Midday Prayers for the Climate: 

Friday 11th March

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom like the crocus Isaiah 35:1

You Lord, are the source of all good things: We praise you.

You call us to tend and care for your creation: May we strive to do your will.

You have made us as brothers and sisters with all that lives: May we live together in peace.

A Reading: Isaiah 42: 5, 10-12 

Sing to the Lord a new song,
    his praise from the end of the earth!
Let the sea roar and all that fills it,
    the coastlands and their inhabitants.

Let the desert and its towns lift up their voice,
    the villages that Kedar inhabits;
let the inhabitants of Sela sing for joy,
    let them shout from the tops of the mountains.

Let them give glory to the Lord,
    and declare his praise in the coastlands.

Each Friday during Lent we will focus on a different continent; this week Australasia. 

The Australasia realm is dominated by the Australian continent and 2 additional subrealms — New Zealand and  the Australasian Islands: Papua, Sulawesi, and other Indonesian islands east of the Makassar Strait and south of the Java Sea, as well as the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and New Caledonia. Australasia encompassed a diversity of environments from the vast interior deserts of Australia, dry and wet tropical savannahs and rainforests, Mediterranean woodlands, temperate grasslands and  alpine uplands. With its seven seas and immense coral reefs, Australasia is one of the most important realms for ocean biodiversity. The Great Barrier Reef, considered one of the Seven Natural Wonders, is the world’s largest coral reef system. https://www.oneearth.org/realms/australasia/

Australasia is already greatly affected by the ongoing climate crisis, with rising land temperatures and an increasing frequency of heat waves and bush fires; rising sea levels and an increasing frequency of heavy rain causing flooding, interspersed with increasing periods of drought. Rising sea levels disproportionately affect small islands nations. Rising temperatures in the oceans are destroying  coral reefs. 

An extract from ‘Kangaroo’ by D H Lawrence

Delicate mother Kangaroo 

Sitting up there rabbit-wise, but huge, plump-weighted, 

And lifting her beautiful slender face, oh! so much more 

gently and finely lined than a rabbit’s, or than a hare’s, 

Lifting her face to nibble at a round white peppermint drop 

which she loves, sensitive mother Kangaroo. 

Her sensitive, long, pure-bred face. 

Her full antipodal eyes, so dark, 

So big and quiet and remote, having watched so many 

empty dawns in silent Australia. 

Her little loose hands, and drooping Victorian shoulders. 

And then her great weight below the waist, her vast pale belly, 

With a thin young yellow little paw hanging out, and 

straggle of a long thin ear, like ribbon, 

Like a funny trimming to the middle of her belly, thin 

little dangle of an immature paw, and one thin ear. 

Her belly, her big haunches 

And, in addition, the great muscular python-stretch of her tail. 

There, she shan’t have any more peppermint drops. 

So she wistfully, sensitively sniffs the air, and then turns, 

goes off in slow sad leaps 

On the long flat skis of her legs, 

Steered and propelled by that steel-strong snake of a tail. 

Intercessions 

We give thanks for the beauty and diversity of the world you have given us, for its colour and abundance, its richness and vitality.  Generous God, hear our prayer.

With sorry we acknowledge our part in damaging what you have created. We acknowledge that our lifestyles have been selfish and careless.  We acknowledge that we could and can do more to tend this earth and care for its inhabitants. Merciful God, hear our prayer.

We pray for these who conserve plant and animal wildlife, birds and insects. We pray for the work of agriculturalist and scientists in developing better, kinder ways of living on this earth. We pray for the resilience of small communities that they may live in harmony with their environment. Gracious God, hear our prayer. 

We pray for government leaders and advisers, farmers and business leaders, that they will hold dear the needs of the environment and seek to avert the risks imposed by the climate crisis. Enabling God, hear our prayer.

The Grace 

Midday Prayers for the Climate: 

Friday 25th February 

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom like the crocus Isaiah 35:1

You Lord, are the source of all good things:

We praise you.

You call us to tend and care for your creation:

May we strive to do your will.

You have made us as brothers and sisters with all that lives: 

May we live together in peace.


