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Resource 4 Sample Order of Service for Celebration of Elders (Tapestry of Faith)

In "," a Tapestry of Faith program

Prelude

Have musicians play a medley from the songs that will be sung.

Welcome and Announcements

Lighting the Chalice

Have the group say in unison Reading 683 in Singing the Living Tradition, "Be Ours a Religion" by Theodore Parker.

Singing

"This Little Light of Mine," Hymn 118 in Singing the Living Tradition

Meet and Greet

Invite people to meet those they do not know and to greet those they do.

Sharing of Responsibility

Offering collection

Readings

Each High Hill participant shares a paragraph or two from their Odyssey.

Reading

"The Layers," poem by Stanley Kunitz (Resource 5), read in unison by the High Hill group

Meditation

Singing

"For All That is Our Life," Hymn 128 in Singing the Living Tradition

Speaking

Minister's homily

Celebration

Minister: Dear friends, it is our honor and our delight to celebrate the accomplishments of you who live among us. The Bible tells us that "gray hair is a crown of glory" and since you are already wear those crowns, whether in name or in deed, or both, it remains only for us to formally recognize you and to accept you as elders of this congregation. Will you please rise in body or spirit?

President of Congregation: Will you (names of High Hill participants) commit yourselves to moving among us gently, counseling us wisely, and informing both youth and adult with the learning of your years and experiences of your lives?

High Hill participants: We will.

President of Congregation: And will you welcome our gratitude, love and care in recognition of all you have done and all you have been to us? And will you let us lighten your load of duty and responsibility when the time comes?

High Hill participants: We will.

President of Congregation: Members of this congregation, please rise in body or spirit. Will you give gratitude, love and recognition to all these Elders have done and all they have been to us? And will you offer to lighten their loads of duty and responsibility when the time comes?

Congregation: We will.

President of Congregation: And will you now welcome them and recognize them as Elders of this congregation?

Congregation: We will.

Minister: Elders, be glad and speak with me the words, from Black Elk, Reading 614 in Singing the Living Tradition.

President of the Congregation: And will you all now join in "The Larger Circle" by Wendell Berry, Reading 646 in Singing the Living Tradition. We will read responsively, with the congregation reading the words in plain type and the elders reading those in italics.

Singing

"For All the Saints," Hymn 103 in Singing the Living Tradition

Closing

Words by Barbara Pescan, Reading 680 in Singing the Living Tradition

Postlude

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Last updated on Saturday, December 10, 2011.

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