Worship At Home
The Twenty-fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Worship at Home with
Corpus Christi Church

The Twenty Fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time

 

Whatever your present status in the Catholic Church, whatever your
current family or marital situation, whatever your past or present
religious affiliation, whatever your personal history, age, background,
race or color, sexual orientation, whatever your self-esteem…
you are
invited, welcomed, accepted, loved and respected by the
Catholic Community of Corpus Christi.
Let us know your needs, your hopes, your gifts.
There is a place for you here.

 


Opening Prayer

We begin in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,

Amen

Loving God,
we are thankful that you are faithful and do not change.
We look upon you to be our strength, to be our guide, and to be our help this day.
Help release our anger, anxiety, frustration, and fears and help us to extend your forgiveness and mercy to those around us.
Mold our minds in the patterns of justice and shape our hearts with your unconditional love.
Give us the grace to face obstacles while letting these difficult days strengthen our faith as we rely on you.
We ask this through Christ our Lord

Amen

 

 


The First Reading

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah
Seek the LORD while he may be found,
call him while he is near.
Let the scoundrel forsake his way,
and the wicked his thoughts;
let him turn to the LORD for mercy;
to our God, who is generous in forgiving.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD.
As high as the heavens are above the earth,
so high are my ways above your ways
and my thoughts above your thoughts.
The word of the Lord

Thanks Be To God

 

 

The Second Reading

A reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Philippians
Brothers and sisters:
Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.
For to me life is Christ, and death is gain.
If I go on living in the flesh,
that means fruitful labor for me.
And I do not know which I shall choose.
I am caught between the two.
I long to depart this life and be with Christ,
for that is far better.
Yet that I remain in the flesh
is more necessary for your benefit.
Only, conduct yourselves in a way worthy of the gospel of Christ.
The word of the Lord

Thanks Be To God

 

 

The Gospel

Fr. Michael Goodavish

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew
Jesus told his disciples this parable:
“The kingdom of heaven is like a landowner
who went out at dawn to hire laborers for his vineyard.
After agreeing with them for the usual daily wage,
he sent them into his vineyard.
Going out about nine o’clock,
the landowner saw others standing idle in the marketplace,
and he said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard,
and I will give you what is just.’
So they went off.
And he went out again around noon,
and around three o’clock, and did likewise.
Going out about five o’clock,
the landowner found others standing around, and said to them,
‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’
They answered, ‘Because no one has hired us.’
He said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard.’
When it was evening the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman,
‘Summon the laborers and give them their pay,
beginning with the last and ending with the first.’
When those who had started about five o’clock came,
each received the usual daily wage.
So when the first came, they thought that they would receive more,
but each of them also got the usual wage.
And on receiving it they grumbled against the landowner, saying,
‘These last ones worked only one hour,
and you have made them equal to us,
who bore the day’s burden and the heat.’
He said to one of them in reply,
‘My friend, I am not cheating you.
Did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage?
Take what is yours and go.
What if I wish to give this last one the same as you?
Or am I not free to do as I wish with my own money?
Are you envious because I am generous?’
Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last.”
The Gospel of the Lord

Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ

 

 


