Its Complicated: a holiday prayer

God, I’m sitting with the fact that all holidays are complicated. Thanksgiving is the worst–because let’s be honest, the next one is always the worst one.

We try to remember to give thanks in a country where taking, enslaving and abusing people, land and…well everything is a part of our DNA.

And then there are the complications of not seeing family this year. And perhaps for some people, it’s emotionally safer to not see their family. Queer people who are rejected, disabled people who are forced to pass, victims of abuse or neglect trying to build bridges in a broken system.

So I’m praying for this complicated holiday, where everyone gets to feel especially lonely this year.

Teach us thanksgiving,

The Thanks part, and the giving part too.

Help us to find ways to safely connect and support one another. Help us to find the moments of security in this turbulent times.

But also, let us give ourselves permission for these holidays to be complicated.

Let us take them as they are, and struggle to acknowledge who and where we are this year.

This I pray in the name of the Holy Comforter, the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

Feel free to use/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Read about my journey towards a doctorate in ministry in creative writing and give a small donation towards my tuition! About Me: My Story & My Writing

More Pandemic Prayers and Mundane Prayer to Survive the Day to Day

Pieces of Joy & Thanksgiving

God, I’m a the point in the chaos where I am wondering if I am allowed to be happy

Because the world is shitty right now. People are sick and dying. Politicians and governments do nothing and there is real suffering in the world.

And God knows the last recession, we were living on the edge, skirting bankruptcy, playing Russian Roulette with the bills, the credit cards, the job searches

I remember counting property after property for sale in 2010

This time the hurt is less visible. Those who are sick are quarantined, the hospitals are off limits, and poverty is hidden again and again (like we did) because it is a sign of shame.

I am all to aware the the suffering I know is but a microcosm of what is really going on.

So when things go right, when I realize we have enough room to live in, or we enjoy celebrating the youngest turning 9, or I get in to the program I applied for. I wonder is it ok to be happy?

Lord, I thank God for things like the Nap Ministry and Queer Theology and Black Girl Magic which remind us of the value of rest and joy, and that these things must be practiced especially in the midst of chaos.

Lord I give thanks for a moment to soak in the sun, the opportunity to zoom and pray for one another, and the early Christmas tree lights and carols that are seeping into consciousness.

Lord God I thank you for the beauty of snowflakes, the reminder that safe at home can mean cozy at home and the gifts of pets, hot chocolate, and my favorite music.

Help me to celebrate the little things, God. Help me not to forgo joy, but instead to embrace it, and let these moments strengthen me so that I am more able to go on.

Remind me that you give joy to everyone, even those who suffer, and that denial of joy is not helping anyone, I pray.

This Thanksgiving, please give me, and help me to celebrate whatever pieces of joy might happen. Especially give me the spirit and strength to recognize when these pieces of joy sneak up and surprise me.

Help me to enjoy them.

And appreciate them.

And give thanks for them, I pray.

Amen.

Feel free to use/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Read about my journey towards a doctorate in ministry in creative writing and give a small donation towards my tuition! About Me: My Story & My Writing

More Pandemic Prayers and Mundane Prayer to Survive the Day to Day

I GOT IN!!

I GOT IN to Pittsburgh Seminary’s Doctorate in Ministry in Creative Writing!

I’m so grateful for every single person who has read my writing, and prayed with me or shared my resources!

I am now officially working to gather enough resources for tuition.

I apprecaite any and all help including using and sharing my writing, praying with me, and supporting my tuition costs through my go fund me.

Thank you so much!

Exponential Growth Selah!

God, I’ve heard on the radio that it’s hard for us to grasp exponential growth.

That the concept that a 2×2 foot closet can become the size of a country a week is hard for our meager human brains to grasp.

And here we are, face to face with a disease that has exponential Growth. And God as the numbers stare us in the face.

Remind us that our actions are exponential. Please God, help our, you know we are only human, brains to process.

Selah!

For we know we cannot take in the magnitude of the grains of sand in the world, of the variety of species and genders and loves and in the mulitude of stars and planets in the universe.

