Through New Eyes (Script)

Through New Eyes

Refusing to stay silent, Bartimaeus SHOUTS OUT to Jesus. Throwing cloak aside, life begins afresh. In conversation, prayer, action and blind hope all can worship, witness, encounter, imagine, go …


Set up

A lectern in central place with fixed microphone

Two radio microphone

Picnic blankets laid out around venue each with a plastic bag at each. Bag to contain

 strip of stickers, people shapes (2 attached), felt tips, dice

Voices

A scriptural voice – telling the bible story 

A practical voice – explaining activities 

A prayer voice – leading prayers

A teaching voice – providing commentary

 

Beginning

Participants are encouraged by the greeters to sit on the blankets in groups of 8-10 and to get to know one another answer the questions on either side of the bag – “What have you seen this weekend that interested you?” or “What has someone told you about that you missed seeing?”

 

Bible is carried in and placed on the lectern

 

We listen for the Word of God. Mark 10:46-52

 

They came to Jericho

 

We are going to pause the bible reading for a moment, to say welcome to this conversation in which we will aim to experience this life-changing encounter together. Just as our bible passage has begun with a group of people coming into Jericho we have each arrived from somewhere on our way to somewhere else. Take two minutes to speak in your groups where have you each come from, where are you going?

 

They came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside.

 

A new character is introduced into the story of Jesus, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus. But Bar Timaeus simply means son of Timaeus, In Greek Timaeus means honour, in Hebrew it could mean unclean. So twice we are told he is either the son of honour or more likely son of the unclean – but we are never told his own name. What we are told is that he is blind and that he is beggar – he will be known through history as Blind Bartimaeus.

 

What are you called? How are you known by others? How are you known by yourself? In your bags you will find a number of people chains. Take 2 minutes to decorate the figures – on the left hand side with with the ways you are known by others and on the right how you see yourself. If you want to you can close these and keep them private

 

As Jesus and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’

 

What do you want to shout at Jesus? Think about that for a moment, what if you only had one chance to catch Jesus’ attention – What would you call him? What would you shout?

Quiet thinking time

 If one of these prayers is your prayer – then say Amen

 if someone is swearing angrily – have mercy

if someone cries noiselessly – have mercy

if someone bawls painfully – have mercy

if someone weeps  incessantly – have mercy

if someone complains endlessly – have mercy

if someone laments blindly – have mercy

 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’ Many sternly ordered him to be quiet,

 

What is it like to seek attention and be quietened?  Some may know only too well, but to give everyone an idea, here’s a game that may help us to experience that place. In your bags each group has a dice – take turns to roll it – when someone in the group rolls a 6 they shout as loud as they dare, “Jesus, son of David have Mercy”  and the rest of the group shouts “Shush”

“Jesus, son of David have Mercy” …

play game

 

Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me!’

 

Time to speak in your group again. “Whose voice is being silenced?” “Whose voices do we not want to hear?” “Whose voices do we constantly talk over?”

 

Let us move this conversation on in prayer:-

if someone has been silenced – have mercy

if there is someone to whom we will not listen – have mercy

if there is someone I shout down – have mercy

 

Jesus stood still and said, ‘Call him here.’

 

Silence

 

They called the blind man, saying to him, ‘Take heart; get up, he is calling you.’ So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus.

 

A beggar’s blanket marks out their pitch in the daytime, keeps them warm in the evening. It is the place where they gather money, it is their security, their livelihood. The Bible tells us that, shortly before meeting Bartimaeus, Jesus conversed with a young man who wanted to follow him.  This young man politely asked all the ‘right’ questions of Jesus.  But when it came to the final question, the question about how he would gain eternal life, Jesus told him to throw off his security blanket. “Go sell everything you have and give it to the poor” said Jesus, “Then come, follow me”.  The man’s face fell and he went away sad for he had great wealth, and that was the one security blanket he knew he could never throw off.  Bartimaeus does not yet know what Jesus will say to him, how Jesus will challenge him; yet already he is throwing off whatever security he has and leaving it behind, in order that he might encounter Jesus.

