It's Incarnation's first-ever global week! Each day, we are posting a prompt for prayer and art from around the world to our Facebook and Instagram. And the entire week's art and prayer are available here for those who do not use social media.
Prayer focus for Monday: Global health
COVID-19 threatens the entire world and is a good starting point for our global prayers this week, particularly as we remember those who lack access to adequate care. Please pray for the health of the world:
for effective containment, vaccines, and treatment of the most deadly infectious diseases: COVID-19, but also HIV, TB, Ebola, and many others
for the devastation of non-infectious conditions like cancer, stroke, mental illness, and others
for safe and reliable health care for women and children
for endurance and refreshment for medical workers, particularly those who lack resources
for all who are sick, scared, and grieving to encounter the Great Physician
A Collect for Medical Professions (BCP 661)
Almighty God, whose blessed Son Jesus Christ went about doing good, and healing all manner of sickness and disease among the people: Continue in our hospitals, clinics, and homes around the world his gracious work among us; console and heal the sick; grant to the physicians, nurses, and assisting staff wisdom and skill, diligence and patience; prosper their work, O Lord, and send down your blessing upon all who serve the suffering; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer focus for Tuesday: Refugees and migrants
Did you know 37,000 people are forced from their homes every DAY because of conflict and persecution? This number includes Syrians, Rohingya, Sudanese, and so many more, just as it once included the Holy Family who were refugees in Egypt. Please pray for all refugees and migrants:
for safe shelter, clean water, sufficient food, and gainful employment
for protection in camps from trauma, abuse, crime and illness, particularly COVID (to which refugees are among the most vulnerable)
to encounter the love of Jesus through the welcome and service of his people
A Collect for the Human Family (BCP 659)
O God, you made us in your own image, and you have redeemed us through your Son Jesus Christ: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer focus for Wednesday: Hunger
One in nine people around the world go to bed hungry every night. COVID-19 is expected to double the number facing acute hunger this year, particularly across many regions of Latin America, Africa, and South Asia. Please pray:
for children who are no longer fed by school meal programs
for the locust swarms destroying crops across East Africa, threatening the food supplies of 23 million people
for peace and social harmony; many fear looting, riots, and social unrest due to food shortages
for creative, generous, and sustainable engagement by food-rich countries
for Jesus the Bread of Life to comfort and sustain all who are hungry
You can help! Many asylum seekers - our global neighbors here in Northern Viriginia - are facing food insecurity. We are collecting groceries for ten asylee families to be distributed through Restoration Immigration Legal Aid. Collection May 8-10; distribution next week. Read more and sign up here.
A Collect for the Harvest of Lands and Waters (BCP 653)
O gracious Father, you open your hand and fill all living things with plenteousness: Bless the lands and waters, and multiply the harvests of the world; send forth your breath, and renew the face of the earth; show your loving-kindness, that our land may yield its increase; and save us from selfish use of what you provide, that the poor and needy may give thanks to your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer focus for Thursday: Creation care
Polluted skies and waterways, degraded soil, and disappearing habitats threaten the health and flourishing of all life on earth, and often disproportionately impact the poor. Please pray:
for careful stewardship of natural resources and protection of the beautiful diversity of life that God created
for the health and flourishing of communities who must breathe polluted air and drink and wash in polluted waters
for the restoration of health and fertility to degraded soil, that abundant food may grow and provide for communities
that the church would bring hope and leadership to the task of renewing creation
"So, friends, every day do something
that won't compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world.
. . . Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest."
(excerpt from The Mad Farmer Liberation Front by Wendell Berry)
A Collect for the Stewardship of Creation (BCP 652)
O merciful Creator, your loving hand is open wide to satisfy the needs of every living creature: Make us always thankful for your loving providence, and give us grace to honor you with all that you have entrusted to us; that we, remembering the account we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of your good gifts; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Prayer focus for Friday: The persecuted church
Following Jesus has always brought persecution. Some of the most difficult places for Christians in 2020 are Burma, China, Eritrea, India, Iran, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Vietnam. Please pray:
for blessing, freedom, and reform in the countries listed above
for provision, protection, and healing for all who are persecuted
for the Spirit to empower Christians to respond to persecution with courage, love, and forgiveness
for all who threaten and oppress Christians: that hearts of stone would be turned to hearts of flesh; that God's image within them might be made visible; and that they would come to know the love of Jesus
Join us tonight for a discussion of Christians in the Mirror, a film that tells the story of persecuted Christians from around the world. Details: https://www.incarnationanglican.org/post/global-week
A Collect the Persecuted
Loving Father, you heard the cries of the Israelites when they were oppressed in Egypt; so now hear the groans of your persecuted children throughout the world. Comfort and strengthen them through your Holy Spirit, let them be witnesses that their oppressors might see and turn to you, and hasten to bring them out of their suffering with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
(adapted from a collect by Charles Echols)
Prayer focus for Saturday: Human trafficking
Left: Untitled Study for Prisoner Sculpture (detail), 2002; Right: The Unknown Political Prisoner, 2008, both by Roberto Estopiñán, Cuba
There are more than 40 million people in slavery around the world, more than at any other time in history. And nearly 1/4 of them are children. Please pray:
for release, restoration, and healing for all who are exploited and enslaved
for an end to the causes of trafficking: poverty, corruption, and unjust land and labor systems
for both victims and perpetrators to encounter the One who came to proclaim good news to the poor and liberty to the oppressed (Luke 4:18)
A Collect for Social Justice (BCP 659)
Almighty God, you created us in your own image: Grant us grace to contend fearlessly against evil and to make no peace with oppression; and help us to use our freedom rightly in the establishment of justice in our communities and among the nations, to the glory of your holy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Prayer focus for Sunday: Joy to the world!
We look forward to the coming kingdom of God...when peace and justice reign, all creation is restored, and people from every tribe and people and language worship before the throne of God forever. Pray these words of joyful anticipation:
"But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace." (Ephesians 2:13-14)
"Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations." (Revelation 22:1-2)
"Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10)
"Lord of the poor, who roared from Zion,
sounding the way of David's heir,
there where the lamb is Judah's lion,
there is our home. Then lead us there."
(excerpt from There by Robert Shaw)
A Collect for Mission (BCP 659)
O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you; bring the nations into your fold; pour out your Spirit upon all flesh; and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.