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Trinity United Church
June 27, 2021
Trinity Sunday
Zoom Worship

“Connection not Perfection”

CLICK HERE for the video of the sermon. 



Welcome to Trinity United Church this morning. Today is of course the last Sunday before Canada Day
I contacted the Kwikwetlem First Nation to ask for permission to use their logo. 
With their reply they sent along a short clip of the correct pronunciation recently prepared by Chief Ed Hall. 
I’m hoping you can hear it and we can all attempt to pronounce it as best we can.


They also suggested the following wording:

Acknowledgement of Territory:

We acknowledge that our church exists on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem First Nation). We thank the kʷikʷəƛ̓əm who continue to live on these lands and care for them, along with the waters and all that is above and below.

Call to Worship:
Although we are apart, we are united in this time of praise and thanksgiving.
Let us glorify the name of our loving God.
Welcome to God’s peace.
In this time, may we put aside our urgency and anxiety, and resist the distractions of our fear. 
Let us open ourselves to receive the healing of our caring God.
Welcome to God’s love.
At the height of our joy or the depths of our despair, in the sunshine of our hope and the shadows of our shame, God’s love seeks us out.
Let us experience how we are always made welcome by our inclusive God.

Gill Le Fevre, Walton Memorial U.C., Oakville, Ont. (adapted)

Opening Prayer:
Creating, Loving God,
in Christ, you show us a way
to heal and to shape a new day,
and you entrust us with the gifts of faith:
forgiveness, compassion, trust, and love.
In the changing seasons,
in the changing world,
your love is constant.
May our witness and prayer sustain and support
goodness, justice, and peace
in our worship and work
enough for this day
and for all the generations who follow. Amen

Wendy MacLean, Christ U.C., Flin Flon, Man. (adapted)

Hymn: “This is the Day That God Has Made” VU 175 CLICK HERE

2 Sam 1:1, 17-27
David Mourns for Saul and Jonathan
After the death of Saul, when David had returned from defeating the Amalekites, David remained two days in Ziklag.
David intoned this lamentation over Saul and his son Jonathan. (He ordered that The Song of the Bow be taught to the people of Judah; it is written in the Book of Jashar.) He said:
Your glory, O Israel, lies slain upon your high places!
How the mighty have fallen!
Tell it not in Gath,
proclaim it not in the streets of Ashkelon;
or the daughters of the Philistines will rejoice,
the daughters of the uncircumcised will exult.
You mountains of Gilboa,
let there be no dew or rain upon you,
nor bounteous fields!
For there the shield of the mighty was defiled,
the shield of Saul, anointed with oil no more.
From the blood of the slain,
from the fat of the mighty,
the bow of Jonathan did not turn back,
nor the sword of Saul return empty.
Saul and Jonathan, beloved and lovely!
In life and in death they were not divided;
they were swifter than eagles,
they were stronger than lions.
O daughters of Israel, weep over Saul,
who clothed you with crimson, in luxury,
who put ornaments of gold on your apparel.
How the mighty have fallen
in the midst of the battle!
Jonathan lies slain upon your high places.
I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan;
greatly beloved were you to me;
your love to me was wonderful,
passing the love of women.
How the mighty have fallen,
    And the weapons of war perished!

“The Song of the Bow”
According to the Hebrew Scriptures, Saul was the first king of the United Kingdom of Israel (Israel and Judah). His reign is traditionally placed in the late 11th century BCE. 
Five hundred years later, during the Babylonian Exile, it is likely that the Priests and Scribes redacted the book of Samuel by combining a number of independent texts of various ages.
This particular poem comes from the book of Jashar, an ancient text only parts of which made it into the Hebrew Bible.
The bible tells us that Samuel set Saul up on the throne, but was not pleased with the way things turned out. When he tells Saul that God has rejected him as king, David, a son of Jesse, from the tribe of Judah, enters the picture. From this point on Saul's story is largely the account of his increasingly troubled relationship with David.
Saul’s jealousy eventually lead him into plotting the death of David, but he and his three sons were all killed in the battle of Gilboa against the Philistines. The way was paved for David to be king.
It is suggested that it was the Philistine use of bow and arrow that lead to Saul’s defeat. “The Song of the Bow” was a call for Israel to master that skill. 
However, this beautiful lamentation bears witness to David’s grief in spite of the strained relationship between Saul and himself. David demonstrates what Jesus later will advocate: “loving our enemies” and “forgiving those who trespass against us”.
A challenging example to follow!

