Today in our prayers we remember the people of Central African Republic.
In the name of Jesus Christ, welcome to this time of prayer. The Temple which is “dedicated to the pursuit of peace. …[and which] shall be for reconciliation and for healing of the spirit.” “You are called to create pathways in the world for peace in Christ.”
—Doctrine and Covenants 156:5a; 163:3a
The Central African Republic is bordered by Chad, Sudan, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of the Congo, and Cameroon. The country is noted for its population of forest elephants and western lowland gorillas.
Scripture Reading – Psalm 23
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters;
he restores my soul.
He leads me in right paths
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I fear no evil;
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff—
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
my whole life long.
Prayer for Peace
Many of your sons and daughters, God, live by wooded hills and rolling fields, by the music of rivers, lakes, oceans, or the noisy symphony of the city. They are educated, well-fed. They have purpose to their lives. They can celebrate their existence and for this we give thanks.
But many of your people, God, live with desecration of their lands, with hunger, poverty, and disease. They live in the shadow of greed, cruelty, domination, and destruction. You cry out for the liberation of your people who are oppressed.
Creator God, we cry out with you. We cry out for justice and order, for equity and sanity. We cry out for truth and knowledge, for reconciliation and healing of the spirit.
On our knees we pray for the release of your healing goodness to empower men and women of goodwill everywhere to rise up and stand against the injustice that enslaves those in the wounded places of this Earth.
We pray that ignorance and superstition, apathy, and aimlessness will be overcome by your grace, by intelligence, love, and compassion. We pray that enlightened people will rise up and join all forces for good.
May the earnest prayers of all who unite at this moment rise in mission as we pray for peace and goodwill to all who dwell on the Earth.
We call upon the holy name of Christ Jesus. Amen.
Choose a favorite hymn of peace and justice.
Prayers of the People
As we enter a time of guided prayer, meditation, and musical reflection, you are invited to offer silent prayers or meditate during the moments of quiet. The Prayers of the People this day begin with ourselves and move outward, in rippling waves to those we know and love, to strangers and enemies, to the entire world, to all of creation. We begin by noticing our breathing. We breathe in spirit and exhale those things that separate us from you, O God. Breathe in. Breathe out.
Please enter into the silence with me as we pray for peace remembering God’s promise to be with us and to work in us. Listen for the sound of the beloved’s voice.
God of creation, in the beginning your breath moved over the waters and brought calm and peace to a chaotic world. Breathe into my being this day; bring respite to my frenzied soul. Refresh my frayed sense of self and bring alive my hope for peace through words and actions inspired by your spirit. Breathe on me, breath of God.
God of reconciliation, 2,000 years ago you breathed and the word became flesh among us, teaching us the way of forgiveness, mercy, compassion and peace. Breathe into our relationships this day; allow us to enflesh the teachings of your Son within our family, friends, neighbors, and even our encounters with those we do not yet know. Breathe on us, breath of God.
God of sacred community, your Holy Spirit seeks to blow through the discord, disruption, and disease of the world to bring healing and wholeness once again. We remember all nations, including the Central African Republic, the country we pray for today. Remind us that many of your children lack the basic needs of life, including freedom, space to grow, and love to support them. Breathe on your people, breath of God.
God of all, your planet is gasping for breath, heaving under the pressure and weight of unbridled consumption of resources and greed-driven destruction of your world. The Earth groans from forces of chaos that destroy what we have been given as a gift for all creation. Awaken us to our responsibilities to heal and bring peace to our earthly home. Breathe once again over the waters, skies, land, and all that inhabit them, breath of God.
May the awareness of our own breathing connect us to you, O God, and to all that lives because you create it, love it, and call it good. In and through Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.
Be blessed this day with frustration at injustice.
To motivate us to work for peace.
Go in peace.