You call me to respond with courage and trust,
You call me to bring the precious, fragile and delicate message of love to birth in the world.
Parish Bulletin Notice
8 August 2017 (anniversary of her death)
St Mary of the Cross MacKillop (1842–1909) our first Australian saint, had a passion to ensure that education was available to poor children right across the Australian countryside. She went to extraordinary means and difficulties to pursue the calling and have her sisters travel to where the greatest need existed. She exhibited courage, trust, openness and raw faith in her deliberations and actions.
The Scriptures challenge us with stories of hospitality.
Angels arrive unannounced at the tent of Abraham and Sarah
and then promise an impossible gift of life.
A prostitute bargains with spies for her safety
and the way is opened for the Hebrew people to come into a new land.
We pray for ourselves, we who are church:
That we humbly acknowledge the wound of abuse;
That we resurrect a community of radical love, inclusiveness and solidarity;
That we become an oasis for the weary and downtrodden;
That we explore truth from various sources and live with a creative ‘Kingdom’ tension;
That we speak a language of affirmation and compassion;
That we serve humbly as Jesus did
God of this New Year, I am walking into mystery.
I face the future, not knowing what the days and months will bring or how I will respond.
Be love in me as I journey from the familiar and into the new.
Deepen my faith to see all of life with Your eyes.
Fill me with hope and a deep trust in You.
Thank You for the treasure of life and the opportunity for education, growth and meaningful work.
Thank You for the gift of being able to rise each day with the assurance of Your presence.
God of this New Year, I praise you. Amen.
May there be peace in your family and joy in your coming together.
May you grow in gratefulness and simplicity.
May the wonder and awe of children be awakened within you.
May you greet each person like another Christ.
May the hope of this sacred season settle in your soul.
May the coming year be one of good health for you.
May you go often to the Bethlehem of your heart and visit the One who brings deep and sustaining peace.
Reader: Come, Holy Spirit, breath divine
All: Open us for your presence
Reader: Refresh and give life to what is exhausted and tired
All: Drive away fear out of our hearts
Reader: Come, Holy Spirit, wind divine
All: Wake up our longing, create a new beginning among us
Gracious God, we pray for ourselves and all women as leaders.
Give us and them, open hearts and opportunities to serve.
Give us and them, listening hearts so that your words flow through us as we talk, teach, serve and lead.
Give us and them, the courage to step outside of our plans and programs if you have another path for us to take, as well as the discipline to stay on course amidst distraction and interruption.