a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

Confession: swallowed up

Call to Confession
God saves us despite us being unworthy of that salvation.
In response to that grace, let us confess the ways we have fallen short.

Confession (Responsive)
God of Endless Mercy,
we have often been swallowed up by our our greed and selfishness,
desiring that which we do not have, filling our lives with things that do not save us.
We have often been swept away by the floods of our own making,
polluting your creation, neglecting to be faithful stewards of the earth.
We have often attacked one another and led lives of violence,
sending missiles instead of accepting refugees, ignoring your commandments.
Lord have mercy, for we have sinned and fallen short of your glory.
Christ have mercy, for we are broken and need your salvation.
Lord have mercy upon us and hear us as we pray in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon
Friends, our help is in the name of the Lord
who has heard our plea and answered our confession with absolution.
In Christ’s name, I announce to you that our sins are forgiven!
Alleluia! Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Stephen M. Fearing, Beaumont Presbyterian Church, Lexington, KY

Confession: not enough

Call to Confession
With humility and honesty, let us confess our sins to our God
who is slow to anger and quick to forgive.

Confession
Abundant God, so much of our harmful behavior is rooted in our envy.
You have given us our manna – our daily bread – but we want more.
We have allowed ourselves to be seduced by commercialism,
telling ourselves that we are not complete until we have the nicest things.
Forgive us when our actions convey that you are not enough for us.
Help us to live our lives simply and faithfully,
trusting in your steadfast love to provide all that we need. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon
Friends, our salvation is not something that can be purchased with money or fame.
Our salvation comes from Jesus Christ and Jesus Christ alone.
I announce to you this day, our sins are forgiven.
Alleluia! Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Stephen M. Fearing, Beaumont Presbyterian Church, Lexington, KY

Confession: other things

Call to Confession
Friends, let us confess the ways that we have failed to live up to God’s bountiful invitation.

Confession
God of Mercy and Steadfast Love,
You gave us our tongues that we may speaks words of love, wisdom, and grace.
But often our tongues are the vehicles of other things:
instead of love, hatred,
instead of wisdom, foolishness,
instead of grace, rage.
Like a small fire that sets a forrest ablaze,
too often a word can set forth a flood of fear and anger.
Help us use our tongues to start other things:
kindness, compassion, and courage.
In the name of your son, Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon
We love the Lord because God has heard our voice and our supplication.
In the name of Jesus Christ, I announce to you this day: our sins are forgiven!
Alleluia! Amen.

 

Submitted by Stephen M. Fearing, Beaumont Presbyterian Church, Lexington, KY

Confession: when our faith is empty

Call to Confession
Let us gather to lament what is broken in our lives and ask God to forgive us.

Confession
Your word reminds us that we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves.
But we make far too many distinctions,
treating one person with more dignity and respect than another.
We gladly welcome those who look and act like us,
but give a much less enthusiastic welcome to the stranger.
Forgive us for the moments when our faith has been empty,
for the times that our works have not matched our words.
Help us lean ever more towards your goodness
and help our lives reflect that goodness in concrete ways. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon
The Psalmist reminds us:
Happy are those whose help is in God, whose hope is in the Lord.
Friends, God has heard our cry and has forgiven us our sins.
Alleluia! Amen.

 

Submitted by Stephen M. Fearing, Beaumont Presbyterian Church, Lexington, KY

Confession: instead of…

Call to Confession
In all honesty and humility,
let us confess our sins before God
and be freed of the burdens that weigh us down for the journey ahead.

Confession
Merciful God,
you call us to be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger.
But often we ignore that wisdom.
Instead of listening, we talk past one another.
Instead of exercising patience, we become hotheaded and irritable.
Instead of practicing kindness, we hand out judgment and malice.
Help us rid ourselves of wickedness and embrace steadfast love in its place.
Forgive us of our sins so that, when we look in the mirror,
we see the disciples you are calling us to be. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon
Friends, our hearts overflow with a goodly theme: instea
a theme of God’s forgiveness.
In the name of Jesus Christ,
I announce to you that our sins are forgiven.
Alleluia! Amen.

Submitted by Stephen M. Fearing, Beaumont Presbyterian Church, Lexington, KY

Confession: we manipulate grace

Invitation to Tell the Truth About Ourselves
One: Jesus said, “those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it.” Trusting in the gracious mercy of God, we admit before God and one another our faults and failings. Let us pray.

