Access Sunday: Blessing of Life-Giving Tools

The second Sunday of October, Access Sunday, launches Disabilities Awareness Week. Consider incorporating into worship this blessing of tools that bring fullness of life to individuals and your church.

Hint: Mention the blessing in newsletter and church so folk can determine what objects, architectural changes, and other devices bring them freedom.

Home/work examples: jar lid popper, speech access computer, half-steps, support cane, walker, full spectrum light bulbs, reader, driver, usable hearing device, trifocals, lightweight dishes, electric wheelchair, new computer program, powered implement, levered door handles, reorganized work space. Church: improved sound system, pew cutouts, eliminating chancel step(s), 14-point bulletins/newsletters, large type hymnal, automatic doors, wheelchair-accessible bathroom, welcoming attitude. Invite worshipers to bring tools for blessing.

Materials: Index cards, pew pencils, chancel table for candles, varisized candles in holders on side tables, 2 acolytes, ushers with card baskets, 2 card readers with microphones stationed in sanctuary.


Texts: “Choose life…” (Deuteronomy 30:19b). Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” John 10:10b.

Hymn of Thanking: “Great Is Your Faithfulness” or “Now Thank We All Our God”

Naming Tools

Leader: Let us name the tools that offer fuller life at church, home, and work. We recognize these tools as evidence of God’s presence. Think about expected and unexpected challenges and the life-giving ways you or this church has met them. List them.

Hymn of Reflecting (Sung during card collection): “How Deep the Silence of the Soul,” “We Yearn, O Christ, For Wholeness,” or “I Would Be True”

Leader: By naming, we acknowledge and honor these tools. Hear now those that bring light into our lives. (Readers read several cards with pauses as acolytes place a candle for each on table and light it. Work from center outward leaving room for cards. When naming is finished, readers place cards on table.)

Consecrating Tools

Leader: Ever-creating God, we accept these empowering tools as signs of your compassion.

People: No tool is too small or costly that draws its user into fuller life.

Leader: These gifts symbolize that all people are acceptable and meant to live.

People: When spirits soar with new possibility, God, a surge of energy swooshes like an eagle entering flight.

Leader: Let those bringing tools come for blessing. (Speak as leader places hands on each tool and person:)

Leader: Bless this life-giving tool and the one who uses it.

All: Thank you, God, for wholeness of being. Amen.

Hymn of Launching: “Help Us Accept Each Other” or “Called As Partners In Christ’s Service”

Prayer: Gracious God, in holy partnership with your hope, let us continue to open doors in our lives and in this place with whatever helps answer challenge and life-change with hope. When shortness of funds, courage or tenacity causes stumbling, remind us of networking and shared effort. When tangled mats of impossibility exhaust our spirit, refresh the vigor of our resourcefulness. Through Christ. Amen.

Reading the Signs columns, written or edited by db, are reprinted with permission from the Nebraska Conference Nebraska Record and are to be used freely.