Praying With The Pastor – Africa

Churchgoers pray during a morning service at the Saint Charles Catholic Church, the site of a 2014 bomb attack blamed on Islamic extremist group Boko Haram, in the predominantly-Christian neighborhood of Sabon Gari in Kano, northern Nigeria (Credit: AP Photo/Ben Curtis.)

A slow motion war is under way in Africa’s most populous country. It’s a massacre of Christians, massive in scale and horrific in brutality. And the world has hardly noticed. “ – The Wall Street Journal, 12/20/2019

Dear Friends,

Christian communities in Nigeria are currently suffering from violent attacks by extremists. Most have chosen to respond in non-violent ways. Please join me this week in praying for their safety and well-being, and for peace to be restored.

Blessings,
Pastor Basile

A Prayer
Sovereign God,
we worship You
and we acknowledge that You know all of those
who suffer in Your name.

We remember those who are imprisoned for their faith
and ask that they would join with the Apostle Paul
to see that even though they remain captive,
their chains have furthered the gospel,
not frustrated it.

May they inspire and embolden their fellow believers
to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.

God of all comfort,
for those who are tortured both in body and mind,
give them the grace to endure
and to see their suffering as part of following in Christ’s footsteps.

Merciful God,
for those asked to pay the ultimate price;
who are martyred because of their love for You,
may they truly know Christ
and the power of His resurrection
and the fellowship of sharing in His sufferings,
becoming like Him in His death.

Father God,
for those who are widowed and orphaned
may they know the comfort that comes from Your promised presence
even when they walk through the valley.

May they be strengthened by Your Spirit,
enabling them to rejoice with the psalmist
as they proclaim that the Lord will not abandon them in death.

Heavenly Father,
we ask that You would make us ever mindful of our brothers and sisters around the world
who need us to stand with them
as they suffer in Your name.

Teach us what it means
to overcome by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of our testimony;
we pray that we would not love our lives so much as to shrink from death.
O Lord, hear our prayer.

– from Release International

“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:10)

“Praying with the Pastor” is a resource highlighting prayer needs in our community, nation, and world. Names of Zion members and friends requesting prayer are listed in the weekly church bulletins, and monthly Messenger Newsletter. May God’s blessings abound as we consistently lift up the world, including our own church family, in prayer!

The Middle East

“Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy…” Hebrews 12:14

Dear Friends,

Please join me this week in praying for peace and stability in the Middle East.

Blessings,
Pastor Basile

A Prayer
Sustain together in undiminished hope, O God of hope, those who continue to labor with undiminished determination to build peace in the land from which, of old, out of brokenness, violence and destruction, nevertheless hope emerged for so many of faith. . . . Bless all the spiritual seed of Abraham together with the light of your Presence. For in the light of your Presence we have found a way of justice and mercy and a vision of Peace. We praise you O God, Giver of Peace, who commands us to Peace.

– Rabbi Herbert, from “Christians and a Land Called Holy: How We Can Foster Justice, Peace, and Hope”

The Rev. Jonathan T. Basile
Senior Pastor
Zion Evangelical United Church of Christ
603 N New Jersey Street
Indianapolis, IN, 46202
Tel: 317-639-5411
pastor@zioneucc.org | http://zioneucc.org

Praying With The Pastor – Childhood Illness


A group of school children making cards for hospitalized children

“Every day, 43 children are diagnosed with cancer. 12% of children diagnosed with cancer do not survive. Children’s cancer affects all ethnic, gender and socio-economic groups.
The average age of children diagnosed is six. More than 40,000 children undergo treatment for cancer each year. There are approximately 375,000 adult survivors of children’s cancer in the United States. That equates to 1 in 530 adults ages 20-39.” – CureSearch for Children’s Cancer (originally known as the National Childhood Cancer Foundation)

Dear Friends,

As we begin this year’s Advent season, join me in praying for children throughout our nation who are suffering from serious, life-threatening diseases.

