I have several friends who serve in the United Methodist Church and each year they offer a commissioning prayer for Christian service in a specific ministry. It reminds the members of the congregation that they are called to service and every follower of Jesus is to be about the mission of our Savior. The prayer from the UMC Book of Worship:
Dear friends, today we recognize the ministry of ______________ and commission them to a special task in the service of Jesus Christ.
The pastor or the person being commissioned briefly describes the form of service to which each person is being commissioned. The pastor turns the person to face the door leading out of the sanctuary. From behind, the pastor lays hands on the shoulders of the person being commissioned and invites the congregation to stretch their hands in prayer toward the person being commissioned.
_______________, in the name of this congregation we commission you to this work and pledge to you our prayers, encouragement, and support. May the Holy Spirit guide and strengthen you, that in this and in all things, you may do God’s will in the service of Jesus Christ.
After the commissioning(s) the pastor concludes with the following:
Almighty God, look with favor upon _______________, who today reaffirms their commitment to follow Christ and to serve in His name. Give _______________ courage, patience, and vision; and strengthen us all in our Christian vocation of witness to the world and of service to others; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Friends, as we enter a new season in the life of the Presbyterian Church at Woodbury, I hope that you would reaffirm your commitment to the ministry of Jesus Christ. I hope that you will be involved in the worship, study and service of this community of faith.