8 April 2021

Introit

Welcome & Gathering

Brigid Dwyer (she/her)

This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it.

Alleluia! Welcome to Drew Chapel on this Easter Thursday. The Spectrum Caucus is delighted to be hosting today, and we’re thrilled that you’re joining us. Our Caucus is as diverse and varied as the LGBTQIA+ community itself, and the variety of liturgical and religious expressions we will experience today are meant to express the different traditions of those of us who helped pull this service together – not all of whom are able to be with us visibly as Spectrum members. Texts for the prayers can be found at http://www.drewchapel.com. Please also join us afterwards for fellowship at our virtual Coffee Hour, the link for which you can find in your Drew email.

Let us pray.

O God, whose blessed Son made himself known to his disciples in the breaking of bread: Open the eyes of our faith, that we may behold him in all his redeeming work; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. (BCP, p. 223)

Call to Worship

Janice McCrostie (she/her), Chris Paige (they/them), Pauline Nijander (she/her)

Leader: In the water of the womb You set me apart. You knit me together and called me Yours. Before I drew breath you knew who I was and what I was meant to become and you loved me.

All: Remind me, O God, of the ways You love me.

Leader: With each of my newborn cries and wails, sighs and whimpers, giggles or whines, You watched me find my voice and smiled.

All: Remind me, O God, of the ways You love me.

Leader: You have made me wonderful, marvelous and curious. You have made me unperfect, but loved.

All: Remind me, O God, of the ways You love me.

Leader: Creator of all things, you created me. You know who I am to the core of my being, You understand me beyond comprehension, You see each part of me and love me still.

All: Remind me, O God, of the ways You love me.

Leader: When this world attempts to quiet our voices, we cry out…

All: We are set apart!

Leader: we cry out….

All: We speak for all nations!

Leader: we cry out…

All: We are fearfully and wonderfully made!

Leader: The Lord God knows our hearts. The Lord God knows the deepest crevices of our being and loves us still. Loves us because.

All: Remind us, O God, of the ways in which you love us.

Leader: We are precious in the eyes of our Creator. We are meant to do great things.

All: Remind us, O God, of the great things we’ve still to do.

Leader: Remind us, O God of the strength you’ve given each of us to do it.

All: Amen

Hymn of Welcome

“God is Still Creating” written & performed by Pax Ressler (they/them)

God is making all things new
Giving water in the wilderness
Sending manna down to feed the hungry ones
Forming cloud and fire to guide and bless

God is making new
All around us and from the inside
God is making new
Join in celebrating that God is still creating

God is making all things new
Giving us the words to speak truth to power
Changing bodies and calling us new names
Speaking peace within our darkest hour

God is making new
All around us and from the inside
God is making new
Join in celebrating that God is still creating

God is still creating
God is still creating
God is still creating
God is still creating

Scripture

Luke 24:36-48 CEB

Kirsten Trambley (she/her)

While they were saying these things, Jesus himself stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” They were terrified and afraid. They thought they were seeing a ghost.
He said to them, “Why are you startled? Why are doubts arising in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet. It’s really me! Touch me and see, for a ghost doesn’t have flesh and bones like you see I have.” As he said this, he showed them his hands and feet. Because they were wondering and questioning in the midst of their happiness, he said to them, “Do you have anything to eat?” They gave him a piece of baked fish. Taking it, he ate it in front of them.

Jesus said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the Law from Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures. He said to them, “This is what is written: the Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and a change of heart and life for the forgiveness of sins must be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

Homily

Brigid Dwyer (she/her)

Anthem

“We are the Body”

Prayers

First Prayer: Prayer for Wanderers

Read by Anonymous

God of the seekers and dreamers, the disaffected and disillusioned, the worn out and burnt out, the rejected and leavers, the closeted and the out and proud,
We ask for blessings as we travel, as we doubt, as we meander.
We ask for the grace to leave when necessary, to come home when we can, to create new homes when we need to.
We ask for protection of our souls from those who don’t understand, who judge, who mock.
We ask for the fortitude to undertake the journey even when it’s scary (or, maybe, especially when it’s scary).
We know that as we wander we are not alone. We know that sometimes we have to leave the confines of what we knew to see the truth, to hear Your voice, to find out what to do next.
We pray you lead us where we need to go, by whatever route it takes. We pray for new ways to see You, to understand new ways of being in the world. We pray for healing and for redemption, and, where possible, reconciliation.
We pray for all of this so we can know wholeness, know our bodies, know each other, know You.
And be found.

