I’m moving to a new post so glorioustings is moving too.
Come and see here
As we approach Pentecost I am loving this prayer by Sister Joan Chittister
May the Gifts of the Holy Spirit
bring fire to the earth
so that the presence of God
may be seen
in a new light,
in new places,
in new ways.
May our own hearts
burst into flame
so that no obstacle,
no matter how great,
ever obstructs the message
of the God within each of us.
May we come to trust
the Word of God in our heart,
to speak it with courage,
to follow it faithfully
and to fan it to flame in others.
May the Jesus
who filled women
with his Holy Spirit
fill the world and the church
with new respect
for women’s power and presence.
Give me, Great God,
a sense of the Breath of Spirit
within me as I…
(State the intention
in your own life at this time
for which you are praying.)
God always surprises me. I seem to remember back in January, on a gloomy day blue sky thinking with the RE teacher at the middle school (500 kids aged 9 to 13) that it would be fun to do an RE reflection day on the theme of Pentecost. I didn’t really expect her to be able to persuade the staff to do RE workshops let alone get the head to collapse the timetable for the day.
But….She is fab! On Monday we will be celebrating Pentecost in a big way. Lots of workshops and 2 communion services in church.
So here’s how I’m finishing off Joan’s prayer to make it mine
Give us Great God, a sense of the Breath of Spirit within us, as we join together to celebrate the birth of your church.
…and Lord, make the day fun for both children and staff; move amongst us with your transforming live giving Spirit
….oh and also I could do with some extra help with the eucharist so a bit of inspiration for who to ask and boldness to do so would be good too!
(or the 5 year olds in assembly)….you have prepared praise.
I love this job!
We’ve been doing a series of assemblies about prayer and have been learning the Lord’s prayer.
This morning the kids taught me what God’s kingdom is like.
We had been singing, ‘I’m special you’re special, each of us is special to God’. It’s a favourite. We have a wonderful DVD of them singing it cut with children from a school they are twinned with in Tafu, Ghana singing it in their language. It really is quite special, so is God’s name! (that was last week)
5 year old praise….
Each of us is special to God, so each of us should be special to each other. In a world where each of us is special to each other there would be no robbers, no fighting, we would be friends and play with each other and no one would be poor or hungry.
We think that is what God wants his world to be like. We want the world to be like that.
WOW! Ask a grown up what, ‘thy kingdom come’ means. See if you get a better answer.
through your goodness we have this bread to set before you,
which earth has given and human hands have made
It will become for us the bread of life.
And it did.
On Sunday afternoon at St A’s we had a ‘home made communion’ service which included everyone. It’s not often that I think we get all age worship right! We started by making bread together, something that our hands made. While it was cooking we prepared some thanksgiving prayers and the kids laid the table for our special meal together.
The prayers were a corporate act. We wrote them like you would play the game consequences. We sat in a circle and each person wrote at the top of a piece of paper a way to address God, for example, Holy God, Creator God or Loving Father. They fold down the top of the sheet and passed it to another person who then wrote something that we wanted to do eg, we will bless your holy name, or we will sing of your worth. The next person wrote because you ….. and the next and you…. We finished with so we will……… We then put the result (about ten separate prayers) to one side to use later. The children then taught the adults the actions to the Lord’s prayer that they had been learning in assembly over the previous weeks. By which time a lovely smell of baking bread wafted through from the kitchen and the children were able to bring some to the table.
We then read the prayers as part of the thanksgiving, blessed and broke the bread remembering what Jesus had done for us. With this bread that we had made with our hands we will remember Jesus and it did become for us the bread of life.
The glorious holy moment? Watching God touching the life of a six year old as he reverently passed the cup to his Mum. We handle holy things and holy lives.
I love this job.
Those who are skeptical that 120 children ranging from the age of 4 to 9 can pray together in the most profound way should have observed assembly this morning. It does help that one of their teachers has a Japanese wife, which brings that country into their world and that they know he may have cause to be worried at the moment.
In school we have a prayer tree. It is metal umbrella shape with crocodile clips to hold photos. We used origami to make peace cranes and hung them on the tree but instead of attaching a wish to each bird we thought about what we could ask God for and made it into a prayer.
I shouldn’t be surprised at how close to God children are. Instead of saying that they wanted God to stop the tsunami, they were asking for homes for those who had lost theirs, for friends for those who had lost theirs, for hope, for the rescuers and for God to keep people safe.
They then lit tea lights under the tree and watched the birds bob around in complete silence for more than 5 minutes and wanted to stay there for longer. God was touching us in that assembly hall and I think they sensed that. it is so important that we give children the opportunity to reflect and to be in touch with their spiritual life .
I am glad we are introducing space for quiet in their busy school lives. I am also pleased because if we a major local tragedy that affects them we now have some sort of process that they are familiar with by which to help them.
I found some gentle music to the Lord’s prayer and have designed some actions to help the children learn the words. The head walked in on assembly and thought we were doing Tai Chi. It certainly was a relaxing way to start the day. Might start every collective worship that way.
Obviously in her eyes I am preoccupied with writing sermons.
On the back of the card God is doing ‘godly stuff’. He’s dancing.