It seems very odd, Lord, that people call for January to be a month to try being vegan when Lent was a period, 40 days, in the time before world trade hit our food markets when it was a necessity. We pray for those to whom being vegan is not a life style choice but a necessity forced on refugees, rough sleepers and displaced people. We think especially of those in the Cape provinces of South Africa where drought is forcing extreme measures as water may run out in a matter of weeks.
It seems very odd, Lord, that people think shooting in a school will solve their problems rather than ask you. We pray for all those dealing with the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, USA, for those who grieve, those who are injured and those treating trauma, giving thanks for all who cope as the incident unfolds.
It seems very odd, Lord, that people rake over old scandals rather than seek your moral code for how to live together as a society. We pray for the people of Haiti and other countries where foreign aid workers have inflicted life style problems to the detriment of those they were sent to help. We pray for the Governments of both donor and recipient countries especially those who, lacking perspective, trash all that has been achieved.
It seems very odd that prescription drugs are sold illegally for uses they can’t possibly treat, promote household chemicals as cures for fatal illnesses, while others poach endangered species and prey on people for body parts.
for the women of Pakistan, trying to open bank accounts but whose spinal fluid was abusively taken.
for the churches of Limpopo province, South Africa, where insecticide was used on their congregations.
for those who are willing to pay, and those who take their money to poach, for the short terms gains from shark finning, rhino and elephant poaching.
We ask that things seen as of little media interest in the face of –
- the political crises in South Africa and Israel;
- the collapsing health care in Gaza, Syria and Jordan;
- the Rohingya crisis in Bangladesh;
- the banking investigation in Australia
may be recognised as the major events they are for the future of our whole world.
We pray for those killed and injured in the tragedy of incidents and life-affecting disasters –
- in the plane crash in Moscow, Russia;
- in the helicopter crash at the Grand Canyon, USA;
- in the bus crash in Hong Kong;
- in the train crash in central Austria;
- in fighting and air strikes in Syria,
and may all those involved in rescue and emergency aid operations be recognised for the vital work and care they administer.
Lord, it might seem odd to us that we do so little: a smile here, a hug there, a donation, a prayer. Help us not to forget that the small thing we do today enables another to do a bigger thing tomorrow until all becomes part of your vast generosity. Amen.