PASTO R S TOOLKIT YEARS OF BEING WITH THOSE

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1 PASTO R S TOOLKIT 75 YEARS OF BEING WITH THOSE I N T I M ES O F C R I S I S

2 Call to worship By Gohar Grigoryan, head of mission for UMCOR Armenia (Psalm 107:1-3, Ephesians 2:1-10, John 3:14-21, Numbers 21:4-9) Together: Let us give thanks to the Lord for God s unfailing love. Tell of God s works with songs of joy. Lord s love endures forever. I God redeemed us, gathered from east and west, from north and south. We are God s workmanship. We are created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Be hope, be UMCOR. Celebrating 75 years of being with those in times of crisis. Together: II (Inspired by the Prayer of St. Francis) God, where there is hopelessness, Give us the grace to spread hope. Where there is sorrow, give the grace of consoling, rather than being consoled. Understand others, rather being understood. Love with all my heart. Love as you have loved, as when giving we receive, forgiving we receive forgiveness. Be hope, be UMCOR. Celebrating 75 years of being with those in times of crisis Together: III Teach us, God, to see and serve at any time, To give without estimating the exchange, To struggle without being offended, To work without seeking a rest, And to serve without thinking about reimbursement, but with the desire to accomplish your will. Be hope, be UMCOR. Celebrating 75 years of being with those in times of crisis.

3 Prayer By Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey Gracious and holy God, you have called us to bring hope to people and places where hope seemed impossible. When the road came to an end, you were there. You have called your people to not just bring water to drink, but to bring water that is life-giving and food that not only feeds our bellies, but also our souls. From the far reaches of Sub-Saharan Africa and the flooded fields of the Philippines, to urban streets in the United States, you have called your people to be hope. For 75 years you have called us through the United Methodist Committee on Relief to love extravagantly. We thank you, O God, for entrusting us to such a task; a task that calls for courage, that calls for risk. Continue to stir in us that we might hear the cries of those we call brother, sister, neighbor, friend. Amen. Call to prayer Give thanks to the Lord! God s love endures forever! God has gathered us from the east and the west, the north and the south, From Kansas to Zimbabwe, Pennsylvania to New Orleans, North Carolina to Haiti, Sudan to Ohio, Texas to New Jersey. God has heard the cries of the children. God s healing hand has been upon them. When the floodwaters came and the earth shook, God s steady hand was upon them. God satisfies those who thirst and hunger for food and for the touch of a loving hand. The hungry have been filled and those who thirst have received living water. We give thanks to the Lord. For calling your people to be hope to be UMCOR

4 Pastoral prayer Be hope, be UMCOR. Celebrating 75 years of being with those in times of crisis. By Marji Bishir Hill, associate director of connectional ministries at North Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church Lord of Life, When the soft gentle breezes become fierce gusts of whirling wind, And the translucent clouds become thick and black with rain, When the waves of the sea are no longer gentle, but crash along the shore, And thunder cracks and makes dogs howl. You hear our cry, O God, in our trouble and distress. For you make storms be still and hush the waves of the sea. You gather us in from the east and the west, from the north and from the south. You hear our cry and show us compassion. When the earth has been pummeled and houses have been washed away, You stir up the people who are spared. You give them the desire to come to their neighbor s aid. Their deeds are done in your almighty name, For we are called to bear witness to the reality of Jesus victory. For years afterwards, one generation will tell stories of God s mercy to another. Stories of UMCOR will be lifted up with prayers of thanksgiving. The righteous will remember and declare with joy what God has done. Continue to lead and guide us, we pray, into all the world. Amen. Call for confession (unison) Merciful God we confess that we have not loved you with our whole heart. We have failed to be an obedient church. We have not done your will, we have broken your law, we have rebelled against your love, we have not loved our neighbors, and we have not heard the cry of the needy. Forgive us, we pray. Free us for joyful obedience, Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Confession and Pardon, The United Methodist Hymnal, (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1989), 8.

5 Most Holy God, By Laura Wise, mission intern We give you thanks; Thanks for being almighty, all knowing and always on time. We give thanks for the dynamic foresight of our Methodist foremothers and forefathers, who saw the necessity for a United Methodist Committee on Relief 75 years ago. We give thanks for the walls of life, and the opportunities they provide. The walls in which you dwell inside of our hearts. The physical walls of the places we find ourselves living and working and the spiritual walls of the kingdom that we are called to help build. Where communities have been destroyed by disaster and poverty, we give thanks for the opportunity to be in mission. We give thanks for UMCOR s commitment to building and rebuilding those physical and spiritual walls. We give thanks for the work of UMCOR, serving in partnership with the people of the church, as the hands and feet of Christ in the world. We give thanks for their continuous efforts to alleviate all human suffering. You are the lantern that guides us O Holy God, and we acknowledge the call to reflect your light in the world. On this special Sunday, as we celebrate One Great Hour of Sharing, we say thank you! We give thanks for the light our church continues to shine into the darkest corners of the world through the work of UMCOR. As we move towards the cross on this fourth Sunday of Lent, renew the spirit of mission-driven purpose in our lives. As we give generously on this day to support UMCOR, let our gifts represent our light, that they may be seen plainly in the sight of God. Lord God, on this day, let us celebrate! Let us be united in our efforts to spread abundant life in this world. Let us be hope. Remind us that we are all UMCOR, as we celebrate the past 75 years of being with those in times of crisis, while looking ahead to the next 75. In your holy name we pray, Amen. Benediction By Bishop Hee-Soo Jung As we go forth, we remember that the God who loved the world enough to send Jesus the Christ is the same God who invites us to share the love of Christ wherever we go. And, through UMCOR, we go into all the world. Be hope, be UMCOR. Celebrating 75 years of being with those in times of crisis. Thanks be to God!

