Year B
Proper 26
Sunday 31 October 2021



Eucharistic Preface

Let us lift up our hearts.
    We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
    It is right to give our thanks and praise.

It is indeed right to give you our thanks and praise, O God,
with all our heart and soul and mind and strength,
for you keep faith forever with all peoples
and reach out to save the burdened and the bereft.

You are the creator of heaven and earth,
and the maker of the teeming seas.
From generation to generation,
you have shown your generous love to those who, like Ruth,
have united with your people and walked in your ways.

Through your law you provided a way of forgiveness,
and when we lost our way,
you came to us in your Son, Jesus Christ.
Embodying the law of love,
he shed his own blood to obtain our redemption, and,
raised by you to new life,
he has entered your holy presence, once for all,
freeing us from works of futility
to worship you by living the ways of love.

Therefore with .....

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




Short Preface
(for insertion into Eucharistic prayers with fixed prefaces)

We give thanks for your Son, Jesus Christ,
who embodied the law of love
and shed his own blood to obtain our redemption,
entering your holy presence, once for all,
and freeing us from works of futility
to worship you by living the ways of love.

2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net





General Prayer of Thanksgiving
(Preface reformatted for use apart from communion)

We give you all thanks and praise, O God,
with all our heart and soul and mind and strength,
for you keep faith forever with all peoples
and reach out to save the burdened and the bereft.

You are the creator of heaven and earth,
and the maker of the teeming seas.
From generation to generation,
you have shown your generous love to those who, like Ruth,
have united with your people and walked in your ways.

Through your law you provided a way of forgiveness,
and when we lost our way,
you came to us in your Son, Jesus Christ.
Embodying the law of love,
he shed his own blood to obtain our redemption, and,
raised by you to new life,
he has entered your holy presence, once for all,
freeing us from works of futility
to worship you by living the ways of love.

Therefore, with our hearts lifted high,
we offer you thanks and praise at all times
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net





Declaration of Grace / Absolution

Jesus Christ shed his own blood to win freedom for us.
As our high priest, he has gone into the presence of God
and obtained for us eternal redemption,
purifying us from all guilt,
and freeing us to worship the living God.

Sisters and Brothers,
    your sins are forgiven;
        be at peace.  

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net





Commission & Benediction

Hear this: the Lord our God is the one and only Lord.
Therefore go out into the world
and love the Lord your God
with all your heart, soul, mind and strength,
and love others as you love yourself.

And may God give you justice and freedom;
May Christ Jesus set you free for love;
and may the Holy Spirit go where you go
   and protect you on your way.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
    In the name of Christ. Amen.

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net







Paraphrases of the Scripture Lections
for Proper 26 - Year B - Sunday 31 October 2021
Lections from The Revised Common Lectionary.
Copyright 1992 by the Consultation on Common Texts (CCT)
P. O. Box 340003, Room 381, Nashville, TN 37203-0003, USA. Used with Permission.



* Ruth 1: 1-18

    Long ago in the days before the Jewish people had a king, a severe drought caused a famine in the land of Judah. There was a man named Elimelech, from the tribe of Ephrath, living in Bethlehem with his wife, Naomi, and their two sons, Mahlon and Chilion. When their crops failed, they fled the famine and settled in the land of Moab. While they were there, Elimelech died, leaving Naomi to raise their sons alone. In time, the young men both married Moabite women, one named Orpah, and the other named Ruth. Within ten years, both Mahlon and Chilion also died, and Naomi was left destitute with no husband and no sons.
    Naomi got word that the LORD had blessed her homeland with good rains and good crops again, so she decided to pack up and move back home. Her two daughters-in-law, now widows too, prepared to go with her. They left their home in Moab and set out for Judah, but before they had gone very far, Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “This is crazy. It makes no sense for you to come with me. Why not go home to your own mothers and live among your own people? You have been very kind to me, just as you were always kind to my husband and my sons. May the LORD be just as kind to you and enable you to marry again and have homes and families of your own.”
    With that she kissed them both, and they were all in tears. But the two young women refused to go, saying, “We want to go with you and live among your people.”
    But Naomi leaned on them to change their minds saying, “Don’t be stupid, my daughters. What good will it do you to come with me? It’s not as though I’m going to have any more sons for you to marry. You’ve got your whole lives ahead of you. Go back and get a life. I’m over the hill, and even if I could promise to get a new husband tonight and get pregnant straight away with twin boys, you could hardly put off marrying while you waited for them to grow up, could you? Of course not. My daughters, your lives are a bed of roses compared to mine, because the LORD has written me off.”
    The tears flowed freely again. Orpah kissed her mother-in-law goodbye, but Ruth dug her heels in. Naomi tried one more time: “See, your sister-in-law has seen sense. She has gone back to her own people with their own ways and their own religion. Follow her lead — go back home.”
    But Ruth said,

“Don’t try to change my mind about this,
    or pressure me into giving up.
I’m coming with you, wherever you go.
    Wherever you live, I’m going to live too.

Your people will be my people,
    and your God will be my God.
I’m with you for life,
    and in death I’ll be buried right alongside you.

I’m giving you my word on this, cross my heart.
May the LORD punish me from now to kingdom come
    if I let even death get between us!”
When Naomi saw that Ruth’s mind was made up, she backed off and let her have her way.

