Friends of God
Service Prayers for the Sixth Sunday of Easter
Call to Worship
The Spirit is coming to bless us all with a new song:
Let our joy be complete!
Gifts for the good of all, poured out on all to teach us a new song:
Love one another!
Strangers and neighbors, foreigners and family will join in the new song:
No longer servants but friends!
Come, let our worship make a joyful noise,
Rejoicing in the friendship of God.
O Beloved One,
All the ends of the earth marvel
at your deeds of power; we feel your presence
as growth returning to the countryside;
we rejoice as we remember your faithfulness and steadfast love
revealed in the risen Christ.
Surround us with that faithfulness and steadfast love
Fill us with generosity and courage
so that we may be called your friends
and go forth to befriend your world. In Jesus’ name.
Invitation to Offering
“By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey [God’s] commandments.” (1John 5: 2) Perhaps the most joyful and challenging of all the commandments is to generosity and mutual care: to love one another as God loves us. Let us gather our gifts together and offer them to God in gratitude, heartfelt commitment, and praise.
Blessing Over the Gifts
Beloved Jesus, you surprise us by naming us your friends. You open a way of unexpected justice, mutuality and joy among us. Take these gifts and bless them and let them serve your people at home and throughout the world, all of us, your cherished friends.
Christ sends us forth: Keep my commandments, abide in my love:
We will go forth in peace and justice!
Love one another, go forth to serve:
We will go forth in love!
Share in my mission, bear fruit that will last:
We will go forth as your friends, rejoicing!
Let us go forth in peace to witness to our community and world, that
Christ is alive!
Friends of God: Service Prayers for the Sixth Sunday of Easter was written by the Rev. Susan A. Blain, Minister for Worship, Liturgy and Spiritual Formation, Local Church Ministries.
Copyright 2009 Local Church Ministries, Congregational Vitality and Discipleship Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100. Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education. All publishing rights reserved.
Rev. Susan A. Blain
Minister for Worship, Liturgy and Spiritual Formation
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland, Ohio 44115