This blog is a record of the call to worship, Scripture readings, and prayers from our Sunday liturgies. If you are interested in writing something for the liturgy, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email email@example.com.
Mother's Day Intro
The following is a reading with which we began our liturgy. The majority of this reading is an adaptation of a text written by Amy Young. You can find her original post here.
As you likely know, today is Mother’s Day.
We acknowledge Mother’s Day in our liturgy because motherhood is a metaphor that can tell us something about who God is—namely, the One who has birthed us and who comes alongside us as we grow, nurturing us, guiding us toward maturity, and sustaining us along the way.
It is no secret that Mother’s Day can be a day of complex emotions, both
joyous and sorrowful, and so:
To those who gave birth this year to your first child—we celebrate with you.
To those who lost a child this year – we mourn with you.
To those who are in the trenches with little ones every day and wear the
badge of food stains – we appreciate you.
To those who step-parent - we walk with you on these complex paths
To those who are single mothers -- we have deep respect and
admiration for you.
To those who have lived through driving tests, medical tests, and the overall testing of motherhood – we are better for having you in our midst.
To those who experienced loss through miscarriage, failed adoptions,
running away, or any othercircumstance—we mourn with you.
To those who walk the hard path of infertility, fraught with pokes, prods, tears, and disappointment – we walk with you. Forgive us when we say foolish things. We don’t mean to make this harder than it is.
To those who are mentor moms, and spiritual moms – we need you.
To those who are foster moms -- we appreciate you, and we thank you.
To those who will have emptier nests in the upcoming year – we grieve
and rejoice with you
To those who have warm and close relationships with your children – we
celebrate with you.
To those who have disappointment, heart ache, and distance with your
children – we sit with you.
To those who lost their mothers this year – we grieve with you.
To those who experienced abuse at the hands of your own mother – we
acknowledge you and we will walk with you.
To those who are single and long to be married and mothering your own
children - we mourn that life has not turned out the way you longed for it to be.
To those who placed children up for adoption – we join you in holding that child in your heart.
And to those who are pregnant with new life, both expected and
surprising – we anticipate with you.
This Mother’s Day, we walk with you. Mothering is not for the faint of heart and we have real warriors in our midst. We remember you.
Call to Worship
we have gathered to worship the Creator
the One Who gave birth
to all of creation, and has numbered
every hair on our heads
to be formed by the Wisdom of God,
the One Who gathers the vulnerable
like a hen gathers her children
under her wings
through the power of the Spirit,
the One Who greets
every newborn creature
with the kiss of life
and is raising the world
from death to glory
Happy are those
who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread,
or sit in the seat of scoffers;
but their delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on the Lord’s law they meditate day and night.
They are like trees
planted by streams of water,
which yield their fruit in its season,
and their leaves do not wither.
In all that they do, they prosper.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
for the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
You have entrusted Me with these men who have come out of this corrupt world order. I have told them about Your nature and declared Your name to them, and they have held on to Your words and understood that these words, like everything else You have given Me, come from You.
It is true that these men You gave Me have received the words that come from You and not only understood them but also believed that You sent Me. I am now making an appeal to You on their behalf.
This request is not for the entire world; it is for those whom You have given to Me because they are Yours. Yours and Mine, Mine and Yours, for all that are Mine are Yours. Through them I have been glorified.
I will no longer be physically present in this world, but they will remain in this world. As I return to be with You, holy Father, remain with them through Your name, the name You have given Me. May they be one even as We are one.
While I was physically present with them, I protected them through Your name. I watched over them closely; and only one was lost, the one the Scriptures said was the son of destruction. Now I am returning to You. I am speaking this prayer here in the created cosmos alongside friends and foes so that in hearing it they might be consumed with joy.
I have given them Your word; and the world has despised them because they are not products of the world, in the same way that I am not a product of the corrupt world order. Do not take them out of this world; protect them from the evil one.
Like Me, they are not products of the corrupt world order. Immerse them in the truth, the truth Your voice speaks. In the same way You sent Me into this world, I am sending them. It is entirely for their benefit that I have set Myself apart so that they may be set apart by truth.
God, who is both Father and Mother to us all, we thank you for the gift of another day of life, and for the ability to share this gift in community.
We thank you for every good gift that you’ve given us, and today we are thankful for the gift of every kind of mother in our midst, and every kind of mother that you have given us in our own lives.
We ask that every joy we associate with our experiences with motherhood would teach us about the way you love us.
And we ask that every pain we associate with our experiences with motherhood would not overwhelm us, but that we might bear it together, and You with us.