Home Worship Planning Preaching Resources Offertory Prayers and Invitation for December 2016

Offertory Prayers and Invitation for December 2016

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

Mike Arteen Commissioning

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 our connectional giving, we support the General Board of Global Ministries (GBGM) and missionaries around the world — like Michael Arteen, a young Egyptian Christian recently commissioned at the 2016 General Conference in Portland, Oregon, and assigned to the Bethlehem Bible College in the West Bank. He follows retiring missionary couple Alex and Brenda Awad, who served as GBGM missionaries at the college for 21 years. With his wife Grace Al-Zoughbi (who was Brenda Awad’s student at Bethlehem Bible College) teaching a variety of Bible courses, Arteen serves as the chaplain and director of spiritual life at the college. So this Advent, as we follow Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem and welcome with the shepherds and angels the birth of Jesus, remember that United Methodists are still working to make the world a more welcoming place for the God of love and peace. This ministry happens thanks to the generous support of United Methodists like you. I invite you once again to give generously as we worship God through the sharing of our gifts, tithes, and offerings.

Learn more about the work of GBGM and Bethlehem Bible College »

UMNS photo by Mike DuBose

December 4, 2016 – Second Sunday of Advent

Gracious God, we lift our voices to glorify you! You sent your Son Jesus to lead us in wisdom and mercy. His kindness to the poor and meek reveals the harmony of your heavenly kingdom. Help our church’s ministries to demonstrate your love for the world. We dedicate our tithes and offerings to bless people in our community who are searching for Christ’s abiding peace. We pray in his name. Amen. (Isaiah 11)

December 11, 2016 – Third Sunday of Advent

Almighty God, thank you for the surprising ways that you bring salvation. You faithfully keep your covenant promises to Abraham and Sarah and their descendants. With Mary, we express deep gratitude for your help at unexpected turns in our lives. Give each of us a humble heart to serve you willingly and joyfully. Use these offerings to assist people who struggle with doubt or physical needs through the ministries of our church. We pray in your holy name. Amen. (Luke 1)

December 18, 2016 – Fourth Sunday of Advent

God of faithfulness and encouragement, we are grateful for the hope you freely give. By Christ’s birth in a lowly stable, you prepared the way for his ministry, crucifixion, and resurrection from the dead. Fill us with your Spirit to tell others the good news. As we present our offerings, we ask you to bless the youth and adults whose lives will be uplifted through the mission of this congregation. We pray through Jesus our risen Lord. Amen. (Romans 1)

December 24 or December 25, 2016 — Christmas Eve or Christmas Day

Great God our Redeemer, we sing your praises. Your glorious love shines in the face of Jesus, born a babe in this dark world. We marvel that he generously humbled himself to bring salvation. How precious is your gift of love! Let the light in our sanctuary and our songs of praise spill through the windows to neighbors dwelling in darkness. May our gifts and offerings reflect the light of Christ and, as beacons in the night, draw people far and near closer to you. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen. (Titus 2)

December 31, 2016 — Watchnight

Dear God who makes all things new, we praise you! You direct our paths, even when we do not recognize your presence. As we set out on the journey of this new year, we wonder what challenges we may face. Send your Holy Spirit, so that we may trust you completely. Direct our gifts and resources to fulfill your will for us individually and as a community of faith. We ask this through your Son who is Emmanuel, God with us. Amen. (Ecclesiastes 3)

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