Sermon: Supersize it! God in a Box – I Corinthians 13, Isaiah 40:12, 28-31, Job 12:7-10

As human beings we are bound to make “scale errors” when it comes to God, because our knowledge is incomplete. We see this in theology. The church in a certain century has a view of God that they think is extremely important…several centuries later, the church realizes that maybe that wasn’t as big and important as they thought it was. Conversely, something considered a little theological issue for a thousand years suddenly looms large. We can see this in our own lives as well.

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Lost in the Barrens: A Prayer for Drug Addiction

God, you know why people abuse drugs;
you’ve seen the cycles, spiralling downwards,
and all they have lost and left behind.
You know the relationships destroyed, the jobs abandoned,
the joy and easy enjoyment of life itself, gone.
You have seen despair and self-hatred grow
as they struggle with impulses they can’t control.
If only it was as easy as “Just say no.”

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Late Stage Pandemic Prayer

God of hope, we need your presence here,
because sometimes hope is in short supply.
We’ve been dealing with this pandemic for a year,
and we are so very tired of this all.
Thank you that scientists were able to develop vaccines in short order
and we celebrate that some people have had their shots already. 
We need your help with this vaccine rollout to make it fair,
so that the most needy get it soonest. 
We pray for countries where no vaccines are available,

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Pandemic Prayer

Spirit of Hope, can you hear us calling?
This is our pandemic prayer.
You see the virus, and chart its path.
You are with the sick and with those who die,
you are with the caregivers taking such great precautions;
you know our fears of the unseen.
We need your help to keep the virus at bay!
Help us stay vigilant, as we wash our hands
for the thousandth time, as we again mask up
and make choices not to mingle….

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Living with a Pandemic Congregational Prayer

Gracious God:
We are the church united as we pray from different locations,
connected through something more marvellous than technology–
your Spirit filling us with hope and vision.
We come first of all with thanksgiving.
Thank you for the many kindnesses we have experienced
in this time of social distancing: old friends reconnecting,
some households learning about togetherness,
others learning new quieter rhythms….

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Congregational Prayer in a Pandemic

Great God: our community gathers in spirit
through the marvels of technology to give thanks together.
Thank you for medical professionals and staff
who work so faithfully in hospitals, clinics and nursing homes…
give them strength, courage and personal protective equipment.
Thank you for the diligence of scientists working on a vaccine,
and the way so many have ramped up the production of essential supplies.
Thank you for storekeepers and clerks,
farmers and truck drivers,

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Good Friday Pandemic Prayer

Jesus, Saviour, hear our Good Friday prayer.
As human beings stagger under the weight
of a worldwide pandemic,
we turn to you, bearer of the pain of the world.
You woke that Friday morning in captivity,
and so we see your face in all who are imprisoned;
hear our prayer for those in jail,
who cannot escape contagion in close quarters.
We see your face in all who are unjustly accused;
hear our prayer for those who tell the truth about this virus,

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Maundy Thursday Pandemic Prayer

Today is a day unlike other days,
a Thursday of mysteries,
where we remember your final meal with your friends.
Taking a towel, you washed their feet.
Knowing what was to come,
and what you had to suffer,
you instructed them to love one another.
You told them, ”Peace I leave with you,
Do not let your hearts be troubled,
and do not let them be afraid.”

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Palm Sunday Pandemic Prayer

On this Palm Sunday, things are different.
No children waving palm branches in processions,
no collective singing of hosannas, loud hosannas,
no exultant crowds, here or anywhere.
The streets are quiet.
What resonates is the image of you, Jesus,
weeping over Jerusalem,
crying for a people surrounded by enemies,
who do not know the things that make for peace.

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About Carol Penner

I am a Mennonite pastor currently teaching theology at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario. I’ve served congregations in Ontario and most recently, Alberta.

I love to write and to lead worship! If you are finding my writing helpful, I would love to hear from you! Feel free to use or adapt the material here, it is all written by me. If printing material, please credit “Copyright Carol Penner” (and say whether you modified it). If publishing, please contact me for permission. Contact me at

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