Nov 7, 2011

Litany of Confession: Proper 29A

Here’s a litany of confession for two voices written by Moira Laidlaw. It’s based on Ezekiel 34: 11-16, 20-24 and Matthew 25: 31-46, two of the suggested scripture readings for November 20, 2011 (Christ the King Sunday).

Litany of Confession
(based on Ezekiel 34, Matthew 25)

The prophet Ezekiel’s voice resonating across the centuries concerns a crisis in leadership.  Shepherds are failing to care for their flocks; leaders are exploiting the weak and driving people away and not looking after them.

But God, that was then, you can’t possibly mean that we do that now.

Surely we’re not driving people away.

We have to admit that there are times when we do act like the so-called leaders of society, concentrating on the ‘bottom line’ and our survival, building up our own resources, exercising inappropriate power….

Perhaps we are guilty of paying attention to the wrong things—when we put our own comfort first; when the church becomes the centre of our world and we fail to see beyond its walls.

Forgive us O God, if our eyes have been so fixed on priorities of our own making, that we have failed to look for Jesus in the hungry, the thirsty,  the stranger, the naked, the sick and the imprisoned.

Forgive us all the times we fail to touch people’s lives with acts of loving and caring, justice and mercy.
Remind us that we are empowered and enabled by your Spirit to witness to the values of your kingdom in and through all we do and say.
And Jesus said “Truly I tell you, just as you did to one of the least of these brothers or sisters, you did it to me.”  Amen

Assurance of Forgiveness
(based on 1 Peter 2: 24)

Jesus himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that, free from sins we might live for righteousness; by his wounds we have been healed. For we were going astray like sheep, but now have been returned to the shepherd and guardian of our souls.  (1 Peter 2:24)  The good news therefore is this:  In Jesus Christ we are sought, we are found, we are forgiven.
Thanks be to God!

— Copyright © Moira Laidlaw, posted on her Liturgies Online website. Visit that site for other great lectionary-based resources. 

For more worship resources related to this text, or other texts for November 20, 2011 (Reign of Christ or Christ the King Sunday), click on Proper 29A in the list of “Labels” at the lower right side of the page. 

For other resources related to confession, click on Confession or words of assurance in the list of “Labels” at the lower right side of the page, or see this Confession & Assurance index.