This is why it is so hard to understand your exponential grace God, for it is beyond counting!

God I admit, I have trouble even grasping what a million of something means.

Help us process the growth of this illness, help us to have eyes to see and ears to hear, and bolster our hearts for we are Covid-weary and slipping into habits that are not safe.

Remind us that just as COVID19 multiplies, every single act we take for safety also is multiplied. That when we was our hands, or wear a mask or decline an invite or meet outside we are protecting millions of people.

Multiply our intentions to care for one another we pray. Make them twofold, fourfold, twelvefold, a hundredfold, for you know we need the support!

Increase our fortitude so that it burns on even when we feel like we are completely out of oil.

Bolster our socialization, so that a little bit on zoom or through car windows or across a field, might be nourishing enough for us to make it through winter.

Increase all of the good in the world God, so that the evil that is this virus can be defeated, I pray, and as I pray increase my prayer so it is your prayer, and your neighbor’s prayers, and let it become the prayer of the world. Extend this prayer, so that as we see Coronavirus surge, our mutual uplifting will flood as well.

Remind us that many waters of Covid19 cannot quench our love, neither can coronavirus flooding the very hospitals that heal us, even then Love cannot be drowned out.

Intensify our love for one another, especially in the midst of this crises we pray to you Oh God.

We pray all of this in Christ’s name, and in the abundance of the Holy Spirit, Lord hear our prayer. Amen.

Permission to Use/Adapt with Credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Read about my journey towards a doctorate in ministry in creative writing and give a small donation towards my tuition! About Me: My Story & My Writing

More Pandemic Prayers and Mundane Prayer to Survive the Day to Day

#Advent Hymn tune of #SilentNight “#God of #Peace”

Silent Night Tune for an Advent Hymn

katyandtheword

via #Advent Hymn tune of #SilentNight “#God of #Peace”‘

*Hymn “God of Peace” to tune of Silent Night

words by Pastor Katy Stenta                           

God of peace, God of life

Prophesy, Give your breath

Teach us how to make dry bones dance

Reveal to us your abundance 

Be our God, evermore, Be, Our God evermore

God of peace, God of life

Dwell with us, in our breath

Make us prophets and dreamers all

Come to us, Emmanual

Come be with us Lord, Come be with us Lord

God of peace, God of life

King of Peace, Light of Light

Send to us your only son

Redeem us all, with the promised one

Jesus our savior, Jesus our Savior

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Ducks & Wild Geese

Lord God, I know that my ducks aren’t in a row,

because I don’t even know what my ducks are anymore.

How do I prioritize when everything is important? How do I do self care when my hours are chunked in weird ways and the schedule remains nebulous and to the wind.

Even when I breathe sighs of relief, or take moments of joy…I know that the ducks are waiting.

Sometimes they quack at me in the middle of the night, awakening me with all the things I’ve forgotten, or all the problems I’m not sure how to solve.

Lord knows, (that’s you God) that I don’t have my ducks in a row.

My work is never perfect no matter how much I try, my kids need more attention than ever (not to mention socialization) and I can’t seem to find a minute for myself.

Plus everything is different, still! Again! Always!

And ignoring the fact we can’t keep the house clean anymore isn’t really working either.

Are these even the duckies I should be worried about? What ducks am I missing? I’m sure I’m missing some, somewhere.

And I wonder if this is how Jesus felt, as he was chasing down that Wild Goose of the Holy Spirit.

Did he look around at the ducks and said, one of these is the goose, but I just can’t find the one I’m supposed to chase down and catch first.

But maybe, hopefully, the chase is enough. Hopefully between the chasing and the quacking, I have a moment to reflect on what I have completed, or what has gone right.

Or perhaps I will give myself one of those adulting prizes: for sleeping or eating or drinking water or moving around or taking medication. Those all count as important things done.

