Offertory Prayers and Invitation for March 2018
Each month’s Offertory Prayers includes an “Invitation to the Offering” along with a digital image for those who 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 shape leaders to be more effective instruments of God’s love and reconciliation in their ministry settings. Through our connectional giving, we make possible the coordination of the Wesleyan Pilgrimage to England, an event cosponsored by Discipleship Ministries, Higher Education and Ministry, and Archives and History. With the help of special scholarships, people who are in the process of entering ordained ministry get to encounter the Wesleyan traditions of our faith in an “up close and personal” way as they visit the sites that are such an important part of the legacy of John and Charles Wesley to the people called Methodist. 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.
Photo by Steve Manskar, Discipleship Ministries
March 4, 2018 – Third Sunday in Lent
Gracious God, we praise you! You revealed your love for the world in Jesus’ self-offering on the cross. It is a mystery: the sinless One died to save guilty humankind. We are grateful that you speak by your Word and Spirit, through pastors and teachers, to help us receive this gift. May we live with a deeper understanding of true foolishness and wisdom. We present our offerings to you, so that those who are weak in the world will be made strong through our church’s ministries. We pray in the name of Christ, who died and is risen indeed. Amen. (1 Corinthians 1:18-25)
March 11, 2018 – Fourth Sunday in Lent
Generous God, you beautifully show mercy to us, from the beginning of our life to the end, even to eternal life. We act more like your people in the Bible than we like to admit: doubting, impatient, complaining about the sweet manna you provide. Open our eyes to see the truth about ourselves. Give us hope in your power to heal and renew us, individually and as a church. By your Spirit, help us to trust you with our whole heart. May we respond to your great love with generosity. Receive these gifts and offerings for the renewal of our congregation and wider community in Jesus’ name. Amen. (Numbers 21:4-9)
March 18, 2018 – Fifth Sunday in Lent
God, our light and salvation, your forgiveness brings joy and gladness. Thank you for welcoming us to worship with open arms. Thank you for inviting us to follow Jesus as disciples who love you and love our neighbors. Keep us close to you, for in your presence we live. We dedicate ourselves and our offerings to you. Let your will be done by your Spirit at work in us a part of the church of Jesus Christ your Son. We ask this in his name and for his sake. Amen. (Psalm 51)
March 25, 2018 – Passion / Palm Sunday
O Lord, our God, your faithful goodness is beyond our understanding! You fulfill your promises at the right time. You sent the crowd of angels to sing of your glory when Jesus was born. At the height of Jesus’ ministry, people honored him and shouted your praises. Like them, we want to contribute to your kingdom coming on earth. It is a privilege to share in your mission in the world through this congregation. Accept our offerings as a sign of our love and gratitude. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen. (Mark 11:1-11)