Prayer of Confession (we tell the truth)
All: You know, O God, how often we set our mind on human things instead of divine things. You know the ways we try to force your Spirit to fit our agenda, to manipulate your grace for our own ends. You know that we are prone to thinking of our desires long before we ever consider yours. We confess these things to you, praying that saying them out loud might make us aware of our own brokenness, so that we can also be more aware of your ever-present grace. Startle us with your truth and your love. Set our minds and hearts on you, and lead us on your way. Amen. ~silence~

Assurance of Forgiveness
One: The grace of God is always doing a new thing—whether we are prepared, or worthy, or not. Let yourself live and believe this good news:
All: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. Thanks be to God! Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson

Confession: sin is a hard word

Lord, sin is a hard word. I try so hard.
I do not do the good I want to do.

Is sin unavoidable, so that the world can see your grace?
I do not do the good I mean to do.

The broken frustrations of the world surround me and are within me.
I seek your will, forgetting that it has found me.

I long to feel a flood of forgiveness, to be transfigured, to be different- somehow, someway.
But you made me, you know me, you love me.

Forgive my sins- what I do, what I avoid.
Forgive my sins- what I say that should go unsaid, what I hold back that should be shouted.

Forgive my sins- the successes I credit to myself, forgetting your Spirit.
Forgive my sins- the shortcomings I see in others, forgetting my own.

Forgive us. Renew us. Transfigure us.

Silence for reflection

The God of creation does not begin work only to abandon it. The good thing that God has begun in you will continue until the day of Christ’s return and, then, eternally. Hear and receive in your hearts and minds to forgiveness of all your sins, consolation for all your griefs, affirmation of your gifts, and hope for your tomorrows. All of this is true and possible, through Jesus Christ- our Savior and Lord!
AMEN.

 

Submitted by Rev. Julia Seymour, Lutheran Church of Hope, Anchorage AK

Assurance: covenant making God

(This is an adaptation of the Lent B Call to Worship, to be useable as an assurance of forgiveness on Palm Sunday if constructing the symbol cross as noted here. You should not print the instructions for the blocks—they are for your reference as liturgist so you can pause while people get pieces into position.)

 

One: Hear and believe the good news: God has called us “my people”!
All: God has set up a covenant, over and over again,
choosing us even before we can choose,
faithful even when we are faltering.

One: In the flood, in the wilderness, in exile;
in certainty and doubt, abundance and scarcity;
All: God’s promise is true to the thousandth generation.
One: We see the rainbow, (rainbow block is held up on one side)
we hear our names, (signature block is held up at the top)
we learn the commandments, (tablets block is held up opposite the rainbow)
we look up for our help, (rod of Asclepius block is put in position at the bottom)
we know in our hearts: (heart block is placed in centre)
All: we love because God first loved us,
we follow because God first came to us,
we can be faithful because God is faithful.

(Blocks are pressed together to stand as a cross)
One: Come, let us worship God together.

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson

Confession: we don’t know what to confess

Call to Confession
Sometimes we must let go of our nets in order to follow Jesus.
Let us confess our reluctance to follow,
and examine what we must let go of in order to follow Jesus.

Prayer of Confession
We confess that we do not often know what to confess, O Lord. We are so consumed by our own projects that we don’t always hear your voice. We know that you speak through the suffering of others, the curiosity of one who needs to know they are not alone, and the opportunity to demonstrate love and forgiveness. Help us, Lord, to know our faults and turn from them. Hear us now, even as we confess our own unwillingness to hear you.
(silent prayer)
Thank you, Lord, for hearing our prayers.
Guide us in the true way of life as we follow you today. Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Zach Sasser, First Presbyterian Church, Lafayette, Louisiana

Confession/Pardon: Real Salt, Spiritual Wounds

Holy and Beloved God, you are the great peacemaker, who brings together many different parts and makes the one united body of Christ. Yet, we often turn aside from the peace you offer, and assume that we alone have it right. Instead of listening to your call to comfort one another, we accidentally or purposefully rub salt in the spiritual wounds of our neighbors. Help us to stop making things worse, and instead offer cool, calm comfort to your warm and wonderful people, all in the name of your peacemaking. Amen.

My friends, this is the good news of Jesus Christ: God offers us grace for our mistakes and errors, and calls us to reconcile with one another. In Christ, we have hope for true and just peace.

Just as God forgives us, so we too shall forgive each other. Thanks be to God!

 

Submitted Rev. Lucus Levy Keppel, Trinity Presbyterian Church in Bixby, Okla.