you bent down low to the dust of the earth
and you formed us in your image.
Male and female you created us alike
and with our formation you breathed into us the
breath of life
Men and women, people of all shades of color,
straight, gay, lesbian, transgendered;
each one exists by the grace
that is your breath within
and each one you rend open the heavens proclaiming
“You are my child, my beloved with whom I am well pleased.”
You in your assurance
You speak these words of truth over us
You breathe this life into us.
while we in our anxiety and in our strange need to categorize,
we falsely determine that some are more qualified recipients
of these graces than others.
Forgive us for even we who stand here in the hopes of full inclusion
have the same tendency to categorize.
Forgive this institution for committing to religious rules of categorization
that cause harm to our brothers and sisters.
Forgive us for complying with these rules,
not because we believe in them
rather because we believe more strongly in our own well being
than in your love and protection.
Free us for joyful obedience
Free us to say “yes” to the love of Jesus Christ for all people.
Free us to choose relationship over religion.
For all are born in love, by love, and for love;
and so it is in love that we pledge to stop the harm.
Pour your Spirit out upon us now.
Breathe into us the breath of life.
Strengthen and empower us.
Bless your church with the courage and the conviction to change.
And open all of our hearts to the unforeseen possibilities of your Spirit
set loose in this world.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray together – Amen.