Thursday, May 6, 2021

Upper Room Liturgy - Mother's Day 2021 - Presiders: Kathleen Ryan, ARCWP, and Judith Stamp

Judy: Today we celebrate Mother’s Day on this 6th Sunday of Easter. Let’s us remember our mothers and anyone who nurtured us on the way.  Our readings today remind us of the many ways we love and care for one another.

Kathie: Let us pray:  Holy One, we are in awe of the birthing and mothering that occurs in all of nature. We experience your love as we care for one another.  May we always be aware of how you taught us to love.  Amen.

Opening Song:   Namaste


Barb P: A reading from The Monastic Way by Joan Chittister

It is the spirituality of creation—our affinity, our care, for the rest of creation—that really stretches us to the wholeness of ourselves and to the wholeness of God, as well.

Only when we see ourselves, humans, as part of creation, rather than as the crown of creation, will we ever be able to come anywhere close to really grasping the greatness of God and God’s gifts to us. Only then will we begin to see the glowing face of God everywhere. Only then will we begin to understand that we are all meant to come to fullness of life together—plants, animals, planet, and humans in one great reciprocal circle of a common creation. Until we do, all of us will go on living life with spiritual blinders.

These are the inspired words of Joan Chittister, a daughter of the Holy One.  The community affirms these words by saying AMEN.

Mary B: A reading from Meister Eckhart:     Love Does That

All day long a little burro labors, sometimes with heavy loads on her back, sometimes just with worries about things that bother only burros.

And worries, as we know, can be more exhausting them physical labor.

Once in a while a kind monk comes to her stable and brings a pear, but more than that, he looks into the burro’s eyes and touches her ears and for a few seconds the burro is free and even seems to laugh, because love does that.  Love frees.

These are in the inspired words of Meister Eckhart, a son of the Holy One.  The community affirms these words by saying AMEN!

Dennis: Alleluia

Eleanor: A reading from the Gospel of John

“As my Abba loves me, so I also love you.
Remain in my love.

And you will live on in my love if you keep my commandments, just as I live in Abba God’s love and have kept God’s commandments.
I have called you friends,
because I have told you everything I have heard from my Abba God.
It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you
and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain,
so that whatever you ask of Abba God in my name God may give you.
This I command you: love one another.” 

These are the inspired words of John, a disciple of the Holy One. The community affirms these words by saying AMEN!

Shared Homily  - Kathleen Ryan

Our gospel reading today is another very familiar reading, sometimes known as ‘The Last Discourse.”  It is the last time the disciples are gathered together in a room with Jesus.  Jesus sums up his life and ministry with two familiar phrases: Remain in my love and love one another.  So easy to remember and so easily said. The  phrase, “remain in my love” struck me. How do I remain in love? A few translations of this scripture passage said, “live in my love”.  The best translation for me was “persist in my love”.  Persist says, keep trying, don’t give up, commit and walk the path one step, one loving act at a time. 

The Meister Eckhart and Joan Chittister readings put some ‘meat on those bones’ the ‘how’ we remain or persist in his love and love one another. 

Joan Chittister describes the spirituality of creation as the path to love. When we acknowledge we are each “part of creation”, not the crown of creation, we begin to grasp “the greatness of God” and we see the “glowing face of God everywhere.”   When we share communion at liturgy we frequently say the prayer “you are the face of God.” This prayer is even more meaningful if we recognize and remember we are talking about ourselves as well. Together with the plants, animals, the planet we “come to the fullness of life.”  To come to the fullness of life we need everything, everyone, every part of creation. 

Meister Eckhart makes it even more simple.  At times we are the burros, laboring, worrying, and exhausted.  Then someone brings us a gift of love: looks in our eyes, touches us and for a few moments we know we are loved.  Sometimes we are the monks.  We bring food to the pantries, help our neighbor, listen to a friend who is suffering. We protest and stand in solidarity with the marginalized, pray for one another,  and gather at liturgy to be a community of love. To come to the fullness of life we must be the monk while never forgetting we are also the burro.

