A House of Prayer for all People and the Episcopal Church in Colorado

The Wilderness

The Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany

January 29, 2023

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Home By Another Way: The Season after the Epiphany at The Wilderness

When the Magi are preparing to depart from Jesus and his parents, they are told in a dream that King Herod will harm them if they return home the way they came. So, in a moment of prophetic clarity, Matthew tells us the Magi “went home by another way”, spurning the schemes of a tyrannical despot. Their instincts preserve their lives and enable them to return home grateful and in one piece. In this season after the Epiphany, the story in which the Magi – Gentiles – use the mechanisms of astrology to be led to Jesus – a Jewish child in a rural village – we are invited to plumb the depths of our own paths and see the endless possibilities of going home by another way. Perhaps it is a rut in a relationship with your spouse, children, or coworkers. Or it might be repeated mistakes on the road to recovery. Or it might just be the staleness of a prayer practice you’ve cherished for years. Whatever your well-worn road is, God is inviting you to go home by another way, another practice, another route that, until this moment, wasn’t at all possible before. Perhaps this season is God’s way of inviting you to trust that whatever way you choose to get home, the important part is that God is your companion there and back.

In Awe,

Broderick

PRELUDE
The Wilderness Musicians

GATHERING SONG

OPENING ACCLAMATION

Presider  Blessed be our God, holy Trinity, undivided.
People  Amen.

THE CONFESSION OF SIN AND ABSOLUTION

As we prepare to celebrate the holy mysteries, let us confess our sins, confident in God’s infinite mercy, and the promise God makes to us in Holy Baptism.

Silence.

People  Our lives are laid open before you: rescue us from the chaos of sin we have committed and sin done on our behalf. In your mercy, heal and make us whole through our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
Presider  You are forgiven in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

THE PRAYER OF THE DAY

Presider  God is with you.
People  And also with you.
Presider  Let us pray.

O God, teach us the hidden wisdom of the gospel, so that we may hunger and thirst for holiness, work tirelessly for peace, and be counted among those who seek first the blessedness of your kingdom. We ask this through our Savior Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in union with the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever.

People  Amen.

All sit.

THE READING
Micah 6:1-8

A Reading from the Book of the Prophet Micah.

Hear what the Lord is saying: Arise, lay out the lawsuit before the mountains; let the hills hear your voice! Hear, mountains, the lawsuit of the Lord! Hear, eternal foundations of the earth! The Lord has a lawsuit against his people; with Israel he will argue. “My people, what did I ever do to you? How have I wearied you? Answer me! I brought you up out of the land of Egypt; I redeemed you from the house of slavery. I sent Moses, Aaron, and Miriam before you. My people, remember what Moab’s King Balak had planned, and how Balaam, Beor’s son, answered him! Remember everything from Shittim to Gilgal, that you might learn to recognize the righteous acts of the Lord!” With what should I approach the Lord and bow down before God on high? Should I come before him with entirely burned offerings, with year-old calves? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with many torrents of oil? Should I give my oldest child for my crime; the fruit of my body for the sin of my spirit? He has told you, human one, what is good and what the Lord requires from you: to do justice, embrace faithful love, and walk humbly with your God.

Reader  Hear what the Spirit is saying to God’s people.
People  Thanks be to God.

PSALM 15
Said in unison.

Lord, who is welcome in your house?

Who can rest on your holy mountain?
Those who walk with integrity
and do only what is right,
speaking the truth with courage.
They never spread slander
or abuse their friends
or condemn their neighbors.
They disdain the godless,
but honor those who believe.

Before God, they give their word

and keep it at any cost.
They neither lend for gain
nor take bribes against the guiltless.

These are the just:
they stand for ever unshaken.

All stand.

THE GOSPEL
Matthew 5:1-12

Presider  The Good News of our Savior Jesus Christ according to Matthew.
People  Praise and glory to Christ.

Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up a mountain. He sat down and his disciples came to him. He taught them, saying: “Happy are people who are hopeless, because the kingdom of heaven is theirs. “Happy are people who grieve, because they will be made glad. “Happy are people who are humble, because they will inherit the earth. “Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full. “Happy are people who show mercy, because they will receive mercy. “Happy are people who have pure hearts, because they will see God. “Happy are people who make peace, because they will be called God’s children. “Happy are people whose lives are harassed because they are righteous, because the kingdom of heaven is theirs. “Happy are you when people insult you and harass you and speak all kinds of bad and false things about you, all because of me. Be full of joy and be glad, because you have a great reward in heaven. In the same way, people harassed the prophets who came before you.

