We welcome visitors to our services at Yetholm (10am) and Morebattle (11.15am) this Advent Sunday. Please take time to sign the visitors’ book.
Lighting of Advent Crown – Hymn 284 (v1)
A candle burns, the sign of our hope. In the darkness of our world we dare to hope. God of hope, come to us again this Advent. May your hope live within us, burning as a light in our lives.
Call to Worship
The light shines in the darkness,
We come to worship, seeking the light of Christ
Shine into our lives and into your world this Advent.
Renew us with fresh hope.
Hymn 273 – O come, O come Emmanuel
Prayers of adoration and confession
Almighty and everlasting God,
You hold all our days in your hands,
and embrace us in your everlasting arms.
In a tired and violent world, you are hope.
In a hectic and busy world, you are peace.
In a cold world, you are comfort.
In Jesus Christ, you bring love into this world,
and call us to embody his love in all we do and say.
In our worship this day, we offer you our love and loyalty. Make us one in worship and service,
so that the world will see your hope at work in us and through us, making all things new. Amen
Forgive our sleepiness in the presence of your splendour. Forgive us for abandoning hope so quickly,
and expecting the same old thing in the same old way.
Forgive us for underestimating your power to do a new thing. Awaken us to your holy, hopeful presence.
Awaken us so we may watch and wait for you.
Come, Lord Jesus, come.
The One who comes with justice also comes with mercy. The God of Judgment is the Christ of compassion. Do not be afraid but rejoice in the God who comes to us.
Readings - Isaiah 2:1-5 (Pg 686)
Matthew 24:36-44 (Pg 994)
Hymn 543 – Longing for light
Holy God during this season of Advent, as we move towards the festivities of Christmas, we pray that peace will flow from all of our actions and interactions this week. Teach us all your ways, so that we also may be ready to walk in your paths of peace. Amen
Have you noticed any Christmas decorations up yet? I visited my Syrian friends in Galashiels and I was amazed to see some of the houses decorated for Christmas already. Plastic lighted deer in gardens and so on. But then that particular housing estate seems to have a lot of children. But on coming back home, I drove through Eckford and noticed a house festooned in fairy lights, actually quite tastefully done, but Christmas seems to get earlier every year.
Today is the first Sunday of Advent. We don’t have our Christmas trees up yet, but we do have our Advent crown, and we have lit our first candle, a symbol of light shining in the darkness. The world is dark just now with the war in Ukraine still in the forefront of our minds with other conflicts in Ethiopia as bad but not making the headlines; with energy bills soaring and inflation rampant; with floods and earthquakes and lack of human rights. We need hope. We need a candle shining to break the darkness; we need the coming of Jesus.
Advent is a special time of watching and waiting and anticipating, and Advent means ‘coming’ or ‘arrival’, and we anticipate the arrival of Jesus. We are asked to stop rushing around with lists of 101 things to do, but rather ponder the wonder of God coming to earth as a human child, born in the manger, the longed-for Messiah, but also we are asked to be ready to prepare ourselves for His coming again, for he will turn the world upside down.
Many of the prophets looked for the Messiah to come to right wrongs, to establish a kingdom of justice and peace, and we will be reading some of these prophecies during Advent, but today we read the familiar words from Isaiah of a kingdom, where weapons of war would be turned into tools for tending creation and where the lion would lie down with the lamb – and where people would study war no more. It is an ideal world, a return to Eden. But there is more, for the nations of the world would come together and seek a unified purpose, namely to walk in the ways of God. If only the nations of the world would learn to cooperate. But the passage also gives a challenge to us – to live differently. For to walk in the light of the Lord means a different, transformative kind of living, where peace and justice will be our priorities.
