May 30, 2021



Bob Dylan observes, in one of his songs, that

“He not busy being born is busy dying.”

Each day there is set before us the choice

to pursue life and take up the challenges

and opportunities of the present

or to begin the process of death and decay,

the trading of life in abundance

for a non-threatening passivity.

In worship we encounter the challenge

of new opportunities, new ways of thinking,

new ways of being human

and we grapple with how we are going to realize

the promise of life in abundance.

PROCESSIONAL HYMN                                                                       ‘Praise with Joy’

Words: ©1987 J Bell & G Maule (Admin. by Willow Publishing Pty. Ltd.)

Music: Praise my soul (Public domain) 4 verses


  1. Praise with joy the world’s Creator,

God of justice, love and peace,

source and end of human knowledge,

force of greatness without cease.

Celebrate the Maker’s glory –

power to rescue and release.


  1. Praise the Son, who feeds the hungry,

frees the captive, finds the lost,

heals the sick, upsets religion,

fearless both of fate and cost.

Celebrate Christ’s constant presence –

Friend and Stranger, Guest and Host.


  1. Praise the Spirit sent among us,

liberating truth from pride,

forging bonds where race or gender,

age or nation dare divide.

Celebrate the Spirit’s treasure –

foolishness none dare deride.


  1. Praise the Maker, Son and Spirit,

one God in community,

calling Christians to embody

oneness in diversity.

Thus the world shall yet believe, when

shown Christ’s vibrant unity.


Kia ora tatou.

Kia ora.



PRAYER Meditation: "Mystery" by Gordon B. McKeeman

How does one address a mystery?


E tō mātou Matua i te rangi
Our Parent in heaven
Kia tapu tōu ingoa.
Your name is holy
Kia tae mai tōu rangatiratanga.
May your Chieftainship arrive here
Kia meatia tāu e pai ai
Your will be done
ki runga ki te whenua,
On Earth
kia rite anō ki to te rangi.
As in heaven
Homai ki a mātou āianei
Give us today
he taro mā mātou mō tēnei rā.
Food for this day
Murua o mātou hara
Forgive our sins
me mātou hoki e muru nei
As we also forgive
i o te hunga e hara ana ki a mātou.
Those who sin against us
Aua hoki mātou e kawea
kia whakawaia;
Do not lead us into temptation
Engari whakaorangia mātou
i te kino:
But save us from evil
Nou hoki te rangatiratanga,
te kaha, me te kōroria,
Your is the chieftainship, the power
and the glory
Ake, ake, ake. Amine
Forever. Amen

We send you to the Rainbow Room to hear stories, ask questions and have fun together.
We bless you. Amen.
Traditionally we shake hands to pass the peace and say “peace be with you”. Now that COVID-19 is here we ask that you pass the peace without shaking hands.
HYMN HIOS 116 ‘Praise the all-sustaining Word’
Words and Music: © 2009 Colin Gibson

1. Praise the all-sustaining Word,
blazing out against the night;
inextinguishable flame,
beacon through the darkest night.
Praise the calm, majestic will,
drawing endless good from ill.

2. Praise the never-failing love,
patient to the end of time;
praise the rainbow and the dove
searching ocean for a sign.
Praise the mighty storm of grace
pouring down upon this place.

3. Praise the parent-God of all,
past and present, yet to be;
praise the Christ, the child who showed
love in pure simplicity.
Praise the Spirit, lifelong friend;
praise till praise shall, praising, end.

THE WORD IN TEXTS Norman Wilkins
Hebrew Bible Genesis 1: 1-5
The beginning
Gospel John 3 1-10
Jesus and Nicodemus
Contemporary reading ‘The Quest of the Historical Jesus’
by Albert Schweitzer
(New York: MacMillan, 1956), p. 403
He comes to us as One unknown,
without a name,
as of old, by the lake-side;
He came to those men who knew Him not.
He speaks to us the same word:
‘Follow thou me!’
and sets us to the tasks
which He has to fulfill for our time.
He commands. And to those who obey Him,
whether they be wise or simple,
He will reveal Himself in the toils,
the conflicts, the sufferings
which they shall pass through in His fellowship,
and, as an ineffable mystery,
they shall learn in their own experience
Who He is.
For the Word in scripture,
for the Word among us,
for the Word within us,
we give thanks.

