Lectionary Selection: Genesis 37:1–4, 12–28
Prayers for Hungary:
Loving God, we come to you today from different places, different contexts and different understandings, but unified in our utter need for you. We humbly ask for your peaceful presence among us as we continue to stumble and fall, sputtering justifications in the face of violence and hatred that we have inflicted upon your world and your children, our brothers and sisters.
By your grace, we approach you. We reach for you in all our brokenness, stubbornness, humiliation and fear. Through our pain, we yearn for you. We praise you. We thank you. We pray for a world that has known too much war, too much suffering. And at this moment, we lift up all those affected by the brutal situation in Ukraine, especially the ethnic Hungarians in Sub-Carpathia being called away from their homes and for the families they leave behind. Wrap your comforting arms around this tormented land, O God, and bring it peace.
In your infinite patience, teach our fists, which too easily lash out at others, to unclench, shaping them instead into open invitations of love and service to those around us. In your Son’s name, we pray. Amen.
Mission Stewardship Moment from Hungary:
This passage of Joseph and his dream coat is one of the better-known Bible stories. But re-reading these verses, what I am struck by is the brothers and the ease with which they plot Joseph’s demise. In a world filled with so much hatred and violence, I think there is much to learn from the brother’s actions – their pettiness and fear. After all, if we never discuss the dark times, there can be no change or betterment, as people or society.
The place where I serve, like all places, has its own darkness. Nowhere is this more evident than in the division and discrimination toward the Roma, which has created a chasm in Hungarian society filled with ignorance and bigotry. However, since coming to Budapest I have seen the ways in which the Reformed Church in Hungary is working toward inclusion and integration, the local pastors creating programs and community with Roma families. I have observed that being in service to one another means seeing the pettiness and division among us, and instead of turning a blind eye or allowing the conflict to continue, fighting for those on the margins and walking alongside them to show that justifications for hatred are no longer acceptable.
Thank you for your support and prayers. Thank you to all those who have allowed me to see this. May we all strive to stand against those who too easily turn to darkness.
(Prayer and Mission Moment by Amy Lester)
Mission Partners in Hungary:
Reformed Church in Hungary
More information on Hungary:
Global Ministries Missionary in Hungary:
Amy Lester, a member of First Christian Church, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, serves as a Global Mission Intern, serving the the Reformed Church in Hungary where, among other duties, she works to facilitate international communications, tutor in English, and receive and guide international guests, including those attending the Youth-Festival of the Reformed Church. Her appointment is supported by Week of Compasssion, Our Churches Wider Mission, Disciples Mission Fund and your special gifts.