Second Sunday of Advent – Bible Sunday

PRIEST: My Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ Jesus,
We gather this morning, at the beginning of our second week of Advent Preparation and Prayer. We come together to listen to God’s Holy Word in the Bible, so that we may allow His Word to be made Flesh in our lives. That Word will be spoken over bread of the earth and wine from the hills, with such power that the Word will become the Flesh and Blood of Christ in Eucharist. In this Year of Prayer we recognise that the Bible is our first and greatest ‘prayer book’.

Let us now praise the Light of God’s Word as we sing…

(‘The Lord is my Light’)

Let us pray…

O God, from all eternity You have spoken forth Your Word, so that all creation may experience Your Love. Your Word first created Light at the dawning of time. In the fullness of that time, Your Word became Flesh in the poor Virgin of Nazareth. For Your People everywhere, Your Word remains the Light that guides our journey, the Lamp revealing the path before us. Bless our Wreath, and this our parish family, so that the Light of Your Word may grow in our hearts, inspire our lives, and guide our community,
                                                    … Amen!

READER:   Too often, Lord, we allow the false lights of our world to guide us,
rather than the Light of Your Word:
                         forgive us for failing to root our lives in the Word of the Gospel…

                                                   LORD HAVE MERCY

                         Lord, for the many times we do not listen to Your Word in the Bible,
for the ways we leave it an unopened book,
                         a treasure sadly neglected


                          Lord, the neglect of Your Word make us less a People of Faith;
                          it weakens our witness to Your Presence and Your Kingdom:
                          so for the ways our lives do not shine with the Light of Your Word

                                                   LORD HAVE MERCY

PRIEST:       O Lord, stir up our hearts to prepare the way of Your Son,
                                        the Word made Flesh,
                          so that through His Coming on earth we may serve you
                                        with lives filled with the Light of His Word,
                          for He Who will come again lives for ever and ever … AMEN!


Feast of the Immaculate Conception

PRIEST: Today is a day of rejoicing,  a day of holiness:  for Mary’s conception is the earliest dawn of the Holiness of our Redeemer.  Her holiness is the fruit of His Redemption,  so that she should always be a mirror, reflecting the wonder of Christ to us.  She summons us likewise to holiness, to mirror Christ’s love and Wholeness to the world; she pleads with us to tread her same path of humble and faith-filled love,  and like her to give of Christ’s endless life to the people of our earth.  Let us ask forgiveness for the ways and times we have clouded, not reflected Christ’s humanity and love…

READER:    For the ways the poverty of our loving has hidden
the beauty of Christ’s Holiness from those among whom we live…

                                              LORD HAVE MERCY

For the ways we do not embrace our own humanity
and so do not reveal to the world Christ’s loving divinity…

                                              LORD HAVE MERCY

For the moments when our faith and trust give way
before the suffering we encounter;
                            for the ways we do not walk the Way of Christ…

                                               LORD HAVE MERCY

PRIEST:             May the God of Life free us from the sin that is death;
                               May the Risen Jesus summon us by his mercy into the holiness
                                                 that is His Redemption;
                               May the Holy Spirit heal us into the holiness that is our calling
                                                 and our witness to the world;
                               and bring us all to everlasting life…


Penitential Rite & Blessing of Advent Wreath 1st Sunday

PRIEST:  My dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
We have come to the Holy and Joyful Season of Advent, these four weeks of preparation … learning to watch with faith for the Coming of the Lord in Glory … learning to welcome with love our brother Jesus who has already come … learning to yearn with hope for the final coming of the Kingdom upon the earth.
Let us now sing the ancient prayer of our Christian forebears, ‘Come, Lord Jesus!’

[proceed to wreath]

Let us pray…
O God, Father and Mother of all Life, by your Word all things are made holy. Send forth your Blessing upon our Advent Wreath, and upon our parish family: may we use this sign of Your growing Light to prepare our hearts and minds to serve Your Kingdom, and so hasten that day when the Lord Jesus will come in His Glory … In the Name of the Father, + the Son, and the Holy Spirit … AMEN!

READER:  The purple candles and ribbon call us to repentance,making our
hearts wide open and ready for His Coming:
Lord, grant us the grace of conversion to your Gospel this Advent…

                                                              SUNG RESPONSE

The circle of evergreen reminds us that God is ever faithful to us,
                         in His love and mercy that never ends:
Lord, forgive us all our unfaithfulness to your call to love…

                                                              SUNG RESPONSE

The red berries make us mindful that Jesus came among us
                         to die on a Cross, & that we drink the Cup of His Redeeming Blood:
Lord, by Your wounds we are healed,
                          and by Your death we are freed from the death of sin…

                                                               SUNG RESPONSE

PRIEST:  O Lord, stir up Your might and come!
                     Be our protector and liberator; rescue us from the dangers that
threaten us because of our sins,
                                 and lead us to our salvation, for ever and ever… AMEN!

Let us now sing once more ‘Come Lord Jesus…’  

Penitential Rite for the Feast of the Christ the Universal King

PRIEST: As the Church’s Year draws to a close, we celebrate Jesus Christ, King of all Creation. We celebrate He who came with a dream for the world, for the Universe – a dream of creation alive with divine love, drawn together in the deepest Unity in Christ. We celebrate our Brother who suffered and died on the Cross to make this Dream a reality. On this great Feast, which is also National Youth Sunday, we ask ourselves the question:  does Jesus reign in our hearts and in our lives? Do we share His Dream with our young people and draw them joyfully to serve His Kingdom? Does the quality of our loving reveal the Servant King to our wounded world? Do we serve each other and the broken of our world in the name of our King? Do we serve our own kingdom rather than God’s Kingdom?

READER: When we have thought only of our own needs and desires,
when we have given into our selfishness
and not become servants to those among whom we live…


When we have not offered the time, the energy and the gifts God has given us to build up the Body of Christ in our parish, and to transform our world into His Kingdom of Justice, Love and Peace…


Because Christ our King comes to the world in all its poverty and brokenness, to speak the Word of Forgiveness, Mercy and Healing that brings about His Kingdom…


PRIEST: May the all-merciful God, our Lord and King,
touch our hearts with His reconciling love;
fill our community with the peace of His Kingdom;
and renew among us the fire of His Spirit;
and so bring us and all the world to everlasting life…


Penitential Rite for 33rd Sunday

PRIEST: That Jesus will come again is certain … when and how is unknown.  As Advent draws near,  the Liturgy leads us to reflect on the meaning of the vivid images in the Gospel about the Day of the Lord’s Return.  We are challenged to be a People of constant expectancy, always straining our eyes and hearts to watch and work with love for his coming.  Let us repent and so make room for him as he comes to us…

READER: For the superficiality that often marks our lives; 

for our lack of prayer that fails to watch and welcome…


When we needlessly add to the distress of others 

by thoughtlessness,  lack of real listening 

and our readiness to judge…


When we fail to recognise his coming 

in the offer of friendship or the cry of need,  

in wounds to be loved into healing 

and hungers to be filled with compassion


PRIEST: May the God who comes embrace our sin and sets us free for loving compassion;  May the Lord who will return prepare our hearts with his mercy and forgiveness; May the Spirit who is to fill all creation come with a peace that will reconcile all to each; and bring us all creation to everlasting life…