Prayers of the People | January 1

How many new years passed Simeon by before he saw Jesus? How long did Anna fast and pray before the holy child arrived? We have waited through the long season of Advent, and are now joyously celebrating God’s breaking through in the world. And yet, we also continue to wait. A new year arrives, and so much does not change. That frustrating fact can leave us hollow, even despairing. Renew our hope, God. Remind us that what you promise will surely come to pass.

 

When the fullness of time had come… God sent his son.

 

We pray for your church around the world, the universal body of which we are a part. As we wait, watch, and long for you, may we be actively working for peace and justice in our families, communities, and nations. May your Kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

 

When the fullness of time had come… God sent his son.

 

We pray for the needs of the world. For the end of violence and the protection of human rights in Syria. For North Korea, as a new leader comes to power. For the people of Japan, who suffer daily from the aftermath of last year’s earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear crisis. For Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, Egypt and other countries experiencing political instability. For all who experience poverty, oppression, disease, and despair, hear our prayers, mighty God.

 

When the fullness of time had come… God sent his son.

 

We pray for this community of st. benedict’s table. May we be a family who cares for each other’s needs, and the needs of those around us. Thank you for our leaders, especially those who work behind the scenes. Thank you for those who serve and for those who eat at Agape Table. Keep us faithful in our mission to them.

 

When the fullness of time had come… God sent his son.

 

We take this time to name aloud those whose needs are on our hearts…

 

God, we wait in anticipation for you to move in the lives of those we love. Help us to do all we can, and to trust you with what we cannot. We remember those who have died, and those who are grieving the loss of loved ones. Comfort us as we comfort each other, O God.

 

When the fullness of time had come… God sent his son.

 

New Year’s Day itself changes nothing. The pain of loss and of failure follows us into 2012, as much as we would like to start fresh. But still we move forward in hope, resolved to make what changes we are able to, waiting for the fullness of your time. Amen.

Written by Mari Raynard and offered in Worship on January 1, 2012

 

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