SNEUCC Call to Prayer Week One: Prayer for our Lay Leaders

SNEUCC Call to Prayer Week One: Prayer for our Lay Leaders

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SNEUCC Call to Prayer 2023

In January, you’re invited to pray together with our siblings from the Central Pacific Conference, the Kansas Oklahoma Conference, and the Pacific Northwest Conference. Each week, we’ll be led in prayer by one of our Conference Ministers.

This week, please join with the Rev. Darrell Goodwin, Executive Conference Minister for Southern New England, in praying for all our lay leaders.

Rev. Goodwin is inviting our churches along with the churches of these conferences to commit to praying for various aspects of our body in ministry.

Week 1: Prayer for our Lay Leaders: Rev. Darrell Goodwin  (This video. Text below)
Week 2: Pray for MIDS and Authorized Ministers
Week 3: Pray for the local church, associations, and our covenant partners
Week 4: Pray for Conference Staff


Rev. Darrell Goodwin Prayer for Lay Leaders:

Creator of all things. I am asking that you do a new thing in the life of our lay leaders. Our lay leaders who have said yes to serve the church in what for many of us has been a turbulent time. Yes. To serve as we've had to make critical medical decisions. Yes, to serve as the church is literally transforming right before our eyes and sometimes quicker than we're able to get on board. Leaders who have said yes in the midst of not exactly knowing what is next. So God bless the courage of the yes, bless those who've chosen to serve even without all of the answers, even upon territory that seems unchartered and unknown. Those who have had such a love for your people, such a love for ministry, such a love for these houses of worship, that they've made critical decisions to be transformed and transformative. Leaders who decided to be relevant even when they didn't exactly know what relevance may have seemed like or been like for the communities in which they have served, for leaders who have chosen to be prophetic, even when appropriate CDC or medical guidance - or sometimes we didn't even offer immediate conference guidance - but they knew how to respond, how to hold community together and how to be there for each other. So bless the fatigue that many of our lay leaders still feel. Bless the ground, that they might find a solid place to place their vision and their insight to support their pastoral leaders and to support the people in the pews who are still discerning how to regather, how to reenter sacred space and how to be community with each other. Bless our lay leaders who have thought of ways to continue to serve.

In the midst of all of these changes, they've yet found ways to continue soup kitchens, found ways to continue healthy activism and protest. Found ways to still provide backpacks and meals to those who are hungry, and use their church buildings as shelters for those who have been without. For our lay leaders who've continued to help alongside their pastoral leaders, to create places of extravagant welcome, extravagant love, but most importantly, places of mattering. So God bless our lay leaders from the top of their head to the soul of their feet. Surround them with your care. Surround them with your concerns. Surround them with your grace, your mercy, and your peace. Do a new thing in them that they may know that whatever they ask for, whatever they pray for God, to advance the kin-dom of God amongst God's people will not be denied. Across our conferences and across the United Church of Christ, we lift up lay leaders everywhere, that they may find that which they need to get through 2023. As a striving people, as a thriving people. These things we ask in Jesus' name, trusting and believing for a transformed and transformative church. Amen. Be blessed my friends and look forward to week two, which will be a prayer offered for authorized ministers and members of discernment. God bless you.

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