Yarn Bombing Day
They’re showing up everywhere, like some kind of psychedelically colorful mushroom that grows over surfaces like trees,lamp posts and scaffolding and even bike racks. Somewhere, somehow, these normal everyday objects have suddenly become ensconced in an odd wooly growth of amazing patterns and vivid colours.
In St Athan village centre you will find the lamp posts, and other posts festooned with knitted "garments" in loud rainbow colours, all lovingly knitted and displayed with pride. These proclaim love and respect for NHS and carers. They are emblazoned with hearts in pale shades, while the rest in a sort of rainbow of colour and life.
Today is also jerky day, farm workers day and so on. More importantly in our church, it is also the day when we mark and celebrate Corpus Christi. There are multiple things for every day in our week and also for the whole month. It does seem a bit over the top to me! Do we need to mark special days? Do we need every day to be some sort of special day, or month?
We mark our annual birthday and in particular the special ones. Father Craig and I both know about that this year! We mark major festivals in the Church, Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, Pentecost Trinity and so on. We also mark days in our Church year, Saints days, days of Obligation, Corpus Christi etc. These are important to help us through the year and in the past guided us through times where there were no means to tell the passing of the year. They knew where they were with Winter and Summer but Spring and Autumn both could be late or early and crops fail due to harsh weather. Above this these days help us focus on particular things as today we focus upon the Body of Christ, what it means and how it affects us?
We all need to celebrate and remember, from time to time - a wedding, harvest, Christmas, a baptism, Easter, Spring, funerals, Mid Summer and so on. Time to gather together in joy and sadness, to recall and thank God. A time for feasting and rejoicing, for sharing memories and celebrating a life well lived.
Yes, we do need to mark the passing of time, to know where we are so to speak to stop us and make us think back, and then forward. I am sure many people in their diaries or reflections are marking the journey of Coronavirus, to help them through this time. Sometimes, we get a bit silly with dates, and do we really need to mark Iced tea day, even yarn bombing day? On the other hand to mark time, our time in God's time. There is time for every one to mark our life, remember and to celebrate it!
As today is Corpus Christi I share with you a short service for Spiritual Communion produced by the Mother's Union which you might like to use today or at any other time.
Corpus Christi means the Body of Christ and today is a day when we can remember and return thanks for our Holy Communion. It is a day when normally we could receive teh Eucharist, the Body and Blood of Our Lord but this year for so many they are deprived of this. To receive the Body and the Blood of Christ is an important part of our relationship with Christ and for over three months it has not been available.
The Mother's Union has through our Church, shared this simple service for spiritula Communion which some may find helpful.
A Short Rite for Spiritual Communion
+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Jesus, Saviour of the world, we thank you that in this wonderful sacrament you have left us a memorial of your passion: grant us so to reverence the sacred mysteries of your body and blood that we may know within ourselves the fruit of your redeeming love; who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Read the Gospel of Christ according to Saint John
John 15:1-11 (NRSV)
15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinegrower. 2 He removes every branch in me that bears no fruit. Every branch that bears fruit he prunes[a] to make it bear more fruit. 3 You have already been cleansed[b] by the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. 6 Whoever does not abide in me is thrown away like a branch and withers; such branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become[c] my disciples. 9 As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete.
We offer up to God all our worries, hopes, fears and failings.
Heavenly Father, we have sinned in thought, word, and deed, and have failed to do what we ought to have done. We are sorry and truly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ who died for us, forgive us all that is past and lead us in his way to walk as children of light. Amen.
Almighty God, who forgives all who truly repent, have mercy on us and set us free from sin,
Listen to the words of comfort our Saviour Christ says to all those who truly turn to him: Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3.
16 Listen also to what Saint Paul says: The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. 1 Timothy 1. 15
Listen also to what Saint John says: If anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins. 1 John 2.1,2
Take a moment to reflect upon the Eucharist and Christ’s command to “Do this in remembrance of me”.
O Blessed Lord, in union with the faithful throughout the world, at every altar of your Church where the Eucharist is being celebrated, I desire to offer you praise and thanksgiving. I present to you my soul and body with the earnest wish that I may always be united to you. Since I cannot now receive you in the Sacrament, I invite you to come spiritually into my heart. I unite myself to you and embrace you with heart and mind and soul. Let nothing ever separate you from me, so that I may live and die in your love. Amen.
Conclude with the ancient prayer “Anima Christi” in place of a Blessing.
Soul of Christ sanctify me. Body of Christ save me. Blood of Christ refresh me. Water from the side of Christ, wash me. Passion of Christ strengthen me. O good Lord Jesus, hear me. Within your wounds, hide me. Do not permit me to be separated from you, and from the malicious enemy defend me. In the hour of my death call me and bid me to come to you that with all the saints, I may praise you for ever and ever. Amen.