Presbytery Prayer, 22nd April

Presbytery Prayer Point

You are invited to pray with fellow Presbyters at

12 noon on Wednesday 22nd April 2020

Lord, keep us under the shadow of your mercy in this time of uncertainty and distress.

Sustain and support the anxious and fearful, and lift up all who are brought low;

that we may rejoice in your comfort knowing that nothing can separate us from your love. 

Lord we pray for those people who are the hidden faces in the midst of the turmoil and upheaval that surrounds us at the moment. We hear much about those working on the frontline keeping us safe and healthy and it is right and proper that we do so and we pray your protection on all of those people but we also need to bring to mind those not in the headlines – the hidden faces of society. 

We pray for those who depend on a connection to a group or a place of safety to see them through their own personal difficulties and whose circumstances may worsen as a result of isolation. We bring to mind vulnerable children of families, troubled teenagers, and victims of domestic abuse. Lord, we know these people are at an increased risk at this time and our hearts break for the situations they now find themselves in with little or no relief. We seek your protection for them and that you will inspire those who work in such circumstances to find alternative ways of offering support and care in the face of a loss of personal and direct contact. 

We pray too for all those who find themselves stranded in a place far from home and separated from loved ones. We think of migrant and seasonal workers who travelled to their place of work often in a different country prior to the outbreak and who now find themselves without work and pay. We remember too the crews of cruise ships who have been repatriated to their own country and those still stranded on board and now unable to earn as contracts are curtailed. Lord we pray that these groups find strength in their numbers, that in keeping together they can sustain and support one another through these lean times. We also bring to mind those care workers who have opted to stay apart from their family to keep them safe. Carers living in camper vans parked in car parks and those who opt to live in with residents to ensure the safety of the residents and of the carers’ families. We visualise the parents working on the frontline who can only communicate with their children via a computer screen as they seek to keep us and them safe at this time. Lord sustain all those who have voluntarily separated themselves from their nearest in a selfless act of love and care for us all. 

Lord as the fight to defeat the virus continues, we bring to mind the hidden faces working in laboratories seeking to find a solution that will eradicate the threat. These folks working tirelessly behind the scenes in difficult circumstances and sometime at risk from the virus itself deserve our utmost thanks and blessings and our earnest wish that they stay safe and a solution is found. We pray too for air crews who volunteer to undertake flights to other parts of the world so that vital supplies necessary for frontline staff can be delivered safely and expeditiously. And we think too of ferry crews delivering essential supplies to the islands scattered across our Presbytery including the mail, food supplies, and vital medicines. 

Lord as we witness unprecedented arrangements being put in place to deal with the effects of the virus, we bring to mind the hospital and hospice chaplains being recalled to service, especially those known to us here in Presbytery, whose selfless devotion to duty will be crucial in the days ahead. With your encouragement and presence, they will bring succour and comfort to those who need it, especially in the absence of family members who can only stand from afar and watch. We pray your strength and blessing on all of them that they may be sustained in this crucial work in your name and that they will remain safe. 

In these days we are reminded once again of the quiet and measured approach taken by funeral directors and crematoria staff as they deal with an increased workload. We pray that in these difficult circumstances final goodbyes can remain dignified and heartfelt albeit at a distance and that those who mourn will still feel your comforting presence at these times.  

Lord God, we bring to mind those hidden faces mentioned here and those that we are aware who quietly and resolutely get on with what needs to be done and seek no glory or thanks for doing so. 

We are not people of fear: we are people of courage.

We are not people who protect our own safety: we are people who protect our neighbours’ safety.

We are not people of greed: we are people of generosity.

We are your people God, giving and loving, wherever we are, whatever it costs

For as long as it takes wherever you call us. 

We ask all this in the name of Jesus. Amen