Weekly Prayers

Pray with Israel/Palestine on Sunday, October 22, 2017

Israel_Palestine_2011_David_Long_Higgins_009.JPGLectionary Selection: Matthew 22: (15-22)

Prayers for Israel/Palestine:

O God who, in Christ, walked the hills of Palestine and the streets of Jerusalem, accompany each of us as we seek to be faithful followers of your way. Through solid preparation and sound consideration, let us be guided in life and work by your example to desire what is beyond the superficial. Inspire us as we seek to deepen our faith; strengthen us physically and spiritually as we try to follow you; fill us with the inspiration of your Holy Spirit as we do justice and seek peace. Give us hearts of love to embrace Israeli and Palestinian and embolden us to speak words of truth as we seek freedom for all who are occupied by military force or destructive ideology. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer. Amen.

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Pray with Kenya on Sunday, October 15, 2017

Kenya_Eale_2017_02.jpgLectionary Selection: Matthew 22:1-14

Prayers for Kenya:

God of life, lead Africa to peace, justice, and dignity.

We know that you can do it, you can use us, for peace, justice, and dignity.

We are deeply saddened at the turn of events in South Sudan since its independence, including the killings and unrest leading to a continual displacement of populations inside South Sudan and across borders to neighboring countries – the consequence of which is a dire humanitarian crisis – the failure of the successful peace agreements, the struggles faced by the national dialogue process, etc.

In the midst of all this, and because you are still seated on your throne and are still sovereign, we want to continue to pray for our brothers and sisters who walk through this painful journey.

We continue to pray for the determination of church leaders in South Sudan on maintaining unity against all odds and for continuing to raising their prophetic voices towards the political authorities and the population at large. Give them boldness. We strongly believe that you do not forsake your own. Everything you allow has a higher purpose. We hope to rejoice with our brothers and sisters on the day you would stand on their behalf, turn things around, and make South Sudan a strong and stable  nation.

Kenya_Eale_2017_03.jpgWe also come before you with the nation of Kenya. As the presidential election was nullified, there is political tension in the country that is threatening peace. On the other hand, the threat for a terrorism attack is permanent. We pray that you protect your people from any kind of evil and bring about peace in the land.

God of life, we raise from our hearts the concern we have for the Democratic Republic of Congo, especially in Kasai province where thousands of people lost their lives and property was destroyed. As we pray, there over three million Congolese who fled as refugees in Angola and thousands internally displaced. Many are living without shelter and children are exposed to all kinds of illness. We pray for your providence and protection over them. We also pray for the political situation of the same. Since the second and last term of the head of state was over on December 19, 2016, an election has not been organized for a peaceful transfer of power. Tension is now rising for possible trouble in the country at the end of December 2017. We pray that you give wisdom to political leaders to solve the problem in a peaceful way and maintain peace in the country.

We lift up the Church in Eritrea. As the country is going through difficult time economically, socially, and politically, let your Church give hope to your people. Reinforce interfaith dialog among different groups of faith and peaceful coexistence between people of Muslim, Orthodox, Evangelical, and Catholic faiths.

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Pray with Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday, October 8, 2017

Congo_Linda_James_02b.jpgLectionary Selection: Matthew 21:33-46

Prayers for Democratic Republic of Congo:

Our Father, who art in Heaven,

In this vineyard, we call the Democratic Republic of Congo, you have created a land of plenty. There is rich soil for planting. There are rivers, lakes, and an ocean that provide water – the earthly source of life. There is land containing a wealth of minerals. There is a people who are your faithful servants even in the midst of the harsh realities of their lives. Through your grace, we have received your bounty. Please guide us to embrace these blessings and use them to glorify God. May we, your servants, be the ones who tend the land and produce the fruit as Jesus instructed. (Matthew 21:43)

The people of Congo are your most valuable harvest. May their leaders respect and cultivate that fruit to maturity. Through the education of young Congolese, continue to bless the Congo Protestant University as it harvests the fruit it has produced for your glory.

Amen.

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Pray with East Timor on Sunday, October 1, 2017

East_Timor_Vijay_DSCN1927.JPGLectionary Selection: Matthew 21:23-32

Prayers for East Timor:

Merciful and gracious God, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. By the power of your Spirit you send us into the world to witness to the grace and love revealed in your Son. But quite often we do not go. You work vindication and justice for the oppressed and call us to do the same. But quite often we serve you with our lips but not with our bodies. You invite all to your table, giving us yourself in gifts of bread and wine, but still we exclude and divide. And so we call on you: forgive our waywardness, heal our selfishness and redeem us from the pit of despair according your your promise. Bless this day especially the people of East Timor. Bring us together with them at your table and open our hearts to journey with them despite the ambiguities and challenges. Though our fellowship with them and in partnership with you, may we be changed for the furtherance of your will. In Jesus name we pray. Amen. 

