TRINITY UNITED CHURCH
MAY 1, 2022 WORSHIP
Worship Leaders: Linda Lund and Jan Morrissey
Music Leader: David Rogers
Scripture Reader: Joan Lahey
Zoom Hosts/Slides: Jo-Ann Dahms
Balcony Zoom Host: Peggy Horvath
Sound Room: Dave Squires
Usher: Beth Anderson
May the Peace of Christ be with you. And also with you.
Welcome to Trinity United Church in Port Coquitlam. We are grateful you have joined us for worship this morning, in person, on Zoom or via You Tube.
Lighting the Christ Candle
Introductions: I’m Linda Lund, a member of Pastoral Care and a Healing Pathway practitioner since 1999. In the absence of Rev David, I’m leading this service today, together with Jan Morrissey of Inlet United in Port Moody. She is a Healing Pathway Instructor the leader of our Tri-Cities Ministry of the Healing Pathway.
Acknowledgement of Territory: (Linda)
Did you know that prior to the year 1492, there were many hundreds of nations/bands/tribes/groups of indigenous people in the Americas – North, Central and South America? There were hundreds of languages spoken, hundreds of cultures and ethnicities and several millions of people living here (exact number is unknown). Many were here continuously from 8,000 years ago and some from as far back as 13,000 years ago, and Broadview magazine says there are finds that show 50,000 years ago. White Europeans have been here roughly 550 years so we repudiate the doctrine of “discovery” – this was NOT a new world, but one rich in history, trade, art, music, dance, customs and spirituality. The people who were here first honoured the land, the waters and the air and expressed gratitude for the blessings they received. We acknowledge that Trinity United Church is located on the unceded traditional territory of the Coast Salish People of the Kwikwetlam First Nation. We also acknowledge that “every child matters”. We acknowledge that there is much to learn from indigenous cultures, especially about ecological sustainability, and we need to continually work toward reconciliation. We have done some work, but there is much more to do.
Breath Meditation: (Jan)
On the Healing Pathway, all of what we do is based on being connected and open so that God’s Spirit may work through us. We aim to be grounded and centered, fully present in time and place and connected to the divine presence. Breathing with intention is a valuable technique to reach that meditative place so I invite you all to take some deep slow breaths. Breathe in the unconditional love of God and breathe out any distractions.
Call to Worship: (Linda)
We gather here in your presence, God
In our need, and bringing with us the needs of the world.
We come to you, for you come to us in Jesus,
And you know by experience what human life is like.
We come with our faith and our doubts;
We come with our hopes and with our fears.
We come as we are, because you invite us to come;
And you have promised never to turn us away.
Iona Abbey Worship Book
Hymn: Come and Find the Quiet Centre VU 374 CLICK HERE
God of Life, you are as near to us as our breath.
Touch our eyes that we may see you;
Open our ears that we may hear your voice;
Enter our hearts that we may know your love.
Grace our souls and bodies with your presence,
That we might feel your strength and your healing touch;
In the name of Jesus the Christ. Amen.
Learning together: (Jan)
The Healing Pathway ministry offers healing through attention to the energy field that surrounds each person. Energy moves in and out of our bodies most easily through energy centres, called chakras. Each of the main chakras in our bodies has a colour, a sound and a vibration associated with it. Another Healing Pathway instructor, Sheila MacDermott, has written a book to help her grandchildren understand and use their breath to support those chakras. We invite you now to breathe with Ori, the glowworm who has lost his glow.
Linda to read “Ori’s Rain Forest” by Sheila MacDermott (with PowerPoint slides)
Scripture Readings: (Jan)
The passage from the letter to the Ephesians – that we’re going to hear now – contains a prayer asking that we be rooted and grounded in Christ. It is the power of that love that we call upon the healing ministry. We offer it to the receiver, for their body, mind and spirt to use in whatever way they can.
Ephesians 3:16-21 (Joan Lahey)
I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love. I pray that you have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with the fullness of God. Now to him, who by the power at work within us, is able to accomplish abundantly far more than we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen
Hymn: To Show By Touch and Word VU 427
REFLECTION: (Jan with slides)
Offering healing with the laying on of hands is not a New Age idea. It is a practice that goes far back in the history of humankind. Here is a quick summary: (start slideshow)
1. First of all, this kind of healing is not uncommon. Many of the things we all do from day to day are in fact ‘healing touch’ – a sincere handshake, a meaningful hug, an encouraging pat on the shoulder, a rub on a sore spot. We just focus on using it more intentionally.
2. Healing by laying on of hands and praying goes way back in human history. People in ancient India, Egypt and China were all familiar with this form of healing.
3. There are stories from the Jewish tradition as well. In the Old Testament, Moses and Elisha offered healing with prayer and touch.
4. Healing was a large part of Jesus’ ministry. About 1/5 of the Gospel story is about healing of one sort or another – and not just physical healing, but healing of mental or moral problems, and healing by establishing right relationships. And Jesus’ instructions were, “Go and do likewise” (Matt 10: 7-8 and Mark 9: 6)
5. The early Christians understood people as an integrated whole
- body, mind and spirit. Laying on of hands for healing was practiced by all.
6. During the second century, there was a revival of Platonic ideas which involved a separation of body and spirit and these ideas gradually influenced mainstream thought.
7. In 1123, at the Lateran Council, clergy were forbidden to care for the sick except as spiritual directors. The soul was important, the body much less so. Anointing with oil for healing became last rites for the dying to save the soul.
