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Walk of Witness in Petersfield: Good Friday 2018

It was cold and wet but we had a goodly number of walkers. The walk followed the traditional route from the Methodist Church in Station Road, down Lavant Street then through Ram's Walk to The Square.

Because of the rain the service took place in St Peter's. It was led by Simon Mason, one of the three joint coordinators of PACT for 2018. Carol Tubbs read the lesson, Patsy Robinson read the prayer* and Helen and Simon Mason, gave the address.

Music was provided by The Salvation Army band. After the service people were invited to stay for tea, coffee and hot cross buns.

The walkers stopped twice for readings of the Passion story, once in Lavant Street and again in Rams Walk.

*Click the link to see the prayer at the bottom of this page

Some, but not all. of the images below are also available as larger images - where a little hand appears click on the image to see a larger copy. You can move through the larger images by clicking the left of right side of the images.

     
          
Because of the poor weather we all met up inside the Methodist Church
     
Turning into Lavant Street
 
The first reading, in Lavant Street
     
Crossing Chapel Street - stewards were provided by Petersfield Chaplaincy
     
The Walkers gather in Ram's walk
 
 
Mike Gibson reading the second reading in Ram's Walk   Filing into St Peter's
     
 
St Peter's was full
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The prayer read by Patsy Robinson

Brothers and sisters, before he was arrested, Jesus prayed for us. He prayed for those who would believe in him in the future. He prayed that we would be one, us in him and he in us, brought to complete unity.

In order that the world would see the Father’s love in us, and would believe that he had sent Jesus. For the sake of the world he loves so much, we need start with our own hearts and minds. Let us pray

Holy God, we want to be the answer to Jesus’s prayer. We want to be one in you. We thank you for your church, and for every good work you have accomplished through us. Petersfield is amazing! But we’re sorry for the times we’ve failed you, when we’ve been complacent, luke-warm, unforgiving. Please forgive and heal us. We seek your face.

Please forgive us when we make idols of our forms, traditions, denominations. Help us, in each time and place in which we find ourselves, in each culture, in each transformation which goes on in our society, help us to continue to seek you anew each day.

We know that spirituality is only worth something when it is the continual new life breathed by your Spirit.

Help us to let go of forms and structures that have served us well in the past when they no longer serve us now, when they no longer serve your purposes.

We know that you have worked powerfully in the past, you continue to work powerfully in the present, and we trust that if you want to continue to work powerfully through us, you will show us how.

Help us to come to you with that radical trust that you will lead us into what we need for our time, for our place, for the future.

We confess that we too often get into ruts, and we focus on the manifestations instead of you who manifest.

We think that the particular committee structure we have at our meetings, the particular way our worship flows, is the only way or the best way.

Soften our hearts to be aware of your nudges as you breathe life into some of the forms that you want us to keep
and as you invite us to let go of other forms we’ve been using and move into something new.

As we seek to be faithful Christians, as we seek to learn from our own and from other traditions, we pray that you will help us to go more deeply into our own tradition, and courageously encounter you, ourselves and one another at those deep places.

As we read your word, and listen for that place where words come from, as we go deeply into our own tradition, help us be able to receive what other traditions have to offer us. Help us connect with the deep stories of those traditions as well.

So give us the courage not to stay on the surface and sample just a little bit of everything, but to plunge into the depth of our particular path, and then experience our deep connections with other traditions.

Help us to be truly one in you.

We know, Lord, that we’re at a time in the history of our world when the transformative power that the early Christians experienced is greatly needed. The world that you love so much, needs you.

So we offer ourselves to you, to be available for you to work in us in those ways, in those same ways that you worked in Christians of old. Our righteousness comes from Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, and our confidence comes from his resurrection from the dead. So in his name and his authority we resist every tactic of the enemy to undermine us. We choose to trust instead of fear; we choose to hope instead of despair.

Holy Father, we want to be vessels who are totally available to you, so please give us together the courage and openness to give ourselves completely to you, and to see what will happen when we let your power work through us.

Amen

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