The Light on the Hill

Order of Service – 18th September 2022

The Order of Service follows below.

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September 18, 2022
Season of Creation 1 – Mutuality of Grace-all is Gift
We acknowledge the Kaurna people as the traditional carers of the land on which our church is built.


Welcome and Acknowledgment of Land:

Lighting of the Candles and Introit

At the Dawning of Salvation -Tune Nettleton


Call to Worship

In this season of creation, we bring our whole senses to worship.
We reimagine and celebrate the scent of rain on dry earth, of wind blowing in from the sea, of mossy forest and wet earthy places, Citronella, sandalwood and pepper tree.
May our meditation be pleasing to you oh Lord
In this our season of creation.

We picture thistledown and dandelion blown by the breeze, Remembering how the sky once looked before contrails and smog.
Conjure up stately tallest trees, delicate corals, rippling paddocks of grain.
May our meditation be pleasing to you oh Lord
In this our season of creation.

Holding in our hand a precious scrap of created matter, Dwelling upon its texture, Marveling at the design, feeling bumps and blemishes, Touching and being touched by a token of creation.
May our meditation be pleasing to you oh Lord
In this our season of creation.

Giving thanks for the first peoples of this land, Whose relationship and custodial wisdom of earth we have come to respect: Kaurna Sky, Kaurna Waters, Kaurna Land.
May our meditation be pleasing to you oh Lord
In this our season of creation.

Oh Lord God of all creation, Together we gather, united in Grace: Gift and Giver.
We sing your praises; how many are your works. Oh Lord.
In wisdom you made it all.
The earth is full of your creation.
May our meditation be pleasing to you oh Lord
In this our season of creation.

We Sing: Touch the Earth Lightly

  1. Touch the earth lightly,
    use the earth gently,
    nourish the life of the world in our care:
    Gift of great wonder,
    ours to surrender,
    trust for the children tomorrow will bear.

  2. We who endanger,
    who create hunger,
    agents of death for all creatures that live.
    We who would foster
    clouds of disaster,
    God of our planet, forestall and forgive!

  3. Let there be greening,
    birth from the burning,
    water that blesses and air that is sweet,
    health in God’s garden,
    hope in God’s children,
    regeneration that peace will complete.

  4. God of all living,
    God of all loving,
    God of the seedling, the snow and the sun,
    teach us, deflect us,
    Christ re-connect us,
    using us gently and making us one.

Together in Song 668. Words Shirley Erena Murray, Music: Colin Gibson. Words & Music © 1992 By Hope Publishing Co., Carol Street, IL60188. All rights reserved. ONE LICENSE. License #A‑604444.

Prayer of Confession

Humanity bulging, overwhelming the planet.
This is us.
That which sustains us is straining.
Our collective pressure fraying, severing and rewiring biological networks worldwide.
Hear our confession and our cry our God.
Draw near to us in our angst as we, together, seek new ways and the old ways remembered and reclaimed.

Hear these words of assurance:
We are not individuals but part of a community of life.
Just as we are not apart from nature, we are not apart from your spirit, our God.
There is nowhere we can go that you are not there, God of life and all creation.
In Jesus, you offer us new and living ways to live with connection and with creativity.
Open our eyes to see these connections, to live them out and renew our communities.

Passing of the Peace

The peace of our God be with you.
And also with you.

Community News and Notices

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Children’s Time

Children may go downstairs for Sunday School. Parents, you are welcome to join your child in Sunday School if you feel your child may need your assistance. Alternatively, you may wish for your child to remain with you for the duration of worship. Activity packs are available.

Scripture Reading

O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.
Yonder is the sea, great and wide, creeping things innumerable are there, living things both small and great.
There go the ships, and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it.
These all look to you to give them their food in due season;
when you give to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
When you hide your face, they are dismayed; when you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.
When you send forth your spirit, they are created; and you renew the face of the ground.
I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.
Let sinners be consumed from the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless the Lord, O my soul. Praise the Lord!

From this shines forth the word of God.
Thanks be to God.

Choral Anthem

All Things Bright and Beautiful – John Rutter

A Reflection

The Songs of Trees by David George Hasbell

“Because life is a network, there is no “nature” or “environment,” separate and apart from humans. We are part of the community of life, composed of relationships with “others,” so that human/nature duality that lives near the heart of many philosophies is, from a biological perspective, illusory. We are not, in the words of the folk hymn, wayfaring strangers traveling through this world. Nor are we the estranged creatures of Wordsworth’s lyrical ballads, fallen out of Nature into a “stagnant pool” of artifice where we misshape “the beauteous forms of things.” Our bodies and minds, our “science and Art,” are as natural and wild as they ever were. We cannot step outside life’s songs. The music made us; it is our nature. Our ethic must therefore be one of belonging, an imperative made all the more urgent by the many ways human actions are fraying, rewiring and severing biological networks worldwide. To listen to trees, nature’s great connectors, is therefore to learn how to inhabit the relationships that give life its source, substance and beauty.”

A Story

Indira Naidoo: Summary/reminder oof interview on Conversations with Sarah Kanowski about her book The Space Between the Stars 44:36-47:45

After the death of her sister by suicide, Indira had an urge to just run- “but run away from myself.” Went for a long walk – a blur….found herself in the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens and felt this extraordinary sense of calm – like a green radiance from the branches of all the tress around her- she thought “ah, this is a safe place, I can sit here.” She saw the immensity of the tree above her- comforted her and she realised she could sit with this tree and it didn’t ask anything of her but allowed her to be – and to be quiet and still. It became “her” tree and Indira would go and visit it. It opened her eyes up to all the other parts of nature- the feather against a cheek, the weeds in the cracks and the wonder of survival. Realised there was a lot to be grateful for and joy to be had and through that connection she “began to heal.”


  • What is it about our human nature that makes us to want to grasp, own or keep hold of things and in so doing, to exhaust, limit or sully them in the process?
  • How does our relationship with God as Creator, Son and Spirit speak to us about our relationship and connectedness with all of creation?
  • Where in creation do you find that “safe place?”

Responding Together:

And now with the confidence of the children of God, let us pray together, saying the alternate version using the words printed in the Order of Service…

Eternal Spirit
Earth-maker, Pain-bearer, Life-giver,
source of all that is and that shall be,
Mother and Father of us all,
Loving God, in whom is heaven.

The hallowing of your name echo through the universe!
The way of your justice be followed by the peoples of the world!
Your heavenly will be done by all created beings!
Your commonwealth of peace and freedom sustain our hope and come on earth!

With the bread that we need for today, feed us.
In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In time of temptation and test, strengthen us.
From trials too great to endure, spare us.
From the grip of all that is evil, free us.
For you reign in the glory of the power that is love,
now and forever. Amen.

From the New Zealand/Maori Anglican Liturgy in Singing While it is Still Dark.


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We Sing: Praise the Source of Faith and Learning

  1. Praise the source of faith and learning
    that has sparked and stoked the mind
    with a passion for discerning
    how the world has been designed.
    Let the sense of wonder flowing
    from the wonders we survey
    keep our faith forever growing
    and renew our need to pray.

  2. God of wisdom we acknowledge
    that our science and our art
    and the breadth of human knowledge
    only partial truth impart.
    Far beyond our calculation
    lies a depth we cannot sound
    where your purpose for creation
    and the pulse of life are found.

  3. May our faith redeem the blunder
    of believing that our thought
    has displaced the grounds for wonder
    which the ancient prophets taught.
    May our learning curb the error
    which unthinking faith can breed
    lest we justify some terror
    with an antiquated creed.

  4. As two currents in a river
    fight each other’s undertow,
    till converging they deliver
    one coherent steady flow,
    blend, O God, our faith and learning
    till they carve a single course,
    till they join as one, returning
    praise and thanks to you, the Source.

The Faith We Sing #2004. Words by Thomas H. Troeger. Music by Rowland H. Prichard. Words © Oxford University Press, Inc. Words used with permission under copyright CCLI Licence No 137219 Copyright cleared music for churches.


Poem: Lost – by David Wagoner


The Peace of the Earth -John Bell


Please come and share morning tea in the basement. There are stairs behind the organ and a ramp between the church and the car park leading to the basement.