8. During the Middle Ages, a time when a hierarchy of authority was very well established, the laying on of hands for healing was reserved for kings.
9. Another shift came in the 16th and 17th centuries with the birth of science. Then it was not the soul that took precedence over the body, but the mind.
10. It is only now that scientists are really beginning to understand the interdependent relationships between body, mind and spirit.
11. The Christian church’s healing ministry never quite disappeared, however, and it is becoming more accepted again now as more and more people are seen as an integrated whole.
The Healing Pathway is a way that we are reclaiming the church’s healing ministry in a way that is appropriate for our time. (Stop slides)
The following is a brief explanation of the Healing Pathway work as I understand it.
Everything is made of tiny moving particles – so everything is energy. Energy flows in us, around us and through us all the time.
We all have an energy system. It unifies and connects all levels of our being – body, mind, spirit, emotions and our environment as well.
All of the experiences in our lives are held in our energy system and influence the flow of energy. When we pay attention to this energy system, we can make changes in ourselves and others.
Healing is a restoration of balance to the energy system. It is not just a curing of symptoms, but a bringing of a sense of wholeness and the acceptance of all parts of our being.
Love is the power behind this work. Just being with another with the intention for their highest good can be healing.
Anyone can offer healing, but the healing is the work of the receiver, not the giver. We can only offer energy and encourage it to move more freely.
The energy we offer is not our own energy; it is energy from the universal energy field, flowing through us.
The first steps to offering healing energy are to become grounded
– connected to the earth and truly present in this time and place, and centred – aware of our spiritual heart centre, that place deep within where we can be open to our connection to the divine.
And now I will go on to tell you about a valuable practice that has blessed our work through the pandemic.
Most of the work we have done in the Healing Pathway sessions since our ministry began in the Tri-Cities has been offering healing sessions person to person. Since the pandemic began, we have had much valuable experience offering over long distances. There have never been questions about praying for someone who is far away, and we have discovered that we can also offer healing to someone who is not nearby.
The scientific explanation involved is somewhere in the realm of quantum physics where time and distance do not have the same meanings that we are used to. It has meant that we can offer from our homes to a receiver lying down or sitting comfortably in their own home and the sensations are very similar to those we would experience if we were together.
It has actually enabled us to offer many more sessions than we had been able to do when we were scheduling in-person sessions. These sessions can be a welcome time for relaxation and can also be important in helping people through difficult times in their lives – whether the issues are physical, emotional, mental or spiritual.
We are honoured and blessed to be able to accompany people on their healing journeys. Please remember that we are a resource for everyone in the church congregations and beyond.
We are grateful for the many ways people choose to serve and give at Trinity United Church. Our ministry is only possible thanks to your gifts of money, time and service. If you would like to make a financial contribution, please send a cheque to the church office, bring it to in-person worship or click on the “Donate Now” button on our website.
You make a rich feast for our souls,
Filling our hearts with joy.
Grant that we too,
Through our offerings of time, money and praise,
Be a source of joy to others.
In the name of the One who came in your name
We pray. Amen.
Prayers of the People/Disciple’s Prayer: (Linda)
Loving God, thank you for your Healing Presence with us today. We open our hearts to you, our God. Help us be ready to accept back those parts of ourselves that we have rejected and let go of those things that restrict our growth so that we can live abundantly, whole and grateful, for all of life’s wonders and challenges, free from unexamined beliefs and assumptions.
We thank you now for all of the blessings of this life – the wonderful variety of your creation, the abilities we have to help us change and grow, and the love which is always supporting us on our journey.
We pray now for all those who are suffering in body, mind or spirit. Help them be aware of your loving presence with them to strengthen them in their struggles.
We ask for your support for the Healing Pathway and the many other agencies and groups and individuals who are dedicated to work to bring about changes in your world – to bring wholeness on all levels: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual.
We pray now for all the places in the world today that are especially in need your transformative love. We pray for all the places that are struggling with natural challenges – floods, fires, earthquakes and drought – and for all those suffering from the disasters of war and conflict – there are too many to name right now. We pray for all the political leaders in the world – that they be open to your wisdom and guidance.
We ask that you guide and sustain your church in this time of transition – that the worldwide church truly be an expression of the things that Jesus taught, and that this congregation be empowered to an abundant ministry here in Port Coquitlam. In our healing, learning and giving, may we be very conscious of your loving presence.
We pray now for your transformative love to be active in each of our lives. May we be more open to the nudges of your Spirit. From our hearts and in faith, we ask for your blessings on this congregation for our healing journey.
This we pray in the name of Jesus who taught us with one voice to pray:
Our Mother/Our Father, who art in heaven…
Hymn: In You There is a Refuge MV 84
Hold your hands out in a sign of blessing:
Imagine the love of God entering through the top of your head (the Crown chakra) and mingling with your heart centre, going out through your fingers into your device and out to all the people out there.
Blessed is the Path: (by Eric Williams/Jenn Swanson)
Blessed is the path on which you travel.
Blessed is the body that carries you upon it.
Blessed is your heart that has heard the call.
Blessed is your mind that discerns the way.
Blessed is the gift that you will receive by giving.
Truly blessed is the gift that you will become on the journey.
May you go forth in peace, and as you go,
know you don’t go alone and know that wherever you go,
you go with the whisper of God in your heart, the love of Jesus lighting your way, and the companionship of the Holy Spirit,
moving in and through your life. Amen
Postlude: David Rogers