Tuesday, January 16, 2018

A Thanksgiving for Life within the Church

Continuing my between-semester time with the revised St. Augustine Prayer Book. I appreciate this prayer for its simplicity and rootedness in Baptism and the Eucharist. I appreciate this prayer because it's an institutional prayer in an anti-institutional age that nevertheless feels capable of being subversive, just to the extent that it calls the institution to the heart of of who and whose we are. Lastly, I appreciate this prayer because of the holy friends its petitions call to mind and for whom it invites my thanks to God.

We give you thanks and praise, Lord Jesus Christ, that you have called us into your fellowship:

For those who first taught us to pray and opened the gospels to us;
we give you thanks.

For those who stood with us at the font;
we give you thanks.

For the abundance grace of baptism, by which we were granted forgiveness and a place in your kingdom;
we give you thanks.

For the faith we confessed in the Creed and the call we accepted in the Baptismal Covenant;
we give you thanks.

For the gifts of the Holy Spirit and the sign of the cross, marking us as your own;
we give you thanks.

We give you thanks and praise, Lord Jesus Christ, that you have welcomed us at your table;
we give you thanks.

For the joy of worship with brothers and sisters;
we give you thanks.

For the Word proclaimed and heard anew week by week;
we give you thanks.

For hearing our prayers on behalf of the world, for those we love and our own needs;
we give you thanks.

For accepting our gifts and making them part of your eternal offering to the Father;
we give you thanks.

For giving us a place within the awe-filled hymn of all creation;
we give you thanks.

For the regular remembrance of your passion, death, and resurrection;
we give you thanks.

For the outward signs of inward grace you so freely give into our hands;
we give you thanks.

For the peace that passes understanding and the joy of service;
we give you thanks. Amen.

Grant us, O Lord, to receive with grateful hearts and with attentive minds all that you would give us. Make us to know your grace and to believe your promises, to offer with generosity all that you ask of us and to follow where you lead, into lives of service and an eternity of joy in your presence. Amen.

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