Prayer

Each month a country is selected where problems and conflict has been ignored by the general media.
Each week a prayer for this country is distributed and published here.
If you want to receive the email each week you can subscribe here.

May 192016
 

The civil war in Syria has created numerous refugees. The influx of refugees has left the nation and most of the world powerless in reaching out and helping them. Many people have taken the task to hand and started organisations to help the refugees by meeting basic needs. This week our prayer is for those who seek to help.

As usual, you can subscribe to the prayer list by filling in the form.

If you are interested in writing prayers let us know through the contact us page. We are always looking for people to write prayers. We are also open to other suggestions and willing to look into other ways we can resource the church.

Prayers for those who seek to help

Sometimes the scale of things seem so large;
Sometimes the crisis rolls in
Like wave after wave
And we feel so small:

Our resources are limited;
Choices need to be made,
Quotas are set.
The politics are complex,
Lines are drawn in the ground,
And some will win and some will lose.
Good God, it is not fair!

We pray for those agencies
Which seek to help the otherwise helpless;
For the work begun by Father Efstratios Dimou,
Papa Stratis,
And the organisation Agkalia (Embrace)
Which he founded on the island of Lesbos;

“The local people tell them to come to us for help.
We give them food, water, milk for the babies, shoes, clothes.
They can stay here too:
We have blankets, mattresses on the floor.”

We give you thanks, good and gracious God,
For the work done by the Greek people
To help the lives of others:

We give you thanks for all those churches
Which can look back in time
To when the Christian faith
Passed through Syria and present-day Turkey
And made its landfall in Europe, in Philippi:

We pray for their work in bearing witness
To Christ in troubled and perplexing times,
When Christ himself can come, incognito,
In the guise of a stranger, a refugee,
In need of God’s give of hospitality,

Amen.

Historical Background

Over the last few years Greece has been in the news on a regular basis. For some time we would here of emergency budgets, political stand-offs with the European Union, runs on the banks, protests in the streets and frequent changes of government. The reality of Greek indebtedness to German political and economic clout reminded citizens of the damages they had sustained during the Nazi invasion and occupation 70 years before. Would Greece remain within the European Union or be left to find its own way in the company of the drachma rather than the Euro? How difficult to imagine a collapsed state in the light of its classical legacy and its role of being the origins of democracy.

Now all that seems to be in the background – though Greek debt remains high and its people vulnerable. Now the focus falls, firstly, on the Greek islands. For so long they have been the destination of choice for millions of tourists and those on Aegean Sea cruises. The islands of Cos and Lesbos are among those which lie close to the Turkish mainland. They have become the much sought-after destination for refugees from Syria and further afield seeking to establish a foothold, however tenuous in Europe. To the north of the country lies the second focus – the razor wire of Macedonia which prevents refugees entry into the rest of Europe.

For Christians, of course, Greece is of some importance. The books of the New Testament were originally written in Greek. Several of Paul’s epistles were directed to churches in what we would now regard as Greek cities – Philippi, Corinth and Thessaloniki. Paul’s address to the unknown God took place in the Athenian agora or marketplace.

Our expression of faith owes much to this presently troubled country – so much so that words like church are derived from (κυριακος), kyriarkos, belonging to the Lord) and the Eucharist comes from the Greek to give thanks (εύχαριστεω),( eucharisteo).

May 082016
 
Prayer for Sunday 15 May

The civil war in Syria has created numerous refugees. Australia has decided they will accept only 12,000 refugees, other countries have made different decisions. Greece did not have that luxury. They were on the front line of refugees fleeing to the West. Not accepting them meant sending them to their death, but Greece cannot handle

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May 032016
 
Prayer for Sunday 8 May

We continue our prayer in May for Greece. In recent years Greece has had many economic problems which has led to political problems. The culture that has influenced and still influences all thought is today in turmoil. The Old Testament was translated into the Koine Greek Language in the third century BCE. Known as the

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Apr 292016
 
Prayer for Sunday 1 May

In May we start praying for Greece. Although today Greece is a small struggling country, it was once a centre of cultural growth. Philosophical books and the Bible, both Old Testament and New Testament are written in Greek. There is much about Greece to praise and thank God for, yet there is struggle and issues that require

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Apr 192016
 
Prayer for Sunday 24 April

On the 25th of April Australia remembers the ANZACs and their sacrifice at Gallipoli in the first World War. On the 24th of April one day before ANZAC Day, Armenians remember the martyrs of their nation, the victims of a Genocide that was fuelled by political and cultural hatred. Armenians also remember the ANZAC soldiers

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Apr 152016
 
Prayer for Sunday 17 April

The introduction of Christianity in Armenian is accredited to the disciples of Jesus. Until the early fourth century Christians were persecuted. In early forth century, Armenia became the first nation to accept Christianity as its national religion when its king became Christian. The Armenian Church grew and developed in its unique culture of social and

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Apr 092016
 
Prayer for Sunday 10 April

Nagorno-Karabakh is a region within the internationally recognised borders of Azerbaijan. Its population is mainly Armenian. Since 1988, the status of the region has been in dispute and since 1994 the governments of Armenia and Azerbaijan have been in peace talks to resolve the issue. Last weekend, on 1 April 2016, fighting started on the

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Apr 022016
 
Prayer for Sunday 3 April

Lest we Forget! As Australia remembers the ANZACs in April, Armenians around the world remember the Genocide and commemorate the 24th of April, one day before ANZAC day. The genocide was a retaliation triggered by the news of the invasion. Since the majority of Armenians are dispersed around the world, in this month the prayers

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Mar 232016
 
Prayer for Sunday 27 March

On this Holy Day, as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, we pray for Israel and Palestine, for the resurrection hope to be born again. For a brief introduction of the modern struggles in Israel and Palestine read the Historical Background below. As usual, you can subscribe to the prayer list by filling in the form.

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Mar 152016
 
Prayer for Sunday 20 March

We continue our prayer for Israel and Palestine. We also continue our journey with them, in their struggles for peace. For a brief introduction of the modern struggles in Israel and Palestine read the Historical Background below. As usual, you can subscribe to the prayer list by filling in the form. If you are interested

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