June 2011: Love thy (6 billion) neighbour(s)
For the June service we'll be looking at the chaos of choice associated with trying to respond to global (and local) poverty - and trying to choose to act out of a sense of freedom and hope. Simplify the chaos of choice associated with Saturday nights by joining us at St. Mary's Ealing, 8pm Saturday 11th June.
For photos see here.
On a massive board typical of snakes & ladders:
Players each were given a dice card so their role was not 'fair' – if a 6 was rolled, player B might, for example, only get to move forward 2 spaces. Some players never got to move a 6.
Rules: 6 players; take it in turns to roll the dice; all players move at once by the number of spaces shown by their dice card; land on community card? do what it says; land on same square as another player? you move back a square (repeat if necessary)
Station A – various passages from the Bible dealing with poverty, read them through then write on paper what your questions for Jesus are...
Station B – Remembering – we have come some distance in achieving what we've worked and prayed for – people were invited to write up something they were glad to have seen change in and pin it up to share
Station C – where to have influence – what motivates us? People were invited to write on acetate and put on an overhead projector what things they are particularly concerned about, from local issues to those around the world. Thus giving us a sense of what we as a community care about and are involved in.
Station D – persevering with the ordinary – reflection on a little girl putting her socks on over and over - what repeated actions do you want to do but find hard to sustain?
Station E – freedom through less – watch video from Conspiracy of Freedom on Enough - reflect and note on paper answers to: What keeps us from saying 'I have enough'? I have God's more than enough – what does that mean to you? What would it mean if we savoured, celebrated, enjoyed what we have? Can you say: 'thank you', 'I have enough'? How? Can Grace say them? How?
Then, back together:
Reflect on the Serenity Prayer – God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference.
Using a typical consulting matrix, we considered what actions we would take using a cost/value analysis and wrote postcards to ourselves to remind us what we'd committed to do.
Together, the Lord's Prayer.
God, you rescue the needy
from the wicked and the mighty.
You fill the poor with hope
and silence injustice.
We join you tonight in remembering
those whose needs are forgotten
and whose rights are ignored.
We want to be that community
you asked to be brave,
to not lose hope.
We want to be those
who inspire a generation of change,
who keep acting and keep reflecting, who savour, celebrate and enjoy
what we have, and
who find freedom in saying
'I have enough'.
Take our honest efforts further, and
show us where those honest efforts are misconceived or futile.
Please give us courage
- day by day -
- at work, home, and always -
to hope patiently,
and act as we know we should,
over and over and over.
Finishing with audio of children saying what they'd do – are you ready?
Final quote as people leave...
"courage does not always roar.
sometimes courage is the quiet voice
at the end of the day saying,
'I will try again tomorrow'"
(mary anne radmacher)