God, maybe my ducks have never been in a row–after all they are all your ducks and geese anyway. But help me to organize myself in such a way that I can let go of the ducks I can let go of and chase the right things to pursue the Holy Spirit of inspiration, comfort, energy and hope.

Maybe it isn’t about ducks at all, maybe it’s really about the Wild Goose of the Holy Spirit. Remind me to chase down the Wild Goose, and that this Wild Goose Chase is surely worth it.

God will help us to flourish, even at such a time that we don’t know where our ducks are.

Remind us of this we pray. Amen.

Feel free to use/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy

Read about my journey towards a doctorate in ministry in creative writing and give a small donation towards my tuition! About Me: My Story & My Writing

More Pandemic Prayers and Mundane Prayer to Survive the Day to Day

Isaiah Bulletin by Rev. Dr. Barb Hedges-Goettl

All Original Prayers by Rev. Dr. Barb Hedges-Goettl, permission to use with credit

Prelude Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence                 Fernando Ortega

Opening Prayer (1)

O Holy God, 

like Isaiah the prophet, we stand in awe of Your glory,

feeling tremendously small and polluted by our sin, 

and the sin of our society.

Even so, You touch us with Your burning presence,

and we are made clean and whole.

O God, our Creator, 

continue to build this household of faith into what You want us to be.

O Christ, our Savior, 

lead us to do as You will.

O Spirit, our Power,

strengthen us for the work of the Kingdom.

Amen.

Call to Worship (Response is Isaiah 6:3) (2)

Glory in God’s holy name. Let the heart of them rejoice that seek the Lord.

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;

the whole earth is full of his glory.”

99:9Exalt the Lord our God. Worship at his holy hill, 

for the Lord our God is holy.

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;

the whole earth is full of his glory.”

145:17The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works.

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;

the whole earth is full of his glory.”

145:21My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord.

Let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever.

Call to Confession   

John Calvin, whose work and theology are the basis for the Reformed tradition, including our Presbyterian faith, notes that when we compare ourselves to others, we may think highly of ourselves. But when we compare ourselves to God’s absolute holiness and goodness, we see how far we fall short of who God created us to be. Let us be reminded of God’s holiness and our need for forgiveness.

Prayer of Confession (from Isaiah 6:1-7)

O Holy Lord,                                                                                                       when we see that just the hem of your robe fills the whole temple,                                  we know we are a people of unclean lips.

When the six-winged seraphim attend you,                                                   we know we are a people of unclean lips.

As the angels proclaim that the whole earth is full of your glory,                          we know we are a people of unclean lips.

When the thresholds shake and the place is filled with smoke,                                        we know we are a people of unclean lips.

Woe to us! When we see you, O King and Lord of hosts,                                                we know we are lost because                                                                                    we know we are a people of unclean lips.     

(Silent confession)

Assurance of Pardon 

God touches us with burning coal, 

and our guilt departs, our sin is blotted out. 

Thanks be to God for the Good News: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Gloria Patri: (Blue #579) Glory Be to the Father 

Prayers of the People/Lord’s Prayer (traditional)

Celebration of Birthdays and Anniversaries

Hymn of Dedication  Just As I Am, Without One Plea

Just as I am, without one plea But that Thy blood was shed for me
And that Thou bid’st me come to Thee O Lamb of God, I come! I come

Just as I am, and waiting not to rid my soul of one dark blot
to thee whose blood can cleanse each spot O Lamb of God, I come, I come

Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind Sight, riches, healing of the mind
Yea, all I need, in Thee to find O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, Thou wilt receive Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve
Because Thy promise I believe O Lamb of God, I come, I come

Doxology (Blue, #592)   Praise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow

(1) From prayer based on Isaiah 6 from My Redeemer Lives website. 

http://www.myredeemerlives.com/prayers.html

(2) 1 Chronicles 16:10; Psalm 99:9; Psalm 145:17, 21. King James Version.

 Prayer of Dedication            Blessed are you, God of all creation; 

through your goodness we have these gifts to share. 

Accept and use all that we give and all that we are 

for your glory and for the service of your kingdom. Amen.

