The opening song is, ‘How could I be silent’, by Nathan Taylor. If you have problems connecting, try this direct link to YouTube:
Call to worship
We come to hear the Good News, to embody the love of God in Christ as we share our lives with others. .
You may like to light a candle at this time.
God’s truth is revealed in Jesus Christ the light of the world. May the light shine for the hope of the world.
Acknowledgment of country
As we begin, it is appropriate to recognise that this great land has been home to our first nations peoples for many thousands of years. Let us also acknowledge those Aboriginal peoples who are the first inhabitants of the regions in which we dwell, and honour them for their care of the land.
We come from our villages, our homes, our families and the communities we find ourselves in. We come as as the people of God.
Let us pray. The Psalmist says: “My soul longs for you, O God.” These thousands of years later, we long for the same. We too long and thirst for you, even when we forget that we do. Even when we do not know it. God the deepest part of our being is crying out to know you. We long to be at peace with ourselves and with you. In Christ we pray. Amen.
From the Bible
The Bible reading for today is from Luke 8:26-39. The words of the reading is below. There is also a video of a dramatic re-enactment of the Gospel reading underneath.
Then they arrived at the country of the Gerasenes, which is opposite Galilee. As Jesus stepped out on land, a man of the city who had demons met him. For a long time he had worn no clothes, and he did not live in a house but in the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he fell down before him and shouted at the top of his voice, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, do not torment me”–for Jesus had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. (For many times it had seized him; he was kept under guard and bound with chains and shackles, but he would break the bonds and be driven by the demon into the wilds.)
Jesus then asked him, “What is your name?” He said, “Legion”; for many demons had entered him. They begged him not to order them to go back into the abyss. Now there on the hillside a large herd of swine was feeding; and the demons begged Jesus to let them enter these. So he gave them permission. Then the demons came out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and was drowned.
When the swineherds saw what had happened, they ran off and told it in the city and in the country. Then people came out to see what had happened, and when they came to Jesus, they found the man from whom the demons had gone sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid. Those who had seen it told them how the one who had been possessed by demons had been healed. Then all the people of the surrounding country of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave them; for they were seized with great fear. So he got into the boat and returned.
The man from whom the demons had gone begged that he might be with him; but Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return to your home, and declare how much God has done for you.” So he went away, proclaiming throughout the city how much Jesus had done for him.
Dramatic readings from Lumo
Here is the dramatic re-enactment of the Gospel reading by the Lumo group with some extra verses added in (John 8:22-39). If you have trouble connecting you can go directly to YouTube at:
The message is brought to you by Tim Jensen from the Saltbush Community. In today’s reading from Luke, we hear how a man who lived amongst the catacombs had his life transformed but the villagers still lived in fear. After Word Around the Bush credits we have Life in the Bush with Mere Lightfoot from Gunnedah (2 minutes).
Was there ever a time you may have felt excluded? What reason was given for your exclusion? What areas of your life as a Christian Community do you believe God wanting transformation?
Before a time of prayer you may like to spend some time in silence sitting still. Close your eyes lightly. Sit relaxed but alert. Simply be still and open to God. You may prefer to do this while listening to the ‘Optional reflective music’ below.
Optional reflective music
If you have problems connecting, try this direct link to YouTube:
Prayers for Others
Let us pray.
Today, God, we pray for those who live in doubt: for those who doubt their own worth as human beings; for those who doubt they have a legitimate place in human community because they have learnt that their poverty excludes them, because they have been told of who they are they should be shunned, because they have been convinced that they are too fat, thin, old, or young to belong.
We pray for those too who live in despair and cannot share their despair with anyone, who are certain they must suffer in isolation because doubt and despair are signs of weakness and can never be admitted.
We pray for all our community who have forgotten or feel they have never known the truth that is deep within them, the truth that we are all, every one of us, made in the very likeness of you, God. This is our prayer of hope and faith. Amen.
Hope in God, people of faith!
Remember who you are, the chosen of God,
shaped to look and be like God in every way.
Remember those around you now.
You are brothers and sisters together,
One family, one humanity.
Remember your hope in God.
Remember – and go in peace. Amen.
‘Praise the One who breaks the darkness’, sung by Heather Jordan. If you have problems connecting, go directly to YouTube at:
‘Holy Spirit Song’. If you have trouble connecting, go directly to YouTube at:
Messy Family Fun Psalm 23
There are many fun activities at HomeFaith based on the theme of the ‘Good Shepherd’ at:
Pentecost Flames Salad Spinner Art and Prayer Ideas
Get a cheap salad spinner and use it to create some spinner art! It’s brilliant: quick, clean (because the spinner sits in its own bowl) and each piece is unique! The process of making the art really lends itself to Pentecost themes so here’s an idea to help celebrate the occasion. Go to the following link:
The prayers & blessing are based on content in the Saltbush service for this week, which can be found at:
The opening prayer is from ‘Lay Leaders Liturgy, Year C, First Sunday after Pentecost’, 2022.