Jesus said, “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
We pray for all who are weary and carrying heavy burdens throughout the world.
In particular, we pray for the over 50 million people who are refugees in the world today, fleeing their homes due to privation, hunger, or conflict.
- In Syria, where 2.5 million people have fled and 6.5 million are displaced.
- In Pakistan, where a military offensive in the North Waziristan tribal region has forced more than 75,000 people to flee their homes over the past two weeks.
- In Chad, where those living in refugee camps have had reductions in food rations, some as much as 60 percent; and in Liberia, Burkina Faso, Mozambique, Ghana, Mauritania and Uganda where 338,000 refugees have seen their rations reduced by between five and 43 per cent.
- In Iraq, where 10,000 people have been displaced from predominantly Christian communities near Mosul.
- In Ukraine, where over 54,000 people have been displaced in recent conflicts.
- In the Central African Republic where fighting has displaced thousands of people and left over 45 dead.
- In Haiti, where almost 280,000 remain in camps after the 2011 earthquake and another 200,000 are living with host families or in informal settlements.
- And throughout the world, for those seeking asylum from the burdens they carry and the yokes they wear.
May we bear one another’s burdens so that all may share in the liberty of God’s loving kindness and live with one another in peace.
[Much of the information for these prayers comes from the United Nations High Commissioner on Refugees’ website: http://www.unhcr.org/cgi-bin/texis/vtx/home]