Lectionary Selection: John 21:1-19
Prayers for Lebanon:
Dear Lord and Savior, Friend and Brother, standing by the edge of the water with your eye and heart fixed upon us, now hear our prayer as we immerse ourselves in the busy-ness of the day, trying to forget how abandoned we feel in this heartless world.
Though we wish to be with you today in Paradise, instead we find ourselves here on Earth, continuing the struggle to live each day no matter what may befall us, to serve you alongside the least of our sisters and brothers, to preserve hope in you amid every pressure to which we are subjected by powers, seen and unseen.
Remember your church in Lebanon today, as it carries your light to a society staggering under mistrust, corruption, selfishness, nearby wars, lack of reckoning with the past, abuse of nature and misuse of your name.
Open our ears as you lead us in casting our nets to gather an abundant catch of love and truth. Open our eyes to see that you have already prepared a table of fellowship to refresh and renew us. Open our hearts and our lips, to declare, even in our human frailty, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” And empower us to demonstrate that love with our whole lives. In Jesus’ name, we pray.
Mission Stewardship Moment from Lebanon:
The Union of Armenian Evangelical Churches in the Near East (UAECNE)’s Social Action Center (SAC) is located in a poor section of suburban Beirut, where a mixture of political/social/religious groups reside, a less-than-livable “refuge” for people from nearly all the areas of upheaval in the Middle East. Working cooperatively with other similar organizations, SAC personnel see clients in their office, but also go out and visit homes. One family they help has four children, none of whom have official documents from their nearby home country. The office is working on securing those documents, that they may then be eligible for schooling, government hospitals, and the like. A costly and involved process, it will not alter society at large or the local and global pressures on the region. Yet each act of compassion matters, because, as the SAC’s social workers believe, each one they serve is the Lord Jesus himself, incognito.
The Armenian Evangelical Secondary School in Anjar (Bekaa valley, near the Syrian border) began a different type of initiative this past winter – a greenhouse on its campus, next to the soccer field. The principal, who is also the church’s pastor, had the idea that since Anjar is an agricultural town (founded 80 years ago by Armenian Genocide survivors), the school children should have hands-on experience of growing produce. This has reduced food purchases by the boarding department, the surplus is producing income to help overcome their perpetual budget shortfalls, and the students are learning botany lessons in the real world, along with a love for God’s earth.
Prayer and Mission Moment by Nishan Bakalian
Mission Partners in Lebanon:
- Department of Service to Palestinian Refugees
- Forum for Development, Culture, and Dialogue (FDCD)
- Haigazian University
- National Evangelical Church of Beirut
- National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon
- Near East School of Theology
- Union of Armenian Evangelical Churches in the Near East
More information on Lebanon: https://www.globalministries.org/lebanon
Global Ministries Mission Co-worker in Lebanon:
Nishan Bakalian serves with the Union of Armenian Evangelical Churches in Lebanon. His appointment is made possible by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund, Our Church’s Wider Mission, WOC, OGHS and your special gifts.