A Native American Celebration of Holy Communion
A Native American hymn may be sung or Native flute may be played as prelude to the Holy Feast.
Offering of Hospitality and Welcome to the Feast
To be led by laity.
Welcome family! Welcome relations! Welcome all! The house of the Creator is our gathering place today. The feast has been prepared for us all.
This may be your first time to share the feast of Holy Communion. Welcome to the table that binds us all together!
God, who walked with our ancestors, who walks among us now, and who will walk with our children's children for generations to come,
we give you thanks for your presence.
In the air that we breathe, in the sound of rustling leaves and in the waving grass.
we give you thanks for your presence.
In the sound of children's laughter, and in the songs of our elders,
We give you thanks for your presence.
To be led by clergy. Stand as you are able.
Leader: Let us help each other stand and take off the robe of mourning.
Lift up your broken hearts:
People: We lift them up to God
Leader: Let us honor God
People: It is right to honor God Leader: It is right to honor God and to give our thanks.
People: We give our thanks to God.
The people are seated.
Why We Are Here
We send to you, Creator God, our dreams, visions, and prayers.
The playing of a Native flute or the burning of sage, cedar, or sweetgrass is appropriate at this time.
For our mission,
Let your Spirit move us to honor and respect one another – from the least to the greatest. May we treat everyone we encounter with dignity and love. May we affirm the image of the Creator within each one of us. May we help restore the image of the Creator on earth. May our words, thoughts, and actions nourish and sustain your creation.
For the Church,
May she lead and dance with honor. Let all who follow her steps and rhythm know and feel righteousness and strength. May her regalia exemplify purity and perfection.
For the world:
May the nations of the earth gather to listen to the heartbeat of God. May they sit in silence as the Great Peacemaker teaches and shows them how to walk upright. May the war clubs and instruments of destruction be transformed into life giving means of grace. (Isaiah 2)
For the hearts of the people,
Created with your sacred fire burning within us, we confess that we struggle to live out of our great potential. When we do harm to your Creation, your creatures and fellow human beings, forgive us. When we fail to do all the good we can, in all the places we can, forgive us. When we turn away from your love and grace, forgive us.
Leader: Hear now the good news of Jesus Christ,
People: You are forgiven. I am forgiven. We are forgiven.
Leader: Peace be with you.
People: And also with you
Leader instructs people to pass the peace by word and handshake.
We Prepare for the Feast
SONG OF PRAISE
Be glorified, Everlasting Light who ends our mourning. Be glorified, Planter of righteousness whose hands have formed us with strength. Be glorified! (based on Is. 60:19-21; 61:3)
All honor to the Son of God who brings good news to the poor. All honor to Jesus Christ who brings freedom to the oppressed and sight to the blind. All honor! (based on Luke 4:18)
All praise to the Holy Spirit who helps us in our weakness. All praise to the Sacred Spirit who teaches us how to pray and intercedes on our behalf. All praise! (based on Romans 8:26)
Leader: Jesus Christ, Creator's Son, our brother and friend,
People: with honor and respect, we remember the great sacrifice of your life for us and for our people.
Leader: With awe and humility, we remember the miracle of your resurrection from death.
People: With faith, hope and trust, we remember the promise you made to return and lead us home.
Creator God, Jesus, your son, understood the importance of community and relationship. On the night he gave himself up for us, he gathered his disciples from many tribes, and shared a meal with them in preparation for his death and resurrection.
As he stood in the midst of them, he took bread, gave thanks to you, broke it and gave it to his disciples and said, "Take, eat, this is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me."
After the meal, he took the cup, gave thanks to you, gave it to his disciples and said, "Drink this, all of you. This is my blood of the new covenant poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me."
Sharing of the Feast
Leader: As the grain was given by Creator God to all peoples of the world,
People: Jesus Christ was also given to nourish and sustain.
Leader: As the fruit of the vine was given by Creator God to all peoples of the world,
People: Jesus Christ was also given to bind us to God and one another.
Leader: As the women from many tribes knead, fold, and make the bread in holy stillness, so the women tended and cared for the broken body of Jesus Christ:
People: A sacrifice for us.
Spirit, help us now. Come and breathe into these gifts of bread and juice.
As we receive these gifts into our bodies, may our breath become the sweet breath of Christ.
Leader: Rise up, Nations of God,
People: Give God your praise!
Leader: Rise up, Clans of Nations,
People: Come together and give God your praise!
Leader: Rise up, Bands of Nations,
People: Lift your hands and give God your praise!
Congregation comes forward
Spoken to each as elements are given:
The body of Christ given for you
The love of Christ poured out for you
Congregation returns to their seats.
As the rivers flow, let us hear his song.
As the winds blow, let us hear his whispers.
As the grasses sway, let us see them dance.
As the eagle soars, calm our minds.
Christ's love is always there.
Open our arms to embrace his love.
Let us embrace one another and share his message of love.
Words for the Journey
We have taken Jesus into us, we now go out into the different directions to be the hands and feet of Jesus. We go out to correct what we did wrong, what others did wrong, and to sometimes take the blame for another's mistake as Jesus did for us. We go out to stand up for the powerless, the voiceless, and those invisible. Gracious God, let your mercy and grace fall on us and give us courage to follow in the footsteps of Jesus.
Creator God, as we walk from this place with renewed strength for the journey before us, let us follow the path of Jesus, as the Spirit guides our steps. Help us to make wise choices in the days ahead, to serve those in need, and to remember our place in the circle of life. Remind us to listen to our elders, to teach our children the traditions of our people, to respect one another and all creation. As we wait for the day when we will be reunited with you and those who have gone before us, keep our hope alive and our footsteps on the path toward home.
As we depart from one another, remember, Creator God was here before we came and will be here after we depart. Creator God came in with us and will stay with us when we depart. We are all connected to each other and to our Creator. All praise to Creator God! Amen.
This is the first trial version of this resource, intended for use and testing by worshiping communities whose feedback will help to improve it in successive releases.
This resource is covered under a Creative Commons License 3.0 (BY, NC, ND).
You are free to use and reproduce this resource by any means provided that you cite the Native American Writing Group of the Open Source Liturgy Project (Discipleship Ministries of The United Methodist Church) as its source.
You are not free to alter it or sell it without written permission from Discipleship Ministries. Contact [email protected] for permissions or any copyright questions about this resource.