O God who gathers more, and still more, people to your table —
a table that is not contained by our one church, but extends
across varied worship spaces,
across diverse cultures and communities —
bless the gifts that each of us brings today.
May they strengthen bodies and nourish spirits,
and be used for your glory.
I wrote this for a virtual service on August 16, 2020 (15A Proper), a service that centered around themes of reconciliation and interdependence. I preached on Genesis 45:1-15, exploring Joseph’s gender nonconformity as a source for the brothers’ violence against Joseph; how Joseph was brought from suffering into thriving and was celebrated for the very gifts that the brothers had hated; and how Joseph as the wronged party got to choose how and when reconciliation would take place.
Meanwhile, I wove that theme of reconciliation into my liturgy alongside our need for community and to draw the circles of our community ever wider, drawing from the alternative reading Isaiah 56:1-8. This is why the above liturgy is about expanding our community and God’s gathering of all persons.