6 Children s moments Children s moment: What do you want to be? By Rev. Debra R. Tyree, executive secretary for Global Praise Materials and preparation: Collect the following from friends and church members: 1. Small toys that are symbols of the kinds of things that represent professions that children talk about being when they grow up such as a toy stethoscope, thermometer, bandages (doctor, nurse, EMT), toy fire truck or police car (fire/police, emergency helper), a toy car (car mechanic), computer keyboard or mouse (teacher, computer designer), video game controller (video game creator), male and female dolls (moms and dads), stuffed dog or cat (veterinarian), play vegetables or stuffed cow (farmer), Bible (preacher, children/youth minister) and other symbols that are appropriate in your context for what children may want to be when they are grown up. 2. Small toys that can symbolize a few of the ways UMCOR is engaged in ministry such as a small bucket, bandages, a bottle of water, toy food, small notebook, pencil and t-shirt. Has anyone asked you what you want to be when you grow up? They have? I brought some symbols of the kinds of things I ve heard you may want to be when you grow up. (Pull out each of the grown up toys one by one. Ask, What does this represent? Affirm their choices or guide them and then move on to the next toy.) We need people to be involved in all of these kinds of careers and even more as it takes all of us to help make everyone s lives better. There are some things we can be at any age. You don t have to be a grown-up. You can be kind, you can help make people happy and you can be helpful. We can be so many positive things in our community. But, how can we be kind, help make people happy or be helpful if those people live far, far, away when floods, hurricanes or other disasters happen? Through UMCOR, we can be helpful after storms and fires (hold up the bucket), we can help people get fresh water and food (hold up the water bottle and toy food), we can help them with clean clothes (hold up the t-shirt) and even make sure they have school supplies (hold up the notebook and pencil.) UMCOR also offers things that you can t hold in your hand such as a comforting touch, a willingness to listen as people share their concerns and prayer with and for the people who are in need. You know what all of that is? That is being hope we can be the ones who remind people that someone else cares, that Jesus loves them and that together we can work to make their lives more secure. UMCOR is one way that we, as United Methodists, are hope to the world. We offer our prayers, our donations and even our hands to UMCOR to join together with so many others in The United Methodist Church to be something very special together we can be hope in Jesus name.

7 Let us pray together. Dear Jesus, Thank you for the many ways you are in our lives. Please guide us as we decide how to spend our lives helping others. We know that you are with those who are hurting and hungry, those who are sick and those who want to go to school to learn. Help us find ways to be there, too, through the ministry of UMCOR. We thank you for the ability to be hope in people s lives in times of disaster through UMCOR. Help us remember that with you we can bring hope to the world. We ask this in your name. Amen. Children s moment: Happy 75th anniversary UMCOR By Rev. Debra R. Tyree, executive secretary for Global Praise Materials and preparation: 1. Purchase an inexpensive plastic tablecloth from a discount store or ask a friend or church members if they have one you could use. Fold the tablecloth and cut it into strips approximately 3 inches wide by 24 inches long to make streamers. You need to create 75 streamers. You can hold 3 to 5 strips together and tie them with an overhand knot to create a multi-strand streamer or simply use one strip per child (or one per congregation member!) 2. Create a simple Happy 75th Anniversary UMCOR poster. You may want to glue the pictures you choose for #3 to add color to the poster. 3. Visit UMCOR.org and select two to three stories that you know will have meaning to the children in your setting. Consider stories about children s needs such as nutrition, clean water, school supplies, flood relief or other topics the children in your setting may be interested in hearing about. Print out pictures from the stories and prepare a three to four sentence summary story about each picture to share with the children. You can use the pictures to decorate your UMCOR poster. We re having a party this morning! (Pass out a streamer to each child and to congregation members until they are all handed out. Individuals can hold more than one streamer as needed.) We re going to celebrate something that is 75 years old today! Every time I say the number 75, I want you to wave your streamer and say UMCOR! The United Methodist Committee on Relief is celebrating 75 years (UMCOR!) of ministry this year. This committee has the nickname UMCOR: United Methodist Committee on Relief. (Point to the letters on the poster as you say the name.) UMCOR is the ministry of our church that is among the first to help when there are disasters anywhere in the world. UMCOR has been bringing hope to people in need for 75 years. (UMCOR!) That s a long time to be sharing Jesus love and hope with people who are hurting. Here is a picture of one way UMCOR is helping people. (Show the picture and share one of the stories you have chosen.) UMCOR has been hope for 75 years. (UMCOR!) (Share each of the stories you have chosen followed by the sentence UMCOR has been hope for 75 years. (UMCOR!) ) You know what? We know the number of years UMCOR has been helping people. UMCOR is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. (UMCOR!) Can everyone wave your streamer? This is what 75 of something looks like. (UMCOR!)

8 But even as fun as parties are, the fact that it s the 75th anniversary (UMCOR!) isn t the really important thing to remember about UMCOR. Here is what is important: Through the ministry of UMCOR, we are able bring the hope of Jesus love. We bring hope to people who need to know that someone cares for them. We become hope to the world as we share Jesus love through flood buckets, clean water, medicine, safe housing, a comforting touch, a willingness to listen and so much more. All of this happens because for 75 years, (UMCOR!) the people of The United Methodist Church have supported UMCOR with their prayers, their gifts and through their hands on mission service. And that is worth celebrating! Let s pray together. Dear Jesus, Thank you for the many ways we have brought hope to people through the ministry of UMCOR. Help us to work together so that people will be able to experience the love and hope of Jesus through UMCOR for many more years to come. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.

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