COCU Index Year B 2014-15

The COCU Index for Year B, 2014-15: COCU master index.YearB.2015

Upcoming Sundays
International Workers Memorial Day (see resources on this website)
COCU35B, 3 May, Easter 5
COCU36B, 10th May, Easter 6 (Also, Mothers Day in Australia)
COCU38B, 17th May, Easter 7
COCU39B, 24th May, Day of Pentecost
COCU40B, 31st May, Trinity Sunday

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Readings: COCU35B.Easter5B.3May2015

“When you remove the risk, you remove the challenge.  When you remove the challenge, you wither on the vine.” – Alex Lowe
This image of vine and branches speaks to community, both healthy and withered.  It has to do with the quality of our mutuality and interrelationships.  The Old Testament used this image several times (Jeremiah 2:21; Ezekiel 15:6; Hosea 10:1). However, in these examples the vine itself is the community which sometimes is not up to the challenge of being God’s people in harmony.  The vine is therefore destroyed.  In today’s gospel Jesus, not the community, is the vine which is always true; and we are the branches.  Therefore, if some branches do not produce fruit, the vine as a whole does not die.  In this evolution of the image the plant is indestructible.  Beware lest again we be tempted to be judgmental.  Sure, the community will live on, but who of us are the withered branches that do not live up to the challenge?  We might want to point fingers.  Look in the mirror.  The truth is that we all, each and every one of us, have fruitful branches as well as withered branches within ourselves.  The pruning is not the destruction of certain individuals in the fire (John 15:6).  Rather it is beautifying of each of us.  Who does not need to be pruned?  Perhaps the withered branch of judgmentalism needs to be cut from us.  God stands ready to prune us into ever more healthy growth, into full bloom.  But we need to let go.  Why hold on to shunning, selfishness, revenge, envy, or dead end life plans, all petty twigs?  Realizing our shortcomings is not a condemnation.  This here is a resurrection theme.  God is pruning us into life.  We are still connected to the vine.  At the Last Supper Jesus took the “fruit of the vine.”  Every time we receive communion, drink from the cup, we drink to our health; and Jesus hosts the toast. (Bob Eldan)

Thom Shuman communion liturgy for Easter 5B: Thom Shuman

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International Workers Memorial Day (IWMD) – April 28

The International Workers Memorial Day is held around the world each year on April 28th to remember those who have died in the work place, and to highlight the preventable nature of most workplace incidents and ill health and to promote campaigns and union organisations in the fight for improvements in workplace safety.

Facebook event/s here: Adelaide

International Day of Mourning (New South Wales)

Service here (2015 service at Pilgrim UC) – note this is 5.5MB 2015 IWMD


2013-04-28 16.21.07


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Mothers Day resources

Some Mothers Day 2014 resources on Textweek.

Music for Mothers Day
check out suggestions from Singing from the Lectionary
Carolyn Winfrey Gillette, God of the women (tune: Be thou my vision) – new hymn
God, we praise you for the women
by Dan Damon.

1. Mothering God, you gave us birth
in the bright morning of this world.
Creator, source of every breath,
you are our rain, our wind, our sun.

2. Mothering Christ, you took our form,
offering us your food of light,
grain of life, and grape of love,
your very body for our peace.

3. Mothering Spirit, nurturing One,
in arms of patience hold us close,
so that in faith we root and grow
until we flow’r, until we know.
Words and Music: Jean Janzen, based on the writings of Juliana of Norwich
Permissions: Copyright 1991. Abingdon Press, admin. by The Copyright Company.
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Centenary of the landing at Gallipoli. ANZAC Day

ANZACIn A Minute’s Silence
Timeless God,
Christ of the Cross,
Spirit of Peace,
In a minute’s silence take us into compassion and understanding.
In a minute’s silence may we find ourselves almost walking in the shoes of those we remember.
In a minute’s silence may we seek the joys that sustained them in the trials that they faced.
In a minute’s silence may we find the courage that empowered them in the suffering they endured.
In a minute’s silence may we be inspired to love like the sacrifice that they made.
In a minute’s silence may we comprehend the ripples of pain that bounce around the world in response to such disturbance.
In a minute’s silence may we learn the lessons which will lead to such things never occurring again.
In a minute’s silence may we decide to be better in ourselves, that the world may be better with us in it.
In a minute’s silence may the world change for the better.
In a minute’s silence may all this be so.
In a minute’s silence we pray.
Amen. (c) Jon Humphries

UCA ANZAC resources
Rev Sue Page and Rev Matthew Stuart, Ministers in the Uniting Church in Australia, and chaplains in the army, have put together some fabulous resources for the centenary of the landing at Gallipoli. Thanks, Sue and Matt – much appreciated for the planning for Pilgrim’s ANZAC Evensong service on ANZAC Day, 25th April.
ANZAC Centenary Resources PDF

Lest we remember
And this poignant song from Andrew Dutney. Beautiful. Sound file here.
Small (‘pay what you think’s a fair thing) cost to download.

