A Litany for National Coming Out Day (Names from 2011)
You are invited to modify this litany for your particular worship context. You may choose to use a bidding and response at the end of each petition that is part of your tradition, such as “God in your mercy, hear our prayer.”
As our gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender brothers and sisters courageously decide to live lives of authenticity this National Coming Out Day, may we be there to love and support them.
We pray for those in authority: for teachers and administrators, for religious leaders, for our president, our governor, and our senators, and congresspeople. Inspire the hearts of our leaders to compassion and action on behalf of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons.
We pray especially for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender teenagers, that they might have the support of their friends and families and the strength to be who they are.
Inspire the teachers in our schools to speak out for those who are ostracized and bullied.
Give courage to teens who witness acts of cruelty, that they may stand against evil and do what is right, even when it is risky.
We lift up those who ended their lives rather than face the taunts of their peers, especially…
Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover
Cody J. Barker
Harrison Chase Brown
Caleb Nolt, and
and we lift up the countless others whose names are known only to you and to their friends and families.
Forgive us for our silence. Forgive us for the ways in which we contribute to a society in which teenagers who are branded as “different” feel that their only option is suicide. Grant us grace to stand with those who are persecuted and bullied, and to bring about love in the world.
Collect (Prayer of the Day) for National Coming Out Day
Gracious God, you love all that you have created, and you celebrate the diversity of your creation. Throughout your history with your people, you have reminded us that those whom the world sees as the least are the greatest in your eyes. We ask that you give us the grace to celebrate with our gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender sisters and brothers as they choose to live authentically in the world this National Coming Out Day. Teach us to honor and celebrate their gifts, and help us to create a world in which gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender teenagers and adults are loved, accepted and celebrated. We ask this in your many names. Amen.
Responsive Reading for National Coming Out Day
We are grateful for the gift of our lives and the gift of other people in our lives.
Each of us is created with dignity and worth.
We are called to love one another and to do nothing to others that we would find hateful to ourselves.
We honor the many ways that people live and love.
Our common life is enriched when lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender teens can live and learn without fear in their schools, homes, and communities.
True justice flourishes when all people can live with authenticity and integrity.
We repent of our silence in the face of cruelty in our schools and communities. Our silence leads to death.
We weep at this senseless loss of life.
We suffer when LGBT persons are oppressed, excluded, and shamed by religious people who overlook the fundamental call to justice in our scriptures.
Love does not exclude. We are all worthy.
May we work to build a world where all people, no matter their perceived differences, are celebrated and loved.
We celebrate sexual and gender diversity as a blessing that enriches us all.
For a pdf version, click here.