Suggested liturgy and prayers for use with local church Whole Church Initiative Leadership Team, following recruitment and before the first training.

Invite forward the team, including the pastor.

Leader:

Gathered here today are those who have been called to serve on our Whole Church Initiative Leadership Team. [Mention names of anyone not able to be present.]  We are reminded that just as we are all called to the baptism font, and to the fellowship of Holy Communion, we are also called to service.  These persons have agreed to serve for a full year on this team, seeking God’s guidance for the life of this congregation and empowering us to serve ever more effectively as the body of Christ.

Congregation:

We are thankful for your willingness to serve on our Whole Church Initiative Leadership Team!

Leader (To Team):

You will explore and stretch yourselves, and all of us, in challenging and life-giving ways.  We celebrate that you are willing to share your gifts and time in this way.  We value the equipping of our laity and pastor(s) in this partnership for ministry in this body of Christ.

Team:

We are humbled to serve in this role, and dedicate ourselves to following Christ’s example for living and leading.  We recommit ourselves to the life long journey of faithful discipleship.

Leader:

So now we present each one of you to God, praying a special blessing that the Holy Spirit will guide and empower you for this specific role of leadership.

[Slowly says each first name of each person on the team, whether present or not.]

As laborers going towards a harvest, we entrust you to the Spirit’s care.

Congregation:

Yes!  We affirm you in this blessing!  Come, Holy Spirit, Come!

All:

We give thanks, O God, for the abundant gifts you have shared with this Body of Christ.  Some have accepted the call to lead, and all are called to a full awareness of your presence and to strengthening your Kingdom in many and varied ways.  We give you praise and thanksgiving for all that we are, and for all that we will be as a church through your guidance.

Amen.

 

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Adapted from www.churchvitalityprocess.org from Pacific Northwest Conference of the UMC