Lest we remember, lest we recall,
we’ll build ourselves a monument,
we’ll sanctify the war.
We’ll number our heroes.
The dead we’ll ignore.
Nobody remembers what the young ones dies for.

Lest we remember,  lest we recall,
in case we remember the pain of it all.

And over and over we’ll tell it again:
the story of bravery,
of dashing young men.
The reasons we’ll argue,
the blame we will lay,
’till truth as we tell it
is history some day.

Lest we remember, lest we recall,
in case we remember the pain of it all.
Lest we remember, lest we recall,
in case we find reason for just one more war.

from I’ve Got Eyes, released 01 September 1980
Andrew Dutney: Vocal and acoustic guitar; Graham Ashton: Violin.

And this from Paul Kelly, Letter from a Trench (sound file here). Achingly beautiful.

And more from Paul Kelly who writes: ‘My friend, composer James Ledger, asked me to write text for an orchestral and choral work commissioned for the Gallipoli Centenary. I sent him a short poem and last night (24th April, 2015) at the Sydney Opera House heard it played and sung for the first time. It was a spine tingling experience”. Link is here.

Can you see us? Can you help us?
Lying broken on the shore
Look at us – we’re scattered playthings
Busted toys, no use, no more

We’re not heroes, we are fellows
From the country, from the town
We’re Jack and Jim and Doug and Darcy
Bill and Tom and Reg – all down

We are dying, can you hear us?
We are screaming on the shore
We haven’t had our lives or wives yet
We never will, we’re never more

We didn’t think, we never thought
We’d die like this so far from home
Remember us, we died in smoke
We died in noise, we died alone
(Words: Paul Kelly)

You can listen to the ANZAC Centenary ConcertABC Classic FM 8:00pm, 25 April 2015

ANZAC Day resources
(Anglican) Anzac Day liturgical resources

Opinion piece by Greg Rolles here. Definitely worth a read!
“Australia’s investment in World War One commemorations is not being replicated around the world. The government of Australia is spending more on World War One commemorations than the United Kingdom and France combined – both much more significant players in the war. It should be asked why the 25th of April has become such a significant milestone in what it means to be a part of white Australia?”

On Anzac Day (Anglican Prayer Book)
God of love and liberty,
we bring our thanks today or the peace and security we enjoy.
 We remember those who in time of war
 faithfully served their country.
 We pray for their families,
 and for ourselves whose freedom was won at such a cost.
 Make us a people zealous for peace,
 and hasten the day 
when nation shall not lift up sword against nation
neither learn war any more.
 This we pray in the name of the one who gave his life
for the sake of the world: 
Jesus Christ, our Redeemer. Amen.
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Micah Challenge

micahchallenge3What does the LORD require of you? To do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6.8)

Pilgrim Uniting Church has included four specific Micah Challenge services on the worship plan in 2015. Please find attached the one planned for May 3rd. It is a repeatable format, with one or more of the RCL readings set for the day and a different focus each time as examples to ‘doing justice, loving kindness and walking humbly with God’. For May 3rd, the focus is on loving kindness.

Micah Challenge Service.3May2015

micah challenge2


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Readings COCU34B.Easter4B.26thApril2015

