a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

Invitation: let them come

Just after the scripture reading we focused on today,
Jesus offers an invitation we all need to hear:
“Let the little children come to me…”
Let the humble, the meek, the ignored come.
Let the noisy, the misbehaving, the boisterous come.
Let the ones who ask the hard questions come.
Let the ones who trust in ways we cannot understand come.
Let all come to the table,
“…and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.”
It is to us, my friends, that the kingdom of God belongs.
All are welcome at this table.

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Echo Hill Presbyterian Church, Cedar Rapids, IA

invitation: everyone who asks receives

Jesus promises that everyone who asks will receive.
At this table, we receive the presence of Christ in the gift of bread and cup.
Jesus promises that everyone who seeks will find.
If you seek the presence of Christ, we pray that you will find him at this table.
Jesus promises that for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
On behalf of the church universal, in the name of Jesus Christ, you are welcome to this table!

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Echo Hill Presbyterian Church, Cedar Rapids, IA

invitation to the table: bringing our best and our worst

Friends, come to the table!

Bring your shouts of “Hosanna,”
bring your palms,
bring your hopes of a victorious king
to overcome the oppression and sorrow of this world.

Bring your cries of “Crucify him,”
bring your denial and wandering,
bring your hopes dashed by one who was crucified
because he would not validate the power of this world.

Just as Jesus gathered with his disciples here on the night before his execution,
just as he met his disciples in the breaking of the bread on that first resurrection evening,
so too we gather at this table,
bringing our best and our worst,
to this place where we will be made whole
as we meet Jesus again.

submitted by Rev. Andy James, First Presbyterian Church of Whitestone, Queens, New York

Easter Season communion invitation

Jesus met his disciples—women and men, young and old—

and invited them into his new life.

Jesus still meets his disciples—women and men, young and old—

and invites us into his new life.

That new life begins, as any life begins, with water and bread.

At this table, we receive the bread of new life.

At this table, we are called together from many individuals into one body.

At this table, we are strengthened to go answer Christ’s call.

This table is not mine, and it does not belong to this church.

This is not a Presbyterian table.

All of us, no matter who we are, or what we have done, or where we are on life’s journey, are as welcome here as Peter and Joanna and Mary and James were at the first table.

The risen Christ is the host, and he bids us come and celebrate the feast,

to know the power of resurrection, the joy of heaven, the glory of God’s grace.

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

eucharist: the table

Invitation to the Lord’s Table

Joseph no doubt worked his hands
to make a Table for Mary.
With visions of family gathered around,
fresh bread warm in children’s hands,
and simple table wine that brought out the spices of the meat,
Jesus and his siblings and neighbors and those
who weren’t allowed into other people’s homes
or had no table of their own
sat around this Table,
no doubt where Jesus was taught
by his parents who had taken great risks by giving him life
so that he could take risks himself to give us life
simply by
sitting
at
Table.

It was at Table Side that our Christ learned
the power of feeding one another.

It was at Table Side that our Christ witnessed
the telling of truth.

And so Christ invites us to Table Side;
the Table that has been passed down through the generations,
rubbed with oil,
refinished with care
from family to family
to us.
Grace is made visible. [Read more…]

communion invitation for the Easter season

VOICE ONE:

Easter matters.

It matters that the same one who healed with his touch, who taught in the temple, who prayed in the Garden – was hung on the cross.

It matters that the same one who was beaten by the guards, betrayed by his disciples and crucified on the cross – descended into hell.

It matters that the same one who was buried by our failures and sins and brokenness is not dead, but lives!

Easter matters.

VOICE TWO:

This table matters.

It matters that Jesus is here, waiting for us – just as he was only a little over a week ago – before we failed him, before he saved us.

This table matters.

VOICE ONE:

You matter.

The invitation is clear – Jesus died for us. Jesus lives for us.

We are invited to celebrate this holy feast that reminds us that despite theological differences, despite known and unknown sin, despite unworthiness – Jesus clears a place for us and says, “Come!”

You matter.

VOICE TWO:

Wherever you are, wherever you have been, come and celebrate this feast which Jesus has prepared for all of us – uniting us in our salvation through Him.

