Vox friends, from both near and far,
welcome to this space and community.
Welcome to all your beginnings, middles, and ends –
within this year, within this week, within each new day.
Let us take a moment to acknowledge this space and time.
This morning, let us welcome a brilliant,
new understanding of God’s presence.
Let us welcome all the ways God will
show up during this time of transition.
May we welcome all our fears and suffering,
for God is with us in those places, too.
And may we hold sacred space
for what God has to give us,
today and all our days to follow.
In the name of God, our Creator,
Christ, our Redeemer,
And the Holy Spirit, our Breath of Life.
We invite you to hear from the Gospel of John 1.
10 He was in the world, and the world came into being
through him; yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to
what was his own, and his own people did not accept him.
14 And the Word became flesh and lived among us,
and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s
only son, full of grace and truth.
16 From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
17 The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth
came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God.
It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father’s heart,
who has made him known.
The Good News of the Lord.
Thanks be to God!
The grass withers and the flower fades,
but the Word of the Lord endures forever. Amen.
Homily and Reflection
How are you feeling at the start of this new year?
How does the image of God moving into our messy and complex lives open us up to grace?
Friends, sisters, and brothers,
take a moment to look around
you and savor God’s goodness.
Let this space and your community
be a reminder throughout this year
of what God can do and is doing.
This new year, when old wounds reopen
and old habits re-emerge, remember:
Healing is slow, but it is beautiful.
God is at work, and you are not alone.
Your community is surrounding you.
And whenever you return, may you
bring your process of healing with you,
and may you make this place shine.
Go forth into this year,
in the name of
our loving God,
the forgiving Christ,
and our guide, the Holy Spirit.
Go in peace, and live the church.
May you find belonging and community this week.
[Photo by Rachael]