“When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest raged, all hope of our being saved was at last abandoned.”
Mark 4:35-41 (Jesus calms the storm)
There will be times when, standing in the storms of our own making, we are challenged to demonstrate unusual kindness in the face of worldly indifference. Here are some suggestions to Go and Do:
Go and Do (see www.ctbi.org.uk/goanddo)
Global: Take action by adding your voice to the call to address the climate emergency.
Local: Are your churches involved in the eco-church/ eco-congregations award?
Personal: Individual actions on reducing carbon are not enough to make the difference but together they add up.Source: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2020 Resources https://ctbi.org.uk/resources-for-week-of-prayer-for-christian-unity-2020/
For this year’s Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, we accompany the churches of Malta, praying with and alongside them, praying also for them in their Christian journey as they seek the unity for which Christ prayed. And we rejoice with them that Malta traces its Christian origins back to the time of the Apostles. And in so doing, we enter into the drama of St Paul, those that travelled with him, and the inhabitants whom they met, to discover our shared unity, and in so doing recognise the importance of unusual acts of kindness that bear witness to the Gospel of peace and reconciliation.
We will be joined by Churches Together Sandhurst on Sunday January 19th 6:30pm at Crowthorne Methodist Church to celebrate the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity that happens between 18th and 25th January each year.
Over the past eight days the churches of Indonesia have helped us consider difficult situations facing the world. Many of these have raised questions of justice. The Church has been complicit in many instances of injustice and, through that complicity, we have damaged our unity and diminished the effectiveness of our witness to the world. Christians gather for common prayer, professing common faith and to listen for God’s voice. Although the many injustices wound us, we do not lose hope, but are called to action. The Lord is our light and salvation, the stronghold of our lives. We do not fear.
God, the bringer of good news, forgive our lust for power and free us from the temptation to oppress others. Instil in us the determination to see your good news made real in us and those around us, as we share in the mission of your Son Jesus to fulfil your promise of freedom from poverty and oppression. We pray in his name. Amen
God’s goodness has provided ample food and fresh water to sustain life for all and yet many people lack these necessities. Human greed frequently leads to corruption, injustice, poverty and hunger. Jesus teaches us not to be concerned about accumulating more material things than we need. We should, rather, be concerned with proclaiming the Kingdom of equity and announcing God’s reign of justice. Christians are called to live lives which enable the waters of justice to flow.
The Lord is gracious and merciful to all (Psalm 145:8)
God of all humanity your Son was born into a line of men and women, ordinary and extraordinary. Some of them were remembered for their great deeds, others more for their sins. Give us an open heart to share your unbounded love, and to embrace all who experience discrimination. Help us to grow in love beyond prejudice and injustice. Grant us the grace to respect the uniqueness of each person, so that in our diversity we may experience unity. This prayer we make in your holy name. Amen
Source: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Resources, Churches in Britain and Ireland
The letter to the Ephesians presents a call for Christians to be honest and accountable to each other, so that we may grow in community. There is no place for deceitfulness, for it serves only to impair our relationships and so destroy that community. We are called to live an authentic life of faith and stand up for the truth. Our ‘yes’ must mean ‘yes’ and our ‘no’ must mean ‘no’ – with no equivocal language or dishonest behaviour. Dishonesty disrupts the unity of the Church fror which we are called to pray and work.