Primates Prayer Day 10: Abp. Malango, Province of Central Africa

January 17, 2007

Today’s lectionary
AM Psalm 38; PM Psalm 119:25-48
Isa. 44:24-45:7; Eph. 5:1-14; Mark 4:1-20

Ephesians 5:8b-10 ESV
Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.

Gracious Father, we ask for Your grace today, for the work of the Holy Spirit in our hearts that we may walk in the light of Christ, that we may delight in being Your children and doing what pleases You, bearing fruit for Your glory. Help us to love and to walk in what is good and right and true. Help us to discern what pleases You. Romans 12:1-2 reminds us that we know Your good, perfect and pleasing will as we offer ourselves to You, as we allow You to renew our minds and transform our lives through Your Word. Help us to submit ourselves to You today, help us to test what we believe to be right and pleasing against Your Word. We pray all these things as well for the Primates and leaders of the Anglican Communion. May they walk in the light today Lord, and may they be offering themselves to You afresh, may they be renewing their minds in the Scriptures that they may clearly discern Your will and what will please You as they seek to lead our Communion.

Both of today’s collects are wonderful:

Collect for the Second Sunday after Epiphany
Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ is the light of the world: Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and Sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ’s glory, that he may be known, worshiped, and obeyed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Collect, Commemorating Anthony, Abbot in Egypt
O God, who by your Holy Spirit enabled your servant Antony to withstand the temptations of the world, the flesh, and the devil: Give us grace, with pure hearts and minds, to follow you, the only God; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Primate Prayer Focus: Archbishop Bernard Malango, Province of Central Africa

Archbishop Bernard Malango, Province of Central AfricaArchbishop Malango has quite a lot of important leadership responsibilities among the Primates. He served on the Lambeth Commission which produced the Windsor Report. He also is a member of the Primates Standing Committee and one of the advisors to Abp. of Canterbury Rowan Williams regarding the current crisis in the Anglican Communion.

Here is the prayer my colleague Jill Woodliff wrote for Abp. Malango earlier this month:

O Father,
You are good and gracious and generous. Holy is Your name. We humbly beseech You to send a full measure of Your Holy Spirit upon Bernard that he may trust You, delight in You, commit his way unto You, rest in You, and wait patiently for You as he prepares for and participates in the primates’ meeting in Tanzania. Grant him wisdom, and help him to forsake wrath. Feed him, bless him with righteousness, and grant him the desires of his heart. May he inherit all the good things You have in store for him, and may he delight himself in the abundance of peace. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
Psalm 37:3-11, Luke 11:13

Photo credit: Global South Anglican

(Note: as I have time today, I hope to update Jill’s short prayer profile of Abp. Malango with additional background links. I should have an update online by about 4 p.m. Eastern)

Covenant Design Group

January 17, 2007

Sovereign Lord,
You are Ruler of the Universe, and we honor You. You command the heavens and the stars, the earth and the seas, forces seen and unseen. We proclaim Your glory.
We petition You to send Your holy angels to Nassau to surround and protect the Covenant Design Group.
We humbly ask You to commisssion Your Holy Spirit to Drexel, Victor, John, Sriyanganie, Kathy, Santosh, John, Andrew, Rubie, Ephraim, Nomfundo, and Gregory,
–to hover over false thinking and bring order out of chaos, repentance out of sin,
–to rest on their wounds and heal their spiritual understanding of You,
–to cover their sins and make their hearts pure.
We beseeech You to call Your Son Jesus to step into every one and give them His vision for the church.
Bless them with pure hearts that they may see Your face. In His name, we pray. Amen.
Genesis 1:2, Matthew 5:8

Mark 4:1-10 and Words Received

January 17, 2007

And again he began to teach by the sea. And a great multitude was gathered to him, so that he got into a boat and sat in it on the sea; and the whole multitude was on the land facing the sea. Then he taught them many things by parables, and said to them in his teaching: (Mark 4:1-2)

Jesus, please help us hear and appropriate what you are trying to teach us today.

“Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow.” (Mark 4:3)

Holy Spirit, please work in our hearts so that we listen to Jesus and in our eyes so that we see the truths of his kingdom.

“And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it.” (Mark 4:4)

Father, please come into those fruitless, unproductive waysides in our lives.

“Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have much earth; and immediately it sprang up because it had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up it was scorched, and because it had no root it withered away.” (Mark 4:5-6)

Jesus, please come into the shallow places of our common life together in the Episcopal Church where seeds quickly blossom but soon wither away; bring us to greater depth of soil in you.

“And some seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no crop.” (Mark 4:7)

Holy Spirit, help us recognize the thorny places in our lives and in our church that prevent us from producing the crop you are looking for. Please guide us in recognizing and clearing out those areas in our life together so they can be productive.

“But other seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up, increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.” (Mark 4:8)

LORD, thank you for the fruitful places in our lives. Help us invest our time and effort into those areas which will yield a bountiful harvest for your kingdom.

And he said to them, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” (Mark 4:9)

Help us to hear you, Jesus; help us make the choice to listen to you.

But when he was alone, those around him with the twelve asked him about the parable. (Mark 4:10)

Holy Father, guide us into spending time along with Jesus so that we can grow in understanding his words to us. Thank you.

***** A prayer and words received for a Sunday School lesson in February:

Then he said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. (Luke 10:2)

Lord, it is your harvest and your harvest field, not ours; help us go forth to labor in your harvest fields with humility.

In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in your sight. (Luke 10:21)

A word received: Look at the choice my father made: to reveal the gospel to the weak and the lowly. It was that way at my birth and throughout my life and it is true today. I want you to rejoice that your names are written in my Book of Life.

All things have been delivered to me by my father, and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, and who the Father is except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal him.” (Luke 10:22)

A word received: I chose you before you chose me. Rejoice, I have chosen you to go and bear much fruit.

Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see; (Luke 10:23)

A word received: Thank me for blessing you with sight and hearing. All around you many are stumbling in the dark. Who will go to them with the light of the gospel?

for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see, and have not seen it, and to hear what you hear, and have not heard it.” (Luke 10:24)

A word received: Pray for my people to desire to see what I want to show them and hear what I want to say to them.

Now it came to pass, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, that one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” (Luke 11:1)

A word received: I want my people to come to me, asking me to teach them to pray. I will bless that request.

***** Keep praying for our Bishops and dioceses, and their staffs. Pray for protection, provision, strength and clear guidance and constant travel mercies. Pray for Lord’s powerful anointing on them as they engage with their responsibilities. Cry out to the Lord for his Church. Pray for repentance among the leaders of God’s people. Pray for repentance in all of us. Pray for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit locally and in our nation. Pray for God to lead the Primates of the Anglican Communion in their meeting in Africa. Pray for clarity of sight and hearing for all of us, that we may respond to what the Lord wants to do in our midst.

Albany Intercessor

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