Services For Worship And Pastoral Care

Source: The Complete Library of Christian Worship, Robert E. Webber, General Editor

Although pastoral care may be extended in every gathering of Christians for worship, there are occasions when particular needs may be addressed by a gathering called to pray for a specific concern or to celebrate a specific occasion. This section presents sample services for such occasions. They may be`adapted for use in local churches.

A Liturgy For The Long-term Seriously Ill

This liturgy is designed as a communal celebration of the sacrament of the anointing to take place within the context of a eucharistic liturgy. Family, friends, and, if possible, caregivers are invited to gather with the seriously ill in a place suitable for worship. The primary community of worship, however, remains the ill persons themselves. Care should be taken that the liturgy not be celebrated in such a way that the sick persons become passive observers because of a pace set by the healthy. Care should be taken too that the sick persons gathered achieve some sense of relationship among themselves, in addition to their relationships with family and friends.

A Liturgy For The Families And The Community Of The Terminally Ill

The following liturgy is designed for use of those who suffer along with the terminally ill. It is designed both to allow for prayers to be offered for the sick and their families or support communities and for the hope of Christ to be proclaimed.

A Liturgy For A Person Suffering From Addiction Or From Substance Abuse

The problems of addiction and substance abuse are among the most severe problems facing our culture today. Whereas some worshiping communities have remained silent about members who may be faced with these problems, worship services, such as the one outlined here, that identify the problem, offer prayers on behalf of those who suffer, and proclaim the hope that Christ embodies may be important occasions for healing and renewed commitment for those who suffer and for the whole community.

A Liturgy For A Victim Of Crime Or Oppression

Crime and injustice afflict every worshiping community. Some congregations are afflicted on a daily basis by the injustices perpetuated by our culture. The following service allows for prayers to be offered on behalf of those who suffer and proclaims the hope of Christ. Adapt as necessary to local needs.

A Prayer For The Healing Of Memories

In any worshiping community, there are persons, perhaps many persons, who suffer each day because of persistent memories of traumatic events in their past. Whether abused by a close relation, injured in war or in an accident, or rejected by a given person or group, memories can be a source of perpetual pain and affliction. The following prayer addresses such painful memories. Adapt or shorten as local situations may require.

A Liturgy For Survivors Of Abuse

The following liturgy is designed for use by survivors of abuse. It allows for the pain and suffering of the abuse to be turned into prayers that seek healing from God. This service may be adapted for use in local congregations for other acts of personal injustice.

A Litany Of Thanksgiving For Work

Work is part of the lives of many person in every worshiping community. Offering prayers of thanksgiving for meaningful work and for those who do it is an important act of pastoral care, which reinforces the important connection between corporate worship and the everyday lives of God's people. Adapt to local needs or customs, perhaps with references to work carried on by individual members of the worshiping community.

A Liturgy For Retirement From Work And Redirection In Vocation

The following liturgy may be used at the occasion of a retirement. It expresses thanksgiving for the blessings of work, petitions for God's continued direction, and promises of commitment to future service in God's kingdom. This service may be adapted for use in the local parish.