Prayer for Illumination  Take Thou Our Minds, Dear Lord

Take thou our minds, dear Lord, we humbly pray;
give us the mind of Christ each passing day;
teach us to know the truth that sets us free;
grant us in all our thoughts to honor thee.

Old Testament Reading  (NRSV)                     Isaiah 6:1-8

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne,                  high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings: with two they covered their faces, and with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew.     3 And one called to another and said:

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory.”

The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called,            and the house filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! I am lost,                  for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”

Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding a live coal that had been taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. The seraph touched my mouth with it and said: “Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out.” Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I; send me!”

What comes before “Here I Am”? Rev. Barb Hedges-Goettl

Affirmation of Faithfrom the Westminster Confession of Faith

God alone is the Holy One.

There is but one only living and true God, who is infinite in being and perfection.

God alone is the Holy One.

God is a most pure spirit, invisible, without body, parts, or passions, immutable, immense, eternal, and incomprehensible.

God alone is the Holy One.

God is almighty; most wise, most holy, most free, and most absolute,

God alone is the Holy One.

God works all things according to the counsel of his own immutable 

and most righteous will for his own glory,

God alone is the Holy One.

God is most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness 

and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin.

God alone is the Holy One.

God is the alone fountain of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom, 

are all things.

God alone is the Holy One.

God is most holy in all his counsels, in all his works, and in all his commands.

God alone is the Holy One.

To him is due from angels and from human beings, and every other creature, worship, service, and obedience for

God alone is the Holy One.

Closing Hymn  Here I Am, Lord  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcxOkht8w7c

[Verse 1] I, the Lord of sea and sky; I have heard my people cry
All who dwell in dark and sin. My hand will save

[Chorus] Here I am, Lord. Is it I, Lord?  

I have heard you calling in the night.

I will go, Lord, if you lead me. I will hold your people in my heart.  [Chorus]      

[Verse 2] I, who made the stars of night
I will make their darkness bright

Who will bear my light to them? Whom shall I send? [Chorus]

[Verse 3]  I, the Lord of snow and rain
I have borne my people’s pain
I have wept for love of them They turn away [Chorus]

Charge and Benediction

Postlude Holy is the Lord Twila Paris 

God Calls Isaiah Prayers

Isaiah 6:1-8
Luke 5:8-10 Opt Psalm 138

Call to Worship (Psalm 138:1-3)

I give thanks to you O Lord 

with my whole heart, I praise you

I bow down towards your holy temple

Give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and faithfulness

On the day I called, you answered me, 

You have increased the strength of my soul; Come let us worship God

Call to Worship:

God only you are holy

When you instill our hearts with fear and wonder, you remind us of your power

Sweep our breaths away, as we worship you today.

Come let us worship God

Invitation to Confession: As you are called to confession, it is because the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. God’s mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning.

Prayer of Confession: Dear God, we confess that we often do not understand your call. Too often we obsess about holiness, and how to be holy with you instead of letting ourselves wonder. We confess that we forget that there is work be done, and have trouble hearing your Call. Forgive us, please, and teach us to be a resurrection people we pray. Amen. 

Prayer of Confession: Lord, we become so frustrated when humans don’t do what we want them to do. We think of Isaiah, who surely had a troubled heart when he went to bed. Yet he awoke to visions of holiness and glory. Help us to be able to see some of your

Assurance of Pardon: God is forever faithful, God who promises Emmanuel God with us, Jesus is coming! God will not turn away from us, but give us forgiveness. Know in your hearts the Good news: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of Dedication: Holy, Holy, Holy God, Let us go forth saying that All the Works shall praise thy name from earth and sky and sea! You are merciful and mighty! Let us go forth proclaiming the God of three persons, the blessed Trinity, we pray. Amen.