We are here for each other, we need each other. Remain in his love and love one another. 

What resonated for you in these readings? Please remember to unmute to share.

Santa: Let us pray our Statement of Faith together

All: We believe in one God, a divine mystery
beyond all definition and rational understanding,
the heart of all that has ever existed,
that exists now, or that ever will exist.

We believe in Jesus, messenger of God's Word,
bringer of God's healing, heart of God's compassion,
bright star in the firmament of God's
prophets, mystics, and saints.

We believe that We are called to follow Jesus
as a vehicle of God's love,
a source of God's wisdom and truth,
and an instrument of God's peace in the world.

We believe in the Holy Spirit,

The life of God that is our innermost life, 

the breath of God moving in our being.

The depth of God living in each of us.

We believe that God's kin-dom is here and now,
stretched out all around us for those
with eyes to see it, hearts to receive it,
and hands to make it happen.

Eucharistic Prayer of Belonging

Dennis: As we prepare for the sacred meal, we bring to this table our blessings, cares and concerns.  

We pray for these and all unspoken intentions. Amen.

Judy:  We are a priestly people. We are anointed. With open hands let us pray our Eucharistic prayer as one voice:

O Nurturing, Mothering one, You are always with us. We are grateful for Your constant loving and unconditional presence. At times we forget that You are holding us, attending to us. We fall and You pick us up. You send strangers, friends and family to our aid. We are never without Your Light and Spirit.

We experience great joy and we experience great pain and suffering. You are with us in the joy and the pain and suffering. When we experience Your presence we long to sing our hymn of praise: 

Holy, Holy, Holy  Here in this Place 

Kathie: Creator and Lover of all beings, we cannot grow in the darkness of this world without Your Light. Our desire to be in Your light is a gift from You. Help us keep our hearts and minds open to You through our love and care for each other and all creation.

Kathie: Please extend your hands in blessing

All: This bread and wine is a sign of Your nourishment and a sign of Your great love. Your Spirit is upon us and we belong to You and one another.

We thank you for Jesus, simple servant, lifting up the lowly, revealing you as God-With-Us, revealing us as one with you, and all creation. 

Judy: On the night before he died, Jesus gathered for the Seder supper with the people closest to him. Like the least of household servants, he washed their feet. Once again, he showed us how to love one another.

All lift the plate and pray:

When he returned to his place at the table, he lifted the bread, spoke the blessing, broke the bread, and offered it to them saying: 

Take and eat, this is my very self.


All lift the cup and pray:

Kathie: Then he took the cup of blessing, spoke the grace, and offered it to them saying:

Take and drink.

Whenever you remember me like this,

I am among you.

 By Your Spirit we are transformed.  Every time we share this bread and wine we choose to be transformed. We choose to love as You love us.

Through him, we have learned how to live.

Through him, we have learned how to love.

Through him, we have learned how to serve.


Please receive communion saying: I will remain in Your Love.

Communion song: May the Greatest Love

Judy: Loving Source of our being, You call us to live the Gospel of peace and justice. We live justly, we love tenderly, we walk with integrity in Your Presence.

Lynn W: Let us pray together the prayer of Jesus:

O Holy One, who is within, around, and among us, we celebrate your many names. Your wisdom come. Your will be done, unfolding from the depths within us. Each day you give us all that we need. You remind us of our limits, and we let go. You support us in our power, and we act with courage. For you are the dwelling place within us, the empowerment around us, and the celebration among us, now and forever. Amen.

The Prayer of Jesus as interpreted by Miriam Therese Winter

Judy: Closing Prayer

Nurturing one

We thank you for the earth’s vegetation enfolded in your warmth.

We thank you for earth’s creatures encircled in your loving arms.

We thank you for all those women and men who mothered us.

May we always remain in your everlasting community of love. Amen


Judy:  Please extend your hands and pray our blessing together


May we continue to be the Face of God to each other. May the certainty of our connectedness to one another and all creation ignite us to love more fully. May those who nurtured us be remembered with love today and always.  May we, like Jesus, persist in love and be a blessing for all.  

