Confession, Liturgy, The People Pray

Like children afraid to tell their parents

Call to Confession

The Psalmist wrote, “The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” God has the compassion of a deeply loving parent. Beloved children of God, whatever troubling us today, let us bring it to God in prayer.

Prayer of Confession (Unison)

Holy One, like children afraid to tell their parents about something they have done wrong, we may hesitate to open our hearts to you.

We have trouble making peace when we disagree.
We have trouble forgiving ourselves for the things we have done and the things we have left undone.
We have trouble forgiving each other for hurts caused and words spoken and things forgotten.

Yet we know nothing is ever truly secret from you,
and so we will stop talking,
and pray you will listen to our hearts
beating the rhythm of repentance.

(Allow a time of silence.)

Assurance of Pardon (Responsive)

One: God’s love for us is great and steadfast. 
Many: God’s love for us is as high as the heavens are above the earth. 
One: Beloved in Christ, we are forgiven. This is the Good News that brings new life.
Many: We thank God for it.

You’re welcome to use the prayer or the image below in whatever way is useful this week. 

Confession, Liturgy, Prayer

The violence of our silence

Holy Three-in-One, 

What are human beings that you are mindful of them?

We confess that we forget the scale of our importance in the universe,
making ourselves larger and more powerful than we have any right to be.

We take the words of scripture
and twist them until we imagine ourselves to be like you,
all-knowing and all-powerful. 

We bend the meaning of your commandments
by classifying some people as less than human
and therefore not worthy of our care. 

We take offense,
insisting our personal behavior is innocent
while forgetting our complicity in systems that oppress.

Holy God, Creator, Christ, and Spirit,
we want to turn from our sinful ways.  

We repent and confess our actions:
the harm we have done in service of racism
as individuals and institutions,
both in history and today. 

We repent and confess our inactions:
the indifference of our ignorance and
the violence of our silence.

We ask for your forgiveness,
Holy One-and-Three,
yet we still have work to do.


Assurance of Pardon

Even as we grapple with our collective and personal sin, there is good news. God has loved us, loves us now, and will love us always. Trust in God’s abundant grace and healing mercy and live into the image of God we were created to be, forgiving and forgiven. 

This confession for Trinity Sunday is admittedly a prayer for majority white communities of faith, written in response to Psalm 8:4a. You are welcome to use the prayer or whatever parts of it might be useful in the coming week, as well as the image below. 

Confession, Liturgy

Holy God, we wonder (Confession and Pardon)

All: Holy God, we wonder, who will be welcome in your home?
We sometimes struggle to sort out what it means to be good, 
whose rules to follow –
yours or ours? 
We know you want us to do the right thing, 
but we hedge a bit about what that means, 
explaining how life is different,
and the world is complicated,
excusing our compromises. 
We find it hard to be honest when it matters,
and easy to be harsh when kindness is what’s needed. 
We use our power for our own benefit and overlook the ways we could help the people who really need us. 
Yet we know what is good:
to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with you.
We want to do better. Forgive us, we pray. 


One: Beloved, God forgives us, and welcomes us back into relationship, and makes a place for us. This is the good news that brings new life. 

This Confession and Assurance of Pardon are inspired by Micah 6:1-8 and Psalm 15. You are welcome to use the prayer and the image in worship. 

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