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 146

You are the best, LORD!
........With all my heart I sing your praises.
I will never stop talking you up;
........I won’t stop spruiking your goodness till the day I die.

There is no one but you that we can depend on, LORD;
........not experts, not leaders, no one.
No human being can give what we most need;
........no matter what their plans and schemes promise,
................the minute they’re gone, their promises die with them.

But we hit the jackpot when we look to you for help, LORD;
........when we put all our hopes in you — the God of our ancestors.
You are the one who made earth and sky,
........who poured out the seas and filled them with life.
You are true to your word no matter what;
........when people are ground into the dirt, you bring about justice;
................when people are left to starve, you come with food.

You, LORD, set the prisoners free.
........You, LORD, open the eyes of those who can’t see.
You, LORD, put the downtrodden back on their feet.

You, LORD, love those who do the right thing.
........You, LORD, keep a caring eye on the asylum seekers.
You stick up for those who have no one else to stick up for them,
........but you make the schemes of the corrupt backfire on them.

Take charge forever, LORD,
........rule from your sacred Mountain for all time.
You’re the best, LORD. We’re with you all the way!

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Hebrews 9: 11-14

........The priests of old served in a great tent which people had made as the place to approach God here on earth, but when Christ came he bypassed the old tent. He came as the new high priest, bringing a new improved way of approaching God. Once and for all he went in to the real Holy Place of God’s presence, in the middle of the ultimate tent — heaven itself. He also bypassed the old sacrifices of goat and calf blood. Instead, he shed his own blood in the process of winning permanent freedom for everyone.
........Under the old arrangements, people were not permitted to come and worship God if they had done something that made them officially unclean. They had to be purified first in a ritual that required them to be sprinkled with blood from goats and bulls and with the ashes of a sacrificed calf. Now, if such a ritual was enough to clear up these problems, imagine how much more thoroughly our lives can be cleaned up — inside and out — by the blood of Christ! Christ’s self-sacrifice — which because of his spotless record was the greatest possible sacrifice — was made in the power of God’s Spirit to wipe the slate clean for us. No longer are we weighed down by the emotional debris left over from previous futile efforts to sort things out with God. Now we are free to join the joyous dance of life that honours God!

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Mark 12: 28-34

    One of the religious lawyers came across Jesus engaged in a vigorous debate with some members of the Sadducee party. He was impressed by the depth of insight Jesus displayed in the answers he was giving, so he approached him with a question of his own. “Which would you say is the number one commandment of them all?” he asked.
    Jesus answered, “The number one commandment is this:
Listen carefully, O people of Israel: the Lord our God is the one and only Lord. Therefore you will love the Lord your God with everything you are, with all your heart and soul and mind and strength.

And while we’re on the topic, the number two commandment is this:

You will love your neighbour as attentively as you love yourself.

There are no other commandments that can top these two.”
    On hearing this, the religious lawyer applauded him, saying, “Teacher, what a first rate answer! You are right on the mark when you say that ‘God is the one and only, and there is no other.’ And as you have added, ‘to love God with all your heart and soul and mind and strength,’ and ‘to love your neighbour the way you love yourself,’ – these things are way more important than all the religious offerings and sacrifices put together.”
    Jesus was impressed by the wisdom revealed in the man’s answer, so he said to him, “It won’t take much to get you into the culture of God. You’re all but there already!”
    No one was game to put any more questions to him after that.

2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



Alternative Hebrew Bible Lections themed to the Gospel Lection


* Deuteronomy 6: 1-9

    Moses said to the people, “I’m laying down the law to you here with a set of principles and a code of ethics. The LORD your God has given me the job of teaching you to live by these things in the land that you are about to move into and live in. Learning to live this way will be for the best for you, and for your kids and grandkids after you. Learn to honour and respect the LORD your God as long as you live, and stick to the principles and ethics that I have spelt out to you on God’s behalf, and you will live long and happy lives. So listen up, people of Israel. Put these things into practice without cutting corners, and you will reap rich rewards. You will flourish and prosper in a land of peaches and cream, just as the LORD promised your parents you would.
    Listen carefully, O people of Israel: the LORD is our God, the LORD and no other. Therefore you will love the LORD your God with everything you are, with all your heart and soul and strength. Do whatever it takes to keep these things I am teaching you now fixed in your minds. Repeat them over and over to your kids. Talk about them everywhere and all the time, at home, at work, on the road, morning, noon and night. Write them on the back of your hands; wear them as a badge stuck on your forehead, hang them over your front doors, put them up on a billboard at the entrance to your town so that you will be reminded of them as you come and go. Do whatever you have to do to keep them fixed in your minds.

2012 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 119: 1-8

LORD, how good it will be for those who no one can point a finger at,

    who play by your rules and stick to the straight and narrow.

How good it will be for those who do what you say,

    and put their whole heart into knowing you better;

who never do the wrong thing by any one,

    but stick to your tracks all the way.

You have laid down the law for us

    and told us to follow it to the letter.

There is nothing I want more than to be rock solid,

   following your script in everything I do.

If I keep my eyes fixed on your instructions,

    I will never have to hang my head.

The more I discover the justice and integrity of your teaching,

    the more I sing your praises with my heart beating proud.

I intend to do everything you say;

    please don’t ever give up on me.

2011 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net