 

 What is your security blanket? What is it that you cling to? Is it time to throw your cloak aside? In you bags are stickers, write on them anything that you need to throw aside so that you can meet with Jesus – stick them to the blanket

 

When everyone who wishes to has placed a sticker on the blanket – nominate someone from your group to gather up your blanket, with all that you wish to throw aside, bring it to the lectern and throw it down here.

 

So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. Then Jesus said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher, let me see again.’

 

We have called out for mercy, we have been quietened, we have been welcomed, we have thrown away our security blankets, it is time to seek new eyes with which to view our world. If one of these prayers touches your heart respond Amen.

Our prayer is the prayer of those whose eyes were clouded over

who did not look at things that didn’t interest us

who saw only what was right in front of us

who focussed on a few things to the exclusion of everything else

who saw ourselves as the centre of our world

 

And now, standing before Jesus,

our prayer is the prayer of those who want to see again.

We want to see our relationships in new ways.

Jesus asks: ‘What do you want me to do for you?’

We pray with those who answer…

… let me trust

…let me be honest

… let me grieve

… let me cope

… let me be strong

… let me be safe

… let me love.

 

Our prayer is the prayer of those who want to see again.

We want to see our lives transformed.

Jesus asks: ‘What do you want me to do for you?’

We pray with those who answer…

… let me be healed

… let me rest

… let me be free

… let me forgive

… let me be forgiven

…  let me stop

… let me have peace

 

Our prayer is the prayer of those who want to see again.

We want to see the world as it really is.

Jesus asks: ‘What do you want me to do for you?’

We pray with those who answer…

… let me change

… let me speak out

… let me stand firm

… let me be honest

 

Our prayer is the prayer of those who want to see again.

We want to see as you see..

Jesus asks: ‘What do you want me to do for you?’

We pray with those who answer…

… let me believe

… let me hope

… let me do your will

Our prayers are offered to you. May your holy spirit transform us. May we see again.  Amen.

The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher, let me see again.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has made you well.’

 

Almost time to go and claim what you have asked of Jesus. We hope that you have seen your life through new eyes.

 

Almost time to go and in this encounter with Jesus we hope that you have seen the world through new eyes.

 

Almost time to go and begin life anew, but if you still have something you need to pray through some of our group will be available to pray with you.

 

Be blessed with sight to see the world as it is, to see the work of the Spirit, the footsteps of Jesus, and the love of God whose face shines upon you. This day, and all days.     Amen.

 

They came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’ Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me!’ Jesus stood still and said, ‘Call him here.’ And they called the blind man, saying to him, ‘Take heart; get up, he is calling you.’ So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. Then Jesus said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher, let me see again.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has made you well.’ Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.

 

Bible is closed and carried from the venue.

Our thanks to everyone who came and participates and the warm comments we received afterwards. We would love to see some comments from you here.  Please feel free to use and adapt in your own setting – again we would like comments about how you were able to use this.

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Through New Eyes

Through New Eyes: refusing to stay silent, Bartimaeus SHOUTS OUT to Jesus. Throwing cloak aside, life begins afresh. In conversation, prayer, action and blind hope all can worship, witness, encounter, imagine, go …

 Greenbelt Monday 26 August 2013,  11am in Aspire

The conversation to create a fresh piece of worship is always interesting. The theme for Greenbelt as it celebrates it’s 40th year is Life Begins. Our thoughts initially revolved around 40 in roman numerals being XL and wondered if there was a bible verse 10:50. The only one that  we could find is in  Mark’s gospel “Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.”  We thought we would work something around the story of Bartimaeus – whose life begins afresh after an encounter with Jesus.

 As we read it we realised that it almost acts as a liturgy with
a gathering,  “then they came to Jericho”,
A reflection on who we are – (blind, son of .., beggar),
a prayer “have mercy on me!”,
a rebuke, “told him to be quiet”
a call “Jesus stopped and said, Call him”
An encouragement “He’s calling you”,
a response ” Throwing his cloak aside …”
a challenge “What do you want ..”
a Petition “I want to see”
A dismissal “Go …”
a discipleship “followed Jesus along the way”
.. from there comes a worship conversation that hopes that life will begin through new eyes. If you are at Greenbelt and intrigued come and join us  on Monday morning in Aspire.
 
