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Prayers, readings, and suggested hymns: January 21, 2024: 3rd Sunday after Epiphany (Proper 2)


Jonah 3:1-5, 10 (Jonah preaches, Nineveh repents, God has mercy)

Psalm 62:5-12 (God judges all justly; trust in him)

1 Corinthians 7:29-31 (the time as short; live accordingly)

Mark 1:14-20 (time fulfilled, Kingdom near, repent; I will make you fishers of men)

Opening hymn: Christ Be My Leader: LSB #861 (tune is Lord of All Hopefulness)

OR O Christ Our Light, Our Radiance True: LBW #380, ELW #675

O Christ, Our True and Only Light : LSB #839

OR Christ, Be Our Light: ELW #715

Hymn of the Day: “As Surely As I Live,” God Said: LSB #614

OR O God of Light: Your Word, a Lamp Unfailing: LBW #237, LSB #836

OR Spread, O Spread, Almighty Word: LBW #379, ELW #663

Spread the Reign of God the Lord: LSB #830

Communion Hymn #1: I Love to Tell the Story: LBW #390, ELW #661

Communion Hymn #2: Rise Up, O Saints of God!: LBW #383, ELW #669

Closing Hymn: Lord of Light: LBW #405, ELW #688


With gratitude for the gift of Christ, let us draw near to our heavenly Father in prayer, asking his mercy for the Church, the world, and all who need his loving-kindness.

A brief silence


Heavenly Father, be patient with us, even when we are slow to understand and obey you. We are often like Jonah! Forgive us when we are half-hearted or grumpy when someone we dislike actually repents.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.

You called Jonah to preach repentance to Nineveh. Your Son called his disciples to proclaim repentance and the coming of your Kingdom.  Give your Church boldness to preach of judgment, repentance, and forgiveness. Give it grace to rejoice when many turn to Jesus and are saved.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.

Many don’t want to hear the call to repent and believe the Good News. Some hate those who believe it. Some persecute your disciples. Have mercy on your people, and cause their enemies to repent.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.

Have mercy when, like Jonah, we want to run from the tasks you have called us to do! Renew our faith. Give us words that lovingly invite repentance and faith in you. Give us deeds to show Jesus’ compassion. Help us rejoice when someone surprises us with repentance or new-found faith.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.

We pray this day for our members in their middle years. Grant them the fire and enthusiasm of youth, and the wisdom and humility that comes with years. Form them into fishers of men and women, eager to make disciples for your Kingdom.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.

Bless the leaders of all nations, especially our own. Give them integrity, wisdom, humility, and sound judgment. Give us grace to live in concord and unity with one another. And give us peace.


Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.


We lift before you the needs of the lonely and bereaved; the forgotten and abandoned; the abused —and their abusers. Whatsoever they need, grant in double measure. Especially we pray for loved ones who seek our prayers, including: {List}. Grant them faith to cling to your promise of health and salvation.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.

Father, we remember with reverence and affection our departed loved ones. Keep us united with them in bonds of faith and love. Turn our hearts in repentance and trust toward you. In your good time, bring us into the fullness of the Kingdom announced and promised to us by your beloved Son. With all the redeemed, let us praise and adore you forever.

Lord, in your mercy, please hear our prayer.


Graciously hear, and generously answer our prayers and petitions, dear Father, as may be best for us and to your greater glory, thorough your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.