Easter matters.

VOICE TWO:
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them up to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise…. 
Continue with prayer…

Submitted by Rev. Kathryn Johnston, Mechanicsburg Presbyterian Church, Mechanicsburg PA.

eucharist: creativity

This entire Eucharist liturgy is sung, with improvisation line by line. Each line is repeated by the congregation back to the cantor.

Christ is here
The Spirit is with us
We lift our hearts
And give thanks!

Come to the Table. Be Fed.
With knowledge, with wisdom.
Just as you are.
Come to the Table. Eat.
Come to the Table. Drink.

Hungry for all sorts of things.
Thirsty for even more.
Come to the Table. Eat.
Come to the Table. Drink.

You are invited.
Let Jesus feed you.
Come to the Table. Eat.
Come to the Table. Drink.

In a beginning
God was.
In our beginning
God was.
In every beginning
God is.

Wisdom. Knowledge.
at this Table.
at this Table to feed us
To feed each other.

We give thanks.
For friends around the Table. Thanks.
For new beginnings. Thanks.
Before our beginning
So many others.

Taking bread, calling it holy,
naming people, calling us holy.
Take, eat.
Smell, see as you create.
Take, drink.
Listen, taste as you create.
This ending. This beginning.

Creativity pours out.
Creativity pours in.
Creativity pours out.
Creativity pours in.
Creativity.

The Gifts of God for the People of God.

Submitted by Rev. Mieke Vandersall, Minister Director of Presbyterian Welcome, New York, NY.

Maundy Thursday Invitation to the Table: Share, See, Sense, & Experience

The parade is in the past…
the hosannas have hushed…
and Jesus has retreated to an upper room
to quietly dine with his disciples.

We’ve been invited to the table
to share in the mystery
of broken bread…
of a cup of wine…
and of feet humbly washed,
challenging us to eat, drink, and remember…together,
and to love and serve one another
just as Jesus loves and serves us.

We’ve been invited to the table
to see Judas get up from his seat
and walk out the door…
challenging us to look into our hearts,
and glimpse the signs of our own acts of betrayal.

So let’s take our place at this table…
where we sense our brokenness
and experience God’s grace
all at once.

Let us pray…

Submitted by Scott Cervas, pastor at Meadowthorpe Presbyterian Church (Lexington, KY)

Maundy Thursday invitation

It was a feast night, much like tonight. It was the time of celebration—celebration of God giving freedom, celebration of life and light and love being stronger than the powers of oppression and violence that seem to rule the world.

It was a feast night, a dinner party, with storytelling and laughter and more food than anyone knew what to do with.

And at this feast, a meal with traditions and family jokes and songs of hope, Jesus called his friends to see the world differently.

To see not just bread, not just wine, not just a traditional meal, but to allow their eyes to be opened to see the kingdom of God—the kingdom of abundance, love, sharing, hope…the kingdom of LIFE—laid before them.

So tonight, we are invited to share this same feast, to break bread and let our eyes be opened, to share the cup and know the power of a life poured out in love and obedience.

let us pray…

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, Ridgefield Crystal Lake Presbyterian Church, Crystal Lake IL.

Invitation to the Table–palm sunday

Jesus shared his meals with all kinds of people—doubters, believers, and skeptics; rich and poor; leaders and followers; scholars and fishermen and tax collectors, palm wavers and parade watchers.
He calls us all to come, taste, and see that God is good, that there is enough for everyone, that there is another way.
This is the table where all kinds of people, from all kinds of places, in all kinds of times, meet.
This table does not belong to the Presbyterian church, or to this congregation, it belongs to Christ, and he is the one who promises to meet us here.
This is the table where we can begin a journey, where we can make a turn, where we can be strengthened for the road ahead.
So come, not because you understand, but because you want to know God more.
Come, not because you love God a lot, but because you love God a little and want to love more.
Come, not because your faith is unshakeable, but because you could use some strength for the journey.
Come, not because you are already perfect and worthy, but because it is Christ himself who invites you to share in the feast.

(Let us pray…)

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, Ridgefield Crystal Lake Presbyterian Church, Crystal Lake IL.