A Reading: Job 38:4-7,18

‘Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
   Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements—surely you know!
   Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk,
   or who laid its cornerstone
when the morning stars sang together
   and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy? 

Have you comprehended the expanse of the earth?
   Declare, if you know all this. 

Each Friday during Lent we will focus on a different continent; this week Antarctica. 

Antarctica is the fifth-largest continent in terms of total area. There are no countries in Antarctica, although seven nations claim different parts of it: New Zealand, Australia, France, Norway, the United Kingdom, Chile, and Argentina. The Antarctic also includes island territories of  South Orkney Islands, South Shetland Islands, South Georgia, the South Sandwich Islands, Peter I Island and Bouvet Island, Heard and McDonald islands, Scott Island and the Balleny Islands.
The Antarctic Ice Sheet dominates the region. It is the largest single piece of ice on Earth. This ice sheet even extends beyond the continent when snow and ice are at their most extreme.
Antarctica has a number of mountain summits, including the Transantarctic Mountains, which divide the continent into eastern and western regions. A few of these summits reach altitudes of more than 4,500m. The elevation of the Antarctic Ice Sheet itself is about 2,000m and reaches 4,000m above sea level near the centre of the continent. 

The Antarctic region has an important role in global climate processes. It is an integral part of the Earth’s heat balance. The heat balance, also called the energy balance, is the relationship between the amount of solar heat absorbed by Earth’s atmosphere and the amount of heat reflected back into space. 

Lichens, mosses, and terrestrial algae are among the few species of vegetation that grow in Antarctica. The interior has little if any vegetation. The ocean, however, teems with fish and other marine life – among the most diverse on the planet. Upwelling allows phytoplankton and algae to flourish. Thousands of species, such as krill, feed on the plankton. Fish and a large variety of marine mammals thrive in the cold Antarctic waters – especially blue, fin, humpback, right, minke, sei, and sperm whales. One of the apex predators in Antarctica is the leopard seal. The most familiar animal of Antarctica is probably the penguin. They have adapted to the cold, coastal waters. Their wings serve as flippers as they “fly” through the water in search of prey such as squid and fish. Their feathers retain a layer of air, helping them keep warm in the freezing water. https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/antarctica/

Antarctica has experienced air temperature increases of 3°C in the Antarctic Peninsula. Although that might not seem very much, it is 5 times the mean rate of global warming as reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). https://discoveringantarctica.org.uk/challenges/sustainability/impacts-of-climate-change


Seeking first your kingdom & righteousness may all things needful be added to us.
(Prayers for needs may be voiced….)

We pray for the wellbeing of the Antarctic, the protection of its climate and preservation of its ice cap. Inspire and encourage us, as citizens and consumers, governments and leaders to truly address the means by which we can radically reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


You open your hand
and satisfy the desires of every living thing.
We recognise ourselves in the fractured and frail failures of the stories of God’s people. and we pause to reorient ourselves towards love of God and neighbour.
Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude.
Our love has been as the morning mist, as the dew that goes early away.
God be gracious;
Lord, have mercy
Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; Love does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth
Our love has been as the morning mist, as the dew that goes early away.
God be gracious;
Lord, have mercy
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Our love has been as the morning mist, as the dew that goes early away.
God be gracious;
Lord, have mercy.
O Soul be joyful; our merciful God stretches out a loving hand to you.
(1 Cor 13:4-7; Hosea 13:3)  https://ourcommonprayer.org/2017/07/22/lent/

The Grace 

Midday Prayers for the Climate: 

Friday 25th February 

The earth is the LORD’s, and the fullness thereof, the world and all who dwell therein. Psalm 24:1

You Lord, are the source of all good things:

We praise you.

You call us to tend and care for your creation:

May we strive to do your will.

You have made us as brothers and sisters with all that lives:

May we live together in peace.

A Reading:

You shall not withhold the wages of poor and needy labourers, whether other Israelites or aliens who reside in your land in one of your towns. You shall pay them their wages daily before sunset, because they are poor and their livelihood depends on them; otherwise they might cry to the Lord against you, and you would incur guilt. Deuteronomy 24: 14-15

Wages that do not meet the rent,

Pay that does not feed the family?

