Pentecost -- Ordinary Time

A New Reformation of the Church [PDF]

Centering Meditation

Like Luther, I present 95 theses or in my case, 95 faith observations drawn from
my 64 years of living and practicing religion and spirituality. I trust I am not alone
in recognizing these truths. For me they represent a return to our origins, a return
to the spirit and the teaching of Jesus and his prophetic ancestors, and of the           
Christ which was a spirit that Jesus’ presence and teaching unleashed.

Matthew Fox
Theses or Articles of Faith for a Christianity for the Third Millennium Posted on YES!
November 7, 2005

Call to Worship  (Jeremiah 31: 7-9)

One:    Sing aloud with gladness:
Many: God is gathering the people!
One:    From the farthest parts of the earth we come:
Many: All who struggle; all who labor with new life!
One:    Those who are weeping, God will console;
Many: Those who get lost find a clear path home.
One:    Let us worship the God who gathers us!


Ever-calling God,
We give thanks that you have gathered us into your church
and graced us with your faithful presence.
We ponder our history, ancient and still developing,
and marvel at the many expressions of your church.
Grant us the vision to be a part of a new reformation for the Church
that will bring ever more joy and justice to the world.
Continue to gather us, the diverse lot of us,
into Jesus’ vision and dream
that your faithful people may be one in you.  Amen

Prayer of Confession

When we want to be a church ever-reforming, yet cling to comfortable ways:
Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on us!
When we want to honor your “still speaking voice”, but are fearful of insights which challenge old assumptions:
Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on us!
When we want to live into Jesus’ dream of oneness, but fail to listen to voices of difference:
Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on us!

Assurance of Pardon
Take heart, get up; Jesus is calling to us!  We trust in the one who has guided the church for two millennia. Through Christ, God forgives us our failings, and continues to call us into a community of mutual love and forgiveness.  Let us celebrate this mercy of God by greeting each other with a sign of Christ’s peace. 

Call to Offering
Our ancestors in faith and church-building show us the way to share the gifts God has given us with the whole community.  Let us gather our gifts together and offer them to God with heartfelt gratitude, commitment and praise. 

Reform our lives, O God, and let these gifts change the world into which we send them.  Take them and multiply them to be a blessing of justice and peace in the world you love!

May the peace of God which passes all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippines 4:7) 


 A New Reformation: Service Prayers for the 21st Sunday after Pentecost, was written by the Rev. Bonnie Tarwater, pastor of the Congregational Church of Lincoln City, Lincoln City, Oregon.

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