God our Mother: An Inclusive Morning Prayer

God is Father, but, especially, Mother. -- John Paul I

Creation by Sergio Velasquez

Creation by Sergio Velasquez

As an adult I've come to love and savor the practice of Anglican/Episcopal Morning Prayer. The breadth of the prayers, the stillness of heart that the practice cultivates and the dally repetition of praises help to awaken my soul to the essence and movement of God. However, since the practice (and much of the wording) dates back to the 16th century, it is laden with patriarchical language that excludes the feminine aspects of God and marginalizes people who do not identify as men. (Unfortunately, many contemporary prayer practices and worship songs tend to err in these ways as well).

So, my significant other and I drafted an inclusive morning prayer. Drawing from the Book of Common Prayer, Enriching Our Worship, The Inclusive Bible translation, and various prayers, creeds and canticles written by women, we set out to create a morning prayer practice that honors the Anglican/Episcopal tradition but is also gender and class inclusive. We hope it nourishes you as it has nourished us.

Note: This is simply a draft. We may have missed some subtle patriarchy or classism here or there. Also, we know that this is not an exhaustive or perfect resource. If you have suggestions or additions, please share them in the comment section below. Thank you!

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An Inclusive Morning Prayer

Opening Sentence (choose one depending on the occasion/liturgical season):

Advent: Shower, O heavens, from above, and let the skies rain down righteousness; let the earth open, that salvation may spring up, and let it cause righteousness to sprout up also. Isaiah 45:8, NRSV

Christmas: The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth. John 1:14

Lent: Jesus said: “If any of you would come after me, deny yourself and take up your cross and follow me.” Mark 8:34

Holy Week: Christ Jesus, being found in human form, humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:8

Easter: If anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! 2 Corinthians 5:17, NRSV

Occasions of Thanksgiving: We give you thanks, O God, we give you thanks, calling upon your Name and declaring all your wonderful deeds. Psalm 75:1

All Saints and Major Saints’ Days: You are no longer strangers and sojourners, but citizens together with the saints and members of the household of God. Ephesians 2:19

At Any Time: God is Spirit, and those who worship must worship in spirit and in truth. John 4:24

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Opening Versicle:

Officiant: O God, let our mouth proclaim your praise.

All: And your glory all the day long.

Doxology

All: Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Officiant: The Holy One is in our midst 

All: O come let us worship.

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Venite, Jubilate and Pascha Nostrum (choose one):

Venite (Psalm 95:1-7, The Inclusive Bible translation)

Come, let us sing joyfully to God!
Raise a shout to our rock, our deliverance!
Let us come into God’s presence with thanksgiving, And sing our praises with joy.

For YHWH is a great God,
The great Ruler, above all gods.
O God, in your hands are the depths of the earth, And the mountain peaks are yours.
Yours is the sea, for you made it,
The dry land as well, for your hands formed it.

Come, let us bow down in worship; Let us kneel before YHWH, our Maker. For you are our God,
And we are the people you shepherd, The flock under your care.

Jubilate (Psalm 100, The Inclusive Bible translation)

Acclaim YHWH with joy,
All the earth!
Serve YHWH with gladness!
Enter into God’s presence with a joyful song! Know that YHWH is God!

YHWH made us, and we belong to the Creator; We are God’s people
And the sheep of God’s pasture.
Enter God’s gates with thanksgiving

And the courts with praise! Give thanks for God!
Bless God’s Name!

For YHWH is good;
God’s steadfast love endures forever, And God’s faithfulness
To all generations.

Pascha Nostrum (Christ our Passover; 1 Corinthians 5:7-8; Romans 6:9-11; 1 Corinthians 15:20-22, The Inclusive Bible translation)

Alleluia.
Christ our Passover has been sacrificed. So let us celebrate the feast – not with old yeast, the yeast of corruption and wickedness,
but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
Knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, will never die again:
death is now powerless over our Savior.
When Christ died, Christ died to sin, once for all,
so that the life Christ lives is now life in God.
In this way, you too must consider yourselves to be dead to sin –
but alive to God in Christ Jesus
Christ has in fact been raised from the dead,
the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep.
For since death came through one human being,
in the same way the resurrection of the dead has come through one human being. Just as in the first human all die,
so in Christ all will come to life again.

