Upright Call to Worship

Psalm 68:8-9 and
Here we are, God,
filled with life and breath,
citizens in the land of the living
by your grace.
You know our paths,
and the help we will need
to keep our feet firm.
In this time of worship,
equip us to be your upright followers,
in Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

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A Prayer for the Stream Behind My Apartment Building

Creator God:
I am sorry for this little stream,
its banks straightened and cemented.
Graffiti decorates the culverts,
and it’s dotted with plastic bags and bottles.
But trees still grow and shelter,
dappling with shadow,
ducks and dragonflies dally,
birds swoop and the wild creatures come to drink.
Now in fall, yellow leaves sail on its dark surface,
it’s still a place that delights.
This little stream retains its beauty,,,

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Easter Poem: Hope for the Shadow People

We are the shadow people who dance with death,
that great shade, our whole life long.
We try to run from its darkness,
we avoid it, we try to elude it.
But in the end we are always the shadow people,
hopelessly connected to death.
The darkness of death eclipses us.
Death hems us in, stifles us, stunts our growth,
it wants to kill us.
Crippled and cramped by this grave story
we long for a saviour
who sees our crooked shadows, our bent-overness….

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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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