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An Order for Blessing Service Members Deploying to War

March 4, 2013

The pastor calls the service member forward together with his/her family.

Pastor to congregation:

Scripture calls all Christians to pray for those in authority, to honor them and to be subject to them as they support those who do what is good, reprimand those who do wrong and provide for a just ordering of society. Those who are called to military service act as instruments of these authorities. Today we recognize _________________ (Job title/rank/name) as he/she departs to serve in _______________________. (Theater of Operation)

The pastor may briefly describe the assignment that the military service member is departing to fulfill.

The service member may kneel or stand as the pastor and the family members/loved ones lay hands on him/her.

Pastor to service member:

________________, (First name) on behalf of this congregation, I pray God’s blessing be upon you as you journey into harm’s way. While you are serving in ____________ (Theater of Operation) we promise to remember you in prayer, uphold you with encouraging communications and surround your loved ones, who remain at home, with a community of care and support. As you deploy in service to our country, may the Lord be the stronghold of your life. May you rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation and be constant in prayer. May the Holy Spirit guide and sustain you through every experience and may the peace of God which passes all understanding keep your heart and mind in Christ Jesus, Our Lord.

Let us pray:

The pastor and the congregation pray together:

Almighty God, we commend to your love and care, _____________________ . (Full Name) Be with him/her now as he/she prepares to face the challenges of deployment and the uncertainties of war. Grant him/her wisdom and courage so that he/she may discharge his/her duties with integrity and faithfulness. Help him/her to endure hardship with grace and humor. Fill him/her with compassion for those who go the journey with him/her. Protect him/her from all danger, O God, and comfort him/her in moments of distress. During this time of separation, be for his/her loved ones a source of hope and strength and hasten the day when peace may finally come. Amen.

Liturgy prepared by Laura Bender, U.S. Navy, endorsed member of the New York Annual Conference. May 2007.