The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) encourages all congregations to designate the second Sunday of Lent, which this year is February 28, to pray for peace for all people in the Holy Land.
The call comes in response to a motion passed at the 2009 ELCIC National Convention. The motion, titled “An ELCIC Convention Resolution on the Holy Land,” encourages the ELCIC to, “call on its members to regularly pray for peace for all people in the Holy Land, especially the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land, and to designate a Sunday annually for prayers in the congregation across the ELCIC.”
The ELCIC’s Program Committee for Worship (PCW) has prepared a number of resources for use in congregations and in other settings. Congregations are encouraged to include the following prayer petition (or the full prayer – link is available below) in their worship on February 28:
Holy God, Sovereign of the universe, we pray for the peace of the Middle East and of the whole world which you love so much. We pray especially for the city of peace, Jerusalem, Jeru-Shalom, Jeru-Salaam, holy city to Christians and Jews and Muslims, a city which knows too little peace. God, in your mercy, HEAR OUR PRAYER.
The full version of the prayer, along with addition resources for use, are available online at: https://www.elcic.ca/Documents/PrayersfortheHolyLand.pdf
The second Sunday in Lent was chosen because of the first readings from the lectionary, all of which are from the book of Genesis and concern God’s covenant with Abraham and Sarah of promised descendants and land (Year C Genesis 15: 1-12, 17-18, Year A Genesis 12: 1-4a, Year B Genesis 17: 1-7, 15-16).
Future dates designated for prayers for the people of the Holy Land will be March 20, 2011 and March 4, 2012.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada is Canada’s largest Lutheran denomination with 162,100 baptized members in 611 congregations. It is a member of the Lutheran World Federation, the Canadian Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches.
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