Pray Without Ceasing
Please remember this week:
- The Prisons Week Prayer: Lord, you offer freedom to all people. We pray for those in prison. Break the bonds of fear and isolation that exist. Support with your love prisoners and their families and friends, prison staff and all who care. Heal those who have been wounded by the actions of others, especially the victims of crime. Help us to forgive one another, to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly together with Christ in his strength and his Spirit, now and every day. Amen.
- as Advent approaches to pray for (and join in) the Advent Bible Study groups beginning this week, that the prophetic words heralding the Coming to the world of our Saviour Jesus Christ may thrill us with joy and confidence as his disciples and witnesses in our time and place
- the needs of frail elderly people among us and those who care for them lovingly at home, in residential homes or in hospital, affirming them as those who have built our community, our families and our national life and whose wisdom, understanding and support we need in our present endeavours
- to praise God for the children recently baptised into the family of the Church, praying that God our Father may help each and all of us to care deeply for these little ones and their parents, nurturing them lovingly and supporting them in their journey of faith
- prisoners of conscience who suffer at the hands of oppressive governments, giving thanks for Amnesty International, Christians Aware and all who through prayer and action keep hope alive in hearts despairing of justice and freedom
- with thanksgiving the steady, vital work among the young people in Morpeth Boys Brigade company and Scouts, and volunteers helping next week (22-29 Nov.) with the Bargain Bazaar.
In this season of Remembrance, please pray:
- that we may not forget the thousands upon thousands of killed and wounded in wars past and present, commending to God the patient, often sacrificial work of Christian peace-makers resolving conflicts and bringing reconciliation between long-time enemies
- as this month the secretive nuclear sharing US-UK Mutual Defence Agreement to replace the Trident missiles system is due to be ratified, pray that our Parliament may urgently challenge our Government on this immoral, wasteful, out-dated mode of “defence of the realm”
- our ministers, local preachers and worship leaders faithfully proclaiming God’s Word and leading his people week by week in our Area’s churches; we give thanks for their delight in so doing to the glory and praise of God and the building up of the Church [pray for their Area meeting on Thursday evening]
- praising God for the growing effort to contain and overcome the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, we pray for our Christian sisters and brothers unable to gather for worship, prayer, and to listen to God's Word that they may find encouragement and hope in the powerful, if invisible, fellowship of the Holy Spirit
- the government of the USA, hamstrung by the success of Republicans in the mid-term elections, praying that even yet the President, Governors and Representatives may heed the claims of God’s kingdom upon their nation and for the world
- to give thanks that all the UK's major Christian denominations now support The Living Wage principle also endorsed by many employers, councils and businesses [see Church Action on Poverty: www.church-poverty.org.uk] and pray for an end to tax dodging on a grand scale that impoverishes our own and other nations
This week, please pray:
- this All-Saints-tide, praising God for our loved ones “who from their labours rest…” and their living presence with us for, as Jesus reminded his critics, “God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.” Hallelujah!
- with thanksgiving for the steady, costly work of supporting refugees and asylum seekers who have fled from tyranny and torture to find shelter and healing in this “kingdom of kindness”, as some call our country, and for the work locally in Tyneside of Common Ground and the West End Refugee Service
- to give God praise and glory for the work of the Mustard Tree Trust - for Gordon, Nikki, Alice and the trustees as they seek new and creative ways of sharing the Good News of Jesus among our young people in Morpeth and the surrounding area, and for chaplaincies in our schools and Messy Church meeting again next Saturday
- we continue to ask God’s blessing on the Pearl of Africa Children’s Choir as they complete their visits to more churches and communities around the country; and upon our partners in mission the Kamuzinda Victory Church in Uganda lovingly serving their neighbours and faithfully spreading God’s Word in and beyond their congregation
- for people suffering the loneliness or misunderstanding of their depression, mental illness, disability or dementia; and to give thanks that some are helped, by the hospitality of our Church Centre and by CONTACT Morpeth volunteers, to rebuild their confidence and faith
- giving thanks for the ministries of Revds Ann Shepherdson, Adele Moorhouse, Greg Thompson and Ian Farnsworth and the leaders of our sister churches in Blyth, Cowpen, Cramlington, Seaton Delaval, Seghill and Annitsford.
