Worship Guide - Ash Wednesday

Worship Guide

March 2, 2022

Ash Wednesday

Creating Disciples of Jesus who Transform the World






Minister:    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you!

People:     And also with you!

Minister:    Bless the Lord who forgives all our sins.

People:     God’s mercy endures forever.


Call to Worship:


Minister: Why have we gathered in this place?

People:  We come in praise of the God of all life and in affirmation of Jesus Christ as the truth and center of our lives. We celebrate places where love is found in life, and we give thanks for the gift of new life that comes to us this Lenten season.

Minister: Rend your hearts and not your garments; return to your God.

People: For God is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

Minister: I know well my misdeeds, and my sin is ever before me.

People: Wash away my guilt and cleanse me from my sin.

Minister: Let us ask God to break forth light into the dark places of our hearts and confront us with hidden and secret sin, all that we keep in the dark.

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: Our preoccupation with ourselves,

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: Our lustful imaginations, our secret ambitions,

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: The buried grudge, the half-acknowledged enmity,

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: The bitterness of some past loss not yet offered to you,

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: The private comforts to which we cling,

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: The fear of failure which saps our initiative,

People: O God, open our hearts.

Minister: The pessimism that is an insult to your will and power,

People: O God, open our hearts. Here and now, O Holy One, we bring our secret sins to you, we lie open in your sight. Let your piercing light be also our healing, for the sake of Jesus Christ, who both taught us and brought us your forgiveness. Amen.


O Lord our God, as we your people come before you in adoration, open our lips that our mouths might declare your praise. You are the God of our salvation, and our tongues will sing aloud of your deliverance, that your mercy may be known to the ends of the earth.

You have called us to share what we have received at your hand. But instead of doing your works of mercy in private, we take delight in being praised by others. How much we enjoy having others see our great piety! But you, O God, have called for a true sacrifice of the heart. It seems so much easier to look holy than it is to be righteous in your sight. Create clean hearts in us, O God, and renew right spirits within us.

By the power of your Holy Spirit enable us to be truly sorry for our sins. Help us to repent of our ways and to seek only your face. Make our time of fasting a true renewal of our faith; take our alms and transform them into acts of compassion.

In this time we recall your Son’s passion; we remember his suffering and death for our sakes. Receive into your care this day others of your children who are suffering and dying. Give relief to those who hurt; give calm to those whose minds are troubled; give peace to those who are dying and have mercy on us all.

O God, hear our prayers and answer them as you know is best for us, for we pray in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Hymn: Have Thine Own Way, Lord”


Have thine own way, Lord!

Have thine own way!

Thou art the potter, I am the clay.

Mold me and make me after thy will,

while I am waiting, yielded and still.


Have thine own way, Lord!

Have thine own way!

Search me and try me, Savior, today!

Wash me just now, Lord, wash me just now,

as in thy presence humbly I bow.


Have thine own way, Lord!

Have thine own way!

Wounded and weary, help me, I pray!

Power, all power, surely is thine!

Touch me and heal me, Savior divine.


Have thine own way, Lord!

Have thine own way!

Hold o’er my being absolute sway!

Fill with thy Spirit ’till all shall see

Christ only, always, living in me.


*Old Testament Reading: Joel 2:1-2, 12-17


1 Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, for the day of the LORD is coming, it is near— 2 a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness! Like blackness spread upon the mountains a great and powerful army comes; their like has never been from of old, nor will be again after them in ages to come.


12 Yet even now, says the LORD, return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; 13 rend your hearts and not your clothing. Return to the LORD, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and relents from punishing.

14 Who knows whether he will not turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind him, a grain offering and a drink offering for the LORD, your God?


15 Blow the trumpet in Zion; sanctify a fast; call a solemn assembly; 16 gather the people. Sanctify the congregation; assemble the aged; gather the children, even infants at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room, and the bride her canopy.


17 Between the vestibule and the altar let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep. Let them say, "Spare your people, O LORD, and do not make your heritage a mockery, a byword among the nations. Why should it be said among the peoples, 'Where is their God?'"


Leader:   This is the Word of God, for the People of God

People:  Thanks be to God!


Hymn: Just a Closer Walk with Thee”


I am weak, but Thou art strong;

Jesus, keep me from all wrong;

I’ll be satisfied as long

as I walk, let me walk close to Thee.


Just a closer walk with Thee,

grant it, Jesus, is my plea,

daily walking close to Thee,

let it be, dear Lord, let it be.


Through this world of toil and snares,

if I falter, Lord, who cares?

Who with me my burden shares?

None but thee, dear Lord, none but thee.


Just a closer walk with Thee,

grant it, Jesus, is my plea,

daily walking close to Thee,

let it be, dear Lord, let it be.


When my feeble life is o’er,

time for me will be no more;

guide me gently, safely o’er

to thy shore, dear Lord, to thy shore.


Just a closer walk with Thee,

grant it, Jesus, is my plea,

daily walking close to Thee,

let it be, dear Lord, let it be.


Sermon: “Prayers We Don’t Pray” Psalm 51:1-17


1Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.

2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.

4 Against you, you alone, have I sinned, and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are justified in your sentence and blameless when you pass judgment.

5 Indeed, I was born guilty, a sinner when my mother conceived me.

6 You desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.

7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.

9 Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.

11 Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you.

14 Deliver me from bloodshed, O God, O God of my salvation, and my tongue will sing aloud of your deliverance.

15 O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise.

16 For you have no delight in sacrifice; if I were to give a burnt offering, you would not be pleased.

17 The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.


Invitation to Observance of

Lenten Discipline


Thanksgiving Over The Ashes:


Almighty God, you have created us out of the dust of the earth. Grant that these ashes may be to us a sign of our mortality and penitence, so that we may remember that only by your gracious gift are we given everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Savior.  Amen


Imposition of Ashes:


Silent Prayer of Confession


May the almighty and merciful God, who desires not the death of a sinner but that we turn from wickedness and live, accept your repentance, forgive your sins, and restore you by the Holy Spirit to newness of life.  Amen.


*The Peace: “The Peace of Christ be with you” 


Prayer of Thanksgiving:


All things come from you, O God, and with praise and thanksgiving we return to you what is yours. You created all that is, and with love formed us in your image. When our love failed, your love remained steadfast. You gave your only Son Jesus Christ to be our Savior, that we might have abundant and eternal life. All that we are, and all that we have, is a trust from you. And so, in gratitude for all that you have done, we offer you ourselves, and all that we have, in union with Christ’s offering for us. By your Holy Spirit make us one with Christ, one with each other, through Jesus Christ our Lord who taught us to pray...


The Lord’s Prayer:                     


*Hymn: “Sanctuary”  


Lord, prepare me to be a sanctuary,

pure and holy, tried and true.

With thanksgiving, I'll be a living

sanctuary for you.


Lord, prepare me to be a sanctuary,

pure and holy, tried and true.

With thanksgiving, I'll be a living

sanctuary for you.


*Dismissal with Blessing:  


       Go forth in peace.

       The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ,

       and the love of God,

       and the communion of the Holy Spirit

       be with you all.  



Going Forth in Silence        




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