Skip to main content

Question: Joys & Concerns, Pastoral Prayers


How do you gather joys & concerns in your congregation during worship? When do you share them?

Do you have a pastoral prayer every week? When? How?


Anonymous said…
Here's how we handle it and it seems to work pretty well. At the end of the announcements we ask for Joys. There are usually a few. We do a pastoral prayer or a prayers of the people every week during which the pastor says something like "...and we offer up our prayers to you both spoken and unspoken..." and then pauses to allow folks to say things out loud. When they're done he/she finishes, sometimes with the Lord's Prayer. The reason we did it this way is that the prayer requests were stretching into 10 and 15 minutes with detailed reports on Aunt Bessie's gall bladder. It's not that we don't care or want to hurry things but some folks went on and on and on!
Hope this is helpful.
Anonymous said…
Our practice is to do the sharing of joys and concerns following the passing of the peace. I try to keep a reign on the sharing, being perfectly willing to shut things down if I feel like it's getting too long. I then lead into the pastoral prayer, ending with a transition to the Lord's Prayer, which we say every week. Folks have been pretty good about keeping prayer requests and the sharing of joys concise.

BTW, I do this from the "floor" of the sanctuary, walking among the people as we share and praying from the floor in front of the altar table. I do this to suggest that I am simply one person in the congregation and that I have no "higher" level or ability in my prayers than anyone sitting in the congregation. My folks seem to appreciate this approach.
Anonymous said…
I don't take joys and concerns every week (although I probably should). But we do at least twice a month. It depends on whether or not we have some other special prayer experience during the service. Normally, a slide comes up that reads "The chime calls us to silence." and a Tibetan Singing Prayer Chime Bowl is struck. I know. Probably pretentious. Then we have silent prayer and then I ask for joys and concerns. I stop and pray a short prayer for each one as it is mentioned and then say "Lord, in your mercy", and the people reply "hear our prayer".
Anonymous said…
Our church is small - 35 or so at worship - so we are fairly informal about many things.

We ask for joys and concerns every week. I do it by asking for people to share them verbally before the prayer. I jot notes. Then is have spots in the prayer that I can offer those particular prayers as I lead it.

In a larger congregation - or in ours some weeks when there are lots and lots of things offered - it could get a bit ponderous.

But it seems to work for our congregation.
DannyG said…
Well, we're at the other end, with 850-1000 per Sunday, spread over 5 services (3 traditional/2 contempoary). Deaths and hospitalizations are mentioned before the passing of the peace. Other Joys and Concerns are the provence of the Sunday School classes.

Popular posts from this blog

re-post: devotional life for progressive Christians

I posted this a while back before anyone was really reading this blog. Now that more people seem to be stopping by, I thought I'd put it out there again with some edits/additons since it's been on my mind again... Do you find it difficult to have any sort of devotional time? When I was growing up, I was almost compulsive about my personal Bible Study, devotion time, etc. Somewhere along the way, I got more and more sporadic. In part, I found myself frustrated with the devotional books that I considered theologically too conservative. I find it hard to bond with God when you're busy mentally disagreeing with the author of whatever resource you're reading. My habit was broken, and I've never gotten it back for more than a few weeks at a time. So, a disciplined devotional/prayer/bible-reading life - is it something I should be striving to get back, or something that is filled by other ways I am close to God? This is a debate I have with myself all the time. On the

Sermon for the First Sunday in Advent, "Hope: A Thrill of Hope," Mark 1:1-8

Sermon 11/26/17 Mark 1:1-8 Hope: A Thrill of Hope             Are you a pessimist or an optimist? Is the glass of life half empty, or half full? My mom and I have gone back and forth about this a bit over the years. She’s wildly optimistic about most things, and sometimes I would say her optimism, her hopefulness borders on the irrational. If the weather forecast says there’s a 70% chance of a snowstorm coming, my mom will focus very seriously on that 30% chance that it is going to be a nice day after all. I, meanwhile, will begin adjusting my travel plans and making a backup plan for the day. My mom says I’m a pessimist, but I would argue that I’m simply a realist , trying to prepare for the thing that is most likely to happen, whether I like that thing or not. My mom, however, says she doesn’t want to be disappointed twice, both by thinking something bad is going to happen, and then by having the bad thing actually happen. She’d rather be hopeful, and enjoy her state of

Sermon for Second Sunday in Advent, "Peace: All Is Calm, All Is Bright," Isaiah 11:1-10, Mark 13:24-37

Sermon 12/3/17 Mark 13:24-37, Isaiah 11:1-10 Peace: All Is Calm, All Is Bright             “Silent night, holy night. All is calm, all is bright. Round yon’ virgin mother and child. Holy infant, so tender and mild. Sleep in heavenly peace. Sleep in heavenly peace.”             This week, I read news stories about North Korea testing a missile that perhaps could reach across the whole of the United States.             This week, I spoke with a colleague in ministry who had, like all churches in our conference, received from our church insurance company information about how to respond in an active shooter situation. She was trying to figure out how to respond to anxious parishioners and yet not get caught up in spending all of their ministry time on creating safety plans.             This week, we’ve continued to hear stories from people who have experienced sexual assault and harassment, as the actions, sometimes over decades, of men in positions of power have been