The early Christians had to learn that too. They were waiting for Jesus to return. They thought it was imminent. He would come back and usher in his kingdom. But they waited and they waited… Some scholars think that the Gospels were written in part to encourage Christians who were confused and discouraged by Jesus’ delayed return. Matthew, like Mark and Luke, devotes a section of his gospel to exhorting his readers to stay awake, keep prepared and wait with anticipation for Jesus to return. Matthew would highlight Jesus’ parable of the virgins waiting for the bridegroom to encourage the Christians to be ever vigilant. But they were given the example of Noah in our passage today. There was a flood, and it was pretty much the end of the world for most people. They didn’t know it was coming and they perished. They weren’t ready. If a householder knows a thief is coming, then they will prepare themselves, but mostly the thief catches us unprepared. In Indonesia this week there was an earthquake. There wasn’t much anyone could have done. But it emphasises the fragility of life, and how all of a sudden everything is tuned on its head, and I am sure that all of us have been in situations where ill-health or family matters have been critical, and we realise what is important and what isn’t important I remember when I was in Israel, I had to travel between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, but President Obama was visiting Israel at the time and was making the same journey, and the motorway was closed. I duly got off the road and visited a church on the site of Emmaus (one of three places making that claim!). I visited the church until I heard the road was open again, so went back to my car, parked up a narrow road. I did a three point turn that turned into a 5 point turn, but whenever I went into reverse it seemed to jam. I pushed the accelerator down to the floor, but it refused to budge. I got out only to realise the back wheel was half over a 7 foot drop. There are reasons why it wouldn’t budge I am sure, but I still remain convinced that angels were pushing it back up. I did get turned around eventually, but it was quite sobering thinking what may have been. A time to reassess priorities and make sure we are ready to face our Lord.
At Advent we are encouraged to wait and watch, to be alert to what is happening in our world. We are challenged to live differently, by walking in the ways of the Lord. So that if Jesus were to return, we would not be afraid to meet him.
Hymn 339 – Sing of Andrew
Dedication The work of our churches continues to care and continues to walk alongside many in differing, challenging circumstances. Your giving enables this work reach those who need it most. Thank you, whether it be via direct debit or envelopes into the offertory plate, your contribution is so very valued and appreciated.
Bountiful God, we give thanks for all that we have been blessed with. Our skills and talents, our friendships, families, communities to name a few.
May these monetary gifts given in response go some way towards your work and presence being made known to others. Amen
Prayers of Intercession
Living God, on this first Sunday of Advent, we bring our longings to you. We are waiting. We are yearning. For we, and our world, are in need of healing. So we pray that you may suddenly return and never, never more thy temples leave. Pause
Prince of peace, we pray that swords will be beaten into ploughshares and spears into pruning hooks in Ukraine and in places of conflict around the world. We pray for all who are working for justice and reconciliation and all who are suffering as a result of war both directly and indirectly across our global village with pressures on food, fuel and places of safety. May our country be a place of safety and flourishing for those who come in need sanctuary.
Creator of this amazing world in which we live, we pray in the wake of COP27. We ask that all the commitments that have been made should be kept urgently. And that governments and peoples across the globe should continually see the need for more, and quicker, responses to global warming, until the tide of action flows around the world.
Righteous one, as the World Cup puts the spotlight on Qatar and Iran, we pray for the protection of migrant workers around the world and for the breaking down of barriers between people so that all may be valued for who they are, wherever they are, for we are each your child, made in your image.
Loving God, As the weather gets colder we pray for all for whom the cost of living is a crisis. We rejoice that during the pandemic everyone was offered a place to stay, but we are concerned that many do not now have adequate housing. We remember too all those who are sleeping on the streets or sofa surfing, unable to find good accommodation.
Jesus our healer, as we hear of the pressures on the NHS, we thank you for the staff who are doing an amazing job in difficult circumstances. As we pray for the health of our own health system, we are conscious of the many millions across the world without access to good health care and of the places where healthcare is only available to a fortunate few. We hold up to you now all those places and people and pray for a just and equal sharing of all the things that earth affords. To a life of love in action help us rise and pledge our word. pause We pause before you now in silence to hold up to you those who are particularly on our hearts today….
Hymn 477 – Lo he comes with clouds descending
Go in eager expectation, awaiting and watchful for the coming of Christ. May the blessing of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you and those whom you love and those whom we are called to love, this day and even forevermore. Amen
christ the King Sunday
We welcome all visitors to our services at Yetholm (10am) and Morebattle (11.15am) this Sunday. Please take time to sign the visitors’ book.
Call to Worship
From all eternity, Alpha and Omega
We come to worship God
Truth and vulnerability, majesty and mystery
We come to worship God
God is monarch of all creation
We come to worship God
Hymn 459 – Crown him with many crowns
Prayers of adoration and confession
God of majesty and mercy,
we give you thanks and praise for your commitment to your creation. In Christ, you have turned the world upside down, revealing your strength through weakness, and your power through compassion.
