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Canada, United States of America

Canada, United States of America

Prayer at Summit on the Role of the Christian Faith Community in Global Health and HIV/AIDS, Georgetown University, USA.

29 October - 04 November 2017


Give thanks for:

  • Churches that see beyond their own congregations and countries to reach out to others in the name of Christ.
  • The National Council of the Churches of Christ USA, and the Canadian Council of Churches, and their efforts towards unity.
  • Those who tell stories from other parts of the world linking the poverty of the developing world to the consumerism and wealth of North Americans.
  • Those who work for the rights of women and children.
  • Those who walk instead of driving a car, who take the public bus instead of their own van, who call for an end to the wasteful use of the earth’s resources.
  • Maple syrup and pumpkin pie.


Pray for:

  • Continued efforts to ensure the rights of all peoples in Canada: First Nations, English and French speaking, and all immigrants.
  • An end to the creation and proliferation of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.
  • Those who experience poverty, discrimination and lack of opportunity amid great wealth, and for the growing gap between rich and poor.
  • Those affected by terrorist attacks.
  • Revitalization in the churches and renewed leadership.


Breath of the Four Winds
Come from the four winds, O Breath,
And breathe upon these slain, that they may live. (Ezekiel 37:9)

Come from the South, O Breath,
blow your life-giving promise of hope
to our sisters in ponchos, Mothers of the Disappeared, political prisoners and exiles.
Come from the South and breathe justice that they may live.

Come from the North, O Breath,
blow your Word, in Spirit and truth,
to our brothers and sisters who have lost their languages in residential schools.
Come from the North and speak freely, so there may be healing.

Come from the East, O Breath,
blow your message of peace
to children in countries shattered by war and division.
Come from the East with morning’s promise of a new day.

Come from the West, O Breath,
blow in the tongues of fire in the sky at the setting of the sun.
We are your church, kindled in your Spirit, fired in the mystery of your coming.
Come from the West and pray in us, Holy Spirit, our ending and our beginning.
(Wendy MacLean, United Church of Canada)


To wake from sleep into this day
is gift enough for thanks.

To hear a child’s delight in laughter
is gift enough for thanks.

To sip a glass of clean, cold water
is gift enough for thanks.

To watch the sunset paint the sky
is gift enough for thanks.

To share a moment with a friend
is gift enough for thanks.

To smell the fragrance of moist soil
is gift enough for thanks.

To feel the comfort of clean clothing
is gift enough for thanks.

To form the words that make a prayer
is gift enough for thanks.

(Keri K. Wehlander, also published in Wisdom Is Calling, comp. Geoffrey Duncan, Canterbury Press, UK, and United Church Publishing House, Etobicoke, Ont., Canada 1999,pp.126-27,142)


Prayer for life in freedom

God of all hope;
hear our prayer.

When money becomes a prison:
free us to choose life.

Where wealth turns into addiction:
free us to choose life.

When income determines worth:
free us to choose life.

Where poverty equals invisibility:
free us to choose life.

When economies deepen injustice:
free us to choose life.

Where greed invents new oppressions:
free us to choose life.

when finance rules every decision:
free us to choose life.

where consumption replaces compassion:
free us to choose life.

(Keri K. Wehlander)