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Celebrating Homecoming / Ingathering

Sometimes the first Sunday after Labor Day. The kick-off of the church year for many congregations. Some congregations include the Water Communion ritual in this service. This ritual involves congregants who have brought small amounts of water to the service, taken from special places they have been over the summer. Or the water is collected from a rainstorm or is otherwise significant or symbolic in some way. They can pour the water into a large bowl and tell the congregation where it is from and the meaning it has for them.

Themes often used in homecoming include: reunion; re-gathering; re-covenanting as a community of faith; hospitality; returning home to the church community that holds us; hope; looking forward with excitement to church year. The service may be intergenerational in whole or in part.

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