Last week the ELCA Churchwide Assembly adopted a resolution that, among other things, declared the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) a sanctuary denomination. Many of you are asking, “What does this mean?”
Holy One, you formed the church to announce the words of eternal life to the world. Equip the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America which concluded its Churchwide Assembly yesterday to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. Gather the church together into one body for the sake of our shared mission to tell of the love of God. Filled with your Word, turn the church inside out so that we might live lives that proclaim your freedom and renewal to all the world. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.
O God, source of all life, you raised Jesus from the dead and gave us the Spirit of his resurrection. Unbind your church from sin and the fear of death. Set us free to praise you with grateful hearts and to serve the world in Jesus’ name, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
O Light Unseen, O Love unknown, O Life unending, your Word came as one among us to draw us to your loving heart and give us your abundant life. Pour out upon your wounded world grace upon grace through your Beloved, Jesus Christ, our Light and our Salvation. Amen.
Almighty and all-merciful God, for freedom you have set us free from every power that would enslave us. Create in us the heart of a servant and bind us to our neighbors with the love of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.