Let justice roll on like a river, 

righteousness like a never-failing stream!

Debts that cripple, 

Interest rates that grow exponentially?

Let justice roll on like a river, 

righteousness like a never-failing stream!

Money for factories but not for schools

For plantations but not for hospitals?

Let justice roll on like a river, 

righteousness like a never-failing stream!

An absence of workers’ rights, 

Child labour and slavery?

Let justice roll on like a river, 

righteousness like a never-failing stream!

Destruction of forests and habitats,

Loss of native wildlife ?

Let justice roll on like a river, 

righteousness like a never-failing stream! (Response from Amos 5:24)

You have been told, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? Micah 6:8

Prayers:

We pray for those who own sugar and palm oil, coffee and cocoa plantations:

That they may seek justice for workers and wildlife, for soils and habitats. 

We pray for agriculturalists and scientists:

That their work developing ecological and practical farming methods may flourish.

We pray for investors and entrepreneurs:

That their work developing new and sustainable markets may grow.

We pray for those who raise funds and awareness, and those who lobby:

That they may succeed in changing both hearts and minds and government policies.

We pray for those who monitor progress and certify business operations:

That their work will ensure and expand fair trade.

We pray for consumers:

That their hearts and purses will be open to the goals of fair trade.

Amen.

With gratitude we celebrate all that the Fair Trade movement has achieved, 

For lives transformed, for land restored and communities strengthened.

Gracious and ever generous God, 

We thank you for the gift and wonder of creation,

For the plants, animals and peoples

that reveal the munificence of your love.

Amen. 

Midday Prayers for the Climate 

Friday 18th February 2022

The earth is the LORD’s, and the fullness thereof, the world and all who dwell therein. Psalm 24:1

You Lord, are the source of all good things: We praise you.

You call us to tend and care for your creation: May we strive to do your will.

You have made us as brothers and sisters with all that lives: May we live together in peace.

“Don’t hoard treasure down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or—worse!—stolen by burglars. Stockpile treasure in heaven, where it’s safe from moth and rust and burglars. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.

A Reading: Matthew 6: 19-26 The Message 

 “Your eyes are windows into your body. If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a musty cellar. If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have!

 “You can’t worship two gods at once. Loving one god, you’ll end up hating the other. Adoration of one feeds contempt for the other. You can’t worship God and Money both.

 “If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.” 

A reflection on Proverbs 1:10, 13-15:-


If shop windows say, Buy all kinds of costly things; 

fill your houses with luxury:

Do not be seduced, follow rather the way of righteous simplicity.


If magazines say, here are the solutions to all life’s problems; 

 check out this month’s lifestyle: 

Do not be seduced, follow rather the way of righteous simplicity.


If neighbours say, Come, be like us, 

keep up with our standards:

Do not be seduced, follow rather the way of righteous simplicity.


If adverts say, Enjoy today and 

throw away tomorrow:

Do not be seduced, follow rather the ways of righteous simplicity.


If money-makers say, Here, make a quick buck; 

don’t worry about the risk:

Do not be seduced, follow rather the ways of righteous simplicity.


If businesses say, Enjoy what we promise, 

forget the environmental cost:

Do not be seduced, follow rather the ways of righteous simplicity.


Merciful God, 

protect us from ourselves – our ignorance and our gullibility –

Give us wisdom to discern your truth

and insight to see your ways, 

that we may live with simplicity,

enjoying your gifts and sharing your bounty.

Amen.


Praise be to God! For simple things:-

Clean air and the scent of the flowers, 

wind that lifts and freshens.  

For water, crystal clear or dark as bronze, 

now skittering, now languidly flowing.

For trees that grow, ring upon ring, 

and bats and beetles and tiny tree creepers.

For the musical interruption of robin and blackbird, 

and the chit chat of sparrows. 

For fresh picked leaves and fruits in season:

our daily bread.

For the times to pause, to focus our eyes

 and attune ours ears: for peaceful observation.

For all these we give you thanks,

Generous, ever-caring God.

Amen.

Midday Prayers for the Climate

Friday 4th February 


The earth is the LORD’s, and the fullness thereof, the world and all who dwell therein. Psalm 24:1

You Lord, are the source of all good things:

We praise you.

