Sunday, 25 September 2016

Prayers of intercession for Syria and the whole earth

Great God of the whole earth, we come today to bring before you the needs of this planet. And we do so trusting that you are the God of Aleppo, and the God of the West Bank; that you are the God of North Carolina, and the God of Washington; the God of Libya, and the God of Uganda; the God of London, and the God of Bloomsbury. 

We trust that you are God of the environment, and of the climate; that you are God of the marginalised, and of the victim; God of the poor, and the suffering; God of the well and the wealthy; God of the safe and the secure. We trust that you are God of the whole earth, and we trust that you are our God, and we are your people.

And so it is in trust that we your people, cry out to you that the world is not the way that it should be. Every day we see people diminished and distorted in their humanity. 

From those living in war zones and being used as weapons in fights that are not of their making, to those dropping bombs and piloting drones, to those holding civilians hostage to ideologies of hatred and desperation, to those who could negotiate peace but whose national interest is better served by war. 

And so we pray for Syria, and today especially we pray for Aleppo, where millions sit and wait, in fear and without water. And we pray for those who have fled the hells of their former homeland seeking a promised land elsewhere, only to encounter suspicion and hostility. 

And as we remember the example of Jesus who sat and ate with outsiders and sinners, who received hospitality and gave friendship across borders and boundaries, we commit ourselves to living differently, to seeing the person behind the presentation, to finding the image of the divine in each created being.

Help us to open our eyes to the systems of oppression that enslave humanity. Through our prayers for others may we find within ourselves the commitment and the courage to stand against those powers and principalities of wealth and patriarchy that subjugate women, constrict men, exclude children, disadvantage the marginalised, and impoverish the vulnerable.

And in a world where death always seems to get the final word on life, we recommit ourselves to the one who brings life to the living and hope to the dying. And so we stand in prayer alongside those who are sick, those who are diminished through dementia, those who are living with terminal illness. We pray for our friends, and for our families, and for ourselves. May those who need courage be granted it, may those who seek peace discover it. May those who long for rest find it. Great God of the whole earth, may we find our purpose and completion in you.


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