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Scripture Readings and Canticles

Read/Pray the Psalm for the Day

All: Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Read Scripture the Old Testament, Epistle and/or Gospel reading for the day.

Canticles (Choose one+)

Canticle 15
Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55, The Inclusive Bible translation) 
My soul proclaims your greatness, O God,
and my spirit rejoices in you, my Savior.
For you have looked with favor
upon your lowly servant,
and from this day forward
all generations will call me blessed.
For you, the Almighty, have done great things for me, and holy is your Name.
Your mercy reaches from age to age
for those who fear you.

You have shown strength with your arm;
you have scattered the proud in their conceit; you have deposed the mighty from their thrones and raised the lowly to high places.
You have filled the hungry with good things, while you have sent the rich away empty.
You have come to the aid of Israel your servant, mindful of your mercy –
the promise you made to our ancestors –
to Sarah and Abraham
and their descendants forever.

Canticle 17
The Song of Simeon (Luke 2:29-32)
Now, O God, you can dismiss your servant in peace, just as you promised;
because my eyes have seen the salvation
which you prepared for all the peoples to see –
a light of revelation to the Gentiles
and the glory of your people Israel.

Canticle 19
The Song of the Redeemed (Revelation 15:3-4) 

Mighty and wonderful are your works,
O God Almighty!
Just and true are your ways,
O Ruler of the nations!
Who would dare refuse your honor,
or the glory due your Name, O God?
Since you alone are holy,
all nations will come
and worship in your presence.
Your mighty deeds are clearly seen.

Canticle A
A Song of Wisdom (Sapientia liberavit Wisdom 10:15-19,20b-21)

Wisdom freed from a nation of oppressors *
a holy people and a blameless race.
She entered the soul of a servant of the Lord, *
withstood dread rulers with wonders and signs.
To the saints she gave the reward of their labors, *
and led them by a marvelous way;
She was their shelter by day *
and a blaze of stars by night.
She brought them across the Red Sea, *
she led them through mighty waters;

But their enemies she swallowed in the waves *
and spewed them out from the depths of the abyss.
And then, Lord, the righteous sang hymns to your Name, * and praised with one voice your protecting hand;
For Wisdom opened the mouths of the mute, *
and gave speech to the tongues of a new-born people.

Canticle B
A Song of Pilgrimage (Priusquam errarem Ecclesiasticus 51:13-16,20b-22)

Before I ventured forth,
even while I was very young, *
I sought wisdom openly in my prayer.
In the forecourts of the temple I asked for her, *
and I will seek her to the end.
From first blossom to early fruit, *
she has been the delight of my heart.
My foot has kept firmly to the true path, *
diligently from my youth have I pursued her.
I inclined my ear a little and received her; *
I found for myself much wisdom and became adept in her.
To the one who gives me wisdom will I give glory, *
for I have resolved to live according to her way.
From the beginning I gained courage from her, *
therefore I will not be forsaken.
In my inmost being I have been stirred to seek her, *
therefore have I gained a good possession.
As my reward the Almighty has given me the gift of language,*
and with it will I offer praise to God.

Canticle C
The Song of Hannah (1 Samuel 2:1-8)
My heart exults in you, O God; *
my triumph song is lifted in you.
My mouth derides my enemies, *
for I rejoice in your salvation.
There is none holy like you, *
nor any rock to be compared to you, our God.
Do not heap up prideful words or speak in arrogance; * Only God is knowing and weighs all actions.
The bows of the mighty are broken, *
but the weak are clothed in strength.
Those once full now labor for bread, *
those who hungered now are well fed.
The childless woman has borne sevenfold, *
while the mother of many is forlorn.
God destroys and brings to life, casts down and raises up; *

gives wealth or takes it away, humbles and dignifies. God raises the poor from the dust; *
and lifts the needy from the ash heap
To make them sit with the rulers *

and inherit a place of honor.
For the pillars of the earth are God’s * on which the whole earth is founded.