Our Hymn: “Your Hand, O God, Has Guided” VU 274 CLICK HERE

Mark 5:21-43
A Girl Restored to Life and a Woman Healed
When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered around him; and he was by the sea. Then one of the leaders of the synagogue named Jairus came and, when he saw him, fell at his feet and begged him repeatedly, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.” So he went with him.
And a large crowd followed him and pressed in on him. Now there was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years. She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse. She had heard about Jesus, and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, for she said, “If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.” Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease. Immediately aware that power had gone forth from him, Jesus turned about in the crowd and said, “Who touched my clothes?” And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing in on you; how can you say, ‘Who touched me?’” He looked all around to see who had done it. But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling, fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.”
While he was still speaking, some people came from the leader’s house to say, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?” But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the leader of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” He allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. When they came to the house of the leader of the synagogue, he saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. When he had entered, he said to them, “Why do you make a commotion and weep? The child is not dead but sleeping.” And they laughed at him. Then he put them all outside, and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him, and went in where the child was. He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!” And immediately the girl got up and began to walk about (she was twelve years of age). At this they were overcome with amazement. He strictly ordered them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.

I’m sure that I don’t need to point out to anyone that our world needs healing.
Recent events make that very clear and I’ll come back to that in a minute, but first there are a couple of points in this reading, that should not be overlooked.
First: Jairus, one of the leaders of the synagogue, comes to Jesus to beg him to save his daughter. So often in the Gospels we hear of Jesus being at odds with the religious leadership. It’s important to note that this was not always the case.
Second: Women in the ancient world are often seen as chattels and of little value to men--their highest calling to be the bearing and raising healthy sons. They are often omitted from any serious text. Yet, here we experience something different:
•    Jairus is portrayed as a loving father who is deeply concerned about his daughter’s illness
•    The woman who reached out and touched Jesus, came in fear and trembling, fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.”
•    When he accompanied Jairus, Jesus allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. Then along with them he took the child’s father and mother, and went in where the child was. He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!”
The most important thing, however, that we take from these two stories comes down to the fact that both Jairus and the woman with the hemorrhage took action.
They were not content to stay safely at home and pray for God to intervene on their behalf. It didn’t work. 
It’s not enough to study the bible, attend church, and pray earnestly for God to intervene in a situation, we have to be prepared to work. Both Jairus and the unnamed woman left the safety of their homes and went out and sought Jesus, a known healer, for help.
Rev. S. Blair Odney, President, Pacific Mountain Regional Council, writes in his recent Pastoral Letter in response to the news of the past month:
“What happens to one of these, the least of our brothers and sisters, happens also to us.  . . .  What does it mean for us now to unite in one common quest, to live with respect in Creation, to love and serve others, to seek justice and resist evil, to proclaim Jesus, crucified and risen, our judge and our hope?”
. . . We don’t really have an option now.  There is only one response. 
Here I am, send me.  Here we are, send us.
Canada is arguably the most beautiful country in the world. We have a stable government and our civil rights are protected in law. However, news over the last few weeks makes it clear that in reality, this is not necessarily true for all of us.
We have an obligation now to make up for the mistakes of the past. We can begin by ensuring that Canada continues on her path of reconciliation. The United Church of Canada has a role to play.

Please join in singing our National Anthem “O Canada”.

Video: Hymn: O Canada CLICK HERE

Prayers of the People:
Holy One,
We pray for health care workers and others who suffer from exhaustion and post-traumatic stress disorder.
We pray for those who struggle to escape conditions of poverty and oppression both in Canada and abroad.
We pray for those who have lost their homes through flooding in Pakistan and others affected by natural disasters.
We pray for those who have just been released from prison.
We pray for elderly persons who have just moved from a long-cherished home.
We will work and pray for the reality of a restored and faithful life.

We pray for those who have lost their financial independence.
We pray for those who cannot find out the reason for their pain.
We pray for those who through accident or conflict have lost their mobility.
We pray for those who are unexpectedly sick.
We pray for those who are dying and afraid.
We pray for those who have been suddenly bereaved (time of silent reflection).
We will work and pray for the reality of a restored and faithful life.

We pray for those who have no time or interest in a spiritual life.
We pray for those who say, “The church is dying.”
We pray for those who hang back from giving their time and talents to God’s work.
We pray for those who equate the faith community with the building.
We pray for those who are unable to envision a worldwide, joyful, yet needy church.
We will work and pray for the reality of a restored and faithful life.

There are times when our faith is weak,
When our trust in a good friend or a loved one is lost;
When work is unfulfilling, or attending a local social group is a chore;
When our life’s path is strewn with obstacles;
When our prayer life is dry and our spiritual searching yields no results;
When there seems no one to turn to in our need.
The prospects may seem dim but we believe, and we will work and pray for the reality of a restored and faithful life.

And we continue in prayer with the words that Jesus taught us. Beginning Our Mother, Our Father . . .

Lord’s Prayer

Hymn: MV 30: “It’s a Song of Praise to the Maker” CLICK HERE

Commissioning and Benediction:
Hands out -
In the midst of a world filled with clamour and boasting, may our faithful presence be for others a quiet moment filled with the love of God that reveals the good news of the kingdom of God to those who are searching for hope. Amen.

Julie Hutton, Minnedosa U.C., Minnedosa, Man.