OSTARA

A Celebration of the Spring Equinox

INVOCATION
(Read together)

I arise today
Through the strength of heaven:
Light of sun,
Radiance of moon,
Splendor of fire,
Speed of lightning
Swiftness of wind,
Depth of sea,
Stability of earth,
Firmness of rock.

- St. Patrick's Breastplate: "Call of the Deer"

PROCESSIONAL SONG: Now the Green Blade Riseth (UMC 311)

[Green budding branches are brought in and the candles are lit on the altar/worship table - see below]

LITANY OF CELEBRATION:

L: Invisible life that sustains all, I awaken to life everything in every waft of air.
P: The air is life, greening and blossoming.
L: The waters flow with life.
P: The sun is lit with life.
L: The moon, when waning, is again rekindled by the sun, waxing with life once more.
P: The stars shine, radiating with life-light.
ALL: All creation is gifted with the ecstasy of God's light.
(Hildegard of Bingen)

COMMON PRAYER

Creator spirit, sacred are your many names. The world we know is your world -- as above, so
below; as without, so within. You provide for us a bounty that is beyond measure, and forgive us our sins, teaching us to forgive those who sin against us. You do not betray us because of our weakness, but protect and deliver us from the consequences. Your power and glory are beyond our understanding, now and forever more, worlds without end .. Amen.  (Written by Sea Raven)

PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION

READINGS

Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16
Psalm 22:23-31
Romans 4:13-25
Mark 8:31-38 or Mark 9:2-9

SONG: In Thee is Gladness (UMC 169)

MEDITATION [not available (The theme is balance, renewal, rebirth)]

SONG: Hymn of Promise (UMC 707)

OSTARA RITUAL

[On the altar/worship table: Green plants, flowers, white and green candles, a large pitcher of moonwater, a small bowl of moonwater containing soaked Morning Glory seeds, small clay pots already filled with moist potting soil (one for each person attending)].

[The people are invited to come up and each person takes a seed from the bowl and plants it in a little pot, then joins the circle around the table. When everyone has planted a seed, Circle Dance around the Altar]

We are Green, Green, Green, Green with Life
We Are the Fruit of All Creation (repeat)
Limitless Love, From the Depths to the Stars,
Loving All; Flooding All
It is the Royal Kiss of Peace.

- From The Dances of Universal Peace using Hildegard of Bingen's words

DISMISSAL

L: For you shall go out in joy, and be led forth in peace
W: The mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands
M: Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the briar shall come up the myrtle.
All: And it shall be to the Lord for a memorial, for an everlasting sign which shall not be cut off. (Isaiah 55:12-13)

[All are invited to share in a pot-luck feast including: veggies & dip, new potato & spring onion soup, bread poppyseed cake, white wine, fruit juices/non-alcoholic punch, tea, coffee]