Blessings,
Pastor Basile

A Prayer
Dear God, I pray today for children with serious, life-threatening illnesses. I know You are the Master Healer. Please comfort and protect them. Help them to know that they can come to You for the peace and health that only You can provide. Please be with the doctors as they continually study to find medicines and treatments. I leave this in Your precious hands, Oh God my Father. Amen

“Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise.” (Jeremiah 17:14)

“Praying with the Pastor” is a resource highlighting prayer needs in our community, nation, and world. Names of Zion members and friends requesting prayer are listed in the weekly church bulletins, and monthly Messenger Newsletter. May God’s blessings abound as we consistently lift up the world, including our own church family, in prayer!

The Rev. Jonathan T. Basile
Senior Pastor

Praying With The Pastor “The Middle East”

 

“Dominion and awe belong to him who establishes peace in his heights.” (Job 25:2)

Dear Friends,

Please join me this week in praying for peace and stability in the Middle East.

Blessings,  Pastor Basile

A Prayer

Sustain together in undiminished hope, O God of hope, those who continue to labor with undiminished determination to build peace in the land from which, of old, out of brokenness, violence and destruction, nevertheless hope emerged for so many of faith. . . . Bless all the spiritual seed of Abraham together with the light of your Presence. For in the light of your Presence we have found a way of justice and mercy and a vision of Peace.  We praise you O God, Giver of Peace, who commands us to Peace.

– Rabbi Herbert, from “Christians and a Land Called Holy: How We Can Foster Justice, Peace, and Hope”

Praying With The Pastor “East Timor”

“Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always.”  1 Chronicles 16:11

Dear Friends,

Join me this week in praying for the people of East Timor, and the work of our ministry partners there.

Blessings,

Pastor Basile

About East Timor

East Timor’s road to independence – achieved on 20 May 2002 – was long and traumatic.  The people of the first new nation of the century suffered some of the worst atrocities of modern times in their struggle for self-determination.  When their Portuguese colonial masters withdrew in 1975, Indonesia claimed the territory for itself and ruthlessly suppressed the independence movement.  Eventually the UN took over the administration and supervised the territory’s transition to independence.  (4 September 2015, East Timor Country Profile, www.bbc.com)

Ministry in East Timor

www.globalministries.org

Tom Liddle, a member of Peace United Church of Christ, Duluth, Minnesota, serves with the Protestant Church of East Timor (IPTL) as a facilitator for strengthening congregations and continuing education of pastors.

From Mr. Liddle…

The ministry of the Protestant Church of East Timor is a ministry of the Word. Does that seem antiquated? I think not. In the Internet age, our world is teeming with words — mostly empty words. And then there’s the instantaneous, ever-present digital image with accompanying sound bite. It’s a barrage of babel intent on forming diligent producers and obedient consumers. Over and against this, the church speaks of the Word of God. The Protestant Church of East Timor has a vital home ministry dedicated to the study and proclamation of the Word. What underlies such a ministry is the confidence that the Word available to us in the Bible is also a vital presence in the world. Thus, a life spent meditating on the Word forms people who are like “…trees planted by streams of water” (Ps. 1). And the Word proclaimed “…goes out and does not return empty,” as the poet in Isaiah says. I think U.S. churches have something to learn from this. Quite often our church ministries mirror the culture’s obsession with “efficient action implementation” schemes. A ministry of the Word, however, is long-term, contemplative work that fosters an alternative life-map outside the realm of fear, conformity, and prattle. Instead, meditation on the Word creates faith and fosters freedom. It opens the imagination and bestows on us space for living humanly in the midst of death.

A Prayer for East Timor:

By: Tom Liddle

Loving God, in our fractured world you have brought us together with partners all over the world. You call us to unity and make us one in the sharing of bread and cup, the water of baptism and meditation on your Word. You ask us to be your people wherever we are. We are thankful for all that we learn from all our global partners. On this day we pray for the Protestant Church of East Timor. We ask that you lead and guide them in their ministry of the Word. Bestow upon its ministers wisdom, patience, and courage. Strengthen the faith of its members. Bless the clinic workers, teachers, and young people. May their ministries in your name be salt and light for all your children in East Timor. In Jesus name, Amen.

 

 

“Praying with the Pastor” is a resource highlighting prayer needs in our community, nation, and world.  Names of Zion members and friends requesting prayer are listed in the weekly church bulletins, and monthly Messenger Newsletter.  May God’s blessings abound as we consistently lift up the world, including our own church family, in prayer!