People’s Table Liturgy

Sunday 9th September 2012

Ordinary 23B, Colour: Green

At Newmarket Baptist we are asking how  ‘Slow Food’ can help reframe our understanding of what it means to be “church”

The “Slow Food” Movement arose in Italy as a response to the negative impact of multinational food companies and its influence is spreading around the world – slowly!

Slow Food opposes the standardisation of taste, protects cultural identity tied to food and seeks to safeguard processing techniques inherited from tradition.  It involves valuing time to prepare, eat and build community through food.

It is sometimes critiqued as being an elite pursuit, however Jesus himself would often seek out the best feed in town!  Far from extravagant eating, Slow Food is about the celebration of the connections that food can make with sustainable production and local food traditions that are often lost in our economy.

Together we are discovering that that if we read the gospels without getting hungry we aren’t paying attention! The how, what, where and with whom Jesus eats is a central point of gospel conflict. “Understanding about the loaves” (Mark 6:52) is presented as essential to understanding Jesus’ ministry of reconciliation.

This ministry is symbolised in the offer of wilderness bread and of his body and blood in the Eucharist.  Our prayer is that like his  followers at Emmaus, it would be in the offer of hospitality to strangers, and at the breaking of bread that our eyes will be opened and that Christ may be made known among us.



Reading: Mark 7:24-30


From there he set out and went away to the region of Tyre. He entered a house and did not want anyone to know he was there. Yet he could not escape notice, but a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit immediately heard about him, and she came and bowed down at his feet. Now the woman was a Gentile, of Syrophoenician origin. She begged him to cast the demon out of her daughter. He said to her, ‘Let the children be fed first, for it is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.’ But she answered him, ‘Sir, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.’ Then he said to her, ‘For saying that, you may go—the demon has left your daughter.’ So she went home, found the child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.

“Healing is impossible in loneliness; it is the opposite of loneliness.

Conviviality is healing.

To be healed we must come with all the other creatures to the feast of Creation.”


– Wendell Berry


drinks hors derves:

Welcome Blessing

Acknowledgement of Country

Candle lighting

entree/ starters:

2nd blessing :  Seeds Prayer

Breaking and Sharing of Bread

Introduction of  Guests


3rd blessing :  Thanks to Guests

Reading and Reflection


Sending Blessing: Seeds Prayer

last drinks

A final toast to the way of Christ

Welcome Blessing

Welcome. We invite you to this table with the cry and promise of Jesus


“Listen, I stand at the door and knock: if you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in and eat with you and you with me.”

In the gift of Christ and through the presence of his Spirit, we have tasted God’s gracious hospitality to us.  And so we extend this grace to each other…

Welcome to the table…

What is it you bring?

2nd Blessing Seeds Table Prayer

Holding up the packet of Seeds
Holy community of gracious hospitality, in the midst of our homelessness you extend us an invitation to Grow Home.

We thankyou for your invitation to join the vocation of those who through the ages have vowed to grow new households of love.

Set us free to share our wealth and may the poor always be with us.  May we live in fidelity with your wild creative power respecting the sacred connections between your Spirit, our bodies and all creation. May we be obedient to your power above all others. Grace us with mutual submission. Give us courage to give of ourselves with the same passion with which you lived and died.

Lord hear us.
All: Lord hear our prayer

Holding up the Bible

May we Know the Word. Not ancient words on a page but the living Spirit of Christ among us.  Guide us in our speech at this table, choosing our stories and storying our choices. May this table be rich in story. Give us strength to raise our voice and the discipline to listen for you in the voice of others
Lord hear us.
All: Lord hear our prayer

Holding up the bowl

May we Eat Slow. Make us mindful of all that has been given and received in the process of production and consumption. ( At this point mention could be made about different elements of the meal and what is known of their process of production). May this meal reconcile us with God, creation and others. May our eyes be opened to your presence through the breaking of the bread and may our eating bear witness to the meal to come, to which all are invited and where there is enough for all.

Lord hear us.
All: Lord hear our prayer

Sending Blessing

Holding up the bottle of oil
May we leave this table energised to Go and Engage our world. To speak truth to the powers and to each other; to name and cast out that which is evil in our world and within; and in the midst of our brokenness may we know and share your healing power; your gracious hospitality to us.   Lord hear us.
All: Lord hear our prayer  Amen.



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