All: Amen.


Closing Song   

A mother’s Love by Jim Brickman

Thank you for watching over me,

All of the sleepless night you lay awake.

Thank you for knowing when to hold me close,

when to let me go.

Thank you for every steppingstone

And for the path that always leads me home.

I thank you for the time you took to see the heart inside of me.

You gave me the roots to start this life and then you gave me wings to fly.

And I learned to dream because you believed in me.

There’s no power like it on this earth. No treasure equal to its worth

The gift of a mother’s love.

Thank you for every sunlit day that filled the corners of my memory.

Thank you for every selfless unsung deed I know you did for me.

Thank you for giving me the choice to search my soul till I could find my voice.

And I thank you for teaching me to be strong enough to bend.

You gave me the roots to start this life and then you gave me wings to fly

And I learned to dream because you believed in me.

There’s no power like it on this earth. No treasure equal to its worth

The gift of a mother’s love.

I thank God for a mother’s love.

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Moment of Oneness: May 5, 2021

7:00pm EST

Meeting ID: 815 0755 1772
To connect by phone dial: +1 646 558 8656

The theme for tonight continues our theme from Sunday: Celebrating the Divine Feminine in, around and among us.

Opening Song: Listen to Her Justice Call by Jann Aldridge-Clanton

A Litany of Women for the Church by Joan Chittister

Holy One, creator of women in your own image,
born of a woman in the midst of a world half women,
carried by women to mission fields around the globe,
made known by women to all the children of the earth,
give to the women of our time
the strength to persevere,
the courage to speak out,
the faith to believe in you beyond
all systems and institutions
so that your face on earth may be seen in all its beauty,
so that men and women become whole,
so that the church may be converted to your will
in everything and in all ways.

We call on the holy women
who went before us,
channels of Your Word
in testaments old and new,
to intercede for us
so that we might be given the grace
to become what they have been
for Your honor and glory.

Saint Esther, who pleaded against power
for the liberation of the people, –Pray for us.

Saint Judith, who routed the plans of men
and saved the community,

Saint Deborah, laywoman and judge, who led
the people of God,

Saint Elizabeth of Judea, who recognized the value
of another woman,

Saint Mary Magdalene, minister of Jesus,
the first evangelist of the Christ,

Saint Scholastica, who taught her brother Benedict
to honor the spirit above the system,

Saint Hildegard, who suffered interdict
for the doing of right,

Saint Joan of Arc, who put no law above the law of God,

Saint Clare of Assisi, who confronted the pope
with the image of woman as equal,

Saint Julian of Norwich, who proclaimed for all of us
the motherhood of God,

Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, who knew the call
to priesthood in herself,

Saint Catherine of Siena, to whom the pope listened,

Saint Teresa of Avila, who brought women’s gifts
to the reform of the church,

Saint Edith Stein, who brought fearlessness to faith,

Saint Elizabeth Seton, who broke down boundaries
between lay women and religious
by wedding motherhood and religious life,

Saint Dorothy Day, who led the church
in a new sense of justice,

Mary, mother of Jesus,
who heard the call of God and answered,

Mary, mother of Jesus,
who drew strength from the woman Elizabeth,

Mary, mother of Jesus,
who underwent hardship bearing Christ,

Mary, mother of Jesus,
who ministered at Cana,

Mary, mother of Jesus,
inspirited at Pentecost,

Mary mother of Jesus,
who turned the Spirit of God
into the body and blood of Christ, pray for us. Amen.

Prayers for the Community

(adapted from Prayers for the Community by Richard Rohr)

Holy One, You fill all things with a fullness and hope that we can never comprehend. You give us the courage to awaken to greater truth, greater humility, and greater care for one another. We place our hope in what matters and what lasts, trusting in your eternal presence and love. You listen to our hearts’ longings for the healing of our suffering world. 

Please add your own intentions . . .

Knowing you are hearing us better than we are speaking, we offer these prayers in love and gratitude. Amen.

