Sunday, 19 April 2015

Prayers for a Baptismal Sunday

Loving God of living water, we come now to pray for ourselves and for your world. 

In Christ, you meet us in the everyday stuff of our lives. As you once entered the waters of the Jordan at your own baptism, so you continue to immerse yourself in the daily reality of our humanity. As you once met us in the waters of our own baptism, so you are joined with us each moment in our need for forgiveness, renewal, and transformation. And so we take this opportunity, this day, to reaffirm before you the promises made at our own baptisms. We pray especially for AAAAA and BBBBB who have been baptised here today. Together as your people we recommit ourselves to the path of faithful discipleship, we seek forgiveness for those times where we have been less than we should have been, and we offer ourselves once again to the task of becoming your people, for the salvation of the world.

Loving God of living water, we pray for all those who need your cleansing touch. We pray for those whose path in this life has taken them far from the life-giving way of Christ. We pray for those whose courage has failed, and whose will has been lacking. We pray for those who have heard your voice inviting them to join you in the life-giving water, but who have turned away and followed their own path. We pray for our friends, and for our families. We pray for those known to us only by their reputation. Lord, draw near to those who draw away from you.

Loving God of living water, we pray for a world where death so often gets the last word. We lift before you now those places and people known to us where death seems to have the upper hand, and where life seems stifled and suppressed. 

We pray for those living with illness, and especially for those who know that their time remaining on this earth is less than they would have hoped for. Living Lord, draw near to them as they draw nearer to you in death. Through the promises of baptism and resurrection, may they know that life is more than death, and that your love endures through and beyond the tomb.

We pray also for those situations around the world where death and disaster overtake a population. We pray especially today for Syria, for Iraq and Iran, for Palestine, and for other places and peoples known to us where death seems victorious. ... ... ... Living Lord of resurrection promise, may streams of life-giving water come to the deserts of destruction. May justice flow like rivers, and righteousness like a never failing stream.

We also commit to your loving care all those whose faithful commitment to their baptismal promises has led them to persecution and death. We lift before you now those situations around the world where Christians are targeted for no other reason than their unyielding identification with the God of love made known in Christ Jesus. May new life come to many through their faithful witness.

Loving God of living water, we thank you that you step down into the midst of the mess of this world, and into the complexities of our own lives. We thank you that in baptism, you draw near to us and invite us to draw near to you. We thank you that you do not leave the world unchanged, and that you are daily at work, inviting transformation, and bringing hope and new life.


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