Prayer

Pray Without Ceasing

December 21st

Please remember this week:

  • children and students and their parents, victims of the slaughter of the innocents in Pakistan, Syria, Gaza, Nigeria, Mexico where, just as in Bethlehem 2,000 years ago there is “weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted because they are no more”; Jesus, God’s Son escaped the rage of Herod to live and die a cruel death on the cross for the sins of the world; “Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world, have mercy on us.”
  • homeless families or lonely people on our streets, in refugee camps all across the Middle East, Central Africa and Southern Sudan, giving thanks for all who at personal cost and risk bring them aid and hope of safety, justice and peace
  • the government of Israel, that the hard-line parties may repent of their “apartheid” oppression of their Arab fellow-citizens and Palestinian neighbours in the land of the birth and saving work of God’s Son to bring good news to the poor, healing, liberty, justice and joy to all people just as their prophets foretold [read again Isaiah 61.1-3 ]
  • dear friends who are poorly this week or recovering from surgery, including Jim Dunn, Tom Gordon, Jane Kitondekigya, Chris McPhilips, Rosalind Philipson, Chris Jolly, giving thanks for all who bring them healing and hope; and for the privilege of visiting and sharing church news with those who are housebound at this time
  • to give thanks for the work of Street Pastors here in Morpeth and other towns praying that more volunteers may be called to this ministry of compassionate service to those endangered by the binge-drinking scene on our streets
  • to praise our heavenly Father that at the gate of a New Year we hear the invitation to “put your hand into the hand of God; that shall be better than a light and safer than a known way” (M. Louise Haskins 1875-1957)

December 14th

Please remember this week:

  • To pray for all those working to stop the spread of the Ebola virus remembering not only those risking their lives to care for the ill but also those taking part in vaccine trials.  Pray that the side effect experienced by those taking part in such a trial in Switzerland prove to be temporary and that the trial can resume shortly.
  • To pray for an end to the use of torture by every country on the planet in line with Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and to give thanks for the work of Amnesty International throughout the world. We pray for all prisoners wherever they may be.
  • To give thanks for the work of MAF Flying for Life providing access to medical care for isolated communities in many parts of the world.  http://www.maf-uk.org  This week we are asked particularly to remember those working in Papua new Guinea.
  • Minorities everywhere who are persecuted because of their differences remembering particularly the albino population in Tanzania.
  • The work of hospital chaplains supporting patients and their families at a time of year when it is particularly difficult to be unable to go home. We remember too, all those we know whose health is giving cause for concern and for those who have lost loved ones recently.
  • To give thanks for the efforts of all those who help to organize events, services, carol singing and celebrations in our churches, care homes, schools and communities helping to bring the word to everyone that God is with us.
  • To give thanks for the joy and excitement in the eyes and hearts of children (of all ages) as Christmas draws closer.

December 7th

Pray without Ceasing

Please remember this week:

  • praising God for wonderful music inspired by the Coming of Jesus, God’s greatest Gift, we give thanks and pray for all music-makers offering their gifts in worship, concerts, and carol singing to the glory of God our Saviour
  • the many ways through which prisoners in HMP Northumberland and those on parole or probation receive God’s gracious help to turn their lives around, make amends and bring peace to their families and communities ; especially giving thanks for chaplains and Christian volunteers engaging with them in worship, Alpha courses, restorative justice mentoring and rehabilitation on release
  • homeless young people, often victims of parental strife, irresponsibility or separation, sleeping rough or sofa-surfing and trapped in poverty: pray for all seeking to answer their dire need - working through statutory bodies or voluntary agencies like Barnabas Safe and Sound, Crisis, Action for Children, Barnardo’s depending on our active support and generosity
  • our sister churches and their leaders in Ashington, Newbiggin, Stakeford, and Bedlington and their ministers Revds Heegon Moon and Jim McGee, praising God for their effective witness and pioneering new ways of proclaiming God’s love and serving their communities
  • the increasing urgency of warnings from the Conference on Climate Change meeting in Peru, praying that rich nations will repent of their self-interest, realise the imminent threat to the lives and livelihoods of millions of people in poorer countries and act decisively to reduce pollution of our atmosphere and oceans [see also World Church Relationships Bulletin December 2014]
  • Winter Prayer
    God of winter glory, of pale sunlight cut to ribbons by bare black branches,
    Of cut glass ice intricately etched with your imagination,
    What desperate love drove you to the Mary-stable-shepherd idea?
    Help us to see in this story of poverty, struggle, hope and fear,
    Your most beautiful creation.   Amen

