Peace with Justice Sunday

June 15, 2003

Hymn Suggestions:

Spirit of God, Descend upon My Heart#500, UMH
Breathe on Me, Breath of God#420, UMH
Where Cross the Crowded Ways of Life#427, UMH
For the Healing of the Nations#428, UMH

Scripture readings

taken from the Lectionary of the day:

Psalm 29
Isaiah 6:1-8
Romans 8:12-17
John 3:1-17


Peace with Justice Sunday

June 15, 2003

"The opposite of war is not peace, but creation
--From the Broadway Musical Rent, 1996

"Attention is love, what we must give the world around us, children, mothers, fathers, pets, the news, the woes of others. What we want to change we curse and then pick up a tool. Bless whatever you can with eyes and hands and tongue. If you canít bless it, get ready to make it new.">br> --Marge Piercy, "The Art of Blessing the Day"

Opening Prayers:

We remember that your church was born in wind and fire, not to sweep us heavenward like a presumptuous tower, but to guide us down the dusty roads of this world so that we may lift up the downcast, heal the broken, reconcile what is lost and bring peace amidst the unrest. --from Litanies for All Occasions, Garth House

Gracious and Holy One,
Creator of all things and of emptiness,
We come to you full of much that clutters and distracts,
Stifles and burdens not only ourselves
But the world around us.
Empty us of distractions
Of dissatisfaction
Of anxiety
Of prejudice
Of old scores to settle
Of the arrogance of being right.
Hollow out in this community a space
In which we will find ourselves with
peace and a whole heart
A forgiving spirit and holiness
And the will to reach boldly for abundant life for the whole human family.
--adapted from "Empty Me," Guerrillas of Grace by Ted Loder

Call To Worship:

L:The Church was born in wind and fire!
P:It was not built to sweep us heavenward in a presumptuous tower.
L:It was built to guide us down the dusty roads of the world.
P:To lift up the downcast.
L:Heal the broken.
P:Reconcile what is lost.
L:Bring peace amidst the unrest.

Confession:

We have it already. From the beginning of time you have given us the light of stars and suns, the strength of seas and storms, the power of seeds and shells, the richness of forests and foliage, the abundance of fruits and freedom. Why is it that we, as human beings, never seem to know we have enough? Why is it that we feel like dry bones in the desert, unable to think creatively, unable to genuinely enter the dusty roads of this world. Lord, God forgive us. Show us how to pick up the tool, fall into your ways and. create again with hands of love and generosity and grace. AMEN.

Offertory Prayers:

These gifts were first yours. We give them back with generous hearts. May they be used by our hands and the tools we have to build the world of peace, where justice is the foundation.
This liturgy appears as a bulletin insert in the March/April 2003 issue of Christian Social Action (pp. 23-24) which all United Methodist Churches receive.

For additional prayers and sermon thoughts, visit the Resources section of www.umc-gbcs.org (UM General Board of Church and Society). For more information about Peace with Justice Sunday, see www.umc-gbcs.org Peace with Justice program.
For other Peace Sunday resources, see Peace and Justice resource page.