Prayer of the Day
Gracious God, help us to live in love and charity with others,
and, as we ask for your forgiveness, enable us to be forgiving.
Take from our lives the hidden grudges and concealed hate.
Forgive us that we have so often denied you;
that like lost sheep we have turned away from you;
that we have sung with our lips what we have not had the courage
to practice in our lives.
Forgive our sins, comfort our sorrows, calm our fears,
and take from us every proud thought.
So fill us with love and concern for others,
and make us ready to help and quick to forgive.
We thank you for every good thing in our lives
for home and friends and family;
for all the beauty and loveliness in the world about us
which has lifted our hearts and made us glad;
for life itself with all its promise and possibility.
We thank you that in every great experience of life,
when it seemed as if we were passing through water and fire
we are not alone, but you were there as companion and friend.
We thank you that we are yours, created for your glory;
that you have called us all by name,
that through Jesus Christ, the great Shepherd of the sheep,
who lived and died and rose again for us,
you have redeemed us;
and that your love will never finally let us go, or ultimately give us up.
We thank you that so often you have come to us
in the ordinary and everyday things of life, in our work and in our leisure .
Help us there to seek you and find you and serve you,
as in Christ you have sought and found and served us.
We ask it for his sake. Amen.
(from Companion to the Lectionary, Vol 3, by Neil Dixon)

An alternate Psalm 23 from Thom Shuman
the Mall is my shepherd,
I shall always need more.
It makes me lie down in mattress stores;
it leads me beside coffee shops;
it restores my greed.
It leads me down paths for the sake of its sales.
Even though I walk the aisles of outlet stores,
I am not afraid,
for you are at my side
your credit cards and coupons – they comfort me.
You prepare a feast for me at the food court
in the midst of shoving shoppers,
you anoint me with cappuccinos,
my latte overflows.
Surely stress and debt shall follow me
all the days of my life (and my kids),
and I shall live at the mall
every day of my life. (c) 2015 Thom M. Shuman


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A friend posted this about a funeral of his friend, where the card handed out contained these beautiful words:
When I have come to the end of the road,
And the sun has set for me,
I want no rites in a gloom filled room.
Why cry for a soul set free?
Miss me a little – but not too long,
And not with your head bowed low,
Remember the love that we once shared,
Miss me – but let me go.
For this is a journey that we all must take,
And each must go it alone.
It’s all part of the Master’s plan,
A step on the road to home.
When you are lonely and sick of heart,
Go to the friends we know,
And lose your sorrows in doing good deeds.
Miss me – but let me go.”
(RIP, Daniel (Paddy) O’Rourke)

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COCU33B.Easter3B.19th April2015

‘Peace be with you’

Christ Is Our Peace
Christ is our peace,
Christ is our health,
he the true Word,
his the true wealth –
gifts to be shared by the simple and poor:
peace in your land,
peace at your door.

Peace in your mouth,
Peace in the hands
Open to truth,
to love’s demands:
those who would go with Christ also must bleed –
bright is the flower,
burst is the seed.

Who work for peace
find the true wealth,
who heal the hurt
find their own health –
peace will flow on through the hearts that believe:
this may we know,
thus may we live.

Shirley Erena Murray, Words © 1992 Hope Publishing Company
Christ is our peace.ShirleyMurray

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Poetry – various

I came across this wonderful post of poems by Chris Corrigan as part of the reflections on the 2014 Awakening Soul conference.

He writes:
These poems were composed more or less spontaneously at Awakening Soul 2014. They are harvests of the content of our days together and are largely composed of other people’s words. My process is to listen carefully to what people are saying, and to let those words inspire rhymes and rhythm that weave together voices. These poems are then read back to the gathering as a way of marking our time together, touching on highlights of the day and bringing beauty. The poems are dedicated to the people whose presentations or talks provided most of the source material. Other lines and sections were added listening to the plenary discussions and reflections from participants. It’s important for me to acknowledge that most of the words in these poems were spoken by others and simply heard by me.Because of the spontaneous nature of this form of poetry these have not been refined or perfected – please ignore errors and enjoy them as they are offered.

We need new words to
share the lightness and the dark
not meekly speak of our seeking
but to enter the reeking stench of the real world
where we can unfurl our heart’s longings
together and drink deeply of this moment.

The link is here – I commend them to you!


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Psalm 133; Acts 4:32-35; 1 John 1:1-2:2; John 20:19-31

Resources: Textweek

A prayer for the Sunday after Easter (John 20:24-29)
It would be wrong, Lord,
for us to say that
we have no doubts,
for this world is trying
to deny all we hold dear,
and is insistent in its cry.
There are days when
like Thomas, your dear friend
we need to reach out
and touch the hand
that has led us these long years,
see the place
where spear and nails
have made their marks.
Forgive our doubts
and in times of tempting
be our confidence,
so close that like Thomas
we might joyfully declare
‘My Lord and my God!’
© John Birch,

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