1/26/09

Monday Morning Offering - 31


Image: George Mendoza

Good morning, good God!

Well, I know you were at the 5:00 Mass on Saturday
so I guess you heard me choke up
and saw tears fill my eyes...

It was my first Mass at Holy Family
since returning from a week's vacation Thursday night...

Our cantor was leading the people in singing The Summons
as the gifts were presented and I prepared the table for Eucharist...

The peoples' singing was so strong and beautiful...
And there was something about the 3/4 time
that was more than rhythmic:
it was moving, rolling, inviting...

The lyrics were your words, Lord, your summons
and each person singing was your voice calling
to every one in the church:
Will you come and follow me if I but call your name?

When the altar was prepared and the song ended
I looked to the people and said, or tried to say,
"I've only been away a week
but it wasn't until I heard the beauty of your song
that I realized how much I can miss you..."

And you, and everyone, heard the catch in my voice
and saw the tears on my face:
tears of joy, Lord...
joy for the ministry you have given me...

joy for the people of my parish
and all the people in my life through whom
you come to me, call and comfort me...

joy for the people through whom you sang to me
at the 5:00 Mass on Saturday...
So this morning, Lord,
a little choked up and through my tears,
I offer you my joy...

I offer you thanks for the people I serve
and all the people whose paths cross my mine...

I offer you thanks for all the ways you speak to me,
hold me, challenge and console me
in the words, the touch, and the warmth
of the people around me...

I offer you thanks, Lord, for showing me your face
in the faces of your people
who are my people, too...

I offer you thanks for the way your beauty,
your presence is refracted
through the faces of the hundreds who gather
each time we break your bread and share your cup...

I offer you thanks for the unspoken trust and bond
I share with you through your people,
the people you have made your own...

I offer you thanks, Lord, for the too-many-to-count ways
you strengthen, heal and give me joy
through the people you give me to serve,
the people who nourish my soul
in the prayer they offer, in the song they sing...

I offer you my cracking voice,
my tear-moist joy,
and the words I spoke...

Open our eyes, ears, minds and hearts, Lord:
help us all to see your beauty, hear your word,
discover your truth and receive your love...

Help us to offer you thanks when you but call our names
and ask, will you come and follow me?

Call us, Lord, and we will follow you...

Amen.


The Summons

Will you come and follow me
If I but call your name?
Will you go where you don’t know
And never be the same?
Will you let my love be shown,
Will you let my name be known,
Will you let my life be grown
In you and you in me?

Will you leave yourself behind
If I but call your name?
Will you care for cruel and kind
And never be the same?
Will you risk the hostile stare
Should your life attract or scare?
Will you let me answer prayer
In you and you in me?

Will you let the blinded see
If I but call your name?
Will you set the pris’ners free
And never be the same?
Will you kiss the leper clean,
And do such as this unseen,
And admit to what I mean
In you and you in me?

Will you love the ‘you’ you hide
If I but call your name?
Will you quell the fear inside
And never be the same?
Will you use the faith you’ve found
To reshape the world around,
Through my sight and touch and sound
In you and you in me?

Lord, your summons echoes true
When you but call my name.
Let me turn and follow you
And never be the same.
In your company I’ll go
Where your love and footsteps show.
Thus I’ll move and live and grow
In you and you in me.

Lyrics: John L. Bell, The Iona Community
Music: Traditional Scottish Melody
Chicago: GIA Publications, Inc.

-ConcordPastor