Novena to Mary, Untier of Knots
Day 6 – Wed 25th October, Knots of Division & Separation among Christian Churches
Welcome and introduction by Fr John
On each day of the novena, so far, we have been reflecting on potential knots in our lives: injustice, disappointment, grief, loss, hopelessness, betrayal, resentment, physical and mental suffering in all its forms, addiction, family disunity, relationship breakdown, confusion, separation, grief and loss, conflict and discord etc.
Tonight Bishop Peter Eagles, the newly consecrated and installed Bishop of Sodor and Man, has kindly agreed to help us ponder the knot of disunity among Christians.
Hymn: O Lord all the world belong to you– see Hymn No.25 on separate white Hymn sheets
We now invite Bishop Peter Eagles to lead us in this service of recognition and repentance for the knots of Separation that exist between the Christian Churches.
Bishop Peter: Opening Prayer.
God our Loving Father, you prayed on the night before you died that we might all be one. We pray that the divisions between the churches might be healed so that your name might be praised throughout the whole world. And we make this prayer through the same Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen
A Reading from Psalm 129
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord, Lord hear my voice. O let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleading. If you, O Lord, should mark our guilt, who would survive? But with you is found forgiveness; for this we revere you. My soul is waiting for the Lord, I count on his word. My soul is longing for the Lord more than watchman for daybreak. Let the watchman count on daybreak and Israel on the Lord. Because with the Lord there is mercy and fullness of redemption. Israel indeed he will redeem from all its iniquity.
The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God
Hymn: Psalm 99 – Cry out with Joy – see Hymn No.26 on separate white Hymn sheets
A Reading from the Holy Gospel according to John
Jesus said ‘I pray not only for these but for those also who through their words will believe in me. May they all be one. Father, may they be one in us as you are in me and I am in you, so that the world will believe it was you who sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave to me, that they may be one as we are one. With me in them and you in me, may they be so completely one that the world will realize that it was you who sent me and that I have loved them as much as you loved me. Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, so that they may always see the glory you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. Father, Righteous One, the world has not known you, but I have known you, and these have known that you have sent me. I have made your name known to them and will continue to make it known, so that the love with which you loved me may be in them, and so that I may be in them.
The Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ.
A time of silence to identify and ponder the knots of separation, division and prejudice and our own collusion with them.
Hymn: This is my body broken for you – see Hymn No.27 on separate white Hymn sheets
Mary Untier of Knots, You understand discord because you witnessed it in your lifetime on earth. You’ve seen what happens when people are at odds and you see the consequences of their failings. Discord was part of the sword that pierced your Immaculate Heart. Pause
Mother, you understand our discord and you can see how the Body of your Son, Jesus, which is the Church, has been torn apart by conflict, pride and obstinacy. You, too, have suffered with those who have been persecuted on all sides throughout history for the sake of their beliefs. You know how this discord came about and you know what must happen for it to end. You also know the responsibility each of us must bear for its cause and its continuation and yet you love us still. Pause
Please accept this knot of discord which is disunity. Take it into your skilful and gentle hands and untie it one snarl at a time so that the ribbon which is the life of the Church, the Body of Christ, can be free of discord and its consequences. If we are at fault, show us how, and then show us what to do to make amends. Make us truly desire this knot to be undone so that we can follow your guidance with integrity and a sincere heart. Pause
Dear Lady, pray for us here this evening. Intercede with your Son on our behalf that the knot of Christian division and the scandal it causes might be undone. Pause
Hymn: Bind us together– see Hymn No.28 on separate white Hymn sheets
Daily Novena Prayer to Mary, Untier of Knots – see words on white Novena Hymns sheet
Daily Novena Hymn: Hail Queen of Heav’n, the Ocean Star – see Hymn No.1 on separate white Hymn sheets
Thank you for coming to our Novena – Please feel free to take this copy service sheet away with you.
Please stay behind to greet Bishop Peter. Light refreshments will be served at the back of Church.
Discord among Christians is the greatest obstacle to evangelisation. It fosters the growth of groups that take advantage of people’s poverty and credulity to propose easy but illusory solutions to their problems. In a world wounded by so many ethnic, political and religious conflicts, communities must become ‘authentically fraternal and reconciled’ so that in them ‘they will find that witness luminous and attractive.’ God gives us the grace if we know how to receive it , to make unity prevail over conflict (Pope Francis)