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Pray with South Africa on Sunday, September 24, 2017

IMG_0080DawnBarnes.JPGLectionary Selection: Matthew 20:1-16

Prayers for South Africa:

Dear God,

Thank you for your outpouring of grace. You are kind and generous to all your children. Teach us to see others with your eyes and be just as forgiving. Thank you for the healing that results when we are quick to forgive. Bless and keep South Africa and her people during these years of mending the wounds of injustice. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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Pray with Israel/Palestine on Sunday, September 17, 2017

Masada__Dead_Sea__Qumran_2007_Peter_Makari_011.jpgLectionary Selection: Matthew 18: (21-35)

Prayers for Israel/Palestine:

Gracious God, your Word exposes our predisposition to retaliate, seek vengeance and pay evil for evil. Jesus’ picture of the Kingdom to which you invite our citizenship convicts our individual and collective consciences. By his sacrifice, you have shown us the breadth, depth and richness of your mercy, and have granted us forgiveness of all our sins. By the power of your Holy Spirit, instill in our hearts the grace of forgiveness toward others in our time and place – in our homes, in our churches, in our nation and in the world that you have loved. Help us to demonstrate your love, pursue peace and be agents of reconciliation. We pray in Christ’s name.

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Pray with India on Sunday, September 10, 2017

Lectionary Selection: Matthew 18:15-20

india-mumbai-flood-840483504.jpgPrayers for India:

Lord of powerful winds and mighty rains, shelter your people. Hear their cries among the rising waters. Be with the hundreds of thousands of families who have been affected. Show your love through rescue workers, neighbors, and strangers. Help us to see your face in the midst of tragedy, both here in Houston and across Southern Asia. Help us to be present through our prayers and actions. You will be there among us to carry us through.

Amen

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Pray with Mexico on Sunday, September 3rd, 2017

Lectionary Selection: Matthew 16: (21-28)

Prayers for Mexico:

Mexico_Scott_Nicholson_2014_zumba_nogales.jpeg

Dear Lord: Help us to walk alongside those who are being crucified daily in the midst of a suffering people. Accompany us as we live today being aware of your presence, Jesus, in every human being, in every circumstance. Let us find you in the walks and ways of the borders, where constant threats, thirst, and hunger are part of the challenge of every day's frontier crossing. As we walk under the shadow of Your cross, which continues to represent madness and a stumbling block to the unbelieving and spiritually stingy, allow us to discern prophetic signals announcing the coming of Your kingdom of justice and peace. We praise you, oh Lord, in our hope of the glorious day when you will reconcile, unite, renew, and reinstate those of your children who wait your coming while working and bearing witness of Your love and compassion.

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Pray for Venezuela on Sunday, August 27, 2017

Lectionary Selection: Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28

Prayers for Venezuela:

Jornada_Medica__Sanarito-Portuguesa__Nov_10-17_2002_099.jpgOh, God, as we confess that you are the foundation of our faith and the foundation of the church, give us the strength and the power to be active agents of your reign in our world.

In times of conflict, confrontation, and despair in Venezuela, grant that the Evangelical Pentecostal Union of Venezuela could be an agent of reconciliation and peace. Give to the Evangelical Pentecostal Union of Venezuela the courage to be a prophetic voice in the midst of silence and complacency.

There are evil forces that become obstacles in the way to do justice and promote peace.

Help the leadership of the Evangelical Pentecostal Union of Venezuela to discern ways in which a pastoral accompaniment could provide vision and hope for the future, trusting in the power of the Holy Spirit to open spaces for dialogue to reconstruct a society in which justice and equality prevail.

We pray in the name of Jesus Christ, the Prince of peace. Amen.

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Pray for Guatemala on Sunday, August 20, 2017

Lectionary Selection: Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28

Prayers for Guatemala:

guatemala---1.jpgJesus, you heard your Father in the voice of a woman whom your countrymen despised; help us to hear your voice today in the words of those considered not worthy to eat at the table; move us to share the hope of a humane world. That in the voice of the excluded, we will feel called to share our food and our hope with those who long for salvation.

Pray with your fellow Guatemalans of the Christian Ecumenical Council of Guatemala.

Vitalino Similox, Secretary General, calls for a halt to the destruction of the human dignity of indigenous peoples; racism and discrimination. Indigenous people should be given the recognition of their right to self-determination.

Misael Méndez, Youth Pastoral Coordinator, implores that gangs stop involving young people in bloody violence; for an end to deaths from malnutrition and curable diseases cease; and to see an increase in opportunities for employment, education and a dignified life.

Nora Coloma of the pastoral of women, prays for an end to the sexism that violates women: patriarchy and authoritarianism, feminicide, street harassment, exclusion of women in decision-making spaces.

Let us hear your voice, purify us, O God, from the pollution that enslaves us; touch our hearts; let us listen, as you did to the Syrophoenician, in the voice of those who yearn for salvation.

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