Christ The Servant Church
homily july 2017
Homily for july 02, 2017
Welcome everyone to this Great Day of worship! Let us begin this message with a prayer. Please join with me…We gather in gratitude for the richness of this land that goes from sea to sea to sea: we offer our gratitude to you, Creator of Life. We pray in awe and wonder, seeking to live daily lives that reflect gratitude.
Let us spend some time reflecting upon that which we should speak proudly of…For the First Peoples, who discovered this land millennia ago, and who teach us that we are all one with creation and with each other, for the rich natural resources, the wonder of the variety of landscapes and ecosystems in our country, urban and rural, prairie and maritime, tundra and mountains, Canadian Shield and foothills,
For the wonderful tapestry of so many cultures that make up our nation, making us all richer for the diversity,
For a country in which we are free and safe to cast our vote, where our vote and our voice count, and where we can give voice to what we believe,
For what our country has offered the world through inventions such as a cure for scurvy, canoes and kayaks, medicinal insulin, the Canadarm, the IMAX movie system, walkie-talkies, toboggans, snowshoes, life jackets, maple syrup, the snowmobile, the electric wheelchair, the prosthetic arm, the garbage bag, the caulking gun, the Robertson screw, and many sports and games such as Trivial Pursuit, ice hockey, lacrosse, basketball, and five-pin bowling,
For artists like Josephine Murphy, Anne Plaxton, and Joan Lee, musicians like …James, Pete, and Marilyn, and the many actors/actresses who contribute to the richness of Canada and also on the world stage
For athletes who give heart, soul, and energy in striving to be the top of their sport, representing Canada in competition around the world (Terry Fox),
For the young people in our CtS family who are pursuing their futures!
We gather in lament for the painful parts of our 150-year history:
For the devastation caused to the Indigenous Peoples through colonization of this land, the overuse of natural resources, and the loss of their cultures, spirituality, and traditions,
For the pain and suffering experienced in the Indian residential schools by too many Indigenous children; while some teachers and supervisors were good and kind, the system itself was cruel, and too much abuse happened that cannot be excused or justified;
For seizing people’s property and money and confining them in internment camps (Ukrainian Canadians during and after the First World War and Japanese Canadians during and after the Second World War), naming them as “enemy aliens” rather than seeing them as devoted Canadians,
For all others in our country who have been discriminated against, abused, and devalued because of their ethnicity, beliefs, or country of origin,
For those who gave their lives and those who continue to experience the traumatic effects of their service in the Armed Forces, during both world wars, as peacekeepers, and in other conflicts,
For the stolen sisters (the missing and murdered Indigenous women), for the 14 female engineering students who were murdered at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal on December 6, 1989, and for the violence and abuse that women in our nation continue to experience,
For the continuing violent and derogatory attitudes and actions that prevent those of the LGBTQ community from living freely who as who they are.
For those who have suffered devastation in both natural and human-made disasters in Canada,
For our CtS family in our perseverance in the face of opposition!
These are things we lament
Alas we do indeed dream! Indeed we dream of the future for our beloved land of Canada
For a country where the best of Canadian values of peacemaking, compassion, hospitality, generosity, fairness, and kindness are lived day by day and extended to everyone in this land,
For a country where everyone shares in the abundance, where everyone has food, shelter, safety, and employment, where everyone is valued as they are for who they truly are,
For a country where we care for the land, the environment, and the creatures, and live with respect in creation, making wise use of our natural resources and understanding that we are one with all of creation.
For the possibilities and promise we have as a nation in which every one of us can contribute our ideas, our imagination, and our creativity for the good of all,
For the leadership and example we can offer as a nation to the world, in building right relationships between all people and in treating all citizens, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, with dignity and respect, and in radical caring for the environment,
For the vision and encouragement we can offer as Christ the Servant Church by striving for right relations between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, in seeking justice and proclaiming hope, as we seek to follow the Way of Jesus,
For our CtS Church, that others in our region can join with us in finding a home of love, joy, and welcoming inclusiveness
On this 150th anniversary of the Confederation of Canada, to this we commit ourselves as your faithful people, Loving God.
We give thanks, we lament, and we dream, we gather in worship, prayer, love and joy! And together we shout AMEN