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Offertory Prayers and Invitation for February 2015

Black College Fund

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 our connectional giving, we support ministry with students of all ages, including those who have had the door to education opened to them through our eleven Historically Black Colleges. Through your generosity in support of the Black College Fund, students are empowered to learn, to succeed, and to change the world. For many of these students, your support is “a life-changer.” This ministry happens thanks to the way the people of The United Methodist Church live and give connectionally. I invite you once again to give generously as we worship God through the sharing of our gifts, tithes, and offerings.

Learn more about our Historically Black Colleges at: www.umcgiving.org/pastors/resources?category=2753

February 1, 2015 -- Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany
Holy God, Architect of all we know and all we do not know, bless the gifts we offer up to you this day. As we are reminded this morning of the authority you have given your precious son, so we remember how, in turn, he passed it on to us. Help us to see that the authority we have is not to wield power over one another, but to stir the power of compassion, hope, and love in one another. We pray this in the name of Jesus, the source of compassion, mercy and healing. Amen. (Mark 1:21-28)

February 8, 2015 -- Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany
God of grace and mercy, you are the source of the true healing that can make us whole. We remember this morning that Jesus’ ministry was deeply involved in both healing of people’s bodies and healing of relationships. As we take time now in worship to offer our gifts to you, we pray that they might be used to bring healing – of body, of spirit, of broken relationships – to people who are in desperate need. We pray this in the holy Jesus’ name. Amen. (Mark 1:29-39)

February 15, 2015 – Last Sunday after the Epiphany (Transfiguration)
God of Transformation, we come together as those who have met you on the mountaintop. We have each had our holy encounters with you; and in those moments, we have wanted to stay on the mountain and retreat from the world. We know that is our longing, not yours. So as we offer our gifts this morning in response to your blessings in our life, remind us that our mission begins as we leave this place, and help us hold our memories of those mountaintop encounters with you in our hearts. We pray boldly in Jesus’ name. Amen. (Mark 9:2-9)

February 22, 2015 – First Sunday in Lent
Ever-loving, ever-giving God, as we bring our gifts to your altar, we confess our need for repentance. We have often let the call of the world drown out your call in our lives. We have given in to the temptation to see the world and its resources as ours to use as we please. We have lived too often as if we were the center of the universe, and we have ignored your pervading presence. Help us move through this season with repentant, generous hearts so that we might not just see your great blessings on us, but see ways to be a blessing to others. In the wonderful name of Christ, our Savior and redeemer, we pray. Amen. (Mark 1:9-15)

UMNS Photo by Mike Dubose

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