Second Prayer

Read by Paola Márquez (they/them)

Beloved One, we offer our thanks for the holy witness in the lives of all queer people. In queer love and in trans and intersex bodies, we experience Christ enfleshed. In the faith of those who have been rejected, judged, and denigrated by the church, Christ is revealed. In the queer practices of community, of love that takes risks, and of telling the truth – even when it’s costly, Christ lives on. In gratitude for these and all the Sacred gifts of the queer community, we give our thanks and offer these gifts. Amen.

Third Prayer

Composed & read by Case Akers (they/them)

Loving Creator, remind us to help us support one another. Your loving hand has shown us how to care for our communities, we cannot outrun your love so help us embrace it, and give that care to all those around us. Creator, just like many other communities, we face both joy and heartache; help us support each other in both circumstances. You walk with us through our days and surround us with Your love. When we are down, send Your Holy Spirit to remind us that we are stronger together. Amen.

UU Blessing

Pauline Nijander (she/her)

The Chalice before me is a symbol of my Unitarian Universalist faith tradition. The chalice together with the flame was originally created by an Austrian artist, Hans Deutsch as a symbol for the humanitarian work the Unitarian Service Committee was doing during World War 2. To him, it was seen as a symbol of sacrifice and love.

And in honor of that symbol of sacrifice and love:

To my siblings in the LGBTQ+ community, know that you are loved by the Divine. May this flame be a symbol of that love, and though this flame will be extinguished, know that the light of your higher power’s love for you will always endure.

Know that we continue to hold and support you wherever you are in your journey, and that you have allies who will walk with you as you navigate the challenges life may throw your way because of who you are.

Beloved allies, may we listen when listening is called for and act when action is called for. In the instances where we fall short, may we learn from our shortcomings so we do not inadvertently harm again, and may we as a community, continue to do the work of building a welcoming place together.

May we all work toward bringing about a world where all are loved and all are welcome.

Blessed be.

As we go forth in our life’s journey from here today:
May love and compassion guide you in all that you do.
May wisdom help you to seek responsible truths and meanings.
May inspiration lead you to new places.
And may the hope you bring be a beacon for others.

May you share your beautiful gifts with the world.
Go in peace, and Amen.

Sending

“Jesus Knows” written & performed by Pax Ressler (they/them)

It matters to me that Jesus was born
He entered the world as a little child
It matters to me that Jesus taught
He ate with the sinner and the defiled

Sometimes I wonder if Jesus hears us
Does he know our pain?

Yes, Jesus knows, Jesus knows
He lived and died upon the earth
And from suffering he arose

Jesus knows, Jesus knows
And he’s calling us to live again
Amen, Jesus knows
Jesus knows

It matters to me that Jesus lived
He walked the earth, the path that we trod

It matters to me that Jesus doubted
On the cross, he called out to God

And when I wonder if Jesus hears us
My soul sings this reply:

Yes, Jesus knows, Jesus knows
He lived and died upon the earth
And from suffering he arose

Jesus knows, Jesus knows
And he’s calling us to live again
Amen, Jesus knows
Jesus knows
Jesus knows


Worship Notes:

Queer Theology: Prayer for Wanderers by Brian G Murphy, adapted by Spectrum member.

Enfleshed: Queer Liturgy #2 (source: enfleshed.com, Order of Worship and Communion Liturgy, option 2. Affirming PIE Day March 14, 2020)

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