This week, please pray:
- that our Church Council’s decision to advertise for a Child and Family Development Worker may be blessed and bear fruit
- “There are many issues facing our country today that specifically impact on children and young people.... housing is unaffordable, child poverty is on the increase and there are constant financial challenges in education.” (Megan Thomas, Methodist Youth President) Give thanks that these concerns are taken up by many Christian young people who are calling for their generation to “Love your neighbour, Think, Pray, Vote…” - the theme of the under- 25s conference on Saturday 21 February 2015, Coventry Central Hall. [Info from Anna Drew : firstname.lastname@example.org ]
- as Advent approaches, think, pray and join in events heralding God’s kingdom - Church Action on Poverty seminars 31st Oct and 4th Nov; MWiB Re-Dedication Day 13th Nov; Advent Bible Study groups weekly from mid November; Coast Praise at Whitley Bay 14th Nov; BB & Scouts’ Annual Bazaar 22-29 Nov; and our Angel Fest 13 December [see Notices below]
- Praise God for the recovery of dear friends from surgery and serious illness - Mike D., Una C., Gene G.; and pray for those in need of healing and help at home - Jean M., and all our frail elderly friends
Lord of all nations, we pray for the people of West Africa: that the Ebola virus may be contained and its effects limited; for those already affected - families grieving the loss of loved ones and communities living in fear; and for health workers, NGOs and local volunteers doing all they can to provide protection, comfort and prevention. May they know your presence, be guided by your love, strengthened by your Spirit and united in this time of suffering. Amen. [see pp 1 and 2 of METHODIST RECORDER
This week, please pray:
- today, Health Care Sunday, we give thanks for our National Health Services, and the dedication and skill of all nursing, medical and support staff, and pray that we may all use these costly services responsibly; pray too for people in countries lacking adequate Health Services, especially in West Africa in the grip of the Ebola epidemic [see also Notice re Church Action on Poverty workshop on NHS on 31/10/2014]
- give thanks for those who champion the cause of disabled people and work to combat discrimination in all of its forms [see www.just-fair.co.uk and click on Disability Report].
- praise God for the gift of music and that here in our churches we are privileged to host recitals and concerts given by internationally acclaimed musicians; praise Him also for the joy of expressing our worship in “hymns and spiritual songs” [ Coloss. 3.16,17]
- persistently, “crying out together with the people of Iraq and Syria to a God of justice, peace and mercy as they suffer the living nightmare of persecution and violent oppression by both ISIS and the Syrian dictatorship” [President and Vice-president of Methodist Conference]
- “Living Differently” is the Theme for One World Week 19-26 October 2014 so let us pray:
Our Father, who art in heaven…….
Lead us to worship only you, Lord, and not money,
to put people before profit
and ‘being’ before ‘having’.
Thy kingdom come………..
Inspire us to work together to change the world
so that everyone has enough
and all can live life to the full.
Forgive us our trespasses……….
Create in us the desire
to live in harmony with creation
so all people may flourish
and your kingdom come. Amen.
