St Lucia – Order of Service  25th April 2021 Anzac Day

When:
25/04/2021 @ 8:30 am
2021-04-25T08:30:00+10:00
2021-04-25T08:45:00+10:00

Greeting-

The Peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.

And also with you.

 

Call to Worship –

Today we recall those who, in the tragedy of war, gave their lives, and those who died for the freedom of all people.

We remember those who found rest on the ridges of Gallipoli, in the fields of France, in the haze of deserts, in the humidity of jungles, or the depths of the seas. We remember they died so that the light of freedom, justice and humanity may continue to shine. May our praise in worship be worthy of their sacrifices.

 

Prayer  – We seek your presence, Almighty God, as we come together in this time of remembrance. Help us not to hide our sorrow and pain from you. Let our actions embrace your divine values and be open to your careful examination. We come inspired by your sacrifice at Calvary and the legendary stories of the ANZACs.

Enfold us afresh in the love and healing of the Holy Spirit. Help us to hear again the courage of Jesus and all who followed him through love of family and neighbour. May the promise of Eternal life be understood anew this day, for we ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

HYMN– TIS 315 Mine eyes have seen the glory Julia Ward Howe 1819-1910 and others

Verses 3 & 4 only

  1. In the beauty of the lilies, Christ was born across the sea, with a glory in his bosom which transfigures you and me:

as he died to make us holy, let us live to make all free,

while God is marching on.

Glory, glory, hallelujah, Glory, glory, hallelujah, Glory, glory, hallelujah

While God is marching on.                         

 

  1. He is coming like the glory of the morning on the wave;

he is wisdom to the mighty; he is succour to the brave:

so the world shall be his foot-stool, and the soul of time his slave:

our God is marching on.

Glory, glory, hallelujah, Glory, glory, hallelujah, Glory, glory, hallelujah

Our God is marching on.     

 

Children’s Time ANZAC Day

   

 from Alexander Turnbull library, NZ

Prayer of Remembrance and Ode

God of Eternity, we remember the courage and patriotism of men and women who resisted evil and defended freedom in the wars Australians fought.

They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old. Age shall not weary them, not the years condemn.

Help us to hold dear the freedom that was won. May we use it wisely so that many may live in harmony with confidence and hope.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them.

We will remember them. Lest we forget.

 In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

 

Australian National Anthem

  1. Australians all, let us rejoice, for we are one and free.

We’ve golden soil and wealth for toil. Our home is girt by sea.

Our land abounds in nature’s gifts of beauty rich and rare;

in history’s page let every stage, Advance Australia fair.

In joyful strains then let us sing: Advance Australia fair.

2.Beneath the radiant Southern Cross, we’ll toil with heart and hand,

to make this Commonwealth of ours a just and righteous land.

For those who’ve come across the seas, we’ve boundless plains to share. With courage, let us all combine to advance Australia fair.

In joyful strains then let us sing: Advance Australia fair.

 

Scripture Readings- Psalm 23, John 15: 9 -17 and 1 John 3: 16-24

 

Prayer of Confession- 

Gracious God, before whom generations rise and fall, have mercy upon human folly and failures. We stand before you asking forgiveness for the times we have done nothing about the wrongs we see around us.

We acknowledge the power of human greed, fear, and jealousy. We admit the aggression and pretence of nations. Please forgive those sins that lead to war.

We hold before you those who misuse the young and old, confusing them by words of hatred or revenge, to wreak havoc and commit unthinkable crimes due to false ideology.

Give us clear eyes and the courage we need to stand up against falsehood and the bullies of this world.

We hold before you those crippled or maimed in body as well as spirit, those who suffer nightmares, those who cannot or will not forgive, those women and children homeless and traumatised by war even now.

Forgive us for our lack of attention to their needs. Christ have mercy on us, for we ask in Jesus’ name. Amen

                            

Words of Assurance

In Christ, God has forgiven not only our sins, but the sins of the whole world.

Rejoice in the light and peace of the Holy One. In his name I remind you: our sins are forgiven.

Thanks be to God

 

Sermon –  Lest we forget

My early childhood years were spent mostly in Port Moresby, PNG. We threw the rubbish in the bomb craters, there were lots of jeeps which had the driver on the wrong side of the front seat, and much of our basic food came in cans with an arrow on the top – butter, jam, and bully beef especially. When we came on furlough to Brisbane, I always wondered where the jeeps were and why you had to put rubbish in a bin – no handy big gullies around to explore. My favourite outing was to Bomana war cemetery – lovely flowering trees and  beautiful green grass with white gravestones set out in rows exactly symmetrical, no matter which direction you looked. The Anzac Day dawn service was holy in its solemnity, even for a small child who cried along with the adults present. It was the 1950’s. Lest we forget.

Lest we forget the sacrifice of lives laid down so that others may live. That is how we know love – we see it in action, when YOUR life is more important than my own. YOUR needs for safety and shelter, for food and family, for education and employment, for enjoyment and satisfaction, for creative achievement and recognition – all take precedence over mine. Wait a minute, is that what Jesus really expects? Is that what the early apostle John really preached? Laying down our lives for one another is not just sending soldiers off to war and making them heroes if they die or come home wounded?

How did the church let the military leaders highjack a central concept of love and core of Christianity – the central concept of Jesus dying for us and commanding us to love one another in the same sacrificial way?  Laying down our lives demands that we live fully in the service of others, rather than the service of ourselves. Spending in luxury for yourself ‘because you are worth it’  – or ‘look after Number One’ as the advertisements seduce us, is the very opposite of what Jesus commanded his disciples to do. As the With Love to the World Rev Niall McKay wrote for 21st April commentary this week: “We are not always called to die for others but rather to live so that others might have fuller, richer, grace-filled lives. … Self-giving love generates a kind of confidence and freedom that liberates us from worrying about what will happen next. Because we have already dedicated our lives to others, we can rest in this purpose with peace. As people of faith, our identity is cemented in obedience to God, love for others, and the openness to take risks for good.” And then we can know we are never alone for God’s Son, Jesus Christ, always abides in us and the Holy Spirit is with us, as 1 John 3:24 assures us.

