a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

confession: gifts

Creator God, with each breath of life you breathe, you give gifts to your creation, calling us to use your gifts to build up your kingdom on earth. We confess that sometimes we do not see your gifts for the treasures they are. We either take credit for them ourselves, or we dismiss them as not important. We privilege some gifts over others, forgetting that you care about tiny things as much as big things. And when we are called upon to use our gifts for your glory, so often we find ourselves distracted by our own desire and uncertain of your direction. Forgive us. Open our ears to hear you speaking, and our hearts to embrace your purpose. Amen.    ~silence~


Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

Charge & Benediction: the spirit of God

The Spirit of God inspires…
The Spirit of God transforms…
The Spirit of God empowers…
go…and be…and do!

And may you…
those you encounter…
and those who are touched beyond that encounter…
discover and know the grace, love, and peace of God
each and every day.


Submitted by Scott Cervas, pastor at Meadowthorpe Presbyterian Church (Lexington, KY)

POP: on the wings of your Spirit

God of our awakening…

we have named our fears;
we have named those things
that hold us back
and keep us from moving beyond
where we are.

You have taken our fears…
our inhibitions…
and our complacencies…
and you have invited us
passionately and COMpassionately
to fly on the wings of your Spirit.

We look to the sky…
we look on the streets…
we look in the alleyways…
we look in our homes…
we look to the mountains and the rivers…
the valleys and the seas…
we look into the eyes of one another…
those we know,
and those we are meeting for the first time…
we look at individuals,
we look into communities…
we look throughout your whole creation…
and we see potential.

Where there is despair…we see the potential for hope.
Where there is hunger…we see the potential for satisfaction.
Where there is war…we see the potential for peace.
Where there is prejudice…we see the potential for fellowship.
Where there is oppression…we see the potential for justice.

This list could go on…
but when we dare to look at the world through your eyes…
when we make enough room for your Spirit to enter in…
when we have the audacity
to trust your perfect vision for creation…
all there is to see is potential.

So inspire us…
in the midst of hatred and destruction,
abuse and neglect,
natural disasters and human-generated disasters…
inspire us with the stories of loving and building up,
respecting and caring,
helping and sharing and repairing…
so we may cling to your Spirit
as she leads us beyond where we are
into a way of life that reflects your goodness…

just as Jesus prayed…



Submitted by Scott Cervas, pastor at Meadowthorpe Presbyterian Church (Lexington, KY)

litany of affirmation: we have an Advocate

We are not alone, sliding through a mystery with no guidance.
We have an Advocate who guides us with power and truth.

We do not pray alone, worried about “getting it right” or being heard.
We have an Advocate who prays with us, in deep, wordless sighs.

We do not work alone for the healing of the world.
We have an Advocate who directs our paths and reveals Christ to us.

We are born of water and fire, adopted into the family of God.
We have an Advocate who strengthens our relationship with the Holy.

We are a people of bountiful gifts and many connections.
We have an Advocate who blesses and encourages us.

We are yet coming to know more fully the height and depth and breadth of the love of God.
We have an Advocate who does not rest in revealing that truth to all creation.


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

CTW: Come Holy Spirit!

A word about how this call to worship might work. This will require a bit of planning and knowing your congregation. I picture the congregation facing forward and the gifts of the Holy Spirit coming from behind the congregation toward the front of the sanctuary. I’d like to have the visuals stay where they are visible for the whole service. They may even be utilized while talking with the children or preaching the sermon. Be creative and have fun! I would suggest having multiple readers but not having the congregation read responsively. This will allow the visuals time to move around the sanctuary before the next line is read.


Come, Holy Spirit, Come!
Live and move among us like a dove of peace!
(Enter the dove-possibly a fake dove on a stick that can “fly”, possibly a banner with a dove on it that floats through the congregation, maybe even a real dove?!)
Swoop down. Surprise and delight us like a red kite.
 (Enter someone flying a red kite through the sanctuary!)
Flash and flicker as our light of inspiration.
   (Enter someone with flashlights or glow sticks or lanterns!)
Warm our hearts so we may be fire-filled followers.
 (Enter someone carrying a lit candle!)
Come, Holy Spirit, Come!

Submitted by Rev. Susannah DeBenedetto, Salisbury, Maryland

illumination: a breath of fresh air

Let the fire of your Spirit shed light on your word, O God. As we open these pages, may we find a breath of fresh air, a word for our hearts, a light for our path. Amen.


Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

dedication: the Spirit’s vision

Spirit of life, you long for the world’s transformation. Your vision is grander than anything we can imagine, and so we thank you for the privilege of participating in your mission. May these gifts be a blessing that speaks the language of this community, and may that blessing multiply out to every place. Breathe in us again this day, that our whole lives may be an offering for your glory. Amen.


Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

Pentecost Prayer: freed for

On this day of Pentecost, the church is born and re-born.

The Holy Spirit is poured out

and sends us out together, aflame with new life.

God, we pray that your Spirit would set us free

from the prisons of pettiness, jealousy, and greed.

Set us free to be Your church.

We are freed to free others.

We are forgiven to forgive others.

We are loved to love others.

You call us to be the church,

and you send us to feed the hungry,

clothe the naked, heal the sick,

and to be alleluias even when there is no music.

Fill us with your Spirit,

make us again into your body for the world.  Amen.


Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL. Originally used in place of a confession sequence.

confession: we explain away

Call to Confession

When we come together to confess our sin, we find that the closed room of our minds and the locked door of our spirits burst open, making room for the Spirit of God to run wild. When we think we can contain God, we deceive only ourselves—the Spirit is here, and calls us to join the dance. Before God, with the people of God, let us lay down our burdens of brokenness and join what God is doing. Let us pray.


The wind blows and we hear the sound of it, but we do not know where it comes from.
We try to explain it away, but even our own breath speaks of new things we cannot understand.
We may be together in one place, but we do not speak with one voice, we do not listen with one heart.
We hear, and dismiss, your deeds of power, your call to love those who are different, your insistence that the whole world be included.
You pour out your Spirit, and we squash the vision—it is too big, too unrealistic, too uncertain, too unruly.
You send visions of a future with hope, and we look back instead.
You light the way, and we look for a fire extinguisher, trying to keep ourselves (and you!) safe.
Forgive us, O God. We long for your new life, but we do not know how to live it.


Rush into this place again, and fill every nook and cranny with dreams and visions of possibility.
Turn our hushed whispers into proclamations of your grace, in every language of the world.
Lead us out into your future.


This is the promise: “I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh—young and old, men and women, rich and poor—and all people will see.” This promise is for you, and for us. No matter who we are or where we have been, the Spirit of the Living God falls fresh, with mercies new every morning. Know that you are forgiven, and let the Spirit speak through you!
Thanks be to God. Amen.


Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

CTW: come together

We come together from many places—

from north and south, from east and west, just as God calls.

We come together in one place—

piece by piece, becoming the Body of Christ.

We come together in one place—

not always understanding, not always courageous, not always ready,

and the Spirit rushes in!

Let us rejoice, and proclaim God’s power in this place!


Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL