Home Offertory Prayers and Invitation to the Offering

Offertory Prayers and Invitation to the Offering

By Ken Sloane

Each month’s Offertory Prayers includes an “Invitation to the Offering” 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.

Stock financial analysis 72px

January 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work done by the General Council on Finance & Administration (GCFA) to help manage the ministry support needed to keep the outreach of The United Methodist Church strong, even during crises and pandemics.

Offering annual conferences their expertise in the “ministry of administration,” GCFA not only collects and distributes the apportioned funds given by local church members but it is also present to offer legal expertise through difficult situations. GCFA offers financial and human resources support for the whole church. Recently, the agency has been negotiating cost-saving arrangements with large vendors to free up more local church dollars for mission and ministry.

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to read more about financial services offered by GCFA through United Methodist Church support.

Offertory Prayers

Gbgm feb 2022
GBGM Photo by Kim Ingram

February 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work done by the General Board of Global Ministries, the mission arm of The United Methodist Church, in calling, preparing, and sending people into the mission field in other parts of the world and right here at home.

By June 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic had prompted many people around the world to just stay put. Rev. Julie Wilson (pictured) was not one of them. Her calling to serve as a missionary in the United States meant that she was going to be (safely) on the move.

Even though the pandemic deferred her official commissioning as a Church and Community Worker, Wilson was still virtually blessed and sent out to serve at Open Arms Community Center, a ministry of the Western North Carolina Annual Conference.

In July 2020, two weeks after arriving in Winston-Salem, Wilson wrote: “With the COVID-19 pandemic, we don’t quite know what this year will bring. But we have faith that God will lead us through.” (Julie was commissioned in person by Bishop Paul Leeland at the Western North Carolina Conference as pictured on June 19, 2021.)

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to read more about U.S. Missionaries of the General Board of Global Ministries.

Offertory Prayers:

Black college fund 72px
UM News photo by Mike DuBose

March 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the largest number of fully accredited historically Black colleges and universities in the United States through the Black College Fund. These eleven United Methodist-related historically black colleges and universities reach students who often are first-generation college coeds. Gifts to the Black College Fund support solid and challenging academic programs, faculty development, strong faculties, well-equipped facilities, the maintenance of infrastructure, and financial support and scholarships for students.

Following the Civil War, the former Methodist Episcopal Church organized the Freedmen’s Aid Society to help educate African Americans who could not read or write. In 1972, The United Methodist Church established the Black College Fund to provide reliable support for United Methodist-related historically Black colleges and to offer a chance to everyone with a dream and a commitment to excel – regardless of race, class, gender, or ethnic heritage. Many of these students would fall through the cracks and never earn a college degree, although they have the intellectual capacity to do so.

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to read more about the Black College Fund and the schools it supports.

Offertory Prayers:

Texas immigration 72px
UM News photo by Mike DuBose

April 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work of the worldwide United Methodist Church to ease the suffering of people forced to migrate from their country because of economic or political upheaval. Working on many levels with many agencies in The United Methodist Church and ecumenical partners, we work to build a more humane process to help those seeking asylum at the doorways to our country.

“We encourage United Methodists and others to amplify the suggestions offered by the General Board of Church and Society, the advocacy and justice agency of The United Methodist Church, and by Church World Service (CWS), a longstanding ecumenical partner in refugee resettlement and other migration work. Our work with National Justice For Our Neighbors (NJFON) includes support of their efforts to provide legal assistance for those seeking asylum as well as their increasing advocacy efforts.” - United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR)

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to read more about our ministry with migrants seeking asylum.

Offertory Prayers:

Y23 announcement article

May 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work of Discipleship Ministries to resource those involved in ministry with youth and young adults. This includes the quadrennial youth gathering, to be held next year in Daytona Beach, Florida! Youth 2023 will run from July 25-28, 2023. It continues a tradition that traces back to the first event held in 1988!

“…we have shared in the collective uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic. That sense of uncertainty has been multiplied because of what some see as an uncertain future for our denomination. All the more reason to bring the spirit, energy, and resiliency of youth together in one place at the YOUTH event. We believe that the young people who come to YOUTH 2023 will set an example for the church itself – demonstrating how to come together in Christian fellowship and celebrate our shared call to grow as world changing disciples of Jesus Christ, no matter the obstacle.” - From the YOUTH 2023 announcement

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to read more about ministry with young people.

Offertory Prayers:

Bishop group2
Photo by Maidstone Mulenga, Council of Bishops

June 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work of our Council of Bishops (composed of all elected bishops globally, both active and retired) through a very challenging time in the history of The United Methodist Church. Support for our bishops comes through the Episcopal Fund apportionments from local churches through their annual conferences.

At a time when the church was already in tension around questions of human sexuality, the COVID-19 pandemic was a crisis that had local and global challenges for The United Methodist Church. Our bishops provided leadership in many places where technology training, innovative funding, and deep spiritual care for both clergy and laity were significant factors in the survival of churches.

Some of our bishops were ready to retire in 2020, but due to the pandemic, General Conference had to be postponed, which in the U.S meant that jurisdictional conferences (where new bishops are elected) could not happen. In many places, bishops were asked to provide coverage for additional episcopal areas so their colleagues could fulfill their retirement plans. With everything else on their plates, bishops expanded their supervisory roles.

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to read more about the Council of Bishops

Click here to read more about the Episcopal Fund

Offertory Prayers

Article ministry with dementia

July 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work of Discipleship Ministries, equipping world-changing disciples of Jesus Christ to grow ministries in their congregation and communities.

One example of this was an online course launched in 2021 to help churches develop ministries with persons with dementia. Using the expertise of retired Bishop Kenneth L. Carder, this course made a huge impact. One participant wrote:

“I just ‘stumbled’ across the invitation to this course, on my Facebook feed, I think it was. It comes at a time when I feel God is calling me to get involved in advocating and developing faith-based ministry models that bring hope and comfort and ‘mercy’ to persons living with dementia, both within and outside the church. I have no experience--except my own with my spouse! No training! Yet, this course has offered so, so many avenues to be explored. Thank you for facilitating and writing this resource.... But being part of this class has given me hope and a greater conviction that God is calling his church to be involved, especially in ways that build authentic local communities.”

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to learn more about the course, The Church’s Ministry with Demetria.

A new Lay Servant course is coming based on Ministry with Dementia by Kenneth L. Carder. Click here to download the course catalog.

Offertory Prayers

GCORR CRT Discussion 72px

August 2022

Your offering last week empowered ministry within our congregation and responded to the needs of our community. It also supported the work of the General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR). In 1968, the General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) was formed to hold the newly formed United Methodist Church accountable in its commitment to reject the sin of racism in every aspect of the life of the church.

When controversy and division spread throughout this country on the topic of Critical Race Theory—with many of the arguments fueled by lack of information and misinformation—GCORR developed resources and brought together a panel to keep United Methodists better informed about Critical Race Theory’s role in beginning to heal the harm of racism.

"Critical Race Theory (CRT) examines how laws in the United States have built and supported racial inequities. It is an ideological framework that names race as a social construct and asserts racialized inequities in society are fostered by historic and current systemic, institutional, and legal policies and practices.”

Ministries like these happen, 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.

Click here to learn more about the work of the General Commission on Religion and Race.

Click here to learn more about the Critical Race Theory.

Offertory Prayers

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