 

Lest we forget our real identity and mission as Christians. Lest we forget what Jesus was doing in his teaching about God’s ways of right living for humans in community. Commandments and laws, rituals and concepts of forgiveness are not merely theories or words but actions for the good of all people in the Kingdom of God. There is no glory in death itself – Jesus came that we might have life – life in all its fullness. Life that experiences the highest glory – in love, in loving actions, in words and deeds that show God’s love working through our paltry efforts to love our neighbours as ourselves, to love our enemies, to love one another as Christ showed us in his life and death, trusting God to have the final victory, trusting God’s love to embrace the world in forgiveness and new life opportunities.

Lest we forget that God’s sacrifice for us and the whole world lies in God’s self-giving love and forgiveness for our disobedience, our mistrust, our self-will, our selfishness, our destructive behaviours and words towards others – our actions that have generated wars and injustice over and over again throughout history. Lest we forget our responsibilities to love others and to lay down our wants and desires to be in control, or to have the best, or to lose the least. Lest we forget what real justice and peace for all demands of us – our real love for others shown perhaps in our sacrifice for them. Amen.

HYMN – TIS 586 Abide with me Henry Francis Lyte 1793-1847   alt.  verses 1,3,5 only

  1. Abide with me; fast falls the eventide: the darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide: when other helpers fail, and comforts flee, help of the helpless, O abide with me.
  2. I need thy presence every passing hour; what but thy grace can foil the tempter’s power? Who like thyself my guide and stay can be? Through cloud and sunshine. Lord, abide with me.
  3. Hold thou thy cross before my closing eyes; shine through the gloom, and point me to the skies: heaven’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee. In life, in death, O Lord. Abide with me.

 

Offering-

Direct deposit to ‘St Lucia Uniting Church’ BSB: 334 040 acct#: 553 842 259 (St George Bank)  Please mark it OFFERING with your name (optional)

 

Prayer for others and Lord’s Prayer

We give thanks for the peace and security we enjoy and for the men and women who stood for righteousness in the presence of evil and aggression in times past. We thank you for their sacrifices and their examples to us now. Help us to see past the suffering of this broken world and grant us the grace to pray for those who would wish us harm.

Lord, hear us. Lord hear our prayer.

We pray for all who suffer from the effects of war. For those who were taken prisoner and for all wounded in body, mind and spirit. Grant them your healing peace and strength. As they recall lives lost, may they be comforted by their hope in the resurrection. May we be inspired by their courage and determination.

Lord, hear us. Lord hear our prayer.

We pray for all who still bear the physical and mental scars and disabilities of their service. We remember the widows and widowers, parents and orphans, brothers and sisters and friends and all who waited in vain for a loved one to return.

Lord, hear us. Lord hear our prayer.

While we remember the mateship and agony, courage and compassion of war service, save us from ever glorifying the horror and tragedy of war. Shelter from danger and keep safe from all evil our current defence forces.

Lord, hear us. Lord hear our prayer.

Prosper the activities of those who work to preserve human rights and peace. Deliver us from the forces of malice, jealousy and fear and help us to promote reconciliation and justice.

Lord, hear us. Lord, hear our prayer.

Break down the barriers of ignorance, suspicion and fear. Direct us into the ways of understanding, co-operation and mutual respect that we may foster peace and justice. Bless the peace-makers and sustain all peace-keepers.

Lord, hear us. Lord, hear our prayer.

Bless the men and women who currently serve in our defence forces. Help them to take their share of responsibility cheerfully and intentionally. May they be considerate of others and faithful to their duties. Strengthen their faith and grant them the courage they need to forgive themselves and others when trouble happens.

Lord, hear us. Lord, hear our prayer.

God of all, we are your family and you call us to love one another as you love us. Help us to overcome the barriers which divide people and nations. Bless every effort being made to bring peace and justice in the world. May we learn your ways, follow your guidance and Christ’s example, for we ask in the name of the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ, who taught us to pray:

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen

 

HYMN: TIS 138 Eternal Father strong to save William Whiting 1825-78  alt.

  1. Eternal Father, strong to save, whose arm has bound the restless

wave, who bidst the mighty ocean deep its own appointed limits keep:

O hear us when we cry to thee for those in peril on the sea.

  1. O Christ, whose voice the waters heard and hushed their raging at thy word, who walkedst on the foaming deep, and calm amid the storm didst keep: O hear us when we cry to thee for those in peril on the sea.
  2. O Holy Spirit, who didst brood upon the waters dark and rude,

and bid their angry tumult cease, and give for wild confusion, peace:

O hear us when we cry to thee for those in peril on the sea.

  1. O Trinity of love and power, our people shield in danger’s hour

from rock and tempest, fire and foe, guard them wherever they may go:

thus evermore shall rise to thee glad hymns of praise from land and sea.   

            

Benediction  –

The Peace of God which passes all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge of the Love of God, and of his Son, Jesus Christ our Saviour, and the blessing of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you all, evermore. Amen.

This service includes 2018 ANZAC Day resources, prayers supplied by Padre Cameron West, Anglican Chaplain, 6th Battalion Royal Australian Regiment Dawn service 25th April 2021 and The Australian Hymn Book, multiple copies owned by the St Lucia Uniting Church congregation. Copyright license #217268

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