Canticle D
A Song of the Wilderness (Isaiah 35:1-7,10)
The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, *
the desert shall rejoice and blossom;
It shall blossom abundantly, *
and rejoice with joy and singing.
They shall see the glory of the Lord, *
the majesty of our God.
Strengthen the weary hands, *
and make firm the feeble knees.
Say to the anxious, “Be strong, do not fear! *
Here is your God, coming with judgment to save you.” Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, *
and the ears of the deaf be unstopped.
Then shall the lame leap like a deer, *
and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy.
For waters shall break forth in the wilderness *
and streams in the desert;
The burning sand shall become a pool *
and the thirsty ground, springs of water.
The ransomed of God shall return with singing, *
with everlasting joy upon their heads.
Joy and gladness shall be theirs, *
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

Canticle E
A Song of Jerusalem Our Mother (Isaiah 66:10-14)

Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her *
all you who love her,
Rejoice, rejoice with her, *
all you who mourn over her,
That you may drink deeply with delight *
from her comforting breast.
For thus says our God, *
“I will extend peace to her like a river,
the wealth of nations like an overflowing stream. “You shall nurse and be carried on her arm,
and you shall nestle in her lap.

“As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; * you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.
“You shall see, and your heart shall rejoice, *
you shall flourish like the grass of the fields.”

Canticle F
A Song of Lamentation (Lamentations 1:12,16; 3:19,22-24,26)

Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? *
Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow,
Which was brought upon me, *
inflicted by God’s fierce anger.
For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears, *
for a comforter is far from me, one to revive my courage. Remember my affliction and my bitterness, *
wormwood and gall!
The steadfast love of God never ceases, *
God’s mercies never end.
They are new every morning; *
great is your faithfulness.
“God is my portion,” says my soul, *
“therefore will I hope in God.”
It is good that we should wait quietly *
for the coming of God’s salvation.

Canticle G
A Song of Ezekiel (Ezekiel 36:24-28)
I will take you from among all nations; *
and gather you from all lands to bring you home. I will sprinkle clean water upon you; *
and purify you from false gods and uncleanness. A new heart I will give you *
and a new spirit put within you.
I will take the stone heart from your chest *
and give you a heart of flesh.
I will help you walk in my laws *
and cherish my commandments and do them. You shall be my people, *
and I will be your God.

Canticle H
A Song of Hosea (Hosea 6:1-3)
Come, let us return to our God, *
who has torn us and will heal us.
God has struck us and will bind up our wounds, * after two days revive us,
On the third day restore us, *

that in God’s presence we may live.
Let us humble ourselves, let us strive to know the Lord, * whose justice dawns like morning light,
its dawning as sure as the sunrise.
God’s justice will come to us like a shower, *
like spring rains that water the earth.

Canticle I
A Song of Jonah (Jonah 2:2-7,9)
I called to you, O God, out of my distress, and you answered me; * out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice.
You cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, *
and the flood surrounded me;
all your waves and billows passed over me.
Then I said, “I am driven away from your sight; *
how shall I ever look again upon your holy temple?”
The waters closed in over me, the deep was round about me; * weeds were wrapped around my head at the roots of the mountains. I went down to the land beneath the earth, *
yet you brought up my life from the depths, O God.
As my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, O God, *
and my prayer came to you, into your holy temple.
With the voice of thanksgiving, I will sacrifice to you; *
what I have vowed I will pay, for deliverance belongs to the
Lord!

Canticle J
A Song of Judith (Judith 16:13-16)
I will sing a new song to my God, *
for you are great and glorious, wonderful in strength, invincible. Let the whole creation serve you, *
for you spoke and all things came into being.
You sent your breath and it formed them, *
no one is able to resist your voice.
Mountains and seas are stirred to their depths, *
rocks melt like wax at your presence.
But to those who fear you, *
you continue to show mercy.
No sacrifice, however fragrant, can please you, *
but whoever fears the Lord shall stand in your sight for ever.

Canticle K
A Song of Our Adoption (Ephesians 1:3-10; The Inclusive Bible)

Praised be the Maker of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has bestowed on us in Christ every spiritual blessing in the heavens! Before the world began, God chose us in Christ to be holy and blameless and to be full of love; God likewise predestined us through Christ Jesus to be adopted children—such was God’s pleasure and will—that everyone might praise the glory of God’s grace which was freely bestowed on us in God’s beloved, Jesus Christ.