Revd Penny Worth, York

November 30th

Pray without Ceasing

Please remember this week:

  • Advent is a season of expectation and preparation as we praise God for His coming to us in the birth of His Son Jesus and the promise of the Coming Again of our Lord in glory
  • to ask God for the grace and courage to introduce others to Jesus our Lord, as did St Andrew whom we also celebrate today [John 1.40-42 & 6.8]
  • to give thanks for the encouragement brought to our District by the visit this weekend of the President of Conference, Revd Ken Howcroft, and by the Vice-President, Mrs Gill Gascombe, visiting the Methodist Church of Haiti whose people are bravely rebuilding their lives and nation five years after the catastrophic earthquake and subsequent cholera outbreak claimed 0.25m lives; pray for Haiti and those serving there, including Methodist missionaries Dr John and Mrs Sharon Harbottle from Newcastle
  • families with disabled children who, on the change from Disability Living Allowance and of tax credits to the new Universal Credit scheme stand to lose as much as £1,500 a year; pray that this unfairness may be rectified before it causes serious hardship [see Children’s Society Report: Holes in the safety net: the impact of Universal Credit on families with disabled children]
  • to pray with all those who have lost loved ones that the Macmillan Remembrance Service on Saturday (6th - here at 11 am) may bring them comfort and consolation with thanksgiving and praise; Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s poem “How can I love thee? Let me count the ways” ends -

    I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
    With all my lost saints, - I love thee with the breath,
    Smiles, tears, of all my life ! - and, if God chooses,
    I shall love thee better after death.

November 23rd

Pray without Ceasing

Please remember this week:

  • to pray for those in the families of our churches here and in Uganda who are ill or recovering from illness, including Tom Gordon and Jane Kitondekigya, Bishop Daniel’s dear wife, and all who are caring for them at home or in hospital.
  • to give thanks for another successful, encouraging Messy Church, praying that children and parents who come may hear and believe the Good News they see and hear
  • to praise God for the witness and work of our sister churches at Alnmouth, Amble, Hauxley, N. Broomhill, Widdrington, Pegswood and here in Morpeth, their ministers Revds Linda, John, Ron and Gary and faithful leaders and preachers
  • to praise God for all who commit their time and energy to making welcome those who share or visit our Church Centre, those visiting members shut-in at home or suffering acute or long-term illness in hospital, and who are supplying the needs of our community through many voluntary services
  • with thanksgiving the thoughts and prayers accompanying Operation Christmas Child Shoe Boxes to needy children in many lands and all generous responses to charities’ Christmas Appeals to alleviate poverty
  • the President of Methodist Conference, Revd Ken Howcroft, as along with Revd Leo Osborne, he leads our District Preachers’ Study Day on “Speaking Biblically to the Present Age” at Wylam on Saturday
  • to beg God’s forgiveness for the violence against women and girls perpetrated in our communities to which we and those entrusted with their protection too often turn a blind eye while deploring the same evil in other societies and nations
  • to pray fervently for peace in the Holy Land, the whole Middle East, Libya, Ukraine and Hong Kong

November 16th

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.

November 9th

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

November 2nd

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.

October 26th

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 : drewa@methodistchurch.org.uk ]
  • 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

October 19th

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.

October 12th

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 ]

October 5th

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)

 

 

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