Lay Preaching Basics – by Rosalie Sugrue

Rosalie writes: “I have been concerned for some time that with less ordained clergy along with many parishes less able to employ full-time ministers, a heavier load than ever is being put on lay people to lead worship, many having to do so without training or mentoring. To help with this situation I have written a book that rolled off the printing press last week. Lay Preaching Basics – a Practical Guide for Leading Worship covers the nuts and bolts basics of what a lay preacher needs to know concerning the Bible and preparing services along with sample services and prayer resources. It is a book that would be useful for every preaching place to have ready to hand as it addresses all manner of preaching emergencies as well as supplying Bible information useful to any study group. In my section on additional resources I promote Word & Worship and the NZLPA website.”

Chapter headings include:
1 — Help! The Preacher hasn’t arrived
2 — Introduction to the Gospels
3 — Essential Background Knowledge
4 — Making Reflections Memorable
5 — Making Services Meaningful
6 — How to organise a church service
7 — Lectionary and Liturgy
8 — How to prepare a reflection (sermon)
9 — Service sheets and PowerPoints
10 — The Preacher’s Satchel
11 — Children’s Time / Family Time
12 — Circle and Cafe style services
13 — Services for rest homes
14 — Devotions: Ideas to build on
15 — Complete Service Samples
16 — Sample ‘Family Time’ slots
17 — Sample Cafe Services
18 — Ideas for Devotions, Family Time and Less Formal Services
19 — Sample Prayers
20 — Theology Guides for the 21st Century
21 — Additional Worship Resources

The book is available in paperback format from the publisher, Philip Garside Publishing Ltd, and a Kindle edition is available at amazon.com.au.  It is also available directly from the author, using the form below, which can also be downloaded here.

Lay Preaching Basics

 

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Liturgy for Disability Awareness Sunday

Liturgy for Disability Sunday (3rd Sunday in June) – by Rosalie Sugrue

Call to worship

To the God who walks on wounded feet
and heals with wounded hands,
To the God who stands beside us wounded,
all knowing and all loving,
To the God of imperfections
We offer our imperfect praise,
Trusting in the perfect love of the God
who knows what it is to be truly human.  …

 

The complete liturgy is available here.

 

disability-awareness 02

Pacific Day of Prayer

My apologies for the lateness in posting this, although it was not made available until fairly late in the process to begin with (4 May)!  If you are planning a Pacific day of Prayer in the coming weeks, this recourse may well prove very useful.

~ ~ ~ ~

PACIFIC CONFERENCE OF CHURCHES
PACIFIC DAY OF PRAYER 2018

Image result for pacific oceanCountry of FOCUS: Few of our regional countries was recently hit by Tropical Cyclones (SAMOA, TONGA and FIJI), if not included here, please do INCLUDE THEM – and despite our pain and sorrow, our struggle, we as people of the Pacific continue to celebrate our faith, we celebrate our King who is also our Savior, and we celebrate the strength and the resilience that GOD gave us in the midst of our dark, troubled times.  …

~ ~ ~ ~

For the complete liturgy, click here to download …

An Advent and Christmas Miscellany

A Collection of Advent Poems, Prayers and Blessings

A Liturgy for Advent and Christmas

Betty Shore has sent us an Advent/Nativity reflection/study she used with a group. You may be able to use all or part of this

A Birth in Bethlehem – a Nativity Play – by Joy Kingsbury-Aitken

If Jesus Came for the First Time This Year – A Nativity Story with a Modern Twist – by Joy Kingsbury Aitken

A Collection of Christmas Prayers and Blessings

Some Very Useful Websites

The Text This Week – a great starting point as you begin to work on service preparation

Faith and Worship – Prayers

Weekly Worship – this is from the Church of Scotland and provides useful material related to lectionary readings, prayers, and ideas for a children’s talk

Related imageStorypath – connecting Children’s Literature with our Faith Story – using the lectionary reading and providing good suggestions for linking the children’s story into the service

Lectionary and Worship – from the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia – has range of resources including suggestions of hymns from the New Zealand Hymn Book Trust that could be suitable for each Sunday, as well as Te Reo Maori worship resources

Week in Prayer – each Thursday posts a current prayer of intercession for the following Sunday.  You can sign up to have it emailed to you.  The sample below shows just how current it is.  It reflects the US environment from which it comes but it is truly international and, with a little tweaking, can be very valuable

World News This Week in Prayer – Thursday, October 19, 2017

Dear Lord,

Your people in Puerto Rico and across the Caribbean have looked up into rain flooded skies and out onto destroyed homelands, waiting for water, food, shelter and the provision of medical care. Open the hearts of decision makers to release funds to continue the rescue, to bring relief and stability. Smooth the communications to move people to care as the USNS Comfort (US naval ship) waits for the needy. Help us to grow in compassion as a people as we listen to news from hurricane-devastated places and during the long recovery, not forgetting the gulf coast.

We pray for the Rohingya peoples who await smugglers to take them across the Naf River between Myanmar and Bangladesh. Others make the treacherous journey to safety through jungles and mountains and into refugee camps such as BalukaliKutupalong and Nayapara, where the depth of need is continually expanding. Dear God, our Comforter and Protector, be with the nation of Bangladesh and the NGO’s as they summon all their capacity to meet the needs of these deeply suffering refugees. Surround exhausted families with nourishing sleep. Tend to the children who make up 60% of the refugees – lost and torn from their families. Open our eyes to the horror of genocide, as a people are being erased from Myanmar’s history and annihilated. Come Holy Spirit. Guide the world as it seeks to address this calamity.

