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(Suggestions for prayer)
In the Gospel of Matthew chapter 22 verse 37 we read the words of Jesus. He had been approached by an expert in the Law who asked Him, “what do I need to do to inherits eternal life?
Jesus replied... "What is written in the Law, how do you read it ?”
This was reference to Deuteronomy 6 verse 5... "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength”...then Jesus added “love your neighbour as yourself.”
The horror of the discovery of those precious children in Kamloops and other locations demands not only collective action, but personal response. These Residential Schools were funded by the government and administered by Christian churches in order that indigenous children would be removed from the influence of their own culture in order that they be assimilated into the dominant Canadian culture ("to kill the Indian in the child”). Some 150,000 children across the country were placed in such schools far away from their families and their ancestral languages, and even their names were changed from aboriginal ones to “civilized” ones.
As we evolve and modernize there is still something within humanity that must cry out with the Prophet Isaiah...
”woe is me”, in the context of having unclean lips and “dwelling in the midst of a people with unclean lips”.
It matters not if we are talking about Canada, Palestine, Northern Ireland, Hong Kong or the Rohinga refugees
(to name only a few examples). It matters not whether it’s a black/white, Protestant/Catholic, Jew/Arab, Christian /Muslim issue...it usually boiled down to the stronger, to the dominant, to the victorious becoming the controlling force in society. The real tragedy is compounded by the fact that in an attempt to “evangelize” we became so confused that we thought we had to “civilize”.
God help us to see the error of our ways. Let us seek ways to love our neighbours as we love ourselves, to reach out, not only with legislative action, but with personal love, respect and honour for all.
Dr. Ian Fitzpatrick - National Director, Church of the Nazarene Canada
God of all peoples, all nations and tribes, whose son Jesus took children in his arms and blessed them:
Today we remember all the children of all the residential schools—
the murdered and the missing,
the ones whose names we know and the ones whose names we don’t yet know.
We remember their tears, their loneliness, and their fear.
We remember the families—the grandparents left to grieve;
the parents suffering in unyielding silence,
the communities whose bright hopes for the future were snatched away.
Hear our lament
for what was allowed to happen and for what will never be:
For the injustices lived,
the sufferings inflicted,
the tears cried,
the misguided intentions imposed,
and the prejudice and racism
which smothered the sounds and laughter of the forgotten children.
In speaking and hearing and acting upon the truth
strengthen us, as the followers of Christ and as Canadians,
to embody our hope in action, starting today.
Turn our shock and our grief
into right action—action that works for right relations,
action that works for healing and justice,
action that reconciles what is broken
through the power of the Holy Spirit.
These things we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Remember your missionaries throughout the year in prayer. Many are often facing troubled times in the places in which they serve. They seek to be peacemakers and agents of transformation. They need your support through intercession.
The Prayer Mobilization Line (PML) is a weekly publication focusing on the prayer needs and praise reports for the global ministries of the Church of the Nazarene and our missionaries. It is available in English and Spanish.
Currently Ermias and Mulu are global missionaries serving God and His people in the Horn of Africa based Nairobi, Kenya. They have three grown boys, Nathanael, Estifanos & Abeselom.
Please pray for Ermais and Mulu’s leadership and literature development and refugee ministries.
Remember to pray for the church's response to international needs.
Pray for our two local NCM ministries:
STREAMS OF MERCY
God, we know that 1 out of every 10 people in our world lacks access to safe water, and every 90 seconds a child dies from a water-related cause. In Sierra Leone, more than half of people living in rural areas do not have access to safe water. Nearly one out of every five children in Sierra Leone will die before his or her fifth birthday. Clean, safe water could prevent many of those deaths.
We thank You for the work of Your church to provide access to safe water in Sierra Leone and so many other countries around the world. Please continue to work through Your people to provide safe water for those who are thirsty in the name of the One who is Living Water.
Lord, this is our prayer.
PRAYERS FOR FREEDOM
God, we’ve recently learned that the Global Slavery Index estimates more than 45 million people are trapped in slavery today through forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation. Greed drives this evil enterprise that preys on girls, boys, women, and men who are vulnerable to human trafficking. We pray for the rescue and restoration of those enslaved.
Far too often, children are trafficked, many into the sex trade. May they be freed from their exploitation and experience new life and healing. We pray, too, for children who are vulnerable to trafficking—those in the foster care system, those who are abused, immigrants and refugees, and those living in crushing poverty. Please use us to minister to children and prevent exploitation.
Lord, this is our prayer.
ON THE MOVE
God, our hearts cry out for the 60 million individuals in our world who are displaced from their homes due to violence and persecution. As we learn about the situations of more than 1 million people displaced in Ukraine and more than 9.5 million who have fled from their homes in Syria, we yearn for the danger to end. We yearn for mercy and compassion. And we are thankful for the ways You are working through Your people to serve those who are on a desperate search for safety and stability.
In the busy days we fill up, it’s too easy to forget what is happening in other parts of our neighborhoods and our world. Help us to remember, and use us to show others Your love.
Lord, this is our prayer. Amen.