Prayers of the People

We invite you to pray with us this week.

Glorious God, we give you thanks for this glorious day, for it was not an alarm clock that woke us up this morning, but the breath of life that you breathed into us.

Precious God, we give you thanks, but as your children, we also come to you with concerns weighing heavy on our hearts. We pray for people in our lives and for our siblings in this world who are suffering—living in fear of persecution, burdened by the weight of oppression, struggling to navigate daily uncertainties, feeling alone and unseen.

Mary, Martha and the community wept over Lazarus’ death, and Jesus wept alongside them. We pray for those weeping now. Comfort them, let them know Jesus sees their tears and weeps with them. Grow in us all the wisdom, courage and gumption to put an end to dehumanizing practices of violence, hatred and indifference that inhibit us from participating in your mission of love. Open our eyes to see the glorious image of God in everyone around us.

Almighty God, we give thanks to those whose lives are a testimony to your glorious goodness. We celebrate the release of Paul Rusesabagina, the man whom Hotel Rwanda is based on, who was arrested in 2020 and wrongfully charged with terrorism. We are grateful that this man, who helped save over a thousand lives, has been released from prison, along with 18 others charged alongside him. We give thanks for 17-year-old Ellen Xu, who designed a diagnostic test for Kawasaki disease that works on a smart phone.

Creator God, there are so many people doing amazing things, both big and small, in our lives and in this world. There is so much beauty in the natural world around us—in animals, plants and down to the microorganisms—all proclaiming your glory and majesty. In truth, your glory is beyond our ability to comprehend, but let us be all the more inspired by the bits of your glory revealed to us as we move through our week.

We pray all these things in the name of your son, Jesus, who taught us to pray, saying…

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

Seminarian Veronica Ota offered these Prayers of the People on Sunday, March 26, 2023.