Another Reflection from our Community

This Sunday in the Gospel we find Jesus sharing another parable that only appears in the Gospel of Matthew. The parable of the worker in the vineyard tells of a landowner who employs some day labors at different times throughout the day to help bring in the harvest. The day laborers were often unskilled workers who lived day to day at a level just above homeless and destitute. They were hired for the day and paid at night with no promise of work the next day. There is dignity that comes from work as opposed to a handout of charity. At the end of the workday those who came last were paid first and paid the same amount as those who put in a full day’s work. Naturally, this is upsetting to those who worked a full day. To this the landowner responds that he has paid them all the amount they agreed upon before starting. And finishes with “the last shall be first and the first shall be last.” The complaining workers assumed they were near the top of some unspoken hierarchy. They thought they deserved more than some of their co-workers. They were completely out of tune with the generosity and large heartedness of the landlord who wanted all those day laborers and their households to have their daily bread. The story was important to the early church because generations of Jews waited and longed for the Messiah and, like the first workers, they were the first to respond to the call of Jesus and to work in the field of his Kingdom. For some of the early Jewish Christians it came as a surprise that the Lord was calling Gentiles to the life and work of Jesus’ Kingdom as well. The parable is about the generosity of God, not an encouragement of idleness nor a way out of finding employment for our people, each of whom has the right to work. Jesus tells us that the Kingdom of God disrupts our normal way of thinking, it turns our expectations upside down and completely challenges our relationships. Jesus used a common example to highlight the unconditional love of God, who enjoys giving love to everyone, even the ones we do not think deserve it. God reaches out to all people, even those who take a long time to come around to God’s message. God never gives up on us but returns again and again in our life to extend an invitation to the Kingdom.
If we think of the earth as God’s great vineyard, we can see obvious parallels today. Some nations think they deserve more than their less developed neighbors; perhaps because their economies have been industrialized longer. This distinction is also present in households, communities, states, countries… wherever there are relationships. Can we allow God to be so gracious to everyone? Do we want to be like the rude day laborers who worked the whole day only to complain? We have been taught from an early age that fairness matters. Certainly, at some point in our lives we have uttered “That’s not fair!” We cling to fairness because it gives us the feeling of some assurance of order, predictability, control, and hierarchy. Fairness is based on what you deserve, how hard you work, what you achieve, and the way in which you behave. Sometimes we see it fair to give a reward or punishment. Too often fairness rather than love, acceptance, mercy, forgiveness, or generosity is the measure by which we act and judge another person or life circumstance. We live in a wage-based society in which you earn what you get, you deserve the consequences, good or bad; this leaves very little room for grace. Grace reveals the goodness of God. Wages reveal human effort. Grace seeks unity and inclusion. Wages make distinctions and separate. Grace looks beyond our productivity, our appearance, our race or ethnicity, our accomplishments, or our failures. Grace reminds us that we are not nearly as self-sufficient, deserving, or independent as wage-based society would like us to believe. Clinging to a wage-based society can make us resentful, separating and isolating us from others. Eventually we set up standards and expectations not only for ourselves and others but for God. The only precondition of grace is that we show up and open ourselves to receive what God is giving. When we do, we begin to see our life, the world, and our neighbor differently. How can we tend to the vineyard into which God has sent us? Do we attend to the needs of the hungry, isolated, and homeless? Do we care for the environment, sick and the poor? Do we welcome the outcast, immigrants, and refugees? Who are we to be outraged at the generosity and large-heartedness of God? Trust that in God’s world there is enough for everyone. Give God the freedom to pay whatever is right knowing that God’s ways are not our ways. Make no judgement of yourself or others. That is the way of grace, the way of God who is love.

 

 

 

 


Bless Our Schools Moms in Prayer Ministry

Hello. My name is Deb Stine and I lead the Moms in Prayer ministry here at Corpus Christi. I am excited to be “with you” today as we celebrate Bless Our Schools Sunday! Every fall Moms in Prayer sponsors this event where churches across the globe join to pray for students, teachers, and schools. There are special prayers included below for you to participate in blessing those students, teachers and schools in your own life, but first I would like to explain briefly about Moms in Prayer and share testimonies from three members of our Corpus Christi Moms in Prayer group.
Moms in Prayer is a world-wide prayer movement of women who gather each week in small groups to pray one hour for their children and schools. We follow a simple 4-step format of Praise, Silent Confession, Thanksgiving, and Intercession. Each week we focus on a different name or attribute of God, such as God is Faithful, God is our Strength, or God is our Hope, and together we have learned to pray scripturally for our children and to trust God for the answers to our prayers. These are difficult times we are living in and we are experiencing more stress and uncertainty than most of us have known in our lifetime, yet prayer brings us to a place of greater peace. MIP helps me live out Philippians 4:6 “Do not worry about anything, instead pray about everything!” We hope you will consider joining the Corpus Christi Moms in Prayer at 7pm on Wednesdays (by Zoom) this school year as we lift our children and grandchildren to the Lord in prayer. Women of all ages are welcome, and you do not have to be a mom. All you need to participate is faith in Jesus and a heart to pray for children and schools!
Corpus Christi Moms in Prayer FALL KICKOFF is this Wednesday, September 23!
We will gather by Zoom from 7-8:00 pm. We will:
– Meet the women in our group.
– Learn more about Moms in Prayer.
– Have your questions answered.
If interested, please email me at debstine.mip@comcast.net and I will send you the Zoom codes to join in.

