Thursday, 28 July 2016

Prayers of intercession: Munich, Turkey, Europe, USA

Prayers of intercession, including responses to the terrorist attack in Munich, the attempted coup in Turkey, the changing European situation, and the forthcoming American elections. Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church 24/7/16

Great God of all the earth, in you are found the full riches of our human experience, and you call us to live our lives out of the richness of your self-giving in Christ.

So may our lives reflect the life that you bring to the world.

May we learn what it is to put others before ourselves.

May we learn what it means to see your image in each created human soul, however marred and distorted that image has become as a result of human sinfulness.

And so as we come to pray for our world, we do so aware of the common humanity we share with all people, and in the light of your greater call to forgiveness and reconciliation.

May our prayers shape a world where self is made less, and where generosity and grace are grown.

So we pray for victims of terrorist activity, and especially for those who just this week in Munich faced death on the streets of a peaceful European city. But even as we pray for Munich, we are aware that within the lifetime of some of us here today, it was our own country that brought death to the streets of that same city, even as their fighters brought death to ours.

And as we hear news of the attempted coup and reprisals in Turkey, and of suicide bombings in Kabul, we know that terror can turn to peace, just as peace can turn to war. So we pray for international peacemakers, for politicians and civil servants, for lawyers and judges, and doctors and medics, and all those who strive for reconciliation and healing.

We pray for our own country’s relationship with its neighbours as we begin the process of renegotiating the basis on which we will coexist within the continent of Europe. May we not lose our sense of common humanity, where each person is valued regardless of creed or ethnicity. May we, as your church, have the courage to speak out for justice for all, and for reconciliation in place of conflict.

And as our nation lifts its eyes to the wider global stage, we pray for the United States of America. We thank you for the many ways in which American culture at its best has contributed positively to the world, for their values of justice, equality, and fairness. But we also recognise those voices that would promote hatred, fear, and self-interest, and we recognise them because they echo voices we hear in our own country, and, in our darker moments, in our own hearts too. May your love and justice triumph in our lives, in our country, and in our world.

We believe that your giving of yourself in Christ on the cross was for the whole world, for Jew, Christian, Muslim, atheist, Hindu, and Buddhist. We believe that the cross offers a way to end violence as you reach out to those of all political persuasions and show a new and better way of being human – one where our lives mirror your self-giving.

And so may the revolution of love and peace begin with us. May we be those who show to the world what it means to put the other first, to see your divine image in each created soul, and to live out the truth that in you are found the full riches of our human experience.


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