HYMN ‘God the All-Holy, Maker and Mother’
Words: ©1989 Brian Wren, Music : Bunessan WOV 91 3 verses
Reprinted with permission under One License A-623996. All rights reserved

1. God the All-Holy, Maker and Mother,
gladly we gather, bringing in prayer
old hurts for healing, new hopes for holding,
giving, receiving loving and care.

2. Spirit, All-Seeing, knitting and blending
joy in desiring, friendship and ease,
make our belonging loyal and lasting,
so that our pledging freshens and frees.

3. Christ, All-Completing, nature enfolding,
evil exhausting in love’s embrace,
weaving and mending, make every ending,
God’s new beginning, glowing with grace.

REFLECTION Jim Cunningham

HYMN FFS 47 ‘Maker of Mystery’
Words: Marnie Barrell. Tune: Down Ampney WOV 310
1. Maker of mystery,
dreamer of what will be,
well-spring and fertile ground of all our growing:
tending the buried seed,
foreseeing every need,
you draw us into life beyond our knowing.

2. Christ, strong and living vine,
spreading through space and time,
deep rooted in the love of God our mother:
dying, you live and share
your strength with us, to bear
ripe fruit in season for the life of others.

3. Wild Spirit, springing green,
coiled in the depths unseen,
promise of fruit within the seed maturing:
new life, you grow and swell,
burst from the outgrown shell,
hundredfold yield in every age ensuring.

4. Living and loving God,
sing in the pulse of our blood,
help us to know you in your own creation,
love you, the life of all,
serve you and hear your call
from our first forming to our full salvation.

OFFERING HYMN Tune: Duke Street WOV 24
Willing hands, to lead the blind,
heal the wounded, feed the poor.
Love embracing all our kind,
charity with liberal store.

We recognise and bless the gifts brought to the table, and those which wing
their way electronically from our banks to the church’s account.
People share notices and visitors are welcomed. If you have a notice, please move to the front row, ready to speak briefly from the lectern.
For the benefit of newcomers, please introduce yourself before you begin.
We think today of the people of Ghana and the Christian Council of Ghana. We hold all refugees in our hearts. We pray in particular for those detained for many years in Papua New Guinea & Nauru. We give thanks for progress that has been made and pray that their calls for justice might yet find a compassionate response. In New Zealand, we remember those in Parliament, and today we name Hon Willie Jackson and Anahila Kanongata'a-Suisuiki list MPs. Here in the Central Presbytery, we pray for the leaders and people of St Margaret's Presbyterian Church, Silverstream.


Renew your people, God,
and renew our life in this place.
Give us a new spirit of unity
with all who follow the Way of Jesus
and new bonds of love
with people of other faiths.

Bless the city in which we live
that it may be a place
where honest dealing,
good government,
the desire for beauty,
and the care for others flourish.

Bless this church
that what we know of your will
may become what we do,
and what we believe
the strong impulse
of our worship and work.

CALL TO SERVICE: (standing)
Into a world where hope lies desolate
and despair often hangs like death
polluting even joy and laughter and love,
we are sent forth to live,
to risk a new kind of living,
living as those for whom
hope is reborn and love set free again
to create a society where people
are valued, and affirmed, and cared for.
We go now in the peace and power of God.

HYMN ‘God your power has called to being’
Words: Michael Hare Duke ©1991 Stainer & Bell Ltd
Tune: WOV 92 Hymn to Joy, 4 verses
1. God, your power has called to being
all that fills the earth below.
Myriad stars beyond our seeing,
tiniest creatures that we know;
earth and air and fire and water
woven in the grand design,
witness to the final meaning
of your love in human kind.

2. Human lives are made for sharing;
joined in trust and truth we grow,
speech or silence opening pathways
to the hearts we seek to know.
Welcome love, by your renewal,
worn out ways turn upside down;
weak is strong, success is failure,
and the wise becomes the clown.

3. From your self we take our nature,
Maker, parent, love divine.
Bound into your life we flourish,
leaves and branches of the vine.
Through the Christ we see your pattern,
life surrendered, life restored:
echoing through all creation
sounds the spirit’s deep accord.

4. Love releases us for taking
one more risk than we might bear;
glory breaks through dark and danger,
shows the Lord transfigured there.
God who planted our affections,
help your gifts to grow more free,
fan in us the flames of loving,
daring, dancing Trinity.


THANK YOU                                                                                                 Bruce Corkill

our Musician today

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