Weekly Prayers

Pray with Kenya Sunday, April 28, 2019

Lectionary Selection:  John: 20:19-31

Prayers for Kenya:  

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Pray with Israel/Palestine Sunday, April 21, 2019

Israel_Palestine_Sara_Makari_Easter_Sunrise_Service_on_Mt._of_Olives.jpegLectionary Selection: John 20:1-18

Prayers for Israel/Palestine:  

Gracious God, our Heavenly Father, by the resurrection of your beloved Son, Jesus our Lord, you have turned sadness into joy, doubt into faith, anxiety into peace, darkness into light, and despair into hope.

We pray today for our neighbors in Palestine and Israel who work unceasingly for justice and peace but feel continually defeated by hopelessness, and cannot see light beyond the tunnels of mounting injustice and oppression. Grant them the fortitude not only to endure but to persist in seeking and pursuing those things that make for a just peace. Deliver all your children from the powers of evil that generate prejudice, hatred, racism, social disorder, violence, and a life less abundant for all.

We pray especially for those who are crushed by systems of injustice, those who are stripped of their human rights, those unemployed or deprived of a decent living, those who are marginalized, those coping with depression or fighting addiction, and others who turn to violence as a form of resistance. We pray also for those acting out an attitude of chosenness or supremacy and, by so doing, they disregard your image in their fellow-human beings. Lord, have mercy.  

We pray, too, for political leaders in our region, in our own land, and around the world many of whom may be driven by their own lust for power and are blinded to needs of the people they are called to serve. Touch their hearts and show them the way of your Son who came and lived to proclaim liberty to the captive, to heal the broken-hearted, to bring good news to the poor, and to give sight to the blind. May the victory of your love manifest in the resurrection of our Lord deepen our own faith and empower our living hope to serve you with determination and courage, and to live out the prayer we often utter: “Your kingdom come!”

Amen.

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Pray with Mexico on April 14, 2019

Mexico_2006_Felix_Ortiz_05.jpgLectionary Selection:  Luke 19:28-40

Prayers for Mexico:  

We can be kind by David Friedman

So many things I can't control,
So many hurts that happen every day.
So many heartaches that pierce the soul,
So much pain that won't ever go away.
How do we make it better?
How do we make it through?
What can we do when there's nothing we can do?

            Chorus:

            We can be kind.
            We can take care of each other.
            We can remember that deep down inside
            We all need the same thing.
            And maybe we'll find
            If we are there for each other
            That together we'll weather whatever tomorrow may bring.

Nobody really wants to fight,
Nobody really wants to go to war.
If everyone wants to make things right
Then what are we always fighting for?
Does nobody want to see it?
Does nobody understand?
The power to heal is right here in our hands.

And it's not enough to talk about it.
Not enough to sing a song.
We must walk the walk about it
You and I,
Do or die,
We've got to try to get along.

We can be kind.

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Pray with Thailand Sunday, April 7, 2019

Thailand_Chapel_Service_at_McGilvary_College_of_Divinity.JPGLectionary Selection:  John 12:1-8

Prayers for Thailand: 

O God, you are our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth should change. There is trouble and devastation all around this world, O God. We pray for the people of Thailand at a time when industrialization is harming the air. We pray for all leaders who are trying to find the best ways to respond. We ask, too, that all of us can be part of cleansing this earth that you have made, so that all living things may have a future. Give us the power to make sacrifices that honor you, and that honor this earth, our home. In all these things we thank you because of Jesus Christ, who never allowed obstacles to stand in the way of his work of compassion and redemption. Amen.

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Pray with Zambia Sunday, March 31, 2019

Lectionary Selection:  Luke 15: 1-3, 11b-32

Prayers for Zambia:  

O, Heavenly Father, we confess that, like the Prodigal Son, we are wanderers. We are always longing for something else. We seek novelty. We want something different, something exciting. Always we want more... more than we have, more than we need, more than our competitors, more than we deserve. You know our deep failings. Forgive us for taking advantage of your grace without real contrition. We know it is your nature to love and forgive and we are like wayward children. In the end, though, we know it is only your love that will satisfy and can restore us to health and life.

So, here we are to ask yet another favor. We ask for our friends, your servants in Zambia. Our lives here are precarious. There is so much sickness and suffering. Many people experience poverty and injustice and are in danger of losing hope, losing their way, falling from your strong arms. Today we beg for you to act on our cold, self-centered, and idolatrous hearts. Unworthy though we are, show us how we can reach out with greater love to the least of our sisters and brothers, your own family here. Show us the way home to the place where you reign and dispense real riches among us.

We ask these mercies in Jesus’ blessed name. AMEN.

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Pray with Mexico Sunday, March 24, 2019

Mexico_Carlos_Sediles_66944_o.jpegLectionary Selection:  Luke 13:1-9

Prayers for Mexico:  

God of grace and mercy,

Amid pain and death, you accompany us with your saving presence. Assuming our humanity, you stand in solidarity with the causes of oppression and injustice.

