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Opening Prayers/Prayers of Adoration on The Church

Sermon Illustrations on the Church

Adapted from Psalm 22:22; 97:12; 145:1, 3, NRSV

In the midst of the congregation I will praise you.

Rejoice in the LORD, O you righteous,

and give thanks to God’s holy name!

I will extol you, my God and King,

and bless your name forever and ever.

Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised;

God’s greatness is unsearchable.

The Worship Sourcebook


God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit;  

   God of hope, of new life— 

All our times are in Your hands.  

We thanks and praise You,  

for you are the Lord of our yesterdays, 

our todays and our tomorrows. 

In You, the old is redeemed and 

      everything has become new! 

Knowing that You are good and strong,  

loving, wise and faithful; 

we trust you with all that’s on our hearts today—  

from that which brings us to tears in laughter, 

to that which causes us to weep in sorrow.  

Loving God, we thank You 

for grace you’ve shone to us this week, 

for prayers to which you’ve said “yes” 

and those to which you’ve said, “No—I have a better idea.”

Jesus—Lord of the church, 

we pray or this congregation: 

May they be anointed with your touch, 

empowered by Your Spirit; and 

formed in Your image 

so everyone may see You in them, 

and through them; 

that as You are lifted higher, 

You can draw all people to Yourself in glory. 

Richard Herman


Almighty God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit: You taught us to pray not 

only for ourselves but for people everywhere:  

so now hear us as we pray for others, 

in the name of Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord. 

We ask that You inspire Your whole church in power, unity, and peace. 

Grant that all who trust you may obey your Word, 

and live together in love. 

As we pray for the world, we ask that You lead all nations  

in the way of Your true justice and righteous goodwill. 

Direct those who govern, that they may rule fairly, maintain order,  

help those in need, and defend the oppressed; 

so this world may know your rule and experience true peace. 

Richard Herman


Lord, you whose Son did pray that all your children might be one, we come with repentance for the sin of useless division and for the secret vice of pride. We beg forgiveness for harsh judgment, for prejudice nourished as a virtue, for self-will, for scorn of others, whose experience before you is as valid as our own. For all narrow minded attitudes, for all denial of the worth of other views, for all exclusiveness which has kept out men of good will, receive our forgiveness and heal us of the sin which keeps us apart. Teach us what it means to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 

Open our eyes to the insight of others. Help us to appreciate those of other lands and of other races, who, differing from us in much, are yet one with us in faith. For problems beyond our minds to solve, grant us patience. For tasks too great for our weak hands, give us faith. For all tedious steps in discovering your way and your will for your church, endow us with necessary grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

George Stewart, A Face to the Sky, adapted, Language Modernized by Stuart Strachan Jr.