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UnReCognised @ Greenbelt 2012 “The Tea Party”


Call to worship: Isaiah 55.1-3
Hey you there – are you thirsty?
Then come to the water, and drink.
Are you penniless?
Then come anyway, buy what we have to offer – and eat.
Come buy your drink: wine and milk.
But buy it without hard cash.
You don’t need money here!

Why spend money on the food that isn’t the true bread?
Why labour for that which does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to me – and eat what is good.
Come here, and delight in the richest food of all.
God says, “Come, you are welcome; Listen to me and I will give you life in all its fullness.”

God says, “I am making an everlasting covenant with you. Come to me – and live.”

Welcome to a feast at a tea party
We are UnReCognised. Our aim today is to share with you our idea of paradise; but also to give you the chance to think about what paradise means for you and for the curious world in which you live.

This act of worship is an incredibly informal one. Each one of you will help it take shape. Together we will pray, talk, reflect, discuss; and as we share an informal picnic we hope you will come into communion with each other and with the Lord.
At the end of the service we will be sharing the Lord’s Supper together.
Please feel free to take part in as much or as little as you wish. It is the Lord Jesus Christ who has invited you, and he is the host. Remember that you are welcome.

This service takes place over afternoon tea. This part of the service is where you get to know each other. For the next five minutes we invite you to open your hamper and share out the food. While you do it, introduce yourselves. Who are you? Where are you from? And what brings you here today? Please begin.

Prayer of approach – sharing glimpses of God / paradise at GB or in previous week
We now invite you share a bit about what has been paradise for you in the past week, and particularly here at Greenbelt. Where have you seen glimpses of God?

Do you see glimpses of God in this gathering now? Together, acknowledge God’s presence here. This activity is an act of prayer. We invite you to begin.

Breaking open the texts

John 6:1-15
Extracts from A Mad Tea Party from “Alices’s Adventures in Wonderland” by Lewis Carroll

Jesus crossed Lake Galilee, which was also known as Lake Tiberias.  A large crowd had seen him work miracles to heal the sick, and those people went with him. It was almost time for the Jewish festival of Passover, and Jesus went up on a mountain with his disciples and sat down.

There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was sitting between them, fast asleep, and the other two were using it as a cushion, … The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it: `No room! No room!’ they cried out when they saw Alice coming. `There’s plenty of room!’ said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.

When Jesus saw the large crowd coming toward him, he asked Philip, “Where will we get enough food to feed all these people?” He said this to test Philip, since he already knew what he was going to do. Philip answered, “Don’t you know that it would take almost a year’s wages just to buy only a little bread for each of these people?”

Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. `I don’t see any wine,’ she remarked.

`There isn’t any,’ said the March Hare.

`Then it wasn’t very civil of you to offer it,’ said Alice angrily.

`It wasn’t very civil of you to sit down without being invited,’ said the March Hare.

`I didn’t know it was your table,’ said Alice; `it’s laid for a great many more than three.’

Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the disciples. He spoke up and said,  “There is a boy here who has five small loaves of barley bread and two fish. But what good is that with all these people?”

Have you guessed the riddle yet?’ the Hatter said, turning to Alice again.

`No, I give it up,’ Alice replied: `what’s the answer?’

`I haven’t the slightest idea,’ said the Hatter.

`Nor I,’ said the March Hare.

Alice sighed wearily. `I think you might do something better with the time,’ she said, `than waste it in asking riddles that have no answers.’

The ground was covered with grass, and Jesus told his disciples to have everyone sit down. About five thousand men were in the crowd.

`Jesus took the bread in his hands and gave thanks to God. Then he passed the bread to the people, and he did the same with the fish, until everyone had plenty to eat. The people ate all they wanted, and Jesus told his disciples to gather up the leftovers, so that nothing would be wasted.

The Hatter shook his head mournfully. `Time and I quarreled last March …and ever since that,`he won’t do a thing I ask! It’s always tea-time, and we’ve no time to wash the things between whiles.’

`Then you keep moving round, I suppose?’ said Alice.

`Exactly so,’ said the Hatter: `as the things get used up.’

Take some more tea,’ the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly.

`I’ve had nothing yet,’ Alice replied in an offended tone, `so I can’t take more.’

