a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

Sunday’s Coming!

Some of us are using the Revised Common Lectionary–and that’s how we’ve organized our LiturgyLink life so far. Some of us are using the Narrative Lectionary–and we’d love to include your liturgical resources too! When you write liturgy, send it in, and we’ll find ways to tag it so others can find it! Some of us work way ahead, others of us put the bulletin together on Saturday. Some of us preach sermon series or straight through a book rather than using a lectionary.

And some of us are about to enter stewardship-campaign season.

Whatever your liturgical needs this week, we’re here to create together. But that means we need you! Put your ideas, your seeds of ideas, your bare sparks, your vague notions…whatever you’ve got!…into the comments. And if you write something, whether it’s a prayer or a call to worship or a communion liturgy or an invitation to offering or a call to discipleship or a new benediction–send it in so your friends near and far can enjoy this treasure trove of resources!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward September 23

This is one of those weeks in the lectionary that, when perused on Monday morning, makes you wish for a different lectionary. Perhaps the Narrative Lectionary. Or a nice sermon series on something fun and easy. Or maybe preaching through Ezekiel or something.

But if you’re stuck with the RCL…there’s always the “ode to a capable wife” (which at least we know is not the best translation ever, but still). Perhaps you’ve been following along with Rachel Held Evans’ series on “women of valor” (a better translation of that capable wife business) and will try to tackle Proverbs 31 with a new light.

Or perhaps you’ll be contemplating how faithfulness makes us as strong as a tree…will you address the end of the psalm too, though it seems contrary to experience?

Maybe you want to take on James again this week, thinking about how living from a place of wisdom and peace can create a world of wisdom and peace, and conflict creates conflict. (for fun, take note of the verses cut out of the lectionary…interesting, eh?)

Or maybe you’re wondering: if the lectionary texts had an argument about who was the greatest, who would win, and what would Jesus say? What is success in a gospel-world, and how can we live there and in our earthly-success-world at the same time?

Lots to think about this week–where are you leaning? what seeds of ideas are waiting to sprout into a new way of encountering the Holy in worship? Leave your ideas here so we can create together!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward September 16

This week we have lots of hard teaching…have you ever wondered why wisdom can’t just be easy?

alas.

Wisdom calls out–standing on street corners, hawking her wares…and yet, few seem to be listening.

Even the creation–from sky to sea–is trying to offer us God’s way of wisdom.

But still we have trouble taming our tongue.

And so we come to the path of wisdom: take up your cross and follow me.

 

So…how will you approach these hard words this week? Anyone want to work on a confession using that proverbs text? a call to discipleship or a charge-and-benediction based on the gospel story? A call to worship expanding on the psalmist’s imagery?

Leave your ideas–big or small, fully formed or just a seed–in the comments, so we can create together!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward September 9

we’re back!!! summer was nice and all, but it’s time to get back on the creative-liturgy-train. Are you back? Perhaps you’d like to flex your creative muscles–write a call to worship and send it to us! When your creative juices are flowing, send in a great invitation to offering or a prayer of dedication (stewardship season is nearly upon us, after all, we’re looking for those!). During election season we probably have plenty to confess–share a prayer of confession!

Send your submissions to liturgylink at gmail dot com. You don’t have to be a professional liturgy writer, or have something perfect, or even have the piece completed! Send it in and let the collaborative process work. One of the things we hope for in this space is the back-and-forth, the conversation where ideas flow and sparks fly and we get new ideas out of someone else’s half-formed sentence. So stop in to the comments and make conversation, send in your liturgy or ideas, and let the collaboration begin!

This week many of us are headed back to the lectionary after a summer series. Some of us are Rally-Day-ing, while others have already rallied. Some are working on the narrative lectionary this year rather than the RCL–we’d love to have your NL-related liturgy and ideas here too! Please share!

For those of us working on the RCL this week, we find the sassy Syrophonoecian woman calling out from the pages of Mark. How might she, or the response of Jesus, be a sighting of a “new year” or a call to be the church we can be?

We also find some advice for the beginning of the school year (and the Sunday School Year) in Proverbs. We have the classic call to action in James. And a prayer of trust in varying circumstances in the psalm.

We could perhaps find a theme in these readings, of faithful work within a power (or economic) differential. Or of action speaking louder than words. Or…many themes! What do you think?

Where are you headed this week? Put your ideas, thoughts, words or phrases, song suggestions, or anything else that might spark creativity in the rest of us into the comments! And send your liturgy in so we can create together!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward August 26

It’s here! It’s here! The last of the “bread of life” weeks! After all that, the disciples are all “man, that’s difficult…but we’re not going anywhere Jesus, so you’ll have to keep putting up with us…”

Tired of the whole bread thing? How about armor?? The liturgy I can hear in the whole armor of god thing is incredible–I’m imagining calls to worship that invite us to move our bodies, confessions that remind us that the armor of god doesn’t come from the military-industrial-complex, prayers of dedication that offer up our whole selves, visuals of old suits of armor…but probably not armor-of-god-pajamas. 😉

If reclaiming the whole armor of God from the pajama people isn’t your calling for this week, perhaps you’ll want to spend some time praying with Solomon or the psalmist, contemplating the house of God to which the nations will stream and from which holiness and wonder emanates.

