We had an awesome worship service yesterday. Our Synod Council voted to designate March 5 as a synod-wide emphasis on the National Youth Project with loose offerings on that day being designated of Mission Possible. The ELCIC Program Committee for Youth Ministry chooses a project every two years to focus the attention of the ELCIC youth. For 2004 - 2006 the project has been to raise a minimum of $70,000 to build a Habitat for Humanity home in Winnipeg (the site of the 2006 National Youth Gathering). A possible worship outline with some resources was provided so I went with it.
I'm teaching 5 kids in our confirmation class so I involved them in various ways as assistants in the service. I also got the Sunday School kids involved in various ways, from greeters and ushers to readers and choir. The worship resources included:
CONFESSION AND FORGIVENESS (focus on homelessness and inadequate affordable housing)
Call to Worship (Litany for Shelter from International Day of Prayer and Action for Habitat for Humanity)
Kyrie (A prayer from "The Small Catechism in a Hungry World." ELCA, 1992.)
PRAYER OF THE DAY (Prayer from "A Procession of Prayers." WCC Publications, 1998)
Instead of a sermon I performed a drama with some of the kids called "Beneath the Desert Sun" that I found somewhere on the internet but can't recall where. I had confirmation kids assist with all parts of the liturgy in the assisting minister roles, even distributing Holy Communion.
We did a run-through of the service on Friday evening and I had my doubts about how it would come off on Sunday morning. Before the service while I was making my announcements I asked the congregation's patience, mainly because of what I saw Friday night and because I figured some of the kids might get a case of the nerves in front of a congregation of people. After the service I apologized for apologizing for the kids because they did such a great job. Everyone loved the service and I was so proud of the kids, not just my own who were involved but all of them.