Today, in our prayers we remember the people of Zambia.
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
Zambia is a landlocked nation in Southern Africa, home to 73 ethnic groups. Victoria Falls, the world’s largest waterfall, lies on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, along the Zambezi River.
Scripture Reading—Isaiah 2:4 NRSV
He shall judge between the nations,
and shall arbitrate for many peoples;
they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
and their spears into pruning hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war any more.
Prayer for Peace
In our Prayer for Peace today we seek your clarity and your courage for the sake of children; clarity to recognize injustice against the most helpless in our society, and courage to act on their behalf.
God, you showed us your love. In Christ’s life, ministry, and death, we begin to understand the depths of your compassion, and we know that you comprehend the pain and hope parents feel.
Help us to challenge those systems within our influence that would value the wealth of some over the health and safety of children, those in our midst, who are most vulnerable.
We pray for children in Cairo, Bogota, Kansas City, and throughout the world, whose home is the street and whose constant companions are need and fear. We pray for children whose innocence has been compromised by greed or neglect.
We pray for those children whose consciences have been crippled by racism, hate, or affluence; for children whose eyes have been blinded and hearts hardened by excess, by harm, or by ego.
We ask your Spirit’s nearness when we fail or stumble in our attempts to uphold each child of yours. We need your presence so that we will not be discouraged in our efforts or lose sight of the ways in which your love connects us to each other.
We believe your kingdom is a place where each child can know their worth, to you and to the world. Guide us individually and as a body as we endeavor to create a space for your kingdom in our midst.
We offer this prayer to you, that Christ’s way might more fully become our way. 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 Zambia, 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.