`You mean you can’t take less,’ said the Hatter: `it’s very easy to take more than nothing.’

The disciples gathered them up and filled twelve large baskets with what was left over from the five barley loaves.

 `…..   `I want a clean cup,’ interrupted the Hatter: `let’s all move one place on.’

He moved on as he spoke, and the Dormouse followed him: the March Hare moved into the Dormouse’s place, and Alice rather unwillingly took the place of the March Hare. The Hatter was the only one who got any advantage from the change: and Alice was a good deal worse off than before, as the March Hare had just upset the milk-jug into his plate.

After the people had seen Jesus work this miracle, they began saying, “This must be the Prophet who is to come into the world!”

This piece of rudeness was more than Alice could bear: she got up in great disgust, and walked off; no one took the least notice of her going, though she looked back once or twice, half hoping that they would call after her:

And then she noticed that one of the trees had a door leading right into it. `That’s very curious!’ she thought. `But everything’s curious today. I think I may as well go in at once.’ And in she went. [and]  walked down the little passage [where] she found herself at last in the beautiful garden, among the bright flower-beds and the cool fountains.

Jesus realised that they would try to force him to be their king. So he went up on a mountain, where he could be alone.

Breaking open the word: Discuss Me

Inside your envelopes you will find the questions that came to our minds as we shared tea together, you might like to discuss one of them or chew over some of your own.

How do we welcome? What are the different ways of being rude that you have experienced? How do we invite/exclude people from the table?

Or, How does God feed you? Does it satisfy? is anything wasted? do you have more than nothing?

Or, Are you moving endlessly around the table or moving on towards the garden? Which sounds like paradise?

Or, Can you glimpse God amongst the curiosity of life?


Prayers of Intercession

You may find that your conversations lead you into hopes, dreams, fears and concerns which you would like to share in prayer, take 5 minutes to offer your prayers to God. Remember that your discussions are prayers in themselves. In the name of Jesus we invite you to continue


Celebration of Holy Communion

We are gathered in the name and in the presence of Christ, and together we have already shared something of ourselves with each other.

We now come to the part of the service where we acknowledge and give thanks for the activity of Christ in our midst, in our world, throughout history.

Through eating and drinking together we have already become present at the table of the Lord Jesus Christ. At the appropriate point each group will be served with a scone to share with one another and your tea cup will be filled with grape juice

Now, in the presence of our brothers and sisters, we remember together the love that has brought us to this point, and we celebrate all that Jesus is and has done for us.

Let us pray.


Eucharistic Prayer

We come before you, incredible God, with praise and thanksgiving. You are the maker of the world, Creator of form and substance, time and space.

We praise you for the wonder of your creation: The sea which regulates the tides of time,

The sky, our window on space, that lights our day and darkens our nights,

The earth from which the grain comes for our bread.


We thank you for the bread of life, your Son Jesus, born of Mary to live our common life, to dance and weep, laugh and cry, to know our joys and sorrows and understand our weakness. We thank you that in him we can find true nourishment in heart and mind.

We thank you for the promise you made in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, symbolised by the fruit of the vine that we share together.

We acknowledge our role in the story of God’s people, and we ask you to strengthen us to answer the call to play our part in making paradise real.

We ask that your Holy Spirit be present with us now, (and in all your gifts,) that the ordinary may be made holy, and that in eating and drinking together, however unworthy we are, we may be made one in each other and one in you.

And so, glorifying your name and singing your praise, with all people everywhere, past, present and to come, we join together in the prayer of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Lord’s Prayer

Narrative of the Institution and distribution & sharing

 And so we who are seated at a banquet, remember a banquet which took place long ago. We remember a man, surrounded by his friends who little knew that it was the last earthly meal they would share together. And we recall what took place:


President takes large scone, holds it up for all to see, and breaks it as she says:

As they were eating, Jesus took a piece of bread and, after giving thanks, broke it and said, “Take, eat. This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

Scones are distributed to groups

I invite you to share the scone around your group. Once you all have a piece look at each other saying “the body of Christ” and eat your piece of bread together, remembering that you are one in each other, and one in Christ.

