Lent 4 – Listening in the darkness

Prayers of Adoration

Redeemer God,

We place our hope in you,
Like an owl in the desert, a sparrow alone and afraid.
We seek our rest in the limitless wideness of your heart.

Our confidence is in you,
For your power is without malice,
Your generosity is without boundary,
Your justice is without revenge,
Your love is without distinction,
Your mercy is without end,
And your grace is an ocean that stretches
to a horizon shining with unlookable brightness.

In the light of your Easter coming,
our hope rises from your son Jesus.
Springing up to the sun, like a flower on the branch.
And in the transfiguring light of your empty tomb,
we dare to say that all shall be well.

Though rulers in their thrones change the hand of peace
for the rod of war, all shall be well.
Though regimes pursue the simple task of order,
and forget the complex craft of justice, all shall be well.

Though the pews of the Church should empty, all shall be well.
Though our endeavours should fail and hopes should fade, all shall be well.
Though we should be distant from those we love.
Though we should weep with the pains of grief,
The relentlessness of illness,
The pangs of loneliness, despair or disappointment,
In the light of your everlasting love,
and through the transforming coming of your son,
we hold to your promise that all shall be well, all shall be well,
And all manner of things shall be well.

Daniel Broadstock, offered for worship, 11/3/18, Lent 4

Our worship included a time of Lament, Confession & Commitment in response to the recently released final report of the Royal Commission into Child Sexual Abuse to express our deep concern for the victims of sexual abuse.  A separate blog post will be prepared to mark and share this response.

Prayers of the People

I will lead us now in our prayers of the people.
I have written these with some on this week’s events in mind:
the people besieged in eastern Ghouta, Syria as war continues
the posturing and poor behaviour of political leaders in our State,
nationally and internationally
the halt to rubbish removal in some municipalities
the agreement of Vic and NSW to join a national redress scheme
for victims of sexual abuse
and of course,
our response to the findings of the Royal Commission into Child Abuse.

At the of the prayers I will light the oil lamp in the chapel
and I invite you to light a taper and offer your own prayer there if you wish.

Let us pray:

Loving God, Light in the darkness,
We pray for places of darkness where there is violence …
violence of war, where people living their ordinary lives
become pawns in something that is not of their making,
yet it is their homes, their businesses, their families, friends
and their lives that are destroyed.

Loving God, may your light shine in this darkness to create peace.

Compassionate Jesus, light in the darkness,
We pray for places of darkness where power is abused,
Where truth is manipulated, trust is betrayed,
responsibility abrogated, and leaders don’t speak out,
Where institutions and positions are valued more highly that people.

Compassionate Jesus, may your light shine in this darkness and bring truth.

Life giving Sprit, light in the darkness,
We pray for places of darkness where the environment is abused,
and not treasured as a source of life,
Where rubbish is created needlessly,
where some expect others to clean up after them,
where people don’t even think about what they do
and the impact of their lifestyle choices on our planet.

Life Giving Spirit, may your light shine in this darkness and bring renewal.

Living God, Compassionate Jesus, Life Giving Spirit,
we bring these and the prayers of our hearts before you,
that your light may shine in the darkness.

Kirsty Bennett, offered for worship, 11/3/18, Lent 4