Thursday, February 19, 2009

Zimbabwe Prayers for Ash Wednesday

had this through from my Bishop, reposted in full:

To all licensed Clergy and Readers

Our two Archbishops have asked that parishes in the Church of England join in the worldwide Anglican day of prayer for Zimbabwe on Ash Wednesday. The meeting of worldwide Anglican Primates held in Alexandria three weeks ago asked for this, and our own Archbishops endorsed it strongly at last week’s General Synod. I would like all parishes in the diocese to take part.

Zimbabwe has been on our televisions and in our newspapers for months. We cannot say we do not know what has been happening there. I was able to use my place in the House of Lords last week to press the Government about the need for humanitarian aid.

Please draw people’s attention to this opportunity for prayer, and use the prayer material in the attached document. I also ask you to consider whether your parish can support the Archbishops’ appeal for financial support for the Anglican churches of Zimbabwe. (This is being run on their behalf by USPG, and further details can be found at

I am attaching a note from the Anglican Consultative Council which includes two very helpful prayer resources. The first prayer particularly lends itself to public use, and you might want to include it in your weekly pew sheet if you have one, use it on Ash Wednesday itself, on Sunday, or on the First Sunday in Lent.

The Archbishops say “A breakdown of basic civil infrastructure is slowly destroying a nation and causing unimaginable suffering. But while the government is failing, churches are struggling to feed the hungry and heal the sick. They are suffering alongside their communities, and they need our help.”

There is information on the ‘news and events’ section of the diocesan website and a downloadable flyer or porch poster at

Please do what you can to assist our brothers and sisters.
+Peter Bath & Wells

(text of attachment)
Anglican Communion joins Prayers for Zimbabwe on Ash Wednesday
February 12, 2009

The Secretary General of the Anglican Communion Canon Kenneth Kearon writes: 'I want to bring to your attention the request of the Primates and Moderators of the Anglican Communion, at their recent meeting in Alexandria, Egypt, that Anglican Churches world-wide observe 25th February, Ash Wednesday, as a day of prayer and solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe.

'The primates and Moderators also requested that parishes throughout the Anglican Communion give aid to enable food and other material aid for Zimbabwe for distribution through the dioceses of the Church of the Province of Central Africa.'
Financial aid should be channeled through your own church's relief and development agency, or alternatively donations (in any currency) can be sent to:

The Anglican Communion Office,
16 Tavistock Crescent,
W11 1AP

[NOTE: The Archbishops of Canterbury and York have suggested Church of England parishes channel any money through USPG. See]

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of Southern Africa and the Rt. Rev. Albert Chama, dean of the Anglican Province of Central Africa, had addressed the primates about Zimbabwe and in a press briefing the following day they spoke to the media.

Archbishop Makgoba. "We explained the urgency of the situation – the total collapse of the economy and socio-political infrastructure – and appealed to the primates to assist in whatever humanitarian needs they could provide to Zimbabwe. If we don't intervene we will be failing God in terms of 'when I was hungry you fed me and when I was poor you cared for my needs,' said Archbishop Makgoba.

A downloadable flyer is available at

Prayer for the People of Zimbabwe

We pray for the suffering people of Zimbabwe,
Forced to live amid deterioration, disease and despair.
We raise our voices on their behalf,
As truth-tellers we want to proclaim 'This is not good',
It is not how God desires our world to be.
Loving Father, look after the people of that sad but beautiful land,
Care for the little ones,
Comfort the dying ones,
And into this hour of darkness may the light of your new dawn begin to shine.

Prayer from All Africa Conference of Churches
* Pray for the church in Zimbabwe that it takes its appropriate role in
responding to the needs of the people.
* Pray for the formation of a government that will ensure delivery of
services to the people of Zimbabwe.
* Pray that the food supplies reach the dying people in remote Zimbabwe and that there be enough food for everybody.
* Pray that medical supplies are made available to all areas of the
country and save threatened life.
* Pray that there be unity, tolerance, love and mutual respect among all Zimbabweans regardless of political differences.
* Pray that the Lord may have mercy on Zimbabwe and give enough rains for a good harvest which will result in the restoration of human
dignity, respect and recognition.
* Pray that Christians worldwide may be inspired by the Spirit to remain in solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe until the end of crisis.
* Pray that the faith of Christians in Zimbabwe may be made stronger by their suffering so that in hope they retain their joy and commitment to Christ.
* Pray that the resources being extracted from Zimbabwe may benefit the whole nation including the poor rather than individuals.
* Pray that God may change the hearts of those who do not put the
interests of the people but think of themselves as more important than others.
* Pray that the will of God may be done.

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