You call us to tend and care for your creation:

May we strive to do your will.

You have made us as brothers and sisters with all that lives:

May we live together in peace.

A Reading:

Seek good and not evil,
   that you may live;
and so the Lord, the God of hosts, will be with you,
   just as you have said.

Alas for those who are at ease in Zion,
   and for those who feel secure on Mount Samaria,
the notables of the first of the nations,
   to whom the house of Israel resorts!
Cross over to Calneh, and see;
   from there go to Hamath the great;
   then go down to Gath of the Philistines.
Are you better than these kingdoms?
   Or is your territory greater than their territory,
O you that put far away the evil day,
   and bring near a reign of violence? 


Alas for those who lie on beds of ivory,
   and lounge on their couches,
and eat lambs from the flock,
   and calves from the stall;
who sing idle songs to the sound of the harp,
   and like David improvise on instruments of music;
who drink wine from bowls,
   and anoint themselves with the finest oils,
   but are not grieved over the ruin of Joseph!
Therefore they shall now be the first to go into exile,
   and the revelry of the loungers shall pass away. 

Amos 5:14, 6:1-7

Like carbon to the atmosphere:

We have added to the world’s woes.

Like nutrients from the soil;

We have taken without restoring.

Like heat to the ocean:

We have sown destruction.

All: Have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us.

In our forgiving and being forgiven:

Bring in your reign, O God: Let Godly hopes prevail.


A Lament for our age

When advertisers exhort us to drive ever larger fast cars –

We shall not comply.

When fashion houses entreat us to buy clothes 

for the beach and more for barbecue, 

clothes for lounging and more for reclining – 

We shall not comply.

When top chefs urge us to buy tropical fruits and exotic grains, 

to eat strawberries in January and avocados in September –

We shall not comply.

When tour companies tout trips to the Tropics, 

all flights included,  or city breaks by air –

We shall not comply.

When weekend magazines promote this season’s new colour schemes, 

wall paper and furnishings: out with the old and in with the new –

We shall not comply.

When tech industries unveil this year’s new phone, 

the upgraded tablet and irreparable head sets –

We shall not comply.

When governments tell us  that coal mines are good 

and ask for our vote –

We shall not comply.

When trend setters define the next must-have accessory 

and deride what was last season’s in thing – 

We shall not comply.

When politicians tell us national needs are all important 

and foreigners must wait – 

We shall not comply.

Holy God, 

keep awake in us a true love for the earth, 

its flora and fauna, our brothers and sisters.

Strengthen our resolve to live within our means, 

to act with compassion, and following your will –

We shall COMPLY!

Midday Prayers for the Climate

Friday 4th February 

The earth is the LORD’s, and the fullness thereof, the world and all who dwell therein. Psalm 24:1

You Lord, are the source of all good things:

We praise you.

You call us to tend and care for your creation:

May we strive to do your will.

You have made us as brothers and sisters with all that lives:

May we live together in peace.

A Reading:

When you enter the land that I am giving you, the land shall observe a sabbath for the Lord. For six years you shall sow your field, and for six years you shall prune your vineyard, and gather in their yield; but in the seventh year there shall be a sabbath of complete rest for the land, a sabbath for the Lord: you shall not sow your field or prune your vineyard. You shall not reap the aftergrowth of your harvest or gather the grapes of your unpruned vine: it shall be a year of complete rest for the land. You may eat what the land yields during its sabbath—you, your male and female slaves, your hired and your bound labourers who live with you; for your livestock also, and for the wild animals in your land all its yield shall be for food…The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine; with me you are but aliens and tenants. Throughout the land that you hold, you shall provide for the redemption of the land. Leviticus 25:2-7, 23-24

Like carbon to the atmosphere:

We have added to the world’s woes.

Like nutrients from the soil;

We have taken without restoring.

Like heat to the ocean:

We have sown destruction.

All: Have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us.

In our forgiving and being forgiven:

Bring in your reign, O God: Let Godly hopes prevail.

“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen?”: 

Merciful God, open our ears to hear your word and our hearts that we may respond with action.

