Offertory Prayer

Each month's Offertory Prayers includes an "Invitation to the Offering" (see below) along with a digital image for those who might want to use it. We hope you will find this a helpful way to remind the people in your pews that their offering travels to many places to make a powerful difference in the lives of people they may never meet. You can find great stories of the difference our giving makes at http://umcgiving.org.

Invitation to the Offering
The offering you made last week empowered ministry within our congregation and in response to the needs of our community. It also helped support the work of ministries beyond the local church that reach people who are in desperate need to feel the touch of love and reconciliation. Through churches that receive the “One Great Hour of Sharing” offering this year, we will support the disaster-response arm of the church, the United Methodist Committee on Relief or UMCOR. UMCOR is ready to respond on our behalf within minutes of a disaster occurring, and their specialty is long-term recovery. UMCOR is not always the first organization on the scene, but they are often the last ones to leave. This ministry happens, thanks to the way the people of The United Methodist Church live and give connectionally. I invite you to give generously as we worship God through sharing our gifts, tithes, and offerings.

Learn more about UMCOR at www.umcor.org. Find resources for the One Great Hour of Sharing Offering at www.umcgiving.org.

March 8, 2015 – Third Sunday in Lent
Holy God, Creator and Redeemer, you have commanded us to put no other gods before you. Often, our lives have demonstrated that we have done the opposite. We worship “gods” of power, wealth, beauty, popularity and self-gratification, to name only a few. As we give our gifts to you, we proclaim you as the one and only God of love, deserving of our dedication and praise. In your holy name, we pray. Amen.(Exodus 20:1-17)

March Offertory Prayers were written by the Rev. Dr. Ken Sloane, Director of Stewardship & Connectional Ministries at Discipleship Ministries, The United Methodist Church.

Monday, June 22, 2009

In need of healing, A reflection on Mark 5:21-34

Earlier lessons from Mark: From a small seed grows a large tree. Parables are used for people not ready to hear the explanation. In a storm, even disciples get scared. In the calm, even disciples wonder who Jesus is.

In this week's lesson, two people approach Jesus. Like the disciples from last week, they are in trouble. Like them, they turn to Jesus. Unlike them, one of those approaching him is a leader of the synagogue. He comes publicly. The other is a woman who has been suffering from a hemorrhage for over a decade.

An insider and an outsider. Both have faith in him. (Look back at the verses the lectionary skipped, 5:1-20. Jesus performs exorcisms in gentile territory.)

The disciples seem pretty much oblivious. He healed a woman right in front of them, but they don't notice. They are overwhelmed by the crowd.

Not the main point, but an interesting one, nevertheless. What great healings of ungreat people are happening and we don't see it or expect it?

2 comments:

zeke said...

i was struck by another message. jesus is in a hurry to heal jairus' daughter. it is an important person (a pharisee?) who is asking his help. in the middle of this "ambulance call" jesus stops the ambulance. someone else has taken his attention away from the girl. that someone else is supposed to be an outcast someone separated from the community by her bloody discharge. yet this outcast is the most important person in the world to him at that moment. he takes time and allows her to tell him her story. he tells her to go in peace. jesus' mission was to seek the outcast and make them whole. churches too should not be content with "churching" the people who comfortably sit in the pews, but should reach out to the misfits and those who struggle. the question is how do we do that? do we content ourselves with the fact that all are welcome at our church or do we meet them on their own turf.

Una Malachica said...

now you've got me pondering. what do we mean by the phrase "our church"? If we are followers of Jesus, why are we making a distinction between the turf that is theirs and the turf that is ours? That is, whose church is it, anyway?