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  • Writer's pictureDani Hatfield

Camp Style Worship at Home

Updated: Dec 18, 2020

At camp, we worship in many different ways at all times of the day. Morning worship—called First Word—helps us start the day off with celebration, and evening worship is around the campfire. Campers from all sites gather Wednesday morning for L.I.F.T. – Living In Faith Together, and we celebrate together on Sunday night and Friday afternoon, too. This week, invite your camper to plan a special camp-style worship for your family. Indoors or outdoors, at any time of the day.

Here are some considerations:

Setting the Space for Worship: It is important to take a moment to setup the space for your worship. This may include gathering items such as: a cross, candles, a Bible, necessary song materials, or items to be used for various prayer styles. If you do not have a cross at home, consider taking time to draw one or make one out of sticks found in creation around you. A moment of silence to center yourself in the space can be helpful in quieting your heart and mind before beginning worship.

Elements of worship: God’s Word, prayer, and music. According to Martin Luther, these three elements are required for worship which encompass hearing what’s on God’s mind (God’s Word), sharing what’s on our minds (prayer), and singing: which can be prayer, praise, thanksgiving and hearing God’s Word.

Planning worship together: Each section below contains ideas of what could be included in your worship service. Pick and choose what is meaningful for you and your family. Choose the items together, take turns leading, and be blessed!

Call to Worship/Invocation: An invocation is simply naming aloud the One for whom you are gathering. In this case, it is to name the presence and activity of God. This can be done as a remembrance of Baptism and/or by inviting people to join in naming the Trinity and signing self with the sign of the cross. A greeting of “The Lord be with you. And also with you,” can be said.

  • Cross made out of three bodies (One person facing forward with hands placed together above their head, a person on either side facing out from the front facing person with their hands straight in front of them to create a cross made of three people)

  • 3 different people stating: 1.Welcome to worship in the name of the Father 2. The Son, 3. And the Holy Spirit. All together: The three in one.

Song: Songs can be related to the time of day (e.g., morning) or the theme of the worship service. Songs may be inserted anywhere within your service. Often songs are chosen to fit gathering together, the Scripture theme, or sending out for ministry in the world.

  • Select from favorite Praise and Worship songs and hymns. These can be found using Spotify, YouTube, or other song platforms.

  • Scroll to the end for a snapshot of our songbook contents. Copyright prevents us from sharing the full songbook, but you can find lyrics by Googling the titles.

Prayer: This prayer focuses on the theme of the worship and prepares you to hear the Word of God. There is no wrong way to pray.

  • Prayer Chain—Paper strips with prayer requests written on them connected together to make a paper chain.

  • Pray in Color—use markers/crayons to draw out your prayers.

  • Prayer Stones—find a stone and use permanent marker to write a word, or a symbol, on the stone that represent the prayers on your heart.

Scripture/God’s Word: Scripture can be passages selected and read aloud from the Bible and then talked about as a family.

Confession/Forgiveness: Confessing the truth about ourselves – our need for God’s care, love and forgiveness; always followed by the truth of God’s response which is to care for us, love us and forgive us.

  • After a time for silent confession, take turns to make the sign of the cross on each other’s forehead stating the forgiveness of sins. “Child of God, you are forgiven.”

  • Blow up an imaginary balloon and let it go to the sky. Someone closes with a statement like, “God hears what’s on your heart and gives you all you need.”

  • Go around the circle naming ways we forget to trust God. Turn to one another and say, “God forgives us when we fall short and gives us faith for the future. You are loved.”

Prayers: This is a time to offer prayers of the church include praying for others.

  • Lord’s Prayer

  • Squeeze Prayer—gathered together, holding hands, each person takes a turn praying aloud, then squeezing the hand of the person next to them indicating their turn to pray.

  • During a moment of quiet, light a candle as you pray for your family, your community, the church, and the world.

Statement of Faith: A corporate statement of faith is a beautiful way to be reminded that we are part of a bigger body of believers. Often the Apostles’ Creed is said or it can be a statement of faith written together as a family and then spoken together in worship.

  • We believe in God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We believe God gave us our identity and hears us when we proudly proclaim: I am a child of God! I am a child of God! I am a child of God! I am a child of God!

  • Have each member of the family write one or two sentences that start, “We believe that God…” Then compile these sentences into a family statement of faith.

Benediction: This is simply a statement of blessing to remind us that we do not go alone back into the world but that Christ goes with us and leads us. After a prayer and perhaps a song, the sending could include an affirmation of a Christian’s role in the world. A simple blessing can be included before dismissal.

  • “Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.” “Thanks be to God!”

  • “The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make his face shine on you, and be gracious to you. The Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace.”

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