Forgive us for being indifferent and for our lack of faith and commitment to justice. Teach us to be sensitive to the many situations of violence and despair that many of our brothers and sisters experience around the world.

Open our eyes to see the new opportunities you offer us in your grace. Encourage us to transform the realities of death for signs of life and hope.

We accept with gratitude your protection and your care, recognizing that in your mercy we can find the joy and peace we need. Fill us with your Spirit so that in it we can bear the fruit of love and justice.

May the word of the gospel that we share help us to find ourselves with God's grace and mercy. Help us overcome our vision of retribution, which makes us believe that God only helps the "good" and punishes the "sinners." Cause us to live a genuine life of conversion (metanoia), where change occurs not only our mind but also our heart.

May the gospel be good news for those who seek new opportunities. The fig tree in the parable was in a privileged situation. It was not unusual in Jesus' time to see fig trees and other fruit trees in the vineyards. The good land was scarce, and it had to be used well; the fig tree had good opportunities, but it did not take advantage of them. This story echoes with the overabundance of God's grace. We pray that when the Lord of the vineyard comes, God will find fruits in our lives: fruits of conversion, mercy, and justice.

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Pray with Nicaragua Sunday, March 17, 2019

Nicaragua_Jeanette_Salley_Children's_Sunday.jpgLectionary Selection:  Luke 13:31-35

Prayers for Nicaragua:  

Oh God our God how excellent is thy name in all the earth! You have prepared a place for us to love one another; to live in harmony; to forgive each other; to recognize your presence with us at all times. However, we confess that in all the earth, sometimes we do not have love in our heart for others. There is no harmony when there is pain and suffering. Not trusting ourselves as well as others keeps us from understanding the power of forgiveness in our relationship with you. In all the earth, we have become so self-absorbed that we cannot spiritually see or feel your presence with us at all times. Because you are God of many opportunities who can turn bad situations of injustice, inequality, unfairness, and hopelessness into good situations of justice, equality, fairness, and hopefulness. In all the earth, we say thank you! Now Lord all we ask is for the strength to continue the mission of Jesus—that is, to drive out demons (so that we may see, hear, think and speak with clarity) and to heal the sick (physically, mentally and spiritually). In all the earth, we say THANK YOU! Amen.

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Pray with Indonesia Sunday, March 10, 2019

Indonesia_Karen_Campbell_Nelson_Dramatization_of_mourning_for_Adelina.jpeg

Lectionary Selection:  Luke 4:1-13

Prayers for Indonesia:  

God of Wisdom and Mercy, shed your light on hidden negotiations in Indonesian villages and cities that seduce the poor into lives of debt bondage. We pray for legislators to create and enforce laws to prevent human trafficking and illegal migration and better protect its victims, for judges brave enough to investigate in not just “small fry” but also the devil kingpins of trafficking networks, and for government officials to provide quality education and safe, local employment opportunities for villagers as deterrents to trafficking. We pray for those who, tempted by promises that would turn a future of stone into a loaf of wealth, overnight become slaves who suffer years of abuse and terror. Strengthen those victims tempted to surrender to hopelessness; grant them endurance and cunning; guide them home. Comfort those who would comfort — pastors, activists, Catholic sisters, young theologians — who, week after week, receive yet another victim returning home in a coffin. Loving God, these are your servants, tireless in their dedication, but weary in their bodies and souls. Renew their spirits; lighten their burden. Comfort also families on the islands of Sumba, Flores, and West Timor who mourn the loss of their children. Help us to respond so this reality may cease to endure.

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Pray with Ghana Sunday, March 3, 2019

Debbie_Colvin_IMG_6680.jpeg

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Lectionary Selection:  Luke 9:28-36

Prayers for Ghana:  

Lord Jesus we thank you for your unconditional love, your compassion, your guidance in our daily life.

As we live and work with our brothers and sisters in Peki, Ghana we see YOU in them.

Ghana_Debbie_Colvin_1315eb7e-c794-4700-bc72-e7b8399f742d.jpegThey show your unconditional LOVE by sharing their lives, food, clothing, knowledge and openness to accept people of another race and culture into their home, church, and community.

They show your COMPASSION by being patient, understanding, and willing to help in anyway they can NO matter how small it may seem.

They show Guidance by sharing their culture, history, giving direction, stories of the community, to give us a feeling of being part of them.

Ghana_Debbie_Colvin_IMG_6310.jpegAs we work alongside our Partner the Evangelical Presbyterian Church, Ghana in Healthcare and at the EP Seminary in Peki we pray that you continue to bless them as they continue to show your LOVE in their daily walk.

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Pray with Hungary Sunday, February 24, 2019

Lectionary Selection:  Luke 6:27-38

Prayers for Hungary:  

God, remind us to stretch outside our comfort zones by trying new things and meeting new people. It's not always easy to step outside of what we know, but we know we grow when we take those risks. We are grateful for church camp and the opportunities for young people to learn and grow with one another. We can learn much from the open minds and hearts of young people. Help us all to be open to new experiences and to listen to differing opinions and ideas. In these ways, we grow as individuals, communities, and the world. Amen

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