Let us join our hearts and minds as one in prayer. When you hear the words, “God of our Lenten Journey,” please respond with “Hear our prayers.”
Spring is upon us. The other day I found the first snowdrops in my garden, the little birds are singing their happy song early in the morning, and the sunny blue skies have been welcoming and uplifting. Spring brings resurrection, renewal, and rebirth. This is a good time for us to look deeply into the garden of our hearts. Are we, like the buds of the earth, opening to God and to others? Are we awakening our winter souls to joy, appreciation, and praise? Let us give thanks for our great fortune and gratitude to the One from whom our blessings have come. God of our Lenten Journey… “Hear our prayers.”
God of compassion, hear our prayer for all nations and all people of the Earth. Hear our prayers of support for health care workers, teachers, engineers, and the many who serve throughout the world in various organizations. Hear our cry for justice and peace as we remember our brothers and sisters at Nyanyadzi Methodist Church in Zimbabwe. Hear our words of support for our Bienestar partners involved in our outreach project in Guatemala; for all those affected by COVID-19, whether in body, mind, or spirit; and for LGBTQ2SIA+ people who are persecuted in many countries.
Hear us as we ask your protection for peacekeepers and peacemakers, and their families. Hear us as we seek your guidance to sustain, protect and respect our environment and its resources. In our Regional Council prayer cycle this week, we pray for Canoe United Church. In the World Council of Churches Prayer Cycle, we present our prayers for the people of Ireland; and the United Kingdom of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. We pray for a healing of the scars and memories that linger from times of colonization; and for a resolution to the differences and tensions that exist over how Great Britain should relate to the rest of Europe. God of our Lenten Journey… “Hear our prayers.”
Loving God, comforter of the sick, the grieving, the dispirited, we pray for those who feel discouraged or alone, those who are desolate or depressed; those who struggle with pain, the challenge of serious illness, or the loss of a loved one. May they be filled with faith and with strength. In our prayers today we name all those named in our Prayer List. We pause at this time to name, either silently or aloud, all those for whom we feel concerned … …God of our Lenten Journey… “Hear our prayers.”
We ask that you look upon our places of barrenness
as opportunities for your fruitfulness to abound!
Give us courage to see ourselves that way,
that we might have hope and faith
that we will be led through this wilderness.
Remind us, God of coming resurrection.
We do not go into the wilderness to die
but rather we go into the wilderness to discover who we are
that we might arrive on the other side with a renewed sense of life!
This we pray in Jesus’ name, through the power of the Spirit.
And the people say… AMEN!