Hymns: Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty, Eagle’s Wings, Here I am Lord, Amazing Grace,

Jonah Bulletin by Rev. Dr. Barb Hedges-Goettl

More Narrative Lectionary Resources

Prelude  Lord, I Want to be a Christian           Joslin Grove Choral Society  

Opening Prayer (adapted from Jonah 2:7-9 NRSV)

O  Lord, we remember you.
Our prayers come to you, in your holy temple.
Those who worship vain idols forsake their true loyalty.
But we, with the voice of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you;
what we have vowed we will offer. Deliverance belongs to you, O Lord. Amen.

Call to Worship (adapted from Psalm 145) 

The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made.

The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger 

and abounding in steadfast love.

All God’s works shall give thanks to the Lord and all God’s faithful shall bless the Lord.

They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom, and tell of your power

The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger 

and abounding in steadfast love.
God’s works make known to all people God’s mighty deeds

 and the glorious splendor of God’skingdom.

The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger 

and abounding in steadfast love.
 God’s kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
    and God’s dominion endures throughout all generations.

The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger 

and abounding in steadfast love.

AND SO WE LOVE AND SERVE THE LORD.

Hymn Lord, I Want to Be a Christian https://youtu.be/iZvUDFKAsKI

Lord, I want to be a Christian in my heart, in my heart, 

Lord, I want to be a Christian in my heart. In my heart, in my heart, Lord, 

I want to be a Christian in my heart.

Lord, I want to be more loving….
Lord, I want to like Jesus…

Call to Confession   

God calls us to love those who are against us, and to pray for them.

God calls us not to rejoice in wrong, but to rejoice in the right.

This is a very tall order, and we often fall short.

Prayer of Confession

Lord, the hardest thing you asked was that we love our enemies.
We know how we’d like to love them:

We’d love our enemies to be far away.
We’d love them not to compromise our security.

Forgive us and change us, O God.
We’d love them not to scare us or change the way we live.
We’d love them to be lovable.

Forgive us and change us, O God.
You know, God, We’d love it to be popular to love enemies.
We’d love our neighbors to respect us for this good deed.
We’d love the people on the news to provide examples of how to love.

Forgive us and change us, O God.
If loving enemies were easy,
Jesus wouldn’t have told us about the tax collectors and gentiles,
Who love only their friends. (Matthew 5:46-47)

Forgive us and change us, O God.
If loving enemies were easy, we know
We wouldn’t need your strong arms to bear us up in difficult times.
We wouldn’t need the blood of your Son to save us from human sin.
We wouldn’t need your Spirit flowing among us, wiping our tears.
We wouldn’t need the Bible to tell us what the world does not.

Forgive us and change us, O God.
Give us the strength to stop hating

And halt the cycles of violence and revenge.
Teach us forgiveness,

which we know is suffering love through piercing tears.
Forgive us and change us, O God.
When our community looks at our congregation,
Hears our words and sees our deeds,
Help them to know that you, the God of love, live among us
And that they can come to us to learn about Christian love of enemies.

Forgive us and change us, O God.

(Silent confession)

Assurance of Pardon 

God loves us when we are yet God’s sinful enemies, 

God saves us through God’s immeasurable grace,
God gives us a gift we did not deserve,

Thanks be to God for the Good News: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Gloria Patri: (Blue #579) Glory Be to the Father 

Prayers of the People/Lord’s Prayer (traditional)

Hymn of Dedication  O Master, Let Me Walk with Thee (no intro) 

O Master, let me walk with Thee In lowly paths of service free

Tell me Thy secret; help me bear The strain of toil, the fret of care            

Help me the slow of heart to move By some clear, winning word of love;

Teach me the wayward feet to stay, And guide them in the homeward way.

Teach me Thy patience; still with Thee In closer, dearer company

In work that keeps faith sweet and strong, In trust that triumphs over wrong.

In hope that send a shining ray Far down the future’s broadening way;

In peace that only Thou canst give, With Thee, O Master, let me live.

Doxology (Blue, #592)   Praise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow

 Prayer of Dedication 

Blessed are you, God of all creation; 

through your goodness we have these gifts to share. 

