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Prayer from a Ministerial Installation Ceremony
October 15, 2008, 1:06 pm
Filed under: Pastor Smiley Speaks, Sermons and a Whole Lot More | Tags: , , ,

Installation Prayer
By the Rev. Roger Jones
Sunday, October 12, 2008 in Napa, California
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of North Bay
For the Installation of the Rev. Dr. Bonnie M. Dlott as their Settled Minister

Please join me in an attitude of reflection and renewal, as I offer these words of prayer.
Spirit of Love, you call us into life, and you have drawn us together for this holy time of celebration and covenant.  Soon you will call us out beyond these walls in compassion and service to a hurting world and an endangered planet.  We give thanks for this time together.
We gather in a season of national decision and statewide struggles, in the midst of economic crisis, and with wars and military occupation unabated. The stakes are high.  The need is great for communities of conscience and faith in our time.  Grant us courage and hope.  Help us to join hands and hearts across our communities and faith traditions.  Remind us of the values that sustain us and hold us together in times of trouble.
We give thanks for this congregation and for its 25 years of ministry in the wider North Bay community.  This nomadic fellowship has wandered so much, from place to place.  Yet it has made its home in the heart of love and care, in the place of authentic relationships with one another, and in the gift hospitality to the guest and the newcomer.  This church has offered a religious home for free spirits and spiritual seekers, and has enlarged its circle of care.  It has embraced the working poor, helped the homeless and fed the hungry. It has raised its voice for fairness, justice and peace. May we all remember the sacred obligations to welcome in, reach out, and speak up.
We give thanks for this congregation and its newly called minister. We are grateful for their mutual affection, their common visions, their sharing of leadership, and their trust in one another.   We celebrate their love and joy, their generosity and integrity.  Bless them all, and bless the promises they have made this evening.
Spirit of Love, bless Bonnie and her congregation; bless her family and friends, and bless her colleagues, those who put their heart into this work, in our own religious movement and those in the local interfaith network.  Bless us all.
In the days to come, may we know the gifts of courage, love and hope, and may we share these gifts with one another.  Blessed be and amen.