This week, please pray:
- as we praise God for Harvest blessings, we pray that the fruit of the Spirit may be abundantly evident in our lives, homes, families and neighbourhood: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control
- giving thanks for our sister churches in Stakeford, Ashington, Newbiggin and Bedlington and their ministers Revds Heegon Moon and Jim McGee, and for the privilege of worshipping together with them and all other SENEA churches at Blyth Central Methodist Church this afternoon (4 pm)
- with thanksgiving for the Lord’s blessing on the Sycamore Tree courses in restorative justice at HMP Northumberland, bringing many men to faith in Christ and healing and peace to their victims and to their families; for the dedicated work of chaplains and volunteers, chapel services, Alpha courses, befriending and maintaining family links
- for our Church Council meeting on Tuesday, thanking God that no detail of church administration or oversight is unimportant when it contributes to the mission of God among us and through us [read Acts 6. 1-7]
- for Christian medics and nurses in the front line of the battle to defeat the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, giving thanks that at last the world is taking this threat to global health seriously and deploying personnel and resources to help prevent further spread [see METHODIST RECORDER 10/10/2014 p.5]
- for the families and friends of Alan Henning and other hostages brutally killed by evil men of the ungodly, heretical “Islamic State”, attacking and oppressing cities and regions of Iraq and Syria; pray that the former may be comforted in the love of God and that the latter repent of their evil ways
- praise God for ALL WE CAN ((MRDF) and partners showing us the potential of God’s creation as seen in stories in the Bible and in Burundi and elsewhere today [see http://www.allwecan.org.uk/service-materials/harvest ]
This week, please pray:
- For the people of Hong Kong who have taken to the streets to protest at restrictions to their democratic system. We give thanks for their courage and pray for a peaceful solution.
- Giving thanks for the work of all those who guide and help our young people: teachers, leaders within the Scouting and Guiding movements and the Boys’ and Girls’ Brigades, youth club leaders, Sunday School teachers, Messy Church leaders, those working within local authority Children’s Services and within voluntary groups such as Barnabas Safe and Sound. May God give strength and wisdom to those carrying out such difficult and vital work within our communities
- For families grieving over young people remembering particularly the families of Alice Gross, Hannah Witheridge and David Miller and that of Yussra Hussein.
- Give thanks for the work of food banks throughout the UK and pray that donations to our local bank may increase as they are struggling to cope with demand
- Pray for the work of the Mission Aviation Fellowship in Chad thanking God with them that they now have sufficient pilots for their work there.
- Pray for those who are in Matlock this weekend with our Men’s Breakfast Group. May their time of fellowship together bring them back refreshed and renewed.
Be a light, O Lord, to our eyes, and music to our ears. Be sweetness to our taste and contentment to our hearts. Be sunshine to our days and food at our table. Be rest in our night and sufficiency in our hour of need. Be liberty in our life and everlasting glory at our death; through our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen John Cosin (1594 -1672)
September 28th 2014
This week, please pray:
- Pray for all those trying to find a solution to the crisis in Syria created by the group calling itself Islamic State. Help them to find a way that avoids bloodshed and protects the vulnerable.
- Give thanks for all those throughout the world who dedicate their lives to helping those in crisis in areas where there is war, disaster and disease even when such dedication places them in great danger. Remember in particular medical workers helping to fight Ebola and those working to bring aid to refugees in Syria, Sudan and Turkey. Pray for the safe return of Alan Henning and give thanks for the multifaith vigil held this week in Bolton to pray for him
- In a week where the first images of Mars have been received from India’s Mangalyaan satellite we give thanks for the beauty and variety of our solar system and for the spirit of curiosity and endeavour which drives us to explore it.
- As the Party Conference season opens, remember all those attending either as delegates, party members or politicians and pray that wisdom and harmony may emerge as they try to work out the best way forward for the country in terms of social, economic and foreign policies as well as constitutional reform. Pray that everyone can work together to build a better, fairer, morally justifiable future for this country.
- We pray for charities in the region which depend on funding from the Northern Rock Foundation which will be wound up at the end of the year.
- Pray for those in our church family who are ill or recovering from illness. We particularly think of Tom Gordon and, following our regular service there, we pray also for all those resident at Foxton Court.
This week, please pray:
- today Peace-Making Sunday, especially following the Referendum result in Scotland, we offer this prayer by leaders of the URC and our Methodist Church in Britain
Gracious God, grant to us and all people the desire for wholeness and healing that will not be satisfied until justice becomes the foundation for all human relationships. Give us the courage to go on speaking for the oppressed and working for the fulfilment of your purposes. Amen.