In the cross of Christ you taught us
that no hopeless situation or frightening possibility is beyond your reach.
We praise you for your love at work around us and within us, always able to do more than we can ask or even imagine. Receive our love and our loyalty this day, our Sovereign and our Saviour.
God of wisdom and warning,
we confess that we often prefer our own plans to your purposes. We shrink from acts of service that seem too demanding. Forgive us when our commitment wavers and we think someone else will take up the challenges we face.
Inspire us with the example of Jesus, and energize us with your Spirit to follow him as our Shepherd.
wherever he leads.
Christ embodied God’s love and mercy so powerfully that he offered forgiveness to his tormentors from the cross. In grace he reaches out to us, too. Receive his forgiveness this day, and offer it to others for his sake.
Readings – Jeremiah 23: 1-6 (Pg 782)
Luke 23: 33-43 (Pg 1060)
Hymn 550 – As a deer pants for the water
Almighty God, we acknowledge that your son Jesus is King of Kings, Lord of Lords and the Redeemer of the human race. Look down upon us, your earthly subjects, as we humbly worship before you. Forgive us for our failures to always recognise that you are indeed The Lord Our Righteousness and help us to serve you better in our Cheviot Churches community. Amen
After so many years of singing ‘God save the Queen’, we are now having to remember to sing ‘God save the King’. King Charles is now on the throne, and the transition seems to have gone well. He is obviously a very wealthy man, and the trappings of monarchy are all around, but as a constitutional monarch he engages with the people. He has influence, and therein lies his power.
When I mention kingship, what do you think of? I remember as children playing a game, when the aim was to become ‘King of the castle’, and if you were that, you would be No 1, you would be leader of the pack. You would dominate. The Kings – and the Queens – mentioned in the Bible were like that. They had absolute power. What they said had to be enacted, and woe betide you if you differed. The pharaohs of Egypt, the kings of Babylon and Assyria were the same. They embodied power and wealth. The concept we have of kingship is of power and wealth. And so, when we have ‘Christ the King Sunday’, we inevitably think of these things. However, our readings for today speak of something different.
Christ the King is actually the last Sunday of the liturgical year, and most of our Gospel readings for the last year have been from Luke. We have seen him heal people; we have heard his teachings. We have seen his way was to turn the world’s view on its head, and so it was with kingship. But then, in Israel’s history there had been voices that sought a different way of leadership. Jeremiah was one of them. Jeremiah was a thorn in the side of the king and those in power, but in Chapter 23 he gives his vision of kingship, where leaders do not seek to dominate, subduing people by force of arms or abusing their power. Rather they should seek to transform their kingdom by being a shepherd and caring for their people, seeking the best for them. It is a prophecy of a Messiah who would come and be a shepherd to the people. Of course, we think of Jesus, as the Good Shepherd who comes to transform our lives and our thinking.
We see it in the passage from Luke, a passage more associated with Good Friday rather than November. All the marks of royalty are there. The purple robe, but it is torn and the soldiers gamble over it. The crown – but it is made of thorns and worn with agony. The throne is the cross, and above Jesus as he hangs there is a sign, proclaiming him King of the Jews. During the year we have seen how Jesus embraced people with the love of God, affirmed them with god’s grace. but he had made powerful enemies. He had alienated the religious leaders and put himself on a collision course with the Romans. The result was the cross and facing the mockery of those around. The rulers sneered, ‘He saved others, let him save himself’. The soldiers jeered, ‘If you are King of the Jews, save yourself’. Even one of the criminals crucified beside him said, ‘If you are the Messiah, save yourself – and us’. I have no doubt that Jesus could well have saved himself, but that wasn’t his way. He was more concerned about saving others, than saving himself and so continued to hang on the cross. He showed a new kind of kingship, one of self-giving and self-sacrifice – and invites us to do the same. For we are invited to live in his upside-down world, where the first will be last and those who are trampled upon and rejected find themselves at the top table. So let us live out the transformative message of the Gospels and take the purple robe and wrap the poor in it; wear the crown of thorns and stand with the suffering; break the bread and feed the hungry of the world and hold the cross and know what must be given, for Christ would do the same. This is Christ’s reign and it will change the world.