Whatever your direction, leave your ideas here so we can create the liturgy together!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward August 19

Yes, it’s barely Monday morning, but Sunday is still on its way…and as the end of summer nears, so too does the end of the seemingly interminable series of bread sayings. Do you ever wonder about people in, say, Singapore or Taiwan or someplace where bread is a luxury, not an everyday item, and how they read these passages? What are we really saying when we say that Jesus is the bread of life, or that if you eat this bread you’ll live forever abiding in Jesus? And given that we’ve been discussing this for several weeks now, with still one more week to go (sort of)…what else is there to say about it? What approach have you taken? And how will you enter into this idea in prayer, in song, in art, in movement, in ritual, in words?

Perhaps, like Solomon, you’ll be praying for wisdom (or using some wisdom to avoid yet another week of bread!). Or maybe you’ve read those verses the lectionary leaves out and will instead be pondering the mysteries of sibling rivalry and a mother’s power.  What words might you use to call people to prayer for wisdom, or to confess how we use our worldly wisdom?

Perhaps a ponder of Paul’s admonition to spend time in singing and praying as a path toward wisdom is in order?

Or maybe you’re wondering just what it means to end a song of praise with “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom“…how does one “practice” this fear and so gain understanding and right-relationship with God and the whole creation?

 

Lots to think about this week…what catches your attention? What word or phrase or image pops to mind? How might you help a community encounter the living Word this week in liturgy? Leave your ideas–whether fully formed or thoroughly vague–in the comments, so we can create together!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward July 22

It’s Tuesday morning! Do you know where your liturgy is? What have you been doing this summer? This would be a great time to check in, leave a comment here, and let us know what you need, what has been helpful to you at LiturgyLink, and what you have written that you want to share with your colleagues! What creative things have you done in worship this summer.

While 2 of us are spending time in Scotland…and one of us is preparing a trip to Kansas City &San Francisco in a week, we still have to deal with the relentless return of Sunday.

So what is your focus on Sunday? Will you reflect on David’s desire to build a house for God (2 Samuel 7:1–14a)? The familiar words of the 23rd Psalm whose writer finds comfort in God’s presence and providence? Paul’s encouragement to the Christians who do not come from the Jewish tradition, that they are part of the promises of God (Ephesians 2:11-22)? Or will you reflect on the relentless nature of the people who wanted to see Jesus, and his unshakeable compassion to care for them (Mark 6:30-34,53-56)?

Let’s talk! 🙂

The world needs you!!

Well, at least your fellow worship-planners need you!

Two-thirds of your Liturgy Link team is headed out for 3 weeks in Scotland, and we need your help. You might imagine that while we’re traipsing around ruined churches and enjoying worship at Iona Abbey, we won’t be writing our own liturgy. In fact, we’re looking forward to the opportunity to soak in someone else’s hard work and refresh our own creativity.

Which means that we need YOU to share your creativity, your words, your ideas, your prayers. Write a summer call to worship? Send it in! Writing an affirmation to go with all those bread passages coming up? Send it in! Creating a prayer of confession that captures the essence of letting the Lord build your house instead of arrogantly assuming you can build the Lord’s? Have a great invitation to offering for those low summer months? Using a new benediction? Send it in!!

This resource works because YOU share your creativity with your colleagues near and far. Whether you wrote it this week or 3 years ago, as long as it’s yours…please send it in! Email to liturgylink@gmail.com and become a published liturgy author, and help your friends at the same time!

Sunday’s Coming: working toward July 8

Guess what? Monday morning means that Sunday is on its way soon. How did last Sunday go? For those of you in America or Canada, did you touch on the national holidays at all? Or will you this coming Sunday? Or are you a “keep the 4th of July out of church!” church?

This week in the lectionary is one of those weeks that makes me glad we are doing a summer series…creating liturgy around some of these texts is going to be a challenge! I look forward to everyone rising to the challenge, though, and sharing the brilliance with friends around the world.

So…in the Old Testament readings this week we have David being anointed king (and hey, check out those verses omitted from the lectionary…whoo-ee!), and a psalm about the presence and might of God/King in Jerusalem being so great it put others to flight/awe. Perfect for the weekend after the Fourth of July, right?

In the New Testament we have an epistle reading that actually made me shake my head in surprise at the beginning (someone taken up into the third heaven? really?), and then wonder again about that pesky thorn…and a gospel reading where the thorn in Jesus’ flesh seems to be the unbelief of the people in his own town (and his response to that–which is to send out others to share the good news too! Indeed, grace is sufficient.)

So what’s the liturgical word on your street this week?

Sunday’s Coming: working toward July 1

well, it’s that time again…the time when we look forward to another bulletin, another round of pondering the strangeness of the lectionary, another liturgy-writing extravaganza! Because really, how many liturgies do you know of that help us explore David’s prayer of lament over Saul and Jonathan at their death? Or “Paul’s” discussion of the match between “your present abundance and their need”?

Of course, there are wonderful possibilities with the psalm this week, and it’s move from crying out of the depths to trusting in the depths. And with the great story of Jesus and the two least important people in his society…the dying girl and the bleeding woman. Perhaps some of us will even be connecting those to current news stories.

 

So–where are you heading this week? What creative ideas do you have? Drop your phrases, images, or even just a word or vague idea into the comments, and let’s create together!