Year B
Fifth Sunday in Lent
18 March 2018


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,
for you have taken us by the hand,
and offered yourself to us in a sacred covenant.

You are the creator of all things;
you knew the earth and its inhabitants before their birth.
You led a suffering people from slavery to freedom,
and offered to be their God
if they would be your people.

Though we broke our vows to you and pursued evil,
in gracious love you offered us a new covenant
embodied in your Son, Jesus,
who was made perfect on the path of obedience,
even in the face of suffering.
Lifted up on a cross to die,
he has drawn all people to himself;
and raised from the dead,
he has become the source of eternal salvation
for all who live in obedience
to the new law you have written on our hearts.

Therefore with .....

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net



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

We give thanks for your Son, Jesus,
who was made perfect on the path of obedience
and, as he was lifted up on a cross to die,
drew all people to himself
and became the source of eternal salvation
for all who follow the new law you have written on our hearts.

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net




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

We give you all thanks and praise, O God,
for you have taken us by the hand,
and offered yourself to us in a sacred covenant.

You are the creator of all things;
you knew the earth and its inhabitants before their birth.
You led a suffering people from slavery to freedom,
and offered to be their God
if they would be your people.

Though we broke our vows to you and pursued evil,
in gracious love you offered us a new covenant
embodied in your Son, Jesus,
who was made perfect on the path of obedience,
even in the face of suffering.
Lifted up on a cross to die,
he has drawn all people to himself;
and raised from the dead,
he has become the source of eternal salvation
for all who live in obedience
to the new law you have written on our hearts.

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.

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net




Declaration of Grace / Absolution

God sees us for what we are,
but in mercy does not cast us aside.
Through Jesus Christ, the source of eternal salvation,
God washes away our guilt
and remembers our sin no more.

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

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net




Commission & Benediction

Go now, to serve Christ and follow him.
Let your old life fall like a grain of wheat into the earth
so that you may bear much fruit
as you allow God to reshape your heart
and live in obedience to the law written within you.

And may God centre you in truth and steady your spirit.
May Christ renew your joy and strengthen your will.
And may the Spirit teach you Gods hidden wisdom
   and fill you with songs of rejoicing.

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

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net






Paraphrases of the Scripture Lections
for the 5th Sunday in Lent - Year B - 18 March 2018
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.


* Jeremiah 31: 31-34

   You can count on this, says the LORD. The time is coming when I will once again take Israel and Judah as my marriage partner. Our marriage will not be like the marriage I entered with their ancestors. Back then I took them by the hand and led them out of the land of slavery and carried them across the threshold into a home of their own. But even though I was loving and faithful, says the LORD, they broke our marriage vows.
    But listen to the new marriage vows I will soon make with the people of Israel, says the LORD:

    I will write my values into your hearts and minds.
        I will be your God, and you will be my people.

No longer will they need lessons to learn how I want them to live. They wont need to spur each other on, saying, Get to know the LORD, because all of them, from all walks of life, will know me well, says the LORD. I will erase all record of their past wrongs and let them start over with a clean slate.

2001 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net



* Psalm 51: 1-12

O God, your love never gives up.
........Have mercy on me now!

Im relying on your record of generous mercy:
........please wipe my slate clean!

Scrub away the filth Ive been living in;
........Scour away the stain of my sin.

I know only too well what Ive done;
........my sins stare me in the face.

It is you Ive double-crossed, you Ive betrayed;
........Ive done things which I knew you despised.

You have all the facts and you know what I deserve;
........what ever you decide is fair enough.
Ive been on the wrong side of you forever.
........I turned my back on you before I was born.

You want honesty that comes from deep within,
........so teach me your wisdom,
........let it take root in my heart.

Get the bleach out and give me the treatment!
........Soak me and wash me
........until Im as white as snow.

Open my ears to laughter and music.
........Though you ground me into the dirt,
........let me now rise to the sounds of joy.

Turn a blind eye to my record;
........disregard my prior convictions.

Renovate me from the inside, O God;
........rebuild my heart and rewire my brain;
........install in me a new fault-free operating system.

Dont cut me off from you now,
........or withdraw your Holy Spirit from me.

Rekindle in me the joy of being safe in your care,
........and fill me with an insatiable desire to follow you.

2001 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net


OR
* Psalm 119: 9-16

If anyone wants to avoid polluting their life, LORD,
........they should use your word as protection.

I am giving my all to getting close to you;
........dont let me stumble off the track you have set for us.

Everything you have said, I treasure in my heart,
........to keep myself from doing the wrong thing by you.

You are the best, LORD,
........teach me all you require of your people.

My mouth is ready, willing and able
........to repeat whatever you have to say.

The path you have set for us is my greatest delight;
........it is worth more to me than all the money in the world.

I will keep my mind fixed on your teachings,
........and my eyes fixed on the track you have set for us.

I will cherish the rules you have given us,
........and never forget the things you have to say.

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net



* Hebrews 5: 5-10

........Christ did not push himself forward and campaign for the position of high priest. It was God who tapped him on the shoulder and said, in the words of scripture:

........Youre it my Son;
................today I have named you.

In the same way, in another place, God says:

........You are a priest forever;
................your task is the priestly work begun by Melchizedek.

........When Jesus was among us and the threat of death was closing in on him, it was with agonized cries and tears that he did his priestly work of offering up prayers and appeals to the God who has the power to save us from death. His pleas were heard because of his prayerful acceptance of Gods will. He was given no special privileges as a Son he got his lessons in obedience in the same school of suffering as the rest of us. Once he had made the grade, perfecting all that he had to learn, God marked him out as a high priest the last of the line that began with Melchizedek. Thus, Jesus became the one who sets free all who trust and follow him. For them he is the source of life without limit.

2000 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net



* John 12: 20-33

........Many people were arriving in Jerusalem for the celebration of the Jewish religious festival known as Passover. However, not all of the people were Jewish, and one group of foreigners made contact with Philip, and said, Sir, we would like to meet Jesus.
........Philip, who was from the Galilean town of Bethsaida, told Andrew, and together they went and told Jesus about the request from the foreign visitors. On hearing about it, Jesus said, If the foreigners are asking after us, weve reached the point of no return. The time has come for the New Human to be lifted up in all his glory.
........He went on to say:
I kid you not, a grain of wheat is nothing unless it hits the dirt and loses its life. But if it gives up its life as a single grain, then it will begin to produce a bumper crop of life. Anyone who prizes their own life above everything else will end up losing the lot. But those who treat their individual survival in this world as a matter of no consequence will find life opening up before them without limit. If any of these people want to apprentice themselves to me, they will need to come and stick with me. Those who work for me will be going wherever I go. Whoever works for me will get the thumbs-up from the God who conceived me. But at the moment, Im all churned up inside. Should I call on the Father to bail me out of what is about to happen? No, I cant do that because what is about to happen is the pinnacle of everything I came to achieve. So then, I call out to God and say, Father, put your name up in lights!
........And a voice answered from heaven, saying, I have already brought glory to my name, and I will do so again.
........The crowd who were gathered there heard the voice. Some of them said it sounded like thunder, and others said, A messenger from God has spoken to him.
........Jesus addressed them, saying, This voice has spoken for your benefit, not mine. The world is being weighed in the balance right now; and the one who has been calling the shots in this world will now be driven out. As for me, I will be lifted up off the ground, and when that happens, I will draw all people to myself.
........With these words, he gave an indication of the kind of death he was going to die.

2003 Nathan Nettleton www.laughingbird.net