Water Communion Liturgy

Prayer

In the spirit of life and love, we gather.

In the spirit of life and love, we gather.

In the spirit of humility, we bow before creator.

Let us breathe in and breath out together, knowing this breath of life is shared and sustained by all of creation.

Let us listen in the silence for the sure signs we are not alone: the giggle of a child, the shuffling of feet, the heavy breath of a neighbor, the songbird in the yard, the sirens that pass by (insert other sounds heard in the room).

For all of this is life, beautiful and glorious.

For all the joy, laughter, and love, we also know sorrow, tears, and hate. Death, destruction, and violence unfold before us.

For all the comfort of home, companionship of friends and family, and of place, we also know loneliness, displacement, and homelessness, and danger. Fearful, vulnerable, and fragile we carry on.

Let us, this morning, create a prayer together. I invite you to speak randomly from where you sit. I invite you to lift up that which rests on your heart and mind. I invite you to speak up and I will echo back your prayers at the close for those using our assisted hearing devices.

{Pause for sharing}

May we be still in the embrace of this community as we hold those suffering in the light of Love and all that is Holy.

With gratitude for the sustaining waters of mother earth, and life ever flowing,
we light a candle at the center of our communion vessel.

With the sound of running water, our share the plate offering will be
given and received to help support hurricane relief in Texas and Florida.
~ Carie Johnsen

Water Communion

In our water communion we come home to a community we call our own. Whether it is your first day or simply too many to count, we are glad you have come home to spirit, to goodness, to grace.

We come home to a people who call us to our best selves and forgive us when we disappoint and fail.

We come home to a faith that guides our living, challenges our privilege, strengthens our resolve, deepens our spirit and grows our soul.

We come home to a sanctuary that breaths life into sadness, comforts our grief, stills our anxiety, shores up our fragility, and celebrates our humanity.

We come home to a movement that calls us to a love fiercely, live boldly, speak truth to power, uproot oppression, dismantle whiteness, call out privilege and demand justice; a faith movement that asks us to speak up and show up – over and over and over again.

We come home to a global community where all is not well. Where life is unbalanced and always teetering on the backs of others.
Where inequality is the reality from which we live. Givers and takers.
Those who have and those who have not. Overprivileged and underprivileged.
Good and bad. Evil and grace. Love and hate.
Peace and violence.

Still we come home to love, to companionship, to unity, to something greater and wiser to sustain our hope and dreams for life, glorious life.

Earlier we lit a candle at the center of our bowl to remember with humility and gratitude the sustaining waters of mother earth. In the stillness of running water, we embraced this community as we held each other and a world community in the light of love.

I ask,
Are you one of the suffering in need of love?
Are you one in gratitude with ample light to share?
Maybe you hold both realities in your heart this morning.

Either way, you have come home.

In a moment, as you come forward for our water community, you are invited to add water to the vessel. If you didn’t bring water we have water for you to add.

Your water represents a part of your life that is blessed with joy and woe, laughter and tears, life and death. Sometimes the distinction is clear. Sometimes it is blurred. Sometimes it is a blending of waters.

As you come forward bring to mind the place from which your water was gathered. As you pour your water recall the feeling that washed over you. Recall your location, who and what supported you, surrounded you, held you in embrace and shared the breath of life.

As you turn to leave we invite you to pause so that we can bless the sacred in you. The choir will sing as we gather the water and receive a blessing.

Carie and Noah will offer blessings as water is received.
Blessing: You are worthy, holy, and whole.

Blessing the Water

The creators of the water communion, Carolyn McDade and Lucile Longview said,

“Water is more than simply a metaphor. It is elemental and primary, calling forth feelings of awe and reverence. Acknowledging that the ocean is considered by many to be the place from which all life on our planet came—it is the womb of life—and that amniotic waters surround each of us prenatally, we now realize that [this worship service] was for us a new story of creation… We choose water as our symbol of our empowerment.”

In this spirit
we humbly acknowledge water as creator and sustainer,
we concede to water both giver and taker of life.

In this spirit we know,
these waters have been sanctified by life itself.
These ancient waters have already been blessed
by the redwoods in California, the wildfires that rage,
the imposing flood waters, the freezing tundra,
the expanding deserts, the melting glaciers,
the running river, the white cloud gathering.

These ancient waters have been blessed by
those who died when the waters overwhelmed the land and the surge rose and levees broke
dehydrated flora and fauna in the hot scorching sun
the creatures of sea seeking cooler waters
the person with walked miles for a bucket of clean water
the person who’s water was shut off for lack of payment
the protester who says water isn’t for sale
the farmer seeking a new life when the fields dry up
the thirst immigrant crossing the border

These ancient waters have been blessed by
the women washing in the holy ganges
the tears that won’t stop
the innocent child suckling
the thirsty runner and the sweat of labor
the joyful laughter,
the love of family,
the company of friends.

These ancient waters have been blessed.
As our lives have been blessed by love shared and spirit flowing.
As this day has been blessed by a community that cares for each other and all.

In this spirit we seek the blessings of life and love on the heart of humanity.
So may it be, amen.