It is in Christ and through the blood of Christ that we have been redeemed and our sins forgiven, so immeasurably generous is God’s favor given to us with perfect wisdom and understanding. God has taken pleasure in revealing the mystery of the plan through Christ, 10 to be carried out in the fullness of time; namely, to bring all things—in heaven and on earth—together in Christ.

Canticle L
A Song of Christ’s Humility (Philippians 2:6-11)
Though in the form of God, *
Christ Jesus did not cling to equality with God,
But emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, * and was born in human likeness.
Being found in human form, he humbled himself *
and became obedient to death, even death on a cross. Therefore, God has highly exalted him *
and given him the name above every name,
That at the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow, *
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
And every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, * to the glory of God.

Canticle M
A Song of Faith 1 Peter 1:3-4,18-21
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, * by divine mercy we have a new birth into a living hope; Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, * we have an inheritance that is imperishable in heaven. The ransom that was paid to free us *
was not paid in silver or gold,
But in the precious blood of Christ, *
the Lamb without spot or stain.
God raised Jesus from the dead and gave him glory *
so that we might have faith and hope in God.

Canticle N

A Song of God’s Love (1 John 4:7-11; The Inclusive Bible translation) 

“Beloved,
let us love one another
because love is of God;
everyone who loves is begotten of God
and has knowledge of God.
Those who do not love have known nothing of God,
for God is love.
God’s love was revealed in our midst in this way:
by sending the Only Begotten into the world,
that we might have faith through the Anointed One.
Love, then, consists in this:
not that we have loved God,
but that God has loved us
and has sent the Only Begotten
to be an offering for our sins.
Beloved,
if God has loved us so, we must have the same love for one another.”

Canticle O
A Song of the Heavenly City (Revelation 21:22-26, 22:1-4)
I saw no temple in the city, *
for its temple is the God of surpassing strength and the Lamb.
And the city has no need of sun or moon to light it, *
for the glory of God shines on it, and its lamp is the Lamb.
By its light the nations shall walk, *
and the rulers of the world lay their honor and glory there.
Its gates shall never be shut by day, nor shall there be any night; *
into it they will bring the honor and glory of nations.
I saw the clean river of the water of life, bright as crystal, *
flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb.
The tree of life spanned the river, giving fruit every month, *
and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of nations.
All curses cease where the throne of God and the Lamb stands,
and all servants give worship there; *
there they will see God’s face, whose Name shall be on their foreheads.

Canticle P
A Song of the Spirit (Revelation 22:12-17; The Inclusive Bible)

“Remember, I am coming soon!
I bring with me the reward
that will be given to all people
according to their conduct.
I am the Alpha and the Omega,
the First and the Last,
the Beginning and the End.

Happy are they who wash their robes
so as to have free access to the tree of life
and enter the city through its gates.
Outside are the dogs, the sorcerers,
debaucherers, murderers,
idolaters and the deceitful.
“It is I, Jesus, who has sent my angel to give you this testimony about the churches. I am the Root and Offspring of David, the Morning Star shining bright.”

The Spirit and the Betrothed say, “Come!”
Let the one who hears it answer, “Come!”
Let the thirsty come forward. Let all who desire it accept the gift of life-giving water.”

Canticle Q
A Song of Christ’s Goodness (Anselm of Canterbury)

Jesus, as a mother you gather your people to you; *
you are gentle with us as a mother with her children. Often you weep over our sins and our pride, *
tenderly you draw us from hatred and judgment.
You comfort us in sorrow and bind up our wounds, *
in sickness you nurse us and with pure milk you feed us. Jesus, by your dying, we are born to new life; *
by your anguish and labor we come forth in joy.
Despair turns to hope through your sweet goodness; * through your gentleness, we find comfort in fear.
Your warmth gives life to the dead, *
your touch makes sinners righteous.
Lord Jesus, in your mercy, heal us; *
in your love and tenderness, remake us.
In your compassion, bring grace and forgiveness, *
for the beauty of heaven, may your love prepare us.

Canticle R
A Song of True Motherhood (Julian of Norwich)
God chose to be our mother in all things *
and so made the foundation of his work,
most humbly and most pure, in the Virgin’s womb.
God, the perfect wisdom of all, *
arrayed himself in this humble place.
Christ came in our poor flesh *
to share a mother’s care.
Our mothers bear us for pain and for death; *
our true mother, Jesus, bears us for joy and endless life.
Christ carried us within him in love and travail, *
until the full time of his passion.
And when all was completed and he had carried us so for joy, * still all this could not satisfy the power of his wonderful love.
All that we owe is redeemed in truly loving God, *
for the love of Christ works in us;
Christ is the one whom we love.