Accept and use all that we give and all that we are 

for your glory and for the service of your kingdom. Amen.

Prayer for Illumination Jesus Calls Us https://youtu.be/vgP70vB3lJQ

Jesus calls us: by Thy mercies, Savior, may we hear Thy call.

Give our hearts to Thine obedience, Serve and love Thee best of all. 

Old Testament Reading  Jonah summary with selected verses (NRSV)

1:4 But the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and such a mighty storm came upon the sea that the ship threatened to break up.

 3:10 When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil ways, God changed his mind about the calamity that he had said he would bring upon them; and he did not do it. (NRSV 3:10) 

4:2-11 “O Lord! Is not this what I said while I was still in my own country? That is why I fled to Tarshish at the beginning; for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and ready to relent from punishing.” 

The Lord God appointed a bush, and made it come up over Jonah, to give shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort; so Jonah was very happy about the bush. But when dawn came up the next day, God appointed a worm that attacked the bush, so that it withered. 

When the sun rose, God prepared a sultry east wind, and the sun beat down on the head of Jonah so that he was faint and asked that he might die. He said, “It is better for me to die than to live.But God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry about the bush?” And he said, “Yes, angry enough to die.” 10 Then the Lord said, “You are concerned about the bush, for which you did not labor and which you did not grow; it came into being in a night and perished in a night. 11 And should I not be concerned about Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also many animals?”

Message Whaddyaknow? Rev. Barb Hedges-Goettl

Affirmation of Faithfrom the Confession of 1967

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. God’s redeeming work includes the social and       the cultural, the economic and the political, the scientific and the technological, the individual and the corporate. 

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. God’s redeeming work includes the natural environment as exploited and despoiled by sin. 

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. God’s redeeming work fulfills the divine purpose     for human life under the rule of Christ and all evil be banished from creation.

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. God’s redeeming work brings about the rule of Christ, the heavenly city, the household of God, a new heaven and earth,   a marriage feast, and an unending day culminate in the image of the kingdom. 

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. God’s redeeming work brings about God’s triumph over all that resists the divine will and disrupts God’s creation.

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life.  God’s redeeming work is already present as a ferment in the world, stirring hope in all people and preparing the world to receive its ultimate judgment and redemption 

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. God’s redeeming work provides an urgency to present tasks and our striving for a better world. It does not identify 

We believe that God’s redeeming work in Jesus Christ embraces the whole of human life. In steadfast hope, we look beyond all partial achievement to the final triumph of God. 

THANKS BE TO GOD!

Closing Hymn  Lord, Speak to Me, That I May Speak (with intro)https://youtu.be/CDUkQBN4i_c

Lord, speak to me, that I may speak In living echoes of thy tone

As Thou hast sought, so let me seek Thy erring children lost and lone

O lead me, Lord, that I may lead The wandering and the wavering feet

O feed me, Lord, that I may feed Thy hungering ones with manna sweet

O fill me with Thy Fulness, Lord, Until my very heart o’erflow

In kindling thought and glowing word Thy love to tell, Thy praise to show

Charge and Benediction

Postlude Called as Partners in Christ’s Service

Called as partners in Christ’s service Called to ministries of grace
We respond with deep commitment Fresh new lines of faith to trace
May we learn the art of sharing Side by side and friend with friend
Equal partners in our caring To fulfil God’s chosen end

Christ’s example Christ’s inspiring Christ’s clear call to work and worth
Let us follow never faltering Reconciling folk on earth
Men and women richer poorer All God’s people young and old
Blending human skills together Gracious gifts from God unfold

Thus new patterns for Christ’s mission In a small or global sense
Help us bear each other’s burdens Breaking down each wall or fence
Words of comfort words of vision Words of challenge said with care
Bring new power and strength for action Make us colleagues free and fair

So God grant us for tomorrow Ways to order human life
That surround each person’s sorrow With a calm that conquers strife
Make us partners in our living Our compassion to increase
Messengers of faith thus giving Hope and confidence and peace

More Narrative Lectionary Resources