 

And now, here are three of our group members to share their testimonies about Moms in Prayer:
Jeanne Toews:
I’m Jeanne Toews and this will be my 4th year of being a part of the Corpus Christi Moms In Prayer group. We moved to the Cities 8 years ago and other than family, I really didn’t know anyone. I joined Corpus Christi because our son, daughter in law, and 3 grandchildren were members and I loved the liturgy and social outreach I saw there. I still didn’t really know other church members so when Deb Stine talked about MIP at Bless Our School Sunday in 2017, I thought it might be a good fit for me. I was not familiar with the 4-part prayer format and praying aloud with others in 1 accord was a totally new experience. I’m somewhat of an introvert so it was scary at first, but this amazing, diverse group of ladies soon brought me into their sisterhood. I pray for our 3 children and especially our 6 grandchildren and their schools. I have experienced quite a bit of family illness and death during these past 4 years and my prayer sisters have been a tremendous support group for me and my family. I have grown greatly in my faith and connection to the scriptures and I’m so thankful I made this leap of faith 4 years ago.

 

Melody Rehder:
Hello, my name is Melody Rehder. I’ve been a member of Corpus Christi for 38 years. At the beginning of 2020 I was recently retired and was looking for a way to focus on my children and grandchildren through prayer. My family has grown from three children to each child having a spouse and now four grandchildren. With the growth comes change and I needed a way to focus on the changing circumstances within each family. I reached out Deb Stine inquiring about the Wednesday meetings for Mom’s in Prayer. Deb suggested that I attend the following week’s meeting. Once there I was so impressed with the sisterhood formed by the women in the group, their deep knowledge of scripture and commitment to prayer that I’ve attended as many of the Wednesday meetings as possible. These mothers and grandmothers are truly dedicated to trusting in God for his abundant love of our children, our grandchildren, their teachers and the administration that leads our children daily. We believe in the strength of prayer, knowing that God’s love is steadfast and abundant. I was called to Mom’s in Prayer at the beginning of this year and it’s been such a blessing. I passionately recommend Mom’s in Prayer to all mothers no matter what stage in life their children may be in. Thank you.

 

Alice Gateri:
My name is Alice Gateri. I’m glad to be part of Moms in Prayer. I was introduced to this group by Esther after relocating from Africa in 2018. Back home I was part of a prayer group for young moms where our main focus was to pray for our young children. When I relocated to the United States, I was really worried whether I would be able to find a prayerful group where mothers focused on praying for their children, because it’s something I’m very passionate about – that is praying for my children. I have two children, one is age 18 years and one is age 20 (10 years, sorry) and I feel it is important to pray for them since times have changed, and we really need to pray for our children. So when I discovered Moms in Prayer through Esther, I was really excited to be a part of a team that has the same agenda and same goals as me which is calling on God on behalf of our children, on behalf of our schools and surrounding our kids with the blood of Jesus. I can say it’s been an interesting journey and I’m a living testimony that prayers do change our lives of our children. Thank you.

