Worship – Congregational Prayer

Prayer of Thanks for Teachers in a Pandemic Year

Thank you, God, for teachers
whose work this pandemic year
has made such a difference
in the lives of students and their families.
For the way they showed care and concern through a screen;
for hours spent adapting lessons to an on-line format;
for the way they made learning fun;
for the keeping track of every student,
even the ones that didn’t show up;

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Beautiful Blue Planet Congregational Prayer

God of sea and sky,
God of this great earth laid out under the sun,
we come with thanks on our lips and praise in our hearts.
Thank you for life and breath,
and senses to experience the beauty all around us.
Thank you for the dear ones we love, those around us, those far away,
and those who we will only see again in heaven, by your mercy.
We ask for your comfort for those among us who grieve
and those who are sick, especially…

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Father’s Day Congregational Prayer

Loving God, today we give thanks for those who have fathered us.
We give thanks for fathers and grandfathers who have nurtured us,
and for men who have been caregivers and teachers and mentors.
They have loved us unconditionally, and made us who we are.
We pray for everyone here who fathers someone.
Give them strength to nurture, protect and provide.
Give them wisdom to be role models.
Give them joy as they watch their children learn and grow.
Give them patience as their children test boundaries.

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Visualizing Kindness Guided Prayer

In this prayer, I invite you to close your eyes (if you are comfortable doing that), and picture things during some short times of silence. Rather than forming sentences in your mind, just create a picture. These pictures will be our prayer.

Picture in your mind how someone was kind to you this week.  Thank God for that person.   [10 seconds of silence]

Picture in your mind someone in the congregation who is grieving or sick, and picture how the kindness of the community is helping them through this time. Thank God for kindness.  [12 seconds of silence]

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God our Mother: Mother’s Day Prayer

Loving God, we give thanks today for mothers!
Thank you for mothers who gave birth to us,
and women who have treated us as their own children.
Thank you for good mothers,
cherishing and protecting the children among us.
This pandemic year has been particularly challenging for mothers
who have had to cope with more togetherness, and less support.
Help them mother lovingly, fairly, wisely and with great joy.

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Labour of Love Congregational Prayer

Labouring God, the sea and sky are your work,
every hill and plain, every valley and cliff
fashioned by your hands.
Towering trees and creeping plants,
blossoms, sweet and rare or common as dandelions,
all created by you.
The creatures are your opus,
every fin, paw, wing and hand,
all that runs, swims, soars and wriggles,…

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Above, Below, Within Congregational Prayer

Thank you, God, for all that is
above us, below us and within us.
Above us the birds fly, the clouds sail,
the winds swirl around this beautiful blue globe.
Below us the earth is solid, gravity holds us,
water flows in subterranean channels,
beautiful minerals hide in bedrock,
unseen by all but you.
Our minds are boggled by this amazing world.

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Congregational Prayer after a Natural Disaster

Thank you, God, for the beauty of spring;
for the sound of frogs, singing,
for the taste of rhubarb, tangy on our tongues,
for the colours of tulips…the brilliance of yellow, red, purple,
for the fragrance of hyacinths and lilacs,
and blossoms of all kinds that perfume the air.
We thank you for the soft wrinkled newness of leaves
and the vivid greening of the earth around us.
We enjoy all this under a warm sun.

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Breath of Spring Congregational Prayer

We listen this morning to the sound of our own breath,
and the breathing of those around us. [pause for 30 seconds]
Thank you God for breath,
for life flowing in and out of each of us.
It is wonderful to be alive—thank you for life!
Thank you for the sweet scent of the breath of spring;
for blossoms, apricot, cherry, peach,
for daffodils and sweet hyacinths,
for the good earth, turned over and ready for seed,
for the strong sun and its power.
Thank you that you are a God who hears our breath.

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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 www.leadinginworship.com” (and say whether you modified it). If publishing, please contact me for permission. Contact me at carol@leadinginworship.com

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