Jump directly to the Content

Let Us Stand for the Benediction

Reclaiming the lost art of blessing.

I like to ask people new to our congregation about their first impressions of Village Church. Mary's answer surprised me. "I've been part of a church family for as long as I can remember," she said, "but this is the only church where the pastor blessed his people at the end of the service." She always thought the benediction was the last hymn the congregation sang before returning to the world; she didn't know it was God's blessing on his people.

"When you stretched out your arms and sang a song of blessing over us," she said, "I was moved to tears. You weren't just sending us out to face the world on our own; you were pouring out God's blessing and Spirit on us so that we would be better prepared to face the world."

Benedictions have become one of my favorite pastoral privileges. I can't imagine ending a worship service with, "See you next week," or "You're dismissed," when I can offer a congregation ...

May/June
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
What "I'm Not Being Fed" Really Means (Part 1)
What "I'm Not Being Fed" Really Means (Part 1)
You're convinced that your sermons provide a nourishing spiritual meal. How could anyone claim otherwise?
From the Magazine
Yes, Charisma Has a Place in the Pulpit
Yes, Charisma Has a Place in the Pulpit
But let’s not mistake it for calling.
Editor's Pick
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
Understanding God and our world needs more than bare reason and experience.
close