Canticle S
A Song of Our True Nature (Julian of Norwich)

Christ revealed our frailty and our falling, * our trespasses and our humiliations. Christ also revealed his blessed power, * his blessed wisdom and love.

He protects us as tenderly and as sweetly when we are in greatest need; * he raises us in spirit
and turns everything to glory and joy without ending.
God is the ground and the substance, the very essence of nature;*

God is the true father and mother of natures. We are all bound to God by nature, *
and we are all bound to God by grace.
And this grace is for all the world, *

because it is our precious mother, Christ. For this fair nature was prepared by Christ for the honor and nobility of all, *
and for the joy and bliss of salvation.

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Creeds (Choose one of two):

God Our Mother Bear (by Sarah Moon)

I believe in God, our Mother Bear, source of all being.

I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s wisdom made flesh,
along with Sophia, the church, and all that live in wisdom. Born of the bad-ass womanist liberation theologian, Mary, suffered under the systems of oppression of this world, was crucified, died, and was buried,
forever joining in solidarity with those murdered by Empire.

On the third day, the women declared him risen;
signifying God’s “No” to oppression.
Jesus points to God our Mother Bear,
who works in this world, calling for justice for the poor and oppressed. I believe in Sophia Spirit, Christ’s body, the church,
the communion of saints,
the grace to reject this world’s systems, hope for justice in the future,
and renewed life everlasting. Amen.

God our Mother

We believe in the presence of God in the world. She is our mother, source of deep wisdom, who: holds and protects us,
nourishes our bodies, comforts our pain,
hears and accepts our times of failure and success.

She is our lover and is allowed to touch our pain: healing and recreating,
seeking out what is hidden,
revealing deep precious mysteries.

She is our friend who stands alongside us: working co-operatively for the common good, sharing our concerns,
fiercely criticizing our lack of integrity

We believe in the presence of God in our world.
We meet her as people met her in Jesus, in countless relationships
which are at once human and divine:
in simple encounters with all people,
in office and schoolroom, home and supermarket,
in the community of her people.
We believe in the presence of God in our world,
whose truth is denied, in anguish, like that of Jesus on the cross, whenever:
food is withheld,
the earth is poisoned, abused or destroyed,
people are oppressed, denied dignity and responsibility, tortured or killed.
Together we affirm the truth and goodness of God, our mother, lover and friend and commit ourselves to her in following the way of our brother Jesus.

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Prayers

Officiant: Hear our cry, O God.

All: And listen to our prayer.

Officiant: Let us pray.

The Lord's Prayer (Choose one of two):

The Lord’s Prayer (New Zealand Anglican Prayer Book)

Eternal Spirit, Earth-maker, Pain-bearer, Life-giver,
Source of all that is and that shall be, Father and Mother of us all,

Loving God, in whom is heaven:
The hallowing of your name echo through the universe!
The way of your justice be followed by the peoples of the world!
Your heavenly will be done by all created beings!
Your commonwealth of peace and freedom sustain our hope and come on earth.
With the bread we need for today, feed us.

In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In times of temptation and test, strengthen us.

From trials too great to endure, spare us. From the grip of all that is evil, free us. For you reign in the glory of the power that is love, now and forever.

Amen.

A Feminist Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, Mother, who are in the world and surpass the world,
Blessed be your presence,
in us, in animals and flowers, in still air and wind.
May justice and peace dwell among us, as you come to us.
Your will be our will;
You will that we be sisters and brothers, as bread is bread, water is itself,
For our hunger, for quenching of thirst. Forgive us.
We walk crookedly in the world,
are perverse, and fail of our promise. But we would be human,
if only you consent to stir up our hearts. Amen.

