Liturgical Greetings

Created by Rev. Nelson Cowan. Free to use or adapt with attribution to the author

These liturgical greetings are to be used at the beginning of a worship service and can be led by a liturgist or a clergyperson. Each greeting contexts the service with inclusive words of hospitality.

Liturgical Greetings for General Use


[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

Hear these words of invitation:

Welcome to the joyful—may you be able to share that joy here.

Welcome to the tired and weary—may you find rest here.

Welcome to the lonely—may you find community here.

Welcome to the sick—may you find healing here.

Welcome to those who mourn—may you find comfort here.

Welcome to the foreigner, to the stranger, to the refugee—may you find safety here.

Welcome to every nation, every race, every sexual orientation, every gender identity—may you find hospitality here.

The God who delights in all of creation is in our midst!

Thanks be to God!




[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

God has gathered us here today,

a day in which we bring our full selves:

our simplicity, our complexity

our joy, our sadness

our vigilance, our apathy,

our hopes, our fears.

And in the midst of our own stories,

we gather here to be found in God’s story:

a God who welcomes all people,

a God who loves all people without conditions, and beyond measure.

So let us gather, and let us worship.




[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

Hear these words of invitation:

The hospitality of God knows no bounds.

The love of God is immeasurable.

The generosity and favor of God is beyond our wildest dreams.

We gather together today as invited ones,

as beloved ones,

as blessed ones:

Fathers, Mothers, Grandparents, Friends,

Neighbors, Siblings, Co-workers.

We come as individuals,

yet God unites us as one.

So, welcome!

May we meet this God in new and surprising ways today.




[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

Hear these words of invitation:

God has created the world and called it “good.”

God has created each of us in God’s image and called us “good.”

The rocks cry out to the living God.

The mountains bow down before God.

The rivers and streams proclaim God’s handiwork.

And it is this God who welcomes us today.

…who meets us where we are

…and proclaims that we are God’s beloved.

Let us sing, rejoice, rest,

and be glad in that profound identity today.




For evening worship:

[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

The God of the universe is already in our midst.

The God who ordered the world and breathed life into our lungs

is already in our midst.

The God who is beyond our understanding,

yet closer than our next breath

is already in our midst.

And here we are, here after a hectic day,

or here after a long day of pervasive silence.

And here we gather:

as friends, as strangers, as members, as guests,

all bound by a common love,

all bound by a God who extends a generous welcome

to all people.

So let us respond with worship.



Liturgical Greetings for the Church Year



For Ash Wednesday

[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

From dust you were created, to dust you shall return.

Welcome, beloved children of God,

children of light,

children of dust.

We are the children whom God formed

and breathed life into our lungs,

the children whom God delighted in

as God declared that we are good.

Welcome, beloved children of God!

Let us now draw near to our God,

to remember that we are dust,

and to know that even still, God is mindful of us.




For Eastertide:

[The Lord be with you

And also with you]

Christ has been raised from the dead

and is here among us in this gathered community of faith,

bringing hope for the hopeless,

peace for the restless,

strength for the weak,

joy for the brokenhearted,

and love for those in need.

Christ has been raised from the dead,

extending resurrection life to all people.

So, come!

Come and worship the God who breathes new life into our lungs,

the God who welcomes us as beloved children.


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