 

THE BELSSINGS
First, we will bless all of our students. Students of all ages. Extend a hand over the students and pray with me:
Loving God, we ask that You bless our students this school year and protect them from all harm. Keep them safe from the Coronavirus and help them adjust to all the changes in their learning routines. Assure them of Your love for them and empower them to stand firm in their faith. And from Psalm 37:3a, may each of these students “trust in the Lord and do good.” In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.
Now all school administrators, faculty, and staff. Any of you who work at a school or university. Let us extend our hands and pray together:
Mighty God and Father, we are grateful for each of these servants who carry out Your work in our schools. Strengthen them for the important job they do and empower them with the gifts of your Holy Spirit as they work with students and make difficult decisions each day. Give them Your wisdom as they learn and implement new avenues to educate our children during the pandemic and may they turn to You for encouragement, guidance, and peace. And from Galatians 6:9, help them to “not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time they will reap a harvest if they do not give up!” Equip them now in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.
This year we would like to include a blessing for any family members who will be teaching their children/grandchildren at home or assisting the classroom teacher through online learning. Let’s extend our hands and pray:
Jesus, you are our Teacher and our Lord. We call on you today to fill these family members with everything they need to teach their children and grandchildren. Give them patience, understanding, encouragement, and most of all love. Let them come to You every day for the strength they need to carry out this challenging new role. From Ephesians 6:10-11 “Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can stand firm…” We pray this in the mighty name of Jesus, our Teacher and Lord. Amen.
And now we pray for our schools:
Gracious God please protect our schools and universities from all evil and keep them safe. May there be unity and high moral values among all teachers, professors, administrators, school boards and support staff. We pray that students at every age would be able to learn and grow to their potential in our schools, without fear of bullying, discrimination, or abuse. And we pray that every school would be covered in prayer. Bless our schools in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

 

 


Profession of Faith

Let us together profess our faith:

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,          
born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died and was buried;
he descended into hell;
on the third day he rose again from the dead;
he ascended into heaven,

and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty;
from there he will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and life everlasting.

Amen.

 

 


Prayers of the Faithful

Mindful of the needs of many, we come before our God, praying for our sisters and brothers across the world.

 

For the Church:
May we secure the rights of the poor and oppressed and challenge the consciences of the rich and powerful…
(pause)
We pray to the Lord

Lord hear our prayer.

For those trying to recover from fires, flooding, and hurricanes:
May they find hope to rebuild even as the earth cries out for our help…
(pause)
We pray to the Lord

Lord hear our prayer.

For workers across the world:
May those working tirelessly for basic necessities, especially the underpaid and those who work in dangerous conditions, find dignity and their daily bread…
(pause)
We pray to the Lord

Lord hear our prayer.

For an end to the waste and desecration of God’s creation:
May the gifts of the land be shared equally among all people…
(pause)
We pray to the Lord

Lord hear our prayer.

For the sick and dying who have asked for our prayers and for the those who have no one to pray for them…
(pause)
We pray to the Lord

Lord hear our prayer.

We remember all our loved ones who have died…
(pause)
Welcome them home and fill them with peace…
(pause)
We pray to the Lord

Lord hear our prayer.

 

God who calls us,
we know that living in Christ will never be simple or easy.
Grant us strength to respond to what you ask of us
and soften our hearts to be open to whatever we may be asked to endure.
We know that you will be with us.
We make our prayer through Christ our Lord.

Amen.

 


Closing Prayer

Gracious God,
we come to you with open hearts ready to receive your grace.
You call us to be attentive to the things we would rather not see and the people we would rather not hear.
Our economy grows rich on cheap labor and we clothe ourselves in garments made by the sweat of the poor.
Help us to correct the imbalance of your generosity.
Inflame our hearts with love and enrich our life with service to others.
Bless the work of our hands that it may give glory to you and help to unify all people wherever they may be.
United with our sisters and brothers everywhere,
together we pray in the words Jesus taught us:

Our Father,
who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name.

Thy kingdom come,
thy will be done.
on earth, as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom and the power and the glory are yours now and forever.

Amen.

 

 


Closing Song

Blest Be the Lord:

Wide (for computers):

Tall (for hand-helds):