Suffrages (choose one of two)

Episcopal Suffrage

Officiant: Help us, O God our Savior;
All: Deliver us and forgive us our sins.
O: Look upon your congregation;
A: Give to your people the blessing of peace.
O: Declare your glory among the nations;
A: And your wonders among all peoples.
O: Do not let the oppressed be shamed and turned away; R. Never forget the lives of your poor.
A: Continue your loving-kindness to those who know you; R. And your favor to those who are true of heart.
O: Satisfy us by your loving-kindness in the morning;
A: So shall we rejoice and be glad all the days of our life.

Prayer to See (Mujerista Suffrage by Clarissa Pinkola Estes)

Officiant: May we ever leave the Unlit tangle we’ve gotten ourselves into -- again --
the one complete with blinders not of our making, or shutters we’ve studiously
hand-hammered over time.

All: May we instead, line up behind Black Madonna’s clear line of sight,
and her great strength, to see as closely
as mere humanlings can, to see as she sees with black light
fully illuminating anything that radiates, and to withstand what we see
with her Immaculate Love.

Officiant: May we unhood our heads and look into, under, behind, beyond all words and worlds, and see the winged soul lighting up the oiled map of our past, present, future that once seemed so hidden.

All: May our highways and byways be Illuminated by the passing map under “black light”... thereby learning how to travel, eyes wide open,
and when, why, how, where, and with whom.

Officiant: May we remember how sacred her “Foundry of Light,”
how deeply incubated we are, in Holy Mother, we, the children of the dark-skinned
Holy Woman who is unafraid of any dark.

All: May all be given the ways of seeing that most benefit the growth of rather than the restriction of their souls.

Collects (choose two or more):


A Collect for Peace
O God, the author of peace and lover of concord, to know you is eternal life and to serve you is perfect freedom: Defend us, your faithful, in all assaults of our enemies; that we, surely trusting in your defense, may not fear the power of any adversaries; through the Holy and undivided Trinity: One God. Amen.

Prayer for Mission
Almighty and everlasting God, by whose Spirit the whole body of your faithful people is governed and sanctified: Receive our supplications and prayers which we offer before you for all members of your holy Church, that in their vocation and ministry they may truly and devoutly serve you; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

Prayer for Renewal (Medical Mission Sisters)
God our Mother, Living Water, River of Mercy, Source of Life, in whom we live and move and have our being, who quenches our thirst, refreshes our weariness, bathes and washes and cleanses our wounds, be for us always a fountain of life, and for all the world a river of hope springing up in the midst of the deserts of despair. Honor and blessing, glory and praise to You forever. Amen.

Prayer for Spiritual Teachers (Nancy Steinbeck)
Jesus, please bless our spiritual teachers. Give them strength to nurture their fold. Help them to know by your example that they can be more than public saviors with private sins. Grant them the integrity to face their shadow side and the willingness to explore and expose it, and the courage to reject its seduction so that our spiritual teachers may set an example for us to seek support, comfort and honesty in all our relationships. Amen.

Prayer for Beauty (Changing Woman, Navajo)
Watch over us, your hand before us, protect us, heal us, make us well. As you speak to us, we speak to you: May it be beautiful before us, may it be beautiful behind us, may it be beautiful below us, may it be beautiful above us, may it be beautiful everywhere. Restore us in beauty. Restore us in beauty. Amen.

Prayer for Vocation (Gertrude of Helfta, Germany 1256- c. 1302)
Lord, in the presence of your love, I ask that you unite my work with your great work, and bring it to fulfilment. Just as a drop of water, poured into a river, becomes one with flowing waters, so may all I do become part of all that you do. So that those with whom I live and work may also be drawn to your love. Amen.

Prayer of Reliance (I Arise Today, Brigid of Kildare Abbey, Ireland, c.450-523)

I arise today through a mighty strength: God’s power to guide me, God’s might to uphold me, God’s wisdom to teach me, God’s eyes to watch over me, God’s ear to hear me, God’s word to give me speech, God’s hand to guard me, God’s way to lie before me, God’s shield to shelter me, God’s host to secure me. Amen.

People offer their own prayers, silently or aloud.

Concluding Prayer:

Holy and everliving God,
by your power we are created
and by your love we are redeemed;
guide and strengthen us by your Spirit,
that we may give ourselves to your service
and live this day in love to one another and to you; through Jesus Christ our Savior.
Amen.

Concluding Sentence:


Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more
than we can ask or imagine: Glory to God from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen.