Darb el Arba’in

March 31, 2010

The Darb el Arba’in is an ancient trade route that runs from Darfur to the Nile valley and Egypt. Connecting a series of oases, it is called the Forty Days Road. Up to the end of the 19th century, it was one of the main routes to transport slaves and exotic goods. Its sinister reputation comes from the eye-catching white color of the numberless human and camel bones scattered all along the way, so much so that the road is indicated on maps with the words Track marked with white bones.

Jesus, You are the way.
We speak Your name over the Forty Days Road.
Father, Your Word is truth.
Send forth Your word along the Forty Days Road. It shall not return to You empty, but accomplish what You please.
Holy Spirit, You bring life.
Breathe on these bones, O Breath of God, and fill this land with hope and life.
God’s children in Sudan, whose hearts are thirsty and whose bones are dry, whose hope is lost and spirit cut off. You shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the date palms of the oases shall clap their hands. The sandsheet shall bring forth life, and the trade route shall be holy.
You shall be saved and cleansed by the sure mercies of Jesus. The Lord Almighty is Your God, and you are His people. You shall live under an everlasting covenant of peace, Amen.
Ezekiel 37, Isaiah 55

Psalm 74

March 31, 2010

O God, why have you cast us off forever? Why does your anger smoke against the sheep of your pasture? (Psalm 74:1)
      LORD, we have sinned against you and departed from your ways: have mercy on us and help us return to you.

Remember your congregation, which you have purchased of old, the tribe of your inheritance, which you have redeemed–this Mount Zion where you have dwelt. (Psalm 74:2)
      Jesus, in your mercy remember the Episcopal Church and help us return to you and your ways.

Lift up your feet to the perpetual desolations. The enemy has damaged everything in the sanctuary. (Psalm 74:3)
      Holy Spirit, come and visit your people and refresh us with your presence.

Your enemies roar in the midst of your meeting place; they set up their banners for signs. (Psalm 74:4)
      Father, please help us once again follow the sign of the cross.

They seem like men who lift up axes among the thick trees. (Psalm 74:5)
      Jesus, we are often frighten by the strength of our adversaries; fill us with the courage you gave David when he faced Goliath and the Philistines.

Arise, O God, plead your own cause; remember how the foolish man reproaches you daily. (Psalm 74:22)
      Jesus, please do what man cannot do: renew us by your Holy Spirit, revive us daily and guide us through this time of darkness in your church.

Do not forget the voice of your enemies; the tumult of those who rise up against you increases continually. (Psalm 74:23)
      May the Name of Jesus, the Son of God, who is mightier than all the hosts of Satan, and more glorious than all the angels of heaven, abide with us in our going out and our coming in; by day and by night; at morning and at evening; at all times and in all places.
      May the Name of Jesus, the Son of God, protect and deliver us from the wrath of evil persons; from the assaults of evil spirits; from foes invisible; from the snares of the Evil One; and from all low passions that beguile the soul and body.
      May the Name of Jesus protect and deliver us.
      And the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit be with us this day and always. Amen.
      (Blessing adapted from the Anglican Christian community in Ceylon, Pakistan, and India)

Wednesday: 74; Lamentations 2:1-9; 2 Corinthians 1:23-2:11; Mark 12:1-11
Maundy Thursday: 142, 143; Lamentations 2:10-18 1 Corinthians 10:14-17; 11:27-32 Mark 14:12-25

Albany Intercessor

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