Intercessions

“Loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke.”

May we be not blind to the hardships and inequalities faced by plantation workers and farmers when big businesses hold the balance of power. Rather may we support fair trade both with our lips and our purses. 

“Set the oppressed free and break every yoke.”

May we not be ignorant of the oppression of government loans and trade deals. Rather may we campaign for justice and use our voices to challenge those in power. 

 “Share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter.”

May we be generous in giving aid for those facing starvation and homelessness – those in the UK who are reliant on food banks, those in Ethiopia struggling with drought, those in Madagascar made homeless by storms, and those who sleep on our streets because rents are too high.

“When you see the naked, clothe them; do not to turn away from your own kin.”

May we comprehend that it is not just people, but the land too that can be stripped of protection. May we safeguard all living things that are made vulnerable through our greed. 

Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear”.

Restoring God, may we, in our lifetime, see the healing of the environment, the restoration of justice and the renewal of creation’s natural abundance.

Then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.” 

May we learn in our hearts and put to effect in our lives the wisdom you teach us. 

Amen.

Based on Isaiah 58: 6-8

Midday Prayer

28th January 2022

Trust in the Lord and be doing good; dwell in the land and be nourished with truth.
  Let your delight be in the Lord and he will give you your heart’s desire.
Commit your way to the Lord and put your trust in him, and he will bring it to pass. 

Psalm 37:3-5

You Lord are the bread of life;

feed us with your wisdom.

Our meat is to do the Father’s  will.

guide us in all we do

Whenever we eat or drink

Let it be to the glory of God.

Reading 

 “Listen! A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow.  But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants, so that they did not bear grain.  Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up, grew and produced a crop, some multiplying thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times.” 

Mark 4:3-8

Pause for reflection

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
    and do not return there until they have watered the earth,

So may we store water for when and for whoever needs it,

and safeguard those living with the threat of flooding.


As the earth brings forth and sprouts,
    giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,

So may we harvest what is needed, 

sharing the bounty so no one goes hungry.

so shall God’s word be that go forth; it shall not return empty,
but it shall accomplish that which is purposed
    and succeed in the thing for which it is sent.

May we pay attention to God’s word,

 following the ways of wisdom that God desires 

for the wellbeing of all creation.

For as the earth brings forth its shoots,

May we protect the fertility of the soil,

not polluting it with chemicals nor stripping it of nourishment.


  And as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,

May we treasure those who tend and farm the land,

paying fair wages and sharing profits.

So the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise
    to spring up before all the nations:

May we welcome God’s kingdom with all our being,

following God’s law with hands, hearts and voices.

Based on Isaiah 55:10,11 and 61:11


The Grace is said together

Midday Prayer

21st January 2022

Trust in the Lord and be doing good; dwell in the land and be nourished with truth.
Let your delight be in the Lord and he will give you your heart’s desire.
Commit your way to the Lord and put your trust in him, and he will bring it to pass.  (Psalm 37:3-5)

You Lord are the bread of life;

feed us with your wisdom.

Our meat is to do the Father’s  will.

guide us in all we do.

Whenever we eat or drink

Let it be to the glory of God.

Reading:-

He shall judge between many peoples,
    and shall arbitrate between strong nations far away;
they shall beat their swords into ploughshares,
    and their spears into pruning-hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
    neither shall they learn war any more; but they shall all sit under their own vines and under their own fig trees,
    and no one shall make them afraid;
    for the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken. (Micah 4:3-4)


The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
   He makes me lie down in green pastures;

Year by year, the earth produces fresh food,  enough to feed  10 billion people. 

He leads me beside still waters;
   he restores my soul.

River waters flow through all the earth’s  continents –  volumes of fresh water but unequally apportioned.


He leads me in right paths
   for his name’s sake. 

Your word shows us where truth lies, your wisdom guides us.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
   I fear no evil;

Rather amongst business leaders and politicians, autocrats and diktats do I tremble. 

but you are with me;
   your rod and your staff— they comfort me. 

As you comfort and protect us, so may we comfort and protect all who live in fear.