Hymn 374 - The Servant King
Prayers of Dedication & Intercession
Merciful God, you envision a world where the hungry are fed and strangers are welcomed. We bring you our gifts to share in that vision. With your blessing, may our gifts bear fruit in Christ’s name, and offer his blessing to those we serve for his sake.
In peace we bring our prayers for a world at war. In the calm of this place we beg for the turmoil of our world to cease. Sitting in the sheep fold, we ask our Gentle Shepherd to lead and guide us. So let us pray. O Most High, scatter the bad shepherds of your people; those whose leadership brings harm, those whose policies lead to oppression and torture, and those whose ideologies cause poverty and division.
We pray for the people of Ukraine living with constant shelling, precarious energy, and the ever present threat of death and oppression. We pray for the people of Qatar and the women of Iran, living with politicians who cling greedily to power and prestige. Raise up, O Gentle Shepherd, leaders who will act as shepherds, rulers who will serve, and politicians who will seek the common good.
O Jesus, our crucified King, we remember before You all who are imprisoned and tortured for faith, love, ethnicity or politics. We pray for those struggling in our own nations, worried about making ends meet as inflation rises faster than wages, benefits and pensions. We pray for those who work hard yet feel no benefit, those who work to keep us safe and healthy but aren’t properly rewarded. Inspire your people, O Christ, to resist evil and find, in Your Cross, our redemption.
O Gracious Spirit, in You we take refuge, even though the earth shakes, even though we live in troubled times, and even though we live with fear and uncertainty. Help us to find space in our refuge for those who suffer: those who find life hard and confusing, those who are cold this winter, and those who are hungry. Give us hope, Holy Spirit, hope that evil and destruction do not have the last word, hope that pain and evil will be transformed through the Cross-Throne of Christ, and hope that you will never leave us.
We remember now, Eternal One, those we love and worry about (short pause) those who have died whom we have loved (short pause) those wondering about coming along to church – that we may welcome with love and faith (short pause) our own needs and dreams. (short pause) And so we join our prayers together in the name of the Gentle Shepherd, our Servant King. Amen
Hymn 470 – Jesus shall reign
Come to worship the Eternal One.
We come to worship God.
Come in peace to reconcile with enemies and pray for justice.
We come to worship God
Come & find life in its fullness, plenty & abundance in the Kingdom of God.
We come to worship God.
Hymn 715 – Behold the Mountain of the Lord
Prayers of adoration and confession
Eternal One we come to sing a new song before You; we tell of Your wonders which You have wrought amongst us. We seek, O Most Holy, to make a joyful noise in Your presence, and with the earth to sing to you, our Creator.
With the streams we clap our hands in praise,
with the hills we skip for joy before You. Our hearts rejoice as we bring You our praises, O God.
Yet in our praises we know that we’ve failed to live as You command. Yet in our joy we feel shame as we know we’ve chosen hate not love. Yet in our singing we know that our world chooses war not peace. We know that as we worship, You search our hearts, that as we pray You come to judge Your people, to chastise and redeem, forgive and reform.
So give us grace Eternal One to accept the forgiveness You offer. Give us time, God of grace, to change our ways. Give us hope, O Most High, that we can learn from Your judgements. Amen
Will the congregation please stand, if you are able
Let us remember the courage, devotion to duty and self-sacrifice of the men and women of the armed forces and the toil, endurance and suffering of those who were not in uniform.
Let us remember those who fell in battle, those buried at sea or in some corner of a foreign field; and especially those we have known and loved, whose place is forever in our hearts.
Let us remember those who were our enemies, whose homes and hearts are as bereft as ours.
Let us remember those who came back; those whose lives bear the scars of war; who have lost sight or limbs or reason; who have lost faith in God and hope for humanity.
Let us remember the continuing grace of God, whose love holds all souls in life, and to whom none is dead but all are alive for ever.
They shall grow not old
As we who are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them
Nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun
And in the morning
We shall remember them.
Readings –Micah 4: 1-8
Luke 1: 68-79
Hymn 161 – O God our help in ages past
Almighty God and heavenly Father, we pray that you will teach us your ways and guide our feet into the path of peace.