Some look up into smoke and ash filled skies in the western United States barely escaping burning homes and a tortured landscape and yet 10,000 firefighters – including 100 women prisoners working as firefighters – move toward the flames. Renew their energy to endure and guard their steps. We are so grateful for their unique skills in this treacherous work. Dear God, provide shelter to families bereft of everything they owned. Sustain the communities in their great work of serving these families, providing food, a listening ear, counseling and guidance in next steps and getting in touch with family. Be with the 42 families who have lost loved ones and the 68 families with unaccounted for loved ones. Hold them in their distress.

Some hide in the shelter of darkness yet afraid. “Has the fighting stopped?” Oh Lord, how seemingly endless is the noise and dust and calamity of war and the horrific suffering, the interminable loss and degradation. We pray for the peoples caught in the wars within wars, in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region of Kirkuk, for the police killed in Taliban raids and bombings in the Paktia and Ghazni provinces in Afghanistan. We pray for the dead and wounded civilians as they were waiting to get their identity cards. We pray for an end to 6 years of suffering in the Syrian civil war displacing 6.3 million people internally, causing the deaths of 400,000 with more than 5 million Syrians fleeing the country.

Open the hearts of combatants to give safe humanitarian access. Our hearts are torn again as we hear about the global food crisis, severe food insecurity, and the increasing risk of full on famine in northeast NigeriaSomaliaSouth Sudan and Yemen. Some are too week to sit or even cry, hungry to the point of death. Oh God, you are listening. You surround them. You love them. Open our hearts. Help us to prayerfully consider our time, talent and treasure. Help us to share the wealth from our tables. Bring peace in those places where war creates famine, where conflict creates war, where war seems to be endless.

We watched with deep concern as Ireland and the UK received the effects of Hurricane Ophelia downgraded to a tropical storm. We are saddened at the loss of life as severe winds toppled trees on to cars. We are grateful for advanced warning such that the Irish Defense Forces were ready where needed and schools were closed keeping children safe. Be with families in their sudden grief and with those experiencing the deep deep losses in Portugal and Spain as wildfires fanned by the winds of the very same hurricane have brought further catastrophe. Again we pray for the 6,000 firefighters and nations called to come together in these wildfires. Be with the injured and their caregivers as severe burns are treated. Comfort those who are in mourning of the over thirty-two victims including a one-month old infant taken so quickly. Many weep for their cherished lands and fields, and livestock so vulnerable. Comfort them in their mourning. Give them your strength.

And your people in Mogadishu, where the Somali nation again suffers a bombing so despicable and barbaric with over 276 lives destroyed in an instant. Oh Lord, we take-in this news of the over 300 injured and suffering, and families still searching for the missing. We hear of the need for donor blood, the exhausted hospital staff, and how they keep going, as its populace is weeping, weeping, weeping. Help them as they assemble and arise as a people to discern steps for increased stability and safety in their nation. Comfort your people of Somalia in their great sorrow. Bring them peace.

Guide us in our faith. Help us to seek your will.

May we rush to understand one another, to love urgently, and to grow steadily in becoming more tolerant.

From you comes all blessings and life itself.

Amen.

 

Bill Wallace’s hymns, songs and chants

william-l-wallaceAccess to Bill Wallace’s hymns and songs

Bill Wallace, one of New Zealand’s most published hymn writers, has just had virtually all of his hymns and other worship resources filed and cross-referenced for easy access and free downloading.

The Center for Progressive Christianity in the USA (Progressive Christianity) has recently placed on their website 5 interlinked thematic indexes of Bill Wallace’s material. They give access to the text, score and sound file of each of the 198 hymns, songs and chants on their website along with Bills 35 children’s songs in the collection Sing Young, Sing Joyfully. Reference is also made to the 36 different hymns which are in volumes 1 and 2 of Singing the Sacred, published by World Library Publications. In addition these indexes are linked with the website of the New Zealand Methodist Church which has additional Boundless Life hymns by Bill, together with Hymns for Aotearoa and the 49 hymns in his The Mystery Telling.

The collections on the American website are:

1) Boundless Life (hymns);
2) Celebrating Mystery (general worship resources, including hymns);
3) Festive Worship (resources for Christian festivals, including hymns);
4) Seasoned Celebration (worship resources with hymns for the seasons of nature); and
5) The Sing Young, Sing Joyfully collection of inclusive songs for children.

seasoned-celebration-logo-198x300The worship resources include over 950 of Bill’s original sayings together with collects, poems, reflections and calls for action.

In addition, Bill’s Sacred Energy/ Mass of the Universe is now featured on the Web in three separate entries of either the text and melody line, or the score or the power point presentation.

To access these Bill’s worship resources, click resources at <progressivechristianity.org>, and then use the Search button (second from right in the blue banner at top of page) – select “keywords”, enter “William L Wallace” into the search engine, then click “Search”..  To access the Sacred Energy/Mass of the Universe files, follow the same procedure with “Sacred Energy” entered into the engine.

Week of Prayer for World Peace

peace-01A liturgy, together with a reflection entitled “The Importunate Widow” – both prepared by Rosalie Sugrue – for the beginning of the Week of World Prayer, and a collection of prayers for use during the Week of prayer for World Peace, prepared by Paddy Payne, have been added to our Church Year resources page.  Scroll down to the bottom of page and look under “Ordinary Time” …

Some sources give the dates for the Week of Prayer for World Peace as 9-16 October 2016, others as 16-23 October 2016, while yet another simply says from the 3rd to the 4th Sundays in October – perhaps two weeks of prayer for world peace would not actually go amiss!