You prepare a table before me
   in the presence of my enemies;

May we be peace makers, generously sharing the abundance we have.


you anoint my head with oil;
   my cup overflows. 

May we bring health and well being to all our brother and sisters in creation.


Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
   all the days of my life,

May we all dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of our lives.

(Psalm 23  with added responses)

The Grace is said together .

Midday Prayer

14th January 2022

Trust in the Lord and be doing good; dwell in the land and be nourished with truth.
  Let your delight be in the Lord and he will give you your heart’s desire.
Commit your way to the Lord and put your trust in him, and he will bring it to pass. 

Psalm 37:3-5

You Lord are the bread of life;

feed us with your wisdom.

Our meat is to do the Father’s  will.

guide us in all we do

Whenever we eat or drink

Let it be to the glory of God.

Reading 

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what’s coming to you in this kingdom. It’s been ready for you since the world’s foundation. And here’s why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.’” 

Matthew 25: 34-36 (The Message)

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour; •
he has looked with favour on his lowly servant.

Praise to you O God, for the rich creation of this world 

for which you have created humans to be the gardeners.

From this day all generations will call me blessed; •
the Almighty has done great things for me
and holy is his name.

You have blessed us with fruit bearing trees and plants, 

ensuring food throughout the seasons.

He has mercy on those who fear him, •
from generation to generation.

Your wisdom guides those who, in each generation, 

are honest and humble enough to seek it

He has shown strength with his arm •
and has scattered the proud in their conceit,

Yet each generation sees the damage 

caused when there are those who disdain your will. 

Casting down the mighty from their thrones •
and lifting up the lowly.

Raise the spirits of those who work at the grassroots, 

give them strength to overcome the deceits of big business.

He has filled the hungry with good things •
and sent the rich away empty.

Bless the work of food banks and charities that feed the hunger, 

and teach those with wealth to be sacrificial in their giving.

He has come to the aid of his servant Israel, •
to remember his promise of mercy,

Help nations and communities to work together

for justice and for peace. 

The promise made to our ancestors, •
to Abraham and his children for ever.

May generations to come reap the harvest,

not of our greed, but of your grace .

Amen.

Midday Prayer

Friday 7th January 2022

Trust in the Lord and be doing good; dwell in the land and be nourished with truth.
  Let your delight be in the Lord and he will give you your heart’s desire.
Commit your way to the Lord and put your trust in him, and he will bring it to pass. 

Psalm 37:3-5

You Lord are the bread of life;

feed us with your wisdom.

Our meat is to do the Father’s  will.

guide us in all we do

Whenever we eat or drink

Let it be to the glory of God.

Reading 

But he was quite serious. “How many loaves of bread do you have? Take an inventory.”

That didn’t take long. “Five,” they said, “plus two fish.”

 Jesus got them all to sit down in groups of fifty or a hundred—they looked like a patchwork quilt of wildflowers spread out on the green grass! He took the five loaves and two fish, lifted his face to heaven in prayer, blessed, broke, and gave the bread to the disciples, and the disciples in turn gave it to the people. He did the same with the fish. They all ate their fill. The disciples gathered twelve baskets of leftovers. More than five thousand were at the supper.  Mark 6: 38-44 ( from The Message)

Table Piece

Around the table, smallest to largest, 

youngest to oldest – comfortable and companionable.

Bread, first mixed and kneaded, 

shared together at the table.

Wisdom, debated and pondered,

gathered from around the table. 

Gentle chiding, loving acceptance, laughter –

differences reconciled at the table.

Thanks given, prayers said, hands clasped 

a place of worship at the table.

Kith and kin, friends – all welcome:

a community built around the table.

Prayers

We give thanks O Lord, for the food we have to eat, 

for the opportunities we have to eat together, 

for the times we gather to share and  learn together, 

and for the joy of worshipping at your table. 

We pray Lord, for all who struggle to get food to eat, 

all who lack the companionship of friends and family, 

all who are exploited and all who are fall prey to disinformation, 

and for all who have yet to feel included at you table. 

Stir us Lord, to respond with generosity and determination 

to feed the hungry, 

to transform the inequalities of society, 

to reach out to those starved of love,

and to nourish all with your word.

Amen