We remember those whom you have gathered
from the storm of war into the peace of your presence;
may that same peace calm our fears, bring justice to all peoples and establish harmony among the nations, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen
Prayers of Dedication & Intercession
Eternal One, long ago you called us to be heralds of your coming kingdom, to show by our lives and our loves, our talents and our treasure,
your values of love and justice, where all are valued, where none are deprived and where those who are first are made to wait.
Bless these gifts of money that we may use them wisely and widely, that your kingdom may come.
Let us pray for all who suffer as a result of conflict, and ask that God may give us peace:
for the service men and women who have died in the violence of war, each one remembered by and known to God; may God give peace.
for those who love them in death as in life, offering the distress of our grief and the sadness of our loss; may God give peace
for all members of the armed forces who are in danger this day, remembering family, friends and all who pray for their safe return; may God give peace.
for civilian women, children and men whose lives are disfigured by war or terror, calling to mind in penitence the anger and hatreds of humanity; may God give peace.
for peace-makers and peace-keepers, who seek to keep this world secure and free; may God give peace.
for all who bear the burden and privilege of leadership, political, military and religious; asking for gifts of wisdom and resolve in the search for reconciliation and peace. May God give peace
O God of truth and justice, we hold before you those whose memory we cherish, and those whose names we will never know.
Help us to lift our eyes above the torment of this broken world, and grant us the grace to pray for those who wish us harm.
As we honour the past, may we put our faith in your future; for you are the source of life and hope, now and for ever. Amen.
Hymn 710 – I have a dream, a man once said
Let us go from this place with minds that never forget, with hearts that grow in hope, with lives that shine Christ’s light and the blessing of God, Creator, Peacemaker and Peacebringer be with you, now and always. Amen.
We welcome all visitors to our services at Yetholm (10am) and Linton (11.15am) this Sunday. Please take time to sign the visitors’ book.
Summoned to holiness, roused to justice
We are called to live in love
Granted forgiveness, blessed with mercy
We are called to live in hope
Beckoned by saints, encouraged by angels
We are called to live in joy
Hymn 740 – For all the saints (1-4,7-8)
Prayers of adoration and confession
Light of love, shining like light from the sun,
Bringing all creation to life;
Light of the world, penetrating the darkness, showing the way for all who search;
Light of our hearts, shining within and between us, revealing our truest selves;
Fill us now with your light as we remember your saints and touch us through their transparent goodness and grace.
God of mercy,
We are sorry for times when anger or bitterness made us resentful. We are sorry that the desire to get even turns us from your mercy.
Forgive us, O God, and shine the light of Christ on us,
so that we can know his peace and his purposes for us.
As Cop 27 starts in Egypt, we confess that there are times when we forget the earth is yours, we treat it as our own to use and abuse it as we want. We confess our complicity in all that our common home has lost.
For species lost through disappearing habitats, for biodiversity lost through deforestation and agri-business, for precious resources lost through our single-use, throw away culture, for ozone lost through our continuing reliance on fossil fuels.
The prophet Micah reminds us that God requires of us three things: to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God.
To all who repent and seek reconciliation in kindness and humility, God offers forgiveness and peace.
Readings – Daniel 7: 1-3, 15-18 (Pg 892)
Luke 6: 20 -31 (Pg 1034)
Hymn 745 – How bright these glorious spirits shine
Prayer of Illumination
Faithful God, you have promised to be with us and long ago sent your Spirit to live amongst us to guide us to a future of goodness and hope. As we travel into the week ahead seeking your truth and justice, let us feel your presence as we try, with your help to "Do to others as we would have them do to us". Amen
Just before I studied for the ministry, I took a year out and worked as a volunteer for a year at the Church guesthouse in Tiberias in Israel. I was looking forward to it and thought how marvellous it would be to live in a Christian community, for there was a minister with his family, and the warden and assistant warden were both mission partners too. Then there were the other volunteers. It would be a time of spiritual growth in an atmosphere of Christian love and encouragement. So I thought. Only the minister was long haired and wore shorts and played the guitar, while the warden was as ex Police inspector from the Glasgow police and very straight. And the two did not get on at all well, though the assistant warden did her best to keep the peace. As volunteers we all had our foibles too. It was a time of spiritual growth, for I learned that as Christians we all have our failings.
