Sunday, February 14, 2016

Worship order for Will you be my Valentine worship

Opening prayer
We arrive from many different experiences and backgrounds. Some of us have trouble speaking; others are so young that they’re still learning to talk. Some of us speak English as a second language, and others of us can speak several foreign languages. All of us share this in common
(congregation:) We speak the language of love.
In the moments before worship begins, and again when we return to the service of life, we greet one another with kind words; we chat about the days behind us and days to come, and
we speak the language of love.
We lift our voices in song — not to sing perfectly or in tune, but to hear and feel our voices form a life-giving sound; and
we speak the language of love.
As we form a web of compassionate listening when individuals among us, embodying vulnerability, name the fears that grip their hearts, the joys that buoy their spirits.
we speak the language of love.
At times, our voices clash. We disagree. Tension enters our voices as we make room for different beliefs, different opinions, different perspectives. Through it all, it's our intention that...
we speak the language of love.
In this congregation, we welcome a multiplicity of truths, and invite them to be named out loud. We prophesy, summoning the age when justice and peace will be evident all around us, and
we speak the language of love.
Let us worship together, making room for one another as whole beings, tender hearts, hungry spirits, and curious minds. With our actions and with our words, let us
...speak the language of love.


Let’s dwell in the love of the gospel (In unison)
Merciful God, we know that your mercy comes out of a heart which loves all of us. Pour your spirit of love upon us God that we listen to the gospel with love and great understanding. May we stand close and listen carefully and accept whole heartedly the gospel which loves us and speaks to us. Amen.

Bible reading
St. Matthew 22: 37-40
St. Matthew 25: 35-40

Confession (All together)
We have not held on to opportunities to love, care and share. Instead we build hate thinking it will be a good investment for our family. Little did we notice the sand sliding away from our feet and the tension building in our house. Love can change everything, it can do wonders. Knowing this we come to your loving presence gracious God ready and willing to love and to be loved. Amen.

Love can make us forgive seventy times seven. Love can go beyond rules and traditions and make us whole. God never punishes. God just seems far away because we push God away. Now love will bring us near and will wipe away everything which keeps us from God and God’s loving presence. Amen.

Special song



Exchange of love: Will you be my Valentine?

We pray God for gender sensitivity and acceptance of one another. May our faith and practice gently nudge others into exploring the beauty of love. Let people all around us exclaim “Look how they love one another.” We pray for a community of love which is sensitized to treat one another in love and equality. Lord, in your love towards us. Hear our prayer.

We pray, God of love, that even as flowers are exchanged and vows are made, we don’t forget the story of Valentine, who risked his life and brought couples together in matrimony. He stood for love against war, hatred and violence. Help us, God, to rid ourselves of unfounded patriarchal norms and stand for love because it is a cross against weapons, barricades, guardians of morality and cultural misconceptions. Lord, in your love towards us. Hear our prayer.

Tender and loving God, we pray that wrong cultural norms are healed by the freedom of love. May village khaps and male dominated community groups show true love to women and include women in the decision making and thereby stop one sided decisions against couples who take the bold step of inter-caste and inter-religious marriages. We pray that groups who offer safe spaces to such couples may also flourish and people all over India support mixed weddings. Lord, in your love towards us. Hear our prayer.

God of compassion, we pray for true love where people love each other wholeheartedly and where love is not limited to a couple or a family but goes much beyond that. May the love of God lead us to share our food with the hungry, welcome strangers, cloth the naked and take care of, pray for and visit the sick and destitute. We pray for Ajungla Jamir and her family on the untimely passing away of her sister. We pray for those who have experienced bereavement and those who are recovering from medical emergencies. Lord, in your love towards us. Hear our prayer.

We pray God for the World Association for Christian Communication and its functionaries and members. May they be strengthened in their work towards women empowerment and the Global Media Monitoring project. We pray for the UTC community, so that we inspire, support, love and care for one another. Lord, in your love towards us. Hear our prayer.

Affirmation of faith (In unison)
We believe in God,
who is love, whose love is manifest
in all Creation, in our lives, and in all people.

We follow Christ, who embodied God's love through Mother Mary.
In his life and ministry, his death and resurrection,
and his granting to us of his Spirit,
he filled us with that love as well.

We live by the Spirit, the presence of God's love in us.
In that love we participate in the Church, Body of Christ,
in loving God by loving our neighbors
through our prayers, our presence, our gifts and our service.

Love is our faith, and it is a gift from God.
We thank God, and ask God's blessings,
that we may love in the name of Christ
and the power of the Spirit, to God's glory. Amen.

Love’s prayer (All together)
Our love who dwells in the heavens and on the earth, You are love.
May heaven be a greater present reality here on earth,
And may we choose to join you in making that happen.
Provide us today with the things that you think we need,
And may we not take for granted that which you have already provided for us.
Forgive us for when we don’t live as you intend,
And may we be ready to forgive others when they don’t live as we intend.
Guide us in your wisdom away from the things that would distort us,
And restore the parts in us that are already distorted.
You are goodness, love and truth,
May you remain in us forever. Amen.

Closing hymn- Go my children with my blessing

Closing prayer and benediction
How nice it is to let go and love. How good it is to love without boundaries and fear. How fulfilling it is to keep the love flowing, waiting not for a moment expecting something in return. We have committed ourselves to one another, promising to care for, share and respect all we come across. There are no break ups, only take ups, there are no tears shed, only emotions fed, there are no hard feelings of separation, only good memories egging on to reconciliation. May God who is love fill you with never ceasing love now and always. Amen.

Opening prayer-

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