Presider  Good News from the Lord.
People  Praise to Christ, the Word.

The People are seated.

THE REFLECTION

All stand.

GROUNDING SONG

All sit. The singing bowl is rung twice for prayerful reflection.

OPEN SPACE

The People are invited to wander the cathedral in prayer or remain in their seats.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Presider  We wade here, celebrating the promises you speak over us in the water of baptism, faithful God. Swaddle us once again in your warm, loving embrace, lest we forget to whom we belong.
People  Amen.

THE PEACE

Presider  Christ’s peace is with you.
People  And also with you.

The People greet one another with a sign of Peace and are then seated for announcements.

ANNOUNCEMENTS and STEWARDSHIP

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The Holy Communion

OFFERTORY SONG
The Wilderness Musicians

All stand.

THANKSGIVING AT THE TABLE

Presider  God is with you.
People  And also with you.
Presider  Lift up your hearts.
People  We lift them to the Lord.
Presider  Let us give thanks to our Lord God.
People  It is right to give our thanks and praise.

Fountain of All Wisdom and Source of Life, we thank you and we praise you. You are God, clothed in majesty, girded in mercy. In the beginning, you hovered over the face of the Deep; you spoke and worlds came to be. Night and day, orders and armies of angels and archangels magnify your Name, glorifying your gracious goodness. With them, we worship and adore you, singing:

SANCTUS & BENEDICTUS
All sing.

The Presider continues.

Aflame, but not consumed, a desert bramble trembled with the sound of your voice as you spoke to Moses, your servant and prophet. At the sound of your voice, seas part, storms cease, and the bereaved are reunited with their dead. At the sound of your voice, bread and fish are multiplied and your people are fed.

At the sound of your voice, Mary, a daughter of your covenant people, engendered your Incarnate Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, the Living Word who announced your reign with deeds of healing and power.

On the night he was handed over to suffering and death, Our Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said, “Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.”

After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said, “Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me.”

Recalling all that Jesus has done for us in his life,

death, resurrection, and ascension to your right hand,
we glorify you with joyful hearts:

People  Living, you hallow all flesh.

Dying, you destroy our death.
Rising, you restore our life.
Lord Jesus, come in your glory!

Come, holy God, and sanctify this bread and this wine,
making them the body and blood of your Son,
holy food and holy drink for your holy people.
Let the Church say, “Amen.”

People  Amen.

Come, holy God, and sanctify us also,
making us, your people by Water and the Spirit,

bread and wine for the world you made.

Let the Church say, “Amen.”

People  Amen.

In communion with your saints in ages past; with your holy prophets and apostles; with the holy martyrs; with Mary, Mother of God; joining the ever-flowing chorus of seraphim and cherubim and the orders of angels and archangels in heaven and earth, we thank you. We make our prayer our prayer by Christ, and in Christ, and with Christ, In union with the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.

People  Amen.
Silence.

As Jesus taught his friends, we now pray,

Presider and People

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.

THE BREAKING OF THE BREAD

The Presider breaks the consecrated bread and says,

The disciples knew the Lord Jesus in the breaking of the Bread.

The Presider and assistant break the Bread and fill the chalices with Wine.

THE INVITATION TO COMMUNION

The Table now is ready. Feast on Christ.

Following the invitation to Communion, the Ministers and People receive the Sacrament. For those desiring to receive wine, it is available from the common Cup, or simply leave the bread in your open palm and a chalice minister will intinct for you.

MUSIC DURING COMMUNION
The Wilderness Musicians

All stand.

THE PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION

Presider

Let us pray.

At this altar, holy God, your people have feasted on the food and drink of new and unending life in Christ. Strengthen us to live lives of love, to speak words of healing, and to mend the world you created. Amen.

THE BLESSING

Presider

Go tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere that despair is vanquished, sorrow is no more, and that the joy of the living God is your because Christ is born. And the blessing of the one, holy, and undivided Trinity
be among you and remain with you forever. Amen.

People 

Amen.

SENDING SONG

THE DISMISSAL

Presider  Go in peace.
People  Thanks be to God.

Presider
The Right Reverend Dan Edwards
Bishop in Residence


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