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Invitation
May the Spirit of love be with you
And may the love of Christ be with you
Open wide your cautious hearts.
May the hope of our Creator pour peace in our souls.
Let us give thanks to the one who created this time and space
From our joy we give God thanks and praise.

Prayer of Communion
God of the fair winds and bounteous fields,
Of the storms overhead and the seas below,
With joy we celebrate the connection we have with all of creation
“From sea to shining sea,” 1
From the beauteous mountain caps to the rivers winding across the land.

We honor the connection we have with your beings-
from the chipmunks scurrying through our yards
to the swallows swooping in the air above.

We embrace the relationships with our neighbors near and far-
the ones who are close to our hearts,
and the ones with whom distance in miles and souls sets us apart.

And so we come to this table:
The ones with many opportunities, and those seeking liberty.
The ones who have been disregarded and those embraced,
knowing that Christ’s welcome receives all.
knowing that Jesus the Christ ate with sinners and tax collectors,
with those who disapproved and those who leapt for joy,
with Judas and Peter, with Mary and Martha, with Philip and Thomas.

And so we too come to the table.
The table of God’s freedom. The table of God’s justice and love.
The table which reflects the true kingdom, empire, realm of God where all are welcome.

We come to the table remembering the night before Jesus died.
As he ate with his followers in a room away from the world,
“taking a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’
And he did the same with the cup after supper, saying, ‘This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant.”2 Whenever we eat and drink at the table, we remember the Christ in our midst.

Spirit of Hope, Holy Winds of Divine Freedom,
encircle this bread and cup,
Encircle us in our eating and drinking
that we may experience the radical love of Christ here today
and sharing this care as we journey throughout this week. Amen.

*****

Liturgy (c) Rev. Michelle L. Torigian 2022. Permission to use liturgy with attribution.

1“From sea to shining sea” from America the Beautiful.

2 Quote from Luke 22:19-20 (NRSV)