Resource for Election Day Communion available
In the context of a divisive political climate during this election season, many congregations are choosing to celebrate Holy Communion on Election Day, November 8.
This comes as an expression of unity in one Lord, one hope, one baptism in Christ. Some of our churches serve as polling sites, many schools are closed, and the day is ripe for providing a prayerful, meaningful worship opportunity for our communities.
This prayer of Great Thanksgiving has been specially written for Election Day as a way of offering a timely word, in season. Most of all, it is offered for sharing in congregations who aspire to seek the welfare of the very place where they are and live into the grain of God’s kingdom while at the same time rejoicing that our eternal citizenship lies in God’s family.
The authors are Abby Kocher and Sam Wells, who have recently published a collection of prayers for use in holy communion entitled Eucharistic Prayers.
Rev. Abby Kocher is pastor at Oak Ridge UMC in Oak Ridge, NC and Rev. Dr. Samuel Wells is Vicar at St. Martin in the Fields in London, England.
Electing God, you chose humanity when you created us in your image;
you chose a people for yourself when you called Abraham;
you chose freedom when you led your children with Moses
through the Red Sea.
In Jesus you chose us despite the folly and failure of our own choices;
and in his resurrection and ascension you chose us for yourself, forever.
And so with your people on earth and all the company of heaven,
we praise your name and
celebrate the glory for which you have elected us.
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might.
Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.
Living God, as you rejoice in making all things new,
create your new community of love among us gathered here,
that in this holy meal we may together glimpse
your new heaven and new earth.
As we remember Christ’s saving passion,
transform your church through the renewing of our minds,
that we may discern your good and pleasing and perfect will
and walk the paths that lead to peace.
Send your Holy Spirit upon this bread and cup
that they may be for us the body and blood of Christ.
Who, at supper with his disciples, took bread, gave you thanks,
broke the bread, and gave it to them, saying,
“Take, eat: this is my body which is given for you;
do this in remembrance of me.”
After supper he took the cup.
Again he gave you thanks, and gave it to his disciples, saying,
“Drink this, all of you: this is my blood of the new covenant,
which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.
Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
Great is the mystery of faith.
Christ has died; Christ is risen; Christ will come again.
Everlasting God, you have taught us
to search for you with all our heart and
to seek the welfare of the land where you have placed us.
Send your Spirit upon those who lead,
pour your wisdom on those who are elected,
and restore by your mercy all who are not chosen.
Through your same Spirit, visit your people
in the struggles that no vote can resolve;
show us where what you call from us is
love and forgiveness and mercy;
empower your church to overcome evil with good.
Since here we have no abiding city,
give us a yearning for the city that is to come.
Hasten the day
when all that would separate us from one another will fall away,
when we rejoice to enter that dwelling place
where you have chosen to be with us forever,
where all is redeemed in the presence of the Son
through the power of the Spirit, God most high Amen.
Download copy in Word Document
Resources for Vital Congregations
Lewis Center for Church Leadership
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor
GBHEM Leadership Resources
Living Faithfully: Human Sexuality and the United Methodist Church
Englewood Book Review
Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations
Ted Talks: The Golden Circle
Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability
Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability
Meditations on the Ministry of All Christians
Be A Disciple
A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Adult Christian Studies from the Wesley Ministry Network
Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations
Living As United Methodist Christians
Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials
Reclaiming our Wesleyan Tradition: John Wesley’s Sermons for Today
John Wesley Sermons: Anthology
Get Their Name
Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit
Canoeing the Mountains
Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Reach New Disciples
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People
Community: The Structure of Belonging
RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:
Institute for Emerging Issues
Congregations 4 Children
The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants
The Duke Endowment
The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:
- Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
- Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.
We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at firstname.lastname@example.org.