Leader Resource 1: Suggested Order of Service
Consult with your minister, music director, and/or another experienced worship leader in your congregation as you plan this service. Ask your music director to help you select suitable hymns and recruit an accompanist. Use the suggested readings and hymns or substitute your own choices.
OPENING WORDS AND CHALICE LIGHTING
Reading 439 from Singing the Living Tradition, "We gather in reverence," by Sophia Lyon Fahs, read responsively.
A hymn that asks for help and/or strength blessings on this journey toward reconciliation and healing. Possibilities include:
- "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" (Hymn 126)
- "God of Grace and God of Glory" (Hymn 115)
- "Gather the Spirit" (Hymn 347)
EXPRESSIONS OF OUR EXPERIENCE
Invite participants to share, one at a time, a short reflection on their own experience in the workshops.
MOMENT OF SILENT REFLECTION
A hymn that acknowledges how challenging this work is and has been and expresses a promise to continue. This should be a quieter, more meditative hymn. Possibilities include:
- "Spirit of Life" (Hymn 123)
- "There Is More Love Somewhere" (Hymn 95)
NAMING OUR CHALLENGES AND PROMISES GOING FORWARD
Take the bowl of small natural objects from the worship table and pass it. As it comes to each person, invite them to voice a personal challenge and a promise going forward and to take an object from the bowl as a symbol of both the challenge and the promise.
Choose an upbeat hymn that expresses hope. Possibilities include:
- "We'll Build a Land" (Hymn 121; use the alternate words in Workshop 11, Handout 5)
- "Love Will Guide Us" (Hymn 131)
- "One More Step" (Hymn 168; consider replacing the word "step" with "move," especially if any participants have mobility limitations.)
Reading 567, "A Litany of Restoration," read responsively. Add lines to enrich the litany for your own group, such as "If you grew up speaking Spanish and I grew up speaking English, It will not matter."
Tell participants you will not extinguish the chalice, but will leave it burning for the important conversations to follow.
Invite participants to share refreshments together.