Advent Prayer — Bullies … and the remarkable liturgical gifts of Richard Bott

Thursday, December 4, 2014 … Dealing with Bullies

God, I pray for bullies,
with their broken and defaced lives
out of which they scrawl
an ugly swearing
across the lives of others.

I pray for those bullied
because of weight or race,
accent or poverty,
the sexual orientation of their parents
the wrong pair of shoes,
or the way loneliness
paints a bullseye on their faces.

I pray for young defenders,
full of church,
too many Marvel comics
or good heart,
but often buying
their own pack of trouble.

I pray for adults –
teachers and administrators,
guidance counselors,
therapists, police,
school board members

and especially parents –

trying to find a path to healing,
and to repress their inner Wolverine.
Amen.

Sharing a Candle-lighting for the third Sunday in Advent — the words are Richard Bott, United Church of Canada pastor from British Columbia, Canada and the music — yes you can sing all but the prayer — with a male and female voice and congregational chorus is Silver Bells.””Silver Bells” was first performed by Bob Hope and Marilyn Maxwell in the movie The Lemon Drop Kid, 1951. The first recorded version was by Bing Crosby and Carol Richards.

Week 3: Joy

Candle Lighting / Call to Worship:1293122737

1: It’s a story, quite a story,
that began long ago,
when the prophets foretold
a messiah.
2: Line of David, it was stated
would bring forth a new son,
who would change the world –
turn up-side down!
A: Angel’s words, angel’s wings –
new life is growing, my heart sings:

“Peace on earth, enough for all!
Soon we’ll be living God’s way.”

1: Then there’s Mary (not yet married)
gave her, “Yes,” to the plan
with her love, she became co-creator.
Child of Wisdom, Child of Promise,
here comes Emmanuel!
And with that joy, she sang out her song –
A: Angel’s words, angel’s wings –
new life is growing, my heart sings:

“Peace on earth, enough for all!
Soon we’ll be living God’s way!”
(Third Candle is lit)

Prayer:
A: For the mothers who are ready
to tear tyrants from their thrones,
so that their children may live and love;
for the fathers that stand beside them,
to offer strength and support –
Alleluia, God!
May the joy that we feel in your Presence,
fill us with life abundant,
so that, when the time is right,
that joy can be birthed, new,
into your Creation.
Alleluia.
Alleluia!
ALLELUIA!
Amen!

Richard keeps right on going — this is a possible Advent Candle lighting (can be sung to the tune of “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” [without the stalkerish bits!] which our church in Madbury is certainly going to be singing:

One: Oh, with hearts open wide,
with hands open, too;
living God’s love each and every day, through –
All: Jesus people, walking Christ’s Way.

Two: Opportunities here,
opportunities there,
using our talents, God’s gifts we will share –
All: Jesus people, walking Christ’s Way.

One: This Advent flame is burning,
to brighten day and night,
invites us to discipleship –
to shine out the Christ-light!

Two: Oh, with hearts open wide,
with hands open, too;
living God’s love each and every day, through –
All: Jesus people, walking Christ’s Way!

A possible Adventy-carolish reworking of “Joy to the World,” again Richard

Love is alive, in every heart;
as Jesus’ birth draws near!
We’re opening our li-ves, inviting others i-n –
it’s the year of Jubilee,
it’s the year of Jubilee,
it’s the ye-ar, the ye-ar, of Jubilee!

Now light this flame, remembering God’s grace [or love] –
for you, for me, for all!
The Christ-child, he is co-ming;
the Christ-child, he is nea-r;
to teach us of God’s love,
t-o teach us of God’s love,
t-o tea-ch, to tea-ch u-s of God’s love!

Let us go out, as people of Christ’s Way,
to share this grace [or love] that lives!
With the Holy Family, in this sacred sea-son,
pre-paring for the One,
pre-paring for the One,
pre-paring, pre-par-ing for the One!

And a possible Advent 3 chattin’ with God,prayer:

All: It’s what it’s all about, isn’t it, God?
Love, alive, carried in the womb,
ready to be born,
to live, to grow,
to be!
We’re like Jesus’ parents,
wondering if we’ve done all we can
to get ready.
But, even if we haven’t,
even if we’ve missed something,
your love is with us,
and with all the world.
Help us to live that love,
in ways that change the world,
as much as this birth-to-be!
In Jesus name,
in the Creator’s love,
in the Spirit’s dance,
we ask it. Amen.

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