Worship Resources for Mother’s Day

Many of you know that I have an Advent devotional, Expecting Emmanuel, coming out in September. It has felt rather awkward to be working on it during Lent, but as we approach Mother’s Day, the exploration of the women in Jesus’ genealogy and early life seems quite fitting. This weekend, I will be sending out the first email (of not very many) to those who have signed up for the book’s email list. I am excited to share one of the blessing and art (by Michelle Burkholder) pairs from the book. So if you’d like a sneak peek, sign up for the list by May 6 (2022)!

I find it difficult to know how to acknowledge Mother’s Day in worship because it’s such a fraught day for so many people. I won’t go through the litany here of all that makes the celebration of motherhood difficult and problematic. Instead I offer the worship resources below; the first three lift up maternal images of God from scripture, and the last one offers a blessing for “mothers”–very broadly defined.

(As always, you are welcome to use these in your own worship context. Attribution is appreciated.)

Call to Worship
(Deuteronomy 32:18; Isaiah 42:14; Matthew 23:37)

Come, let us worship our Creator—
The Rock who bore us, the God who gave us birth.
Let us listen for the One who cries out, like a woman in labor—
Gasping and panting to bring new life into the world.
Let us rest near the heart of our mothering God—
Gathered under her warm, strong wings.

Call to Worship
(Psalm 131; Luke 13:34-35)

Our Creator longs
to gather us under her wings.
We long
to rest near the Divine heartbeat.
In this sacred space of worship,
God’s longing and our longing meet.
Like sheltered chicks,
Like weaned children,
We rest here and are renewed.

Prayer of Thanksgiving

Mothering God,
For your creative, creating energy,
We give you thanks.
For groaning in labor pains,
We give you thanks.
For the tears you shed,
We give you thanks.
For the shelter of your wings,
We give you thanks.
For stirring our nests and carrying us aloft,
We give you thanks.
For feeding us and weaning us and holding us,
We give you thanks.
For the fierce strength of your love,
We give you thanks.

(originally published on Rev. Gal Blog Pals)

Prayer of Blessing for Mother’s Day (and other days):

Holy One, today we pray for all who share
in your creative power,
your nurturing energy,
your fierce protection,
your unconditional love.

Whatever titles they carry,
Whatever genders they are,
We offer this prayer for all who bear your Mothering Spirit:

Protect the protectors;
Comfort the comforters.
Nourish those who provide nourishment for others.
Grant your holy energy to those birthing new life in this world.
Provide sacred rest for the weary,
Divine wisdom for the bewildered,
Grace upon grace for the brokenhearted.

For all who gasp and pant with you in life-giving labor,
Grant your blessing,
Grant your peace.

Amen.

And for those preaching Acts 16 this week, Elsa Cook has lovely prayers on her blog, Cooking with Elsa.

2 thoughts on “Worship Resources for Mother’s Day

    • Thanks! Me too. When I wrote my Mother’s Day post I thought that I should include something with this week’s Lectionary scripture, but I didn’t have anything. So I was glad to find your pieces to share.

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