Living the Questions is happy to join other Michael Morwood fans in welcoming the arrival of Michael’s newest book, Prayers for Progressive Christians. Michael first walks the reader through the theological shifts that are necessitating changes to liturgical, group, and personal prayer and then demonstrates how these major shifts can be incorporated into a new template for meaningful, contemporary prayer. With Michael’s permission, we’re posting several examples of prayers you’ll find in the book.
Prayers for Progressive Christians is available on both Amazon and on Michael’s website: morwood.org. Michael is a featured presenter in Living the Questions’ DVD curriculum, “Painting the Stars” and other LtQ programs.
A Prayer for Palm Sunday
We gather today
mindful of the many times
we have professed our readiness
to be true disciples of Jesus
to be salt of the earth
to be light in the world.
We acknowledge the daunting challenge
of this profession
in the society in which we live,
with its economic systems
that impoverish and disempower people,
and its political systems
that enable the rich to get richer
and the earth to become poorer.
We remember that Jesus
encountered in his day
systems as unjust as those
we experience in our day,
and who surely felt powerless
to change anything on his own.
We turn our hearts and minds
to his message
to his hopes and dreams
to his ardent desire
for a better society.
We focus on his struggle
his questions –
where to start?
how to start?
what to say?
whom to choose?
how to keep going?
how to be salt?
how to be light?
We call to mind
how Jesus urged his listeners
to put their trust
in the power of being neighbor
in the power of God’s Spirit within them
in the power of conversion
from religious thinking and practices
that made them feel inadequate
Our prayer today
is a prayer of resolve,
a prayer of determination
that we, each one of us,
will do whatever we can
in whatever way
to bring the real dream of Jesus
in our lives
and in our world today.
At the start of Holy Week
we focus on Jesus
human like us
a man with a dream for a better world
a man of extraordinary courage
a man on a journey to the end of his life
a man willing to die for what he believed
a man who knew
he would never see his dream fulfilled
a man who had to trust
that those who came after him
would keep his dream alive.
As we gather once more around bread and wine
we recall Jesus sharing bread and wine
with his friends
shortly before he died.
He invited them to eat and drink
as a sign of their readiness
to keep his memory alive
to give their all
for what he believed and taught.
We, too, eat and drink.
We stand up
as a sign of our readiness to be counted upon.
We give our word.
By our eating and drinking
we commit ourselves
to follow where Jesus dared to journey.
A Prayer for Easter
Today we remember and give thanks for Jesus
and the seasons of his life
– when he was full of life and hope and possibilities
– when life took him into unknown territory
– when life tested him to the limit
– when, in the depths of his Winter, he believed Spring would come.
This Easter season,
we rejoice that his life
and all that he lived for
all that he believed and taught
leads us to see beyond death and darkness
and to believe in transformation beyond our imagining.
In his memory,
we gather once more around bread and wine
symbols of nourishment
and of commitment.
We share this bread and wine today
to be Easter people,
people who see beyond the barriers,
the pain, the darkness and hard times,
people who live in faith, hope and love
in all the seasons of our lives
whatever the ups and downs.
We open our eyes,
we open our ears,
we open our hands,
we open our minds,
we open our hearts.
We pray for one another:
May you love the life within you
may you love the life around you
and may you know that
a part of everything is here in you
a part of everything is here in you.
We pray for ourselves:
May I love the life within me
may I love the life around me
and may I know that
a part of everything is here in me
a part of everything is here in me.
Other prayers cover a variety of other liturgical and spiritual topics. See the table of contents by CLICKING HERE.
About Michael Moorwood
With over 40 years’ experience as a sought-after retreat leader and educator, Michael Morwood is well known around the world. Bishop John Shelby Spong writes: “Michael Morwood … is raising the right and obvious questions that all Christians must face. He provides fresh and perceptive possibilities for a modern and relevant faith.” With a dozen books to his name (two of which were banned before he resigned from the Catholic priesthood), Morwood brings an extensive background in spirituality to what he sees as the urgent need to reshape Christian thinking for a new millennium.
Be sure to visit Michael’s website by clicking HERE