Let us pray, Great Holy (a prayer for pastors)

Let us pray,
Great Holy,
for your servants
up in the night
wondering how
to best express
your love,
with an ear out
for sick children.

Please,
have an ear out
for us.

Let us pray,
Great Holy,
for ourselves,
up early,
full of plans
for how to serve You,
counting carnations
and sorrows,
one eye open.

Please,
keep an eye
on us.

Let us pray,
Great Holy,
for this world
full of troubles
for the the oppressed
and the hungry
and the homeless
and the terrified,
all birds in your nest.

Please,
spread your wings and
comfort us.

Let us pray,
Great Holy,
for the change-makers
and the talk-walkers
who inspire us.
Make us more like them:
forthright, courageous,
truth-telling despite risk
unsafe, but secure.

Please,
give that push
to us.

In Christ’s name. Amen.

Out of Steam (a prayer for pastors)

Dear God,

Some days, some weeks
we struggle to serve you.
We are flat out of steam.

We are grieving
for lost colleagues,
friends and family.

We lament decisions
by authorities and
individuals.

We wonder at the rise
of certain kinds
of people.

We know too well
why your gifted ones
languish.

We are dismayed,
disheartened,
flat out of steam.

Our fires burn too low
to keep us
going.

We need you, Lord Jesus,
and the gasp
of recognition.

We need you, Great Spirit,
and the heat of
Holy Flame.

We need you, God of all,
for the stoking
of our hearts.

Light your fire in us
and under us,
we pray.
Amen.

Fierce and Fabulous for Jesus (an Easter prayer for pastors)

When they returned from the tomb, they reported all these things to the eleven and all the others. (Luke 24:9, CEB)

Fragrant were the spices they carried
to the tomb that morning,
pungent and piercing,
like the words of women today
who call on us to speak the truth
not just with our speech
but with our actions.

Fabulous were the angels they saw,
two men in dazzling array,
good news bringers
like the powerful sisters
who remind us the gospel
is not white sugar-coated
but for everyone.

Fierce were the women themselves
in their trip to the garden,
and in their encounter with the men,
like clergywomen of our time
who call lairos on patriarchy:
the powers cannot keep him on the cross;
Christ is free in the world.

Fierce must we be, my sisters,
for we serve that risen Lord
This is my prayer for you:
Be fierce and fabulous for Jesus!
Go out and preach Christ resurrected!
Alleluia! Amen.


I offer this prayer with gratitude for Wil, Traci, Naomi, Kentina, Leila, Denise, Jan, Anne, Laura, Katie, Angie, Marci, Amy, Carol, Hannah, Kwame, Ruth, Julia, Joanna, Sally-Lodge, Mary, and Karyn, and so many others in the RevGals community who speak the truth fearlessly like the women on that first morning. May the world have ears to hear.

Sweet hosannas (a prayer for pastors)

Holy One,
bless your servants:

the new preacher facing palms and parades
and processions and passion,

and the just-back-from-youth-retreat
pastor rubbing sleep from her eyes,

and the artistic ones who
lined the aisle with cloaks,

and directors of congregational drama
handing scripts out at the door,

and small church pastors praying for
the voices to make sweet hosannas ring,

and the brave hearts herding children,
and even donkeys,

and the downhearted preacher
with troubles of her own,

and the displaced wishing dearly
for any pulpit in Holy Week,

and the far-commuting Interim
wondering if the palms even arrived.

“Hosanna!
Blessed is the one who comes
in the name of the Lord!”

Bless us today
as you blessed the world long ago.
Amen.

What the world needs to hear (a prayer for pastors)

Dear God,

We have studied,Jesus
poring over our Bibles,
parsing ancient languages,
picking through commentaries,
penciling notes in the margins,
pondering your meaning.
picking out the words
the world needs to hear:
grace, mercy, justice.

Jesus.

Bless the work we have done,
and the words we will say,
and all those who will hear them,
we ask in His name. Amen.

Reorient (a prayer for pastors)

File Mar 19, 8 33 20 AMO Holy One
We thank you

For trips that dislocate us
For maps that reorient us
For views we could not have imagined
For voices we never quite heard before

For all travel that leads to you

For armchair journeying in a good book
For podcasters with unfamiliar perspectives
For conversation partners who push us
For prayer that redirects us

For all travel that leads to you

For taking off with all we think matters
For coming home with nothing to show for it
For thirsty work and unexpected meetings
For hurrying back to share the good news

For all travel that leads to you
We thank you

Bleary-eyed (a prayer for pastors)

For bleary-eyed preachers
Clock-lagged, exhausted,
And those wondering if
This church will see another Lent,
And those eager for the view
From the next pulpit,
And those just getting started,
Clear-eyed and expectant,
In your mercy Lord,
Hear our prayer.

For the weary-souled pastors
Grieving dear ones who have died,
And those missing church folk
Who have moved or moved on,
And for those with a long list
Of things that must be done today,
And for those who woke already
Pondering the holy nap,
In your mercy Lord,
Hear our prayer.

For the journeywoman preacher
Leaning on a sustainable sermon,
And the recently ordained with
More to say than time allows,
And the bivocational pastor,
Notes scribbled between clients,
For the brilliant homileticians
To whom it comes so easily –
Yea, verily, even for them –
In your mercy Lord,
Hear our prayer.