See more on the Donate Life website (Australia)
(Note: In the UMC in the U.S. it is the second Sunday in November which is close to Thanksgiving and is viewed as a time to come together around the issues of life and Thanksgiving)
The Church Encourages Christians to Be Organ Donors
Many churches support organ donation as a way to love one’s neighbor:
“The United Methodist Church recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors,” reports a church policy statement. In a 2000 resolution the church also “encourages its congregations to join in the interfaith celebration of National Donor Sabbath … another way that United Methodists can help save lives.”
— Resolution #139, The Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church, 2000
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) “recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation, and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors as a part of their ministry to others …”
— Minutes of the 195th (1983) General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA), pages 97, 846
The 70th General Convention of the Episcopal Church recommends and urges “all members of this Church to consider seriously the opportunity to donate organs after death that others may live, and that such decision be clearly stated to family, friends, church and attorney.”
Organ, eye, and tissue donation is considered an act of charity and love, and transplants are morally and ethically acceptable to the Vatican.
— Pope John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae, no. 86
For Organ and Tissue Donation
G-d of health and healing,
We give thanks for the medical science
That allows us to remove organs and tissue from one person
And implant them into another,
Renewing life for the critically ill.
Bless all those who dedicate their lives to this sacred task.
Grant strength and fortitude to the scientists and researchers,
Surgeons, nurses and clinicians,
Administrators and other professionals
Whose efforts give life.
May the work of their hands never falter.
Shine Your light on those who,
Still living, give so freely of themselves.
Grant them health, prosperity and long life.
Remember those who have given of themselves in death.
May this final act of charity and love
Be a testimony to their lives.
Grant their families comfort, consolation and peace.
Blessed are You, G-d of miracles,
Who heals, blesses and sustains life.
(Source: Alden Solovy, tobendlight)
God, Each Day You Give Is Precious (A Hymn for Organ and Tissue Donor Sunday/Donor Sabbath) Words: Carolyn Winfrey Gillette, 2014. A PDF of the words and sheet music can be downloaded here. Excellent words.
God, each day you give is precious; it’s a joyful thing to live!
We are stewards of the wonders of these bodies that you give.
In our heartbeats, in our breathing, in our walking, in our sight,
We are blessed to be a blessing, and your grace is our delight.
Yet when tragedy is sudden, when we’re faced with pain and death,
When a body is too broken to receive another breath,
When it seems that none can cheer us, when a loved one is too ill,
In these times when death is near us, life becomes more precious still.
We are grateful for the vision of the ones who have prepared:
Who have made the firm decision that, in death, life must be shared,
For when earthly bodies fail them, as they’re welcomed into heaven,
Others here will know a blessing from the life these saints have given.
God, we thank you for the families who, in saying their good-byes,
Seek to end their neighbors’ suffering, giving hope and changing lives —
And for resurrection glory, we give thanks and praises, too.
Death can never end our story, for you’ll make us whole and new.
We are made to make a difference, we are made to laugh and dance,
So we thank you for each person who receives a second chance.
For they know that life is precious; they can see another dawn.
They are blessed to be a blessing as the joy of life goes on.
Tune: BEACH SPRING 220.127.116.11 D (“God Whose Giving Knows No Ending”) (MIDI)
Alternate tune: KINGSFOLD (MIDI)
Text: Copyright © 2014 by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette. All rights reserved.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org New Hymns: www.carolynshymns.com/