Monthly Archives: April, 2015

Art Therapy, Gets to the Soul of the Matter

April 27th, 2015 Posted by Articles, Blog 4 comments

The “soul art” encounter began as Donna shared with the group her soul wound, making herself vulnerable to the veterans attending. This “confession” had the affect of tearing down walls between her and the group that opened the doors of trust. Donna shared with the group the significance of the art in her life as it has brought her healing. She opened her soul to us by sharing a story around each piece of art.

Memorial Day Sunday Worship Celebration

April 10th, 2015 Posted by Congregational No Comment yet

(Click here to download a Word document that you can edit for your context)

MEMORIAL DAY SUNDAY WORSHIP CELEBRATION

PRELUDE

POSTING OF THE COLORS

*OPENING HYMN

*CALL TO WORSHIP

LEADER:  God makes the sun to rise and the sun to set.  God makes summer and winter to come and go.

PEOPLE:  GOD IS FAITHFUL FROM GENERATION TO GENERATION.

LEADER:  God brings us from places far and near, from places of hurt and joy, from places of noise and silence, from places of darkness and light.  God calls us to serve in places of death, doubt, and despair, and into places of goodness, gratitude, and grace.

PEOPLE:  GOD IS FAITHFUL FROM GENERATION TO GENERATION.

LEADER:  God is always with us and keeps His promise.

PEOPLE:  WE REJOICE, FOR THIS DAY WE HAVE COME TO THIS PLACE OF PROMISE, TO EXPERIENCE THE LIGHT OF CHRIST IN THE AWAKENING AND HEALING OF OUR BODIES, MINDS AND SOULS.

ALL:  THANKS BE TO GOD FOR THE FULLNESS OF LIFE THAT IS MADE NEW EACH DAY!  LET US PRAISE OUR FAITHFUL GOD!

*ACT OF PRAISE                                                       GLORIA PATRI

OPENING PRAYER

ALL:  WE COME TO YOU ETERNAL GOD, NOT BECAUSE WE MUST, BUT BECAUSE WE DESIRE TO BE IN YOUR PRESENCE.  OUR LIVES HAVE AS THEIR CONTEXT THE TURMOIL OF VIOLENCE AND DEATH IN WAR, THE FRUSTRATION OF UNCERTAINTY, THE ANGUISH OF SUFFERING AND LOSS.  QUIET OUR MINDS, REFRESH OUR SPIRITS, RENEW OUR BODIES, AND LEAD US TO A NEWNESS OF LIFE SO THAT WE MAY AGAIN BE YOUR SERVANTS SENSITIVE TO THE NEEDS OF THOSE AROUND US.  AMEN.

ACTS OF REMEMBRANCE

LEADER: On this Memorial Day Sunday, let us remember before God and commend to God’s sure keeping: all who have died for their country in war and peace; and especially those whom we knew and whose memory we treasure.

PEOPLE:  WE REMEMBER WITH GRATITUDE THEIR COURAGE, SACRIFICE, AND SELFLESS SERVICE.  HEAR OUR PRAYERS AND THANKSGIVINGS FOR THOSE WE REMEMBER THIS DAY, WHO SERVED BOTH YOU AND COUNTRY FOR THE PURPOSE OF JUSTICE AND LIBERTY.

LEADER:  This morning we also mourn for the loss of parents, spouses, children and siblings of those who did not return home.  (*Note, after the reading of this response, if the pastor is aware of a Gold Star family attending, may invite the family to stand.  The pastor may come to the family and have those around the family reach out toward the family as the pastor has a special prayer.)

PEOPLE:  WE LIFT UP TO YOU THIS DAY OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS WHO THROUGH YOUR GREAT LOVE WAITED FOR THE RETURN OF THOSE WHO SERVED OUR NATION AND PAID THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICE.  CONTINUE TO UPHOLD THEM IN YOUR LOVE AND CARE.

TIME FOR NAMING THOSE WHO DIED IN SERVICE OF OTHERS AND FOR THOSE WHO WAITED FOR THEIR RETURN (Congregation asked to share aloud or in silence the names of those whom they loved or knew who died while serving their nation.)

PLACING OF THE WREATH OF REMEMBRANCE (The wreath is brought forward and placed at the altar)

MOMENT OF SILENCE (To conclude the silence)

LEADER:  Let us pledge ourselves anew to the service of God, and that we may help, encourage and comfort others.  Let us support those working for the charity of others, and for   the peace and welfare of all nations.

PEOPLE:  WE PLEDGE OURSELVES TO SERVE YOU AND OTHERS IN THE CAUSE OF PEACE, AND FOR THE RELIEF OF WANT AND SUFFERING.  GUIDE US BY YOUR SPIRIT; GIVE US WISDOM, GIVE US COURAGE, AND GIVE US HOPE.

ALL:  TODAY, WE PRAY FOR A NEW DAY AND A NEW WORLD WHERE THE BRAVERY AND SACRIFICE OF OUR VETERANS IS NO LONGER NEEDED, BECAUSE THE NATIONS OF THE WORLD WILL NOT RISE AGAINST ONE ANOTHER IN WAR.  THIS WE PRAY IN THE NAME OF THE PRINCE OF PEACE, JESUS OUR LORD.  AMEN.

PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

HEBREW LESSON

EPISTLE LESSON

*GOSPEL ACCLAMATION

*GOSPEL

MESSAGE                                         “Sermon Title”

ANTHEM

*HYMN OF DISCIPLESHIP

*RETIRING OF THE COLORS

*BENEDICTION AND SENDING FORTH

LEADER:  God grant to the living grace, to the departed rest, to all people unity and peace.

PEOPLE:  WE OFFER OUR HEARTS, OUR TEARS, AND OUR MEMORIES AS THE HURT AND SORROW OF OTHERS ECHO WITHIN US.

LEADER:  Let us never forget those called to serve, and let us never let go of your promise of peace.

PEOPLE:  WE OFFER OUR LIVES FOR SERVICE AND JUSTICE.

LEADER:  Now may the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you all and remain with you always.

ALL:  WE NOW GO IN GOD’S ABIDING PRESENCE, STRENGTH AND LOVE.

POSTLUDE

(Click here to download a Word document that you can edit for your context)

After the Yellow Ribbon – Audio Recordings

April 1st, 2015 Posted by Multimedia No Comment yet

Milites Christi, a student group at Duke Divinity School in Durham, NC, convened the conference After the Yellow Ribbon in 2012 in order to “develop tools that church, military and academic communities can use in order to approach service members and veterans as human beings, and to understand and heal the unseen wounds of war (including PTSD and moral injury).” With the help of Centurions Guild, the audio of the conference presentations is available on soundcloud.