Closing Song: Ave Maria played by Joshua Bell 

Monday, May 3, 2021

The Companion's Rosary

Praying the Holy Rosary
In Original Blessing Theology

Introduction to The Companions’ Rosary

Saying the Holy Rosary is a special focus of prayer and meditation that provides for each of us a state of contemplation and mystical connection. 

When aligning to the Grace of Mary, we can have a sense of purpose in praying for others and ourselves. It can be a singular and private prayer or a community endeavor. 

For those of us who are becoming steeped in Original Blessing Theology, the traditional prayers of the Holy Rosary can be daunting. When changing the wording to better reflect the concepts of Blessing Theology, it seems important to keep a sense of the timing and inflection of the prayers as we have learned them. 

The Companions' Rosary is an attempt to combine the prayers of the rosary within present-day theology of original blessing. 

To all whom feel called to pray in this way, prayers and blessings to you. May we all continue to connect, in whatever way we can, to the Holy One, to Mary and to each other.  

And so it is.

The Sign of the “Cross”.  A Shield of Protection and Love.

The sign of the cross can impress on us the concept of a theology of sacrifice and atonement.  The sign of the “cross”, here, building on the trinity and St. Paul's greetings, can also be a Shield of Protection and Love.

In the name of Peace (hand at the forehead)

And Love (hand at the heart)

And Grace (The Infinity sign across from one shoulder to the other, and back to the heart.) 


Rose Aglow,
DETrees, 2017
Praying the Holy Rosary
In Original Blessing Theology

The Sign of Protection and Love

In the name of Peace and Love and Grace. Amen.

A Simple Companions’ Creed

I believe in the Holy One, Lover, Creator, Enhancer, WHO IS Infinite and Present all at the same time.
Our Field of PEACE in all things.

I believe in Jesus, Friend and Companion, who shows us the Face of God in our human form. 
Our Sign of LOVE in all things.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, Our Heart and Soul, moving within and among us. 
Our Show of GRACE in all things.

I believe in this, our creed, in our communion of angels and saints and in life everlasting.

The Prayer of Jesus
(From Miriam Therese Winter)

O Holy One, who is within, around and among us.
We celebrate your many names.
Your Wisdom Come. Your will be done,
Unfolding from the depths within us.
Each day you give us all that we need.
You remind us of our limits, and we let go.
You support us in our power, and we act with courage.
For you are the dwelling place within us,
The empowerment around us,
And the celebration among us,
Now and forever. Amen.

The Hail Mary

Hail Mary, Full of grace, Our God is with you.
Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother and Friend,
Be with us now, at our hour, and beyond.  Amen.

The Glory Be

Glory and Joy Be to Peace and Love and Grace.
As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be,
World without End. Amen.

Hail Holy Mary
Hail Holy Mary, Mother and Leader, Our Life, our Sweetness and our Hope. You show us how to live with Courage in our convictions. You teach us to stand by each other with unending support and love.
Thank you for being with us now.  Walk this path with us as you did with your son, Jesus. May we follow his example of inclusive love, as you taught him.
O Clement, O Loving, Sweet Mary of Nazareth. Be with us as we look to you.
Praying the Companions’ Rosary
1.   Make the Sign of the Protection and Love.
2.   Say the Simple Companions’ Creed.
3.   On the first bead, say The Prayer of Jesus.
4.   Say The Hail Mary on each of the next three beads.
5.   Say The Glory Be on the fifth bead.
6.   For each of the five decades, announce the Mystery or a special intention then say The Prayer of Jesus
7.   While fingering each of the ten beads of the decade, say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery or Intention. Then say a Glory Be.
8.   After saying the five decades, say the Hail, Holy Mary.

Diagram from USCCB, Accessed 9-29-19


For all who say the Companions’ Rosary, a special Blessing from our Lady and Above. The Angels watch over you in Peace, Grace and Love.

With Joy and Appreciation for All,

Deb Trees, 2019
Debra Trees, FCM, ARCWP

The Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary