Photo: Well of Eternal Youth on Dun I © Mark Scholefield
The Soft Petals of Grace
Communion liturgies and other resources
Thom M Shuman
A collection of communion liturgies and other resources covering Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Holy Week, Easter, Ascension, Pentecost, Trinity and Transfiguration.
The ancient words of scripture become true and alive in us when we realise that the old couple called to new ministry are sitting on the bus next to us, that the children Jesus wants to bless are those on the news, fleeing their war-torn country, that the folk hungry for healing and hope are our next-door neighbours. The stories and people in the Bible speak to us today – if we listen with our hearts and souls.
100 contemporary texts to common tunes
John L Bell / Graham Maule
Singing a new song is not an optional extra, but a faithful response to a divine command. However, on earth, things are not so easy. Sometimes it’s because the latest new song in the hymnbook is two centuries old. Or the congregation has been told by some sadist that it ‘doesn’t sing well’. Or the organist can only play what s/he hears on the radio.
So what if we kept familiar hymn tunes or folk tunes and set words to them in 21st-century idioms? What if we gave some ancient psalms a makeover, replaced threadbare wedding and funeral songs or dealt with the things that people actually talk about when they’re not in church? And what if most of the suggested tunes were so well known that people could sing them unaccompanied if necessary?
With a hundred new songs (words only), this book amounts to a modest proposal from the Wild Goose Resource Group on how to make the most of minimal congregational song resources in an accessible and resilient way.
Like Leaves to the Sun
Prayers from the Iona Community
For many people prayer is difficult. This collection helps us to be less bothered with our uncertainties about what we should be saying when we pray. We can read a prayer and then sit quietly for a few minutes, allowing the particular words and thoughts to meet with our inner self, with our soul, which is linked to the energies and wisdom of the Creator of all things.
The prayers here are not to be read in a rush. They are not about a small God, but about One who at every moment is at the very heart of both our personal lives and the life of the world. A God whose goodness, healing and tender grace are at the core of humanity. In the reading of them may our hearts become more loving and aware, for each prayer invites us into a reality much wider than ourselves – the whole world in its contradiction and promise – and brings us close to our sisters and brothers who, like us, are on a journey in which both light and shadow, sadness and joy are regular companions.
like leaves that turn to the sun
so we turn to you,
the source of all life,
for your love to sustain us,
your will to strengthen us
and your wisdom to guide us.
– Chris Polhill
Affirmation of Faith (PDF download)
Set to music for congregation and choir with optional organ accompaniment
Sheet music download: An affirmation of faith from the Iona Abbey Worship Book set to music for congregation and choir with optional organ accompaniment. The congregation sings its own part in unison (included on a separate page) while the choir sings supportive harmony around the congregational part. It is intended to be sung without accompaniment, but an optional supportive organ or keyboard part is also provided. 8 pages.
My Gran’s Porch (PDF download)
Prayers by and for kids
Ruth Burgess & Thom M Shuman
Digital download: Prayers and poems by and for children. Whether you’re a kid or a kid at heart, we hope you’ll find them helpful, comforting, moving, entertaining, fun. 38 pages.
It was on
my gran’s porch
that I first learned
that you loved me.
It was in a bus
on the way to school
each day, when I discovered
what acceptance meant.
It was on the pitch
on all those rainy days
where I learned
what trust others means.
I’ve found a lot
of holy ground, God,
and not always where
I thought I might.
– Thom M Shuman
Journeys in Community
Father-daughter conversations about faith, love, doubt and hope
John Harvey & Ruth Harvey
A book of reflections, meditations and prayers for Advent and Christmas, Lent, Holy Week and Easter, Ascension and Pentecost arising out of conversations about faith, love, doubt and hope.
This book began as a birthday gift. For her 50th birthday Ruth asked her family not for material presents, but for gifts of time and experiences. What followed included long talks with her father about the deep stories of their shared spiritual journey.
John and Ruth write: ‘It has been a privilege to spend time in each other’s company around the kitchen table and in a chilly Glasgow study. For us it has been a profound experience. We hope that in sharing a part of this story, it may encourage others on a similar journey of shared gifts and faith.’
John Harvey is a retired minister of the Church of Scotland who was part of the experimental Gorbals Group Ministry. He has been a member of the Iona Community since 1964, and has served as Warden of Iona Abbey and as Leader of the Community.
Ruth Harvey is the Leader of the Iona Community. Previously she was Director of Place for Hope, a Scottish charity accompanying churches and faith communities through times of challenge, change and conflict. She is a minister in the Church of Scotland and a Quaker.
‘This book will welcome you home,
with justice, courage, humour and delight.’
Pádraig Ó Tuama, former Leader of the Corrymeela Community
Voices Out of Lockdown
Jan Sutch Pickard (ed)
During the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown in spring 2020, many people turned to writing: diaries, letters, cards, poems. Human words, sent out across the void of our isolation, shouted into the storm over which we had no control. What we could do was communicate with each other, raise our voices against the silence of separation, argue with our own doubts, call out to God, express our fragile hope.
Here are the voices of just a few – members and associates of the Iona Community – with poems, psalms, songs, affirmations of faith and prayers written during a full and fraught ten weeks.
We offer these human words believing that when the darkness seems overwhelming, light dawns; that into the silence of our worst fears God speaks a living Word.
Jan Sutch Pickard is a member of the Iona Community, a former Warden of Iona Abbey, a storyteller, liturgist and Methodist lay preacher. She has twice served as a peace monitor with the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel. Her other books include Out of Iona, A Pocket Full of Crumbs, Walking Through Advent and Sing But Keep On Walking.
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