- thanking God for the peaceful process that brought Scotland’s voters to their decision in favour of staying within the UK, we pray that promises of further devolution of powers to the people be fulfilled through measured constitutional change and democratic empowerment favouring everyone and all communities in Britain and N. Ireland, with equity and justice for all sections of our British family of nations
- saying a big "Thank you" to God for bringing the young people of Pearl of Africa Choir to us once again; may their visit be a great blessing to all who meet them
- praising God for access for Christian ministries in our prisons, as at HMP Northumberland, we pray that their work and witness may save many prisoners from seduction or coercion into further evil ways, offering them freedom from the power of sin and new life in Christ
- for all young people finding their feet in new schools, colleges, work-places or in job-seeking; giving thanks for chaplains, Christian teachers, mentors, counsellors and societies offering them friendship, assistance and encouragement, on their behalf we pray [with St Patrick 372-466]:
Christ be with me, Christ within me, Christ behind me, Christ before me, Christ beside me, Christ to win me, Christ to comfort and restore me. Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ in quiet, Christ in danger, Christ in hearts of all that love me, Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
This week, please pray:
* Grant to us, O Lord, purity of heart and strength of purpose, that no passion may hinder us from doing your will, and no weakness from doing it; that in your light we may see light clearly, and in your service find perfect freedom; through Christ our Lord. Amen. [St Augustine of Hippo - 354-430 AD]
* with confidence in the knowledge that the Lord inspires and hears our prayer, for cleansing daily from all that hinders his purpose for us and for his church - to make his love known in the world and bring the beauty of holiness into every relationship and situation
* that self interest and desires may not blind us to the crying needs of others, nor that in complacency or cowardice we shelter behind “political correctness” when we see vulnerable young or disabled or old people neglected, abused, exploited or preyed upon [Luke 17.2]
* with joy that we may walk in the light of His word, gratefully discerning the light the flickers or blazes from those who, in all humility, let that light so shine that everyone may see the good they do and give God all praise and glory
* that in Christian service (“inasmuch as you have done it unto the least of these my brothers and sisters,” said Jesus, “you have done it unto me“) we may find freedom from our own persistent sins and concerns and experience exhilarating liberty as children of God.
Glory to the Father, our true and only hope. Glory to the Son, our true and only refuge. Glory to the Holy Spirit, our true and only protection. Glory to the Holy Trinity, our true and only light; now and to the ages of ages. Amen. [A prayer of the Eastern Church, quoted in our Prayer Handbook Day 14]
As we enter this new Methodist year, please remember:
* 13+, Messy Church, our pastoral visitors (meeting Monday pm), preachers and worship leaders (Thursday pm), asking for Holy Spirit guidance, grace and strength for spreading the Good news of Jesus’ love
* pray that NATO leaders may seek justice in the Middle East and Ukraine through peaceful means not aggression which only breeds more hatred and strife
* the battle against deadly disease Ebola in West Africa, praying that overwhelmed medical resources in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia may be strengthened immediately from our Western nations; giving thanks for staff at Methodist and other hospitals, some of whom have sacrificed their lives to save Ebola sufferers
* to give thanks for the recovery from illnesses or surgery of several friends; among them Revd Gary, Valerie and Mike Donaldson, Una Carrick, Gene Groves, and holding in prayer our frail elderly members in Foxton Court, Riverside, East Riding and Northlands
* Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s plea to Israelis: “See beyond the moment, beyond the anger at feeling perpetually under seige, and see a world in which Israel and Palestine can co-exist - a world in which mutual dignity and respect reign.” [in Israeli daily paper Haaretz 14/08/2014]
* the families of both staff and prisoners at HMP Acklington and helpers mentoring and resettling prisoners on release, giving thanks for the goodwill that continues to be shown to Prison Fellowship and its Sycamore Tree restorative justice programme
“ ….prayer is connexional, in that it connects us. It makes us generous as we respond to grace, it is cross-shaped because that is the extent to which God is prepared to go in loving. It is sacrificial, in the basic sense of making things holy…..” [President & V-P of Conference in Prayer Handbook Partners in Sacrifice 2014-15 p.1]