Praying for peace
As I write this, the news from the Ukraine is looking very bleak. Russian tanks are rolling again in scenes reminiscent of the not-too-distant past. It can sometimes seem as though we learn nothing from our past mistakes and are destined to have to repeat them constantly.
The Psalms and prophecy of Isaiah, written at least 2,500 years ago, have much to teach us about hope overcoming tyranny, about love winning in the end despite the best efforts of those who would wish to subdue others.
On Sunday we will hear about the Transfiguration, when Christ’s glory is revealed in the most astonishing way. He is with us, as well as the people of Ukraine and Russia, it is just sometimes that we are unable to see it clearly. May we be reminded of his love and light continuously.
Please pray for peace for Ukraine and Eastern and Central Europe.
Christina Laschenko-Stafiychuk (churchwarden of the Anglican church in Kiev)
Holy and Gracious God,
We pray for the people of the Ukraine and the people of Russia; for their countries and their leaders.
We pray for all those who are afraid; that your everlasting arms hold them in this time of great fear.
We pray for all those who have the power over life and death; that they will choose for all people life, and life in all its fullness.
We pray for those who choose war; that they will remember that you direct your people to turn our swords into ploughshares and seek for peace.
We pray for leaders on the world stage; that they are inspired by the wisdom and courage of Christ.
Above all, Lord, today we pray for peace for Ukraine.
And we ask this in the name of your blessed Son.
Lord have mercy.
Prayer from the Methodist Church
Readings for Sunday
The Lord is king; let the peoples tremble!
He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!
The Lord is great in Zion;
he is exalted over all the peoples.
Let them praise your great and awesome name.
Holy is he!
Mighty King, lover of justice,
you have established equity;
you have executed justice
and righteousness in Jacob.
Extol the Lord our God;
worship at his footstool.
Holy is he!
Moses and Aaron were among his priests,
Samuel also was among those who called on his name.
They cried to the Lord, and he answered them.
He spoke to them in the pillar of cloud;
they kept his decrees,
and the statutes that he gave them.
O Lord our God, you answered them;
you were a forgiving God to them,
but an avenger of their wrongdoings.
Extol the Lord our God,
and worship at his holy mountain;
for the Lord our God is holy.
Luke 9: 28-36
Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah’—not knowing what he said. While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!’ When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.
Readings for the week
Monday 28 February
Psalm 111: 17-end, Mark 10: 17-27
Tuesday 1 March (Shrove Tuesday)
Psalm 98:1-5, Mark 10:28-31
Wednesday 2 March (Ash Wednesday)
Isaiah: 58: 1-12, Psalm 51:1-18, John 8: 1-11
Thursday 3 March
Psalm 1, Luke 9:22-25
Friday 4 March
Psalm 51: 1-5, 17-18, Matt 9: 14-15
Saturday 5 March
Psalm 86: 1-7, Luke 5: 27-32