Pray For Our Land

 

Brexit

As the Brexit negotiations continue with the exit date of 29th March growing ever closer the President and the Lay Leader of the Methodist Church in Ireland urge members to make these a matter of individual and corporate prayer.

  • Pray for political leaders and all those who seek to progress the negotiations that they would rise above short-term politicking and find a constructive way forward in the interest of the common good.
  • Pray that debate may be conducted respectfully; that people of differing views would disagree well; and that all who own the name of Christ might set a Christ-like example in this regard.
  • Pray for those involved in commerce, industry and agriculture, across the UK and Ireland, who must prepare for the future in the face of much uncertainty. May they be given wisdom to make good decisions and be guided to take the right steps at the right time. 
  • Whatever the outcome of the negotiations, pray that the hardships of the most vulnerable in society will not increase.
  • Pray particularly for relationships on the island of Ireland – between the political parties in Northern Ireland and between the governments north and south. Pray that the work of reconciliation and the outworking of the Good Friday Agreement may continue, with no return to the violence of the past.

 

Restoration of the NI Assembly

In September last year, the Church Leaders met with the Leaders of the Political parties in Northern Ireland with a view to providing a space where dialogue could happen, and where we could encourage working together for the common good. We also sought to understand the difficulties preventing a restoration of a functioning Northern Ireland Executive and Assembly. The issue of Brexit loomed large overshadowing everything else. 

Following our meetings with these political leaders, the Church Leaders initiated several Civic Forums which included local political leaders, people from the statuary and voluntary sectors, along with leaders from the business community. The Irish Council of Churches had a key role in organising these events which most people found helpful, but so far there has been no real sign of a restoration of a Northern Ireland Assembly and Executive. We would, therefore, ask that over Lent and Easter, intercessions on Sundays would continue to include prayers for the political parties for further progress towards the restoration of the institutions of government, so that events would move from just dialogue to concrete action.

Prayer

Loving Father, we thank you that you have revealed yourself to us in the Lord Jesus, especially in His life and death. We praise you for your wonderful love which surrounds us and makes us confident that the good work you have begun in us you will carry on to completion until the day of Christ. We recognise our daily dependence upon you for fresh grace and power to live a life manifesting the fruit of the Holy Spirit. As we receive grace from you each day, so we pray for the needs of the wider community, and especially the restoration of the political institutions in Northern Ireland. We pray for the political leaders of all parties, that they would recognise their responsibilities to work together for the common good. We pray that both leaders and parties would engage meaningfully with each other at all levels, so that they might find a way to resolve the outstanding issues which continue to prevent the restoration of government.  We pray that the good relationships built up over years between the British and Irish Governments would continue to develop despite all the difficulties that Brexit has raised.  We remember the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and her officials as they continue their work of trying to facilitate further discussions between the parties. We know that nothing is too hard for you and so we pray with confidence knowing that if we ask anything according to your will, you hear us as we approach you in prayer.

Through Jesus Christ.
Amen