It is like someone who went to a monastery and hoped to learn from the monks, for surely they were really holy people. But the first monk he approached and asked how to live a holy life said ‘we stumble and rise, we fall and get up’.
Tuesday was All Saints Day, and sometimes we put saints on a pedestal and think of them, men and women of such paralysing virtue that they never had a nasty thought or did an evil deed their whole life long, but the feet of the saints are as much of clay as anyone else’s. they stumble and rise, they fall and get up. It was Martin Luther who said that all Christians are simultaneously saint and sinner. We are sinners because of our rebellious nature, but saints because of our salvation through Christ. But to quote from Leonard Cohen, the Canadian song writer, ‘It is often the cracks that let the light in’. We fall and we get up.
We fall down for any number of reasons, but if Luke’s Gospel tells us anything, it is that living as a servant of God is demanding and none of us do it perfectly – loving our enemies, doing good to those who hate us, turning the other cheek, giving expecting nothing in return. That is difficult work on the best of days, and it seems to be getting harder and harder in this wild world.
In the Old Testament we read of Daniel’s disturbing visions. The style of writing was called apocalyptic and often dealt with the end times. Things were put in black and white terms, but there is the comforting image of the saints in the safety of heaven. But in Luke, we read what is called the Sermon on the Plain, and the people who gathered there were just ordinary people, bringing with them the cares of the day, their sorrows and struggles. Jesus comes to the level place to say something to people who felt that they were nothing and lift them up, encourage them, give them a standard to aim at. They weren’t perfect, but by seeking to follow Christ’s way of loving enemies, going the extra mile, turning the cheek, they could make a difference. As one writer said, ‘The difference between doing something and doing nothing is everything.’
That is why we need All Saints, so we can remember the saints of every generation, the Cuthberts and Aidans, the Desmond Tutus and Mother Theresas. People who weren’t perfect but were people who were willing to be used by God. People committed to getting up after they fell down, because they believed that God can use us to be transformative in our community and in our world. People who were invested in the Gospel of love for the long haul, who sought to love their enemies and turn the other cheek, who stumbled and rose, who fell and got up – again and again.
When Paul wrote to the churches, he addressed his letters to the saints, to ordinary people who often got things wrong, but tried to let the light shine through their cracks. That is good news. For we too are the saints living in this place. So let us be willing to be used by God to let the light shine in this place.
Hymn 530 – From the falter of breath
Prayers of Dedication & Intercession
Source of all life and love, with deep thanks we offer to you: our fumbled change, church envelopes, and direct debits;
our energy, talents, and time;
our prayers, our hopes, our lives.
Receive and grace these offerings, that they may be used to bless your church, your people, your creation.
In Jesus’ name. Amen.
We thank you for our world, its beauty and grandeur, the resources You provide for us, and the call You give us to live in harmony with the earth, our fragile home. We pray for those meeting at the Cop 27 meeting in Egypt that decisions will be taken and commitments made to save our planet. God, in your mercy….hear our prayer.
Lord Jesus, You came amongst us as a refugee; Your first months and years were spent as an exile. Bless all those staying at the asylum camp at Manston in Kent and other such camps. Give them hope, Lord Jesus, hope that justice and law will prevail. Show us, Lord Jesus, how to welcome the refugee, and remind us again and again, that in being born as one of us, you also sought asylum. (pause) Lord, in your mercy….hear our prayer.
Give grace to Charles our King as he navigates his new role. Give wisdom to Rishi our prime minister and those who govern with him, Nicola and Mark, First Ministers in devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales; leaders of parties in the North of Ireland as they deal with political impasse, and to all who serve us in elected office that careful discernment and a concern for the poor will guide debates and decisions in the coming months. Inspire our leaders as they decide how to deal with the cost of living crisis and our economic problems. God, in your mercy…hear our prayer.
In a moment’s silence we bring to God our needs and prayers for those we love and worry about. God, in your mercy…hear our prayer
God of glory, we remember all who have gone before us with gratitude. May their example inspire us.
May we grow more transparent in our living. Make us windows of your presence, open to seeing you in every face, as we walk in the ways of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen
Hymn 738 – Glorious things
Alpha and Omega, beginning and end, hold us in your love and open our eyes to the great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, and the blessing of Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you, now and always. Amen.