President takes massive cup, lifts it for all to see and says:

After supper, in the same way, Jesus took the cup, and said, “Take, drink. This is the cup of the new covenant sealed by my blood. Do this in remembrance of me.”


Distribute grape juice

I invite you as your cup is filled to share it with one another. As you pass the cup to the person next to you, say “the blood of Christ” to remind the person receiving of the sacrifice Christ made
in order to make us one with each other and one in him.

Prayer after Communion

And now, as one with Christ and one with each other, we pray together.

God of a love stronger than death, you have given us new birth into a living hope through the gift of your son.

We are your people, And you are our God.


You have made us one with all your people in heaven and on earth.

We are your people, And you are our God.


And now we ask that you will strengthen for service, the hands that have taken holy things.

We are your people, And you are our God.

May the ears that have heard your word be deaf to clamour and dispute.

We are your people, And you are our God.

May the eyes that have seen your great love shine with the light of hope, in the knowledge that

We are your people, And you are our God.

May the feet that leave this place ever walk in the light

We are your people, And you are our God.

Thanks be to God for a gift beyond words.

Amen


Share the peace 

As we come to the end of our time together I invite you to offer a sign of the peace to those you have shared your meal with today. Smile at them, shake their hand, hug them, do whatever, but make sure you say to each of them: May the peace of God go with you.


Blessing 

And may the blessing of the one who created you,

the one who redeemed you

and the one who fires and inspires you,

be with you now and ever more.

Amen.

When did I feed you, Lord?

When did I feed you, Lord?

‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ (Matthew 25: 35-36),
Leave a comment and tell us what these words mean to you.

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Why do you labour for what does not satisfy?

labour

Why do you spend your money on junk food? (Isaiah 55.2)
Leave a comment to tell us about how you spend your money.

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Have you ever been satisfied?

Have you ever been satisfied?

The disciples asked Jesus “how will we find enough bread to satisfy all these people?” (Mark 8.4)

Leave a comment to tell us about being satisfied.

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Have you ever been hungry?

Have you ever been hungry?

If you open your heart to the hungry, and provide abundantly for those who are afflicted, your light will shine in the darkness, and your gloom will be like the noon. (Isaiah 58.10).

Leave a comment and tell us about hunger.

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When Jesus Met the Mad Hatter

When Jesus Met the Mad Hatter

When Jesus Met the Mad Hatter
An all age Cream Tea Communion
At Greenbelt: Monday 2pm, Village Green.
Bring a hot drink. We’ll do the rest.

Feeding the 5000 and Cream Tea Communion

Scone with cream and jam

You start with the text of course, waiting for the Word of God to catch something in your imagination, feeling around for the idea that will not be put aside, like the small stone in a shoe that won’t be shaken out and makes its presence felt over and over. Once the idea is lodged firm then come the questions of practicalities. On a hillside, a crowd came, and gathered to listen, and looking at them, Jesus asked: “where will we buy food to feed all this people?”

As we got planning for Greenbelt an idea lodged firm, and then we  – like Philip  – saw a practicalities puzzle. It is not too tricky to serve a cream tea to 150 people in a room next door to a kitchen. But what to do with an unknown and uncapped number of guests outside on a field without even a sink nearby.  Like the disciples, we will find ourselves with less than everything we might want to serve:  more than five barley loaves and two fish – there are scones, jam and cream in plenty –  but we won’t have an urn or hot water nearby and as Philip asked “what good is that for a crowd like this?”  So we’re hoping people will bring their own cuppa, as we hope they will bring their imaginations, openness to strangers, and openness to God. And if enough people bring any or all of these, there will indeed be a banquet to share.

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An UnReCognised Worship Collective

Image
UnReCognised emerged over a pint in the Beer Tent at Greenbelt in 2009.  Drawn together from across the country we gather to eat, pray, read the Bible and through this plan worship. Connected as members of the Greenbelt community and the United Reformed Church we try to explore how we lead communities in worship, responding to and reshaping the Reformed tradition. Always hoping to hear the Word of God, we create spaces for conversation between the Bible and the communities in which we live. Sometimes we serve cream teas while we do so.
Image is ‘question mark’ by Melodi2 on stock.xchng
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