Excerpted by permission from "Coming Out As Sacrament."

This is written for a person or persons who wish to publicly commit to working for justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people, both in the church and in society. The liturgy may be read responsively, possibly sharing leadership, or antiphonally.

Reading: Exodus 3:1-12; Esther 4:6-16

(Reflections my be inward and silent, or spoken [homily or dialogue], sung, dramatized, danced, or omitted.)

Leader: Sometimes God gives us a visible sign such as a burning bush to call us to commitment. But often, the only visible signs that call us are the circumstances of injustice.

People: We must turn to see the signs of our times. We must turn to listen for God's voice.

Leader: N.! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.

N.: Here I am, Sovereign God. (Remove shoes)

People: I am the God of your fathers and mothers, the God of Abraham and Sarah and the God of Mary and Joseph, the God of Ruth and Naomi and the God of Jonathan and David. I have observed the misery of my Rainbow people: I have heard their cry, I know their sufferings, I have come to deliver them. So come, I will send you to bring my people, my lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people, out of oppression.

N.: Who am I that I should bring your Rainbow people out of oppression?

People: I will be with you; and this shall be the sign for you that it is I who sent you: when you have brought the people out of oppression, you all shall worship here together.

N.: You know what happens to those who go uninvited into the courts of power and stand up for the oppressed!

People: Do not think that in this place of worship you will escape injustice. Who knows? Perhaps you have been created for such a time and place as this!

N.: Then fast and pray with me, and I will work for justice. If my well-being is threatened, so be it.

Hymn: "Walk With Me"
(Words and Music by John Rice)

Laying On of Hands

(N. kneel[s]; all gathered lay hands on N. for the commission to justice.)

Leader: You will receive power as the Holy spirit comes upon you, and you will be God's witness (es) here and to the ends of the earth. (Acts 1:8)

People: See, I make you as God to those who oppress. To the oppressed you will bring light and gladness, joy and honor. (Exodus 7:1; Esther 8:16)

The Prayer That Jesus Taught Us

Leader: Let us pray.

People: God, Father and Mother of us all, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.

From "Coming out as Sacrament." Copyright 1998, Chris R. Glaser. Used by permission of Westminster John Knox Press. Orders may be placed by calling 1-800-227-2872.

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