no lightening bolts…

I was jumped upon to lead a little prayer time and impromptu Eucharist last night,  fortunately I had my phoneand therefore access to this meditation which I used as a prayer of blessing with a few on the spot changes to include the wine.  No lightening bolts as yet – so I’m guessing I’m safe!!

Hands on the rail (Part two)

I promised myself, see original post after hearing a priest talk about the hands that are open the communion rail, that I would reflect on this whilst distributing the sacrament.

I did this a few weeks ago and was quite surprised by the results.  Not that I should have been really… It only really works if you know the people in your congregation!

This is what I came up with, albeit after the event, trying to remember what I had thought at the time.

The hands that come to the rail, Anoint, Bless and Baptize.  Hands that have crafted wood, been creative, have the Care of children.  Hands that can Comfort, Cook, Clean, Caress, Console, Cling and Carry.  Hands that Dig, Drive, Dress, Feed, Grab, Heal, Hold, Mend and Nurture.  Hands that have Picked up, Prepared and Planted, Played and Polished.  Hands that Repair, Support, Serve, Sew, Shield and Shelter.  Hands that Type and Talk, Write, Wash and Wipe.  Hands that are Young, Old, Clean, Dirty, Lined, Smooth, gnarled, Missing fingers, Cracked, Well manicured, Cold, have Bad circulation.

All the hands that come to the rail to receive have spent at least part of their life offering skills, time and talents for the benefit of others.  Here they are come to receive a simple blessing from God when all the while they have been blessing the world in their own way.

Blessed Bread

I had been thinking about bread and its blessing during the Eucharist, came across a rubric from a Roman Mass which said (after the Hebrew Prayer, Blessed are you Lord God of all creation etc) “Now the Priest takes the Bread, which is now Christ’s Body”  Interesting, so the Hebrew prayer is enough words, that got me thinking….

Yesterday I came up with this, baked a roll, and shared it with our chapter.

bread

Blessed are you, Lord God of all Creation

Blessed indeed is God, Lord of all that is.  We cannot add or take away from you.
You stand in, above and below all that is made, before and behind us, the source of life itself, the breath in all that lives.
We greet you Lord God, and gather in your light and grace.

Blessed are you, Lord God of all Creation
Through your goodness we have this bread to set before you

Such order, manifest in creation, such careful design, the Goodness of your earth, bound up in wheat, the sun and rain in divine proportion gives unto us this golden grain to be ground to the finest flour.
Mineral salt given up from the earth and sea to flavour and colour.
Yeast, the natural leaven the living breath of the bread, the smallest of life creates through decay, new life of goodness and nutrition.
Water, a gift for life, nourishment for parched bodies, enlivens and binds the dough on a path to perfection.

Blessed are you, Lord God of all Creation
Through your goodness we have this bread to set before you
Which earth has given and human hands have made

Hands you have crafted O Lord, work and knead, skilled in the ancient art; knowledge gained from your natural processes put to use for our benefit, earth has given up her best. We craft and create with it our daily bread.

Blessed are you, Lord God of all Creation
Through your goodness we have this bread to set before you
Which earth has given and human hands have made
It will become for us the Bread of Life.

So in recognition of all of this we set aside a portion, enough to taste the goodness throughout which you have created, been creating, intrinsically involved from the very first seed.   In the knowledge that all bread is blessed, a hurried loaf on a Monday morn, a sliced white in a lunch box, fluffy and regularly square, wholegrain and seed bread in careful plait, sourdough, soda, spelt, paskha, rye, olive, rolls and bloomer, split top, French loaf or cob; because it all comes from you, yet in and through this bread, this gift, this offering of your gift back in recognition of all your work,  we ask for a blessing once again, blessing on what has been created and set aside, blessing on those who gather to draw nourishment from it.
Because we do this, we acknowledge all that has gone before and as Christ broke bread and ate with his friends so many times, so we too follow his example and share this blessed bread with all who come to table.

Blessed are you, Lord God of all Creation
Through your goodness we have this bread to set before you
Which earth has given and human hands have made
It will become for us the Bread of Life.

Blessed be God forever.