We are thankful for:
- the peoples of these nations – the diversity of their cultures, languages, and art, and their resilience
- the breath-taking beauty of these lands – the mountains in all their grandeur, overflowing rivers and green paddy fields
- all those who work for the churches and their institutions, especially in places where natural disasters strike
We pray for:
- efforts of governments and others to build up these nations’ economies
- those who have lost families and homes in earthquakes and other disasters as they struggle to rebuild their lives, homes and infrastructure
- those who contribute to religious harmony and advocate for the minority voice of Christians, especially amid religious and ethnic tensions
- religious and government leaders that they will make it possible for all peoples to live in justice with peace and harmony.
- these small nations which depend on other countries and are often threatened by interests of their bigger neighbours.
O compassionate Lord,
I would prefer power over the storm,
a secure home,
a life protected from the winds.
But help me to live with storms,
shelter with friends,
see my plans broken
but not my life:
rebuilt again and again from the earth.
(Bangladesh. Dear Life, J. Morley, J. Ward and H. Wild, eds © Christian Aid 1998. Used with permission)
O Saviour Christ,
in whose way of life lies the secret of all life,
and the hopes of all the people,
we pray for quiet courage to meet this hour.
We did not choose to be born or to live in such an age.
But let its problems challenge us,
its discoveries exhilarate us,
its injustice anger us,
its possibilities inspire us,
and its vigour renew us,
for your Kingdom’s sake.
(Bangladesh. A Procession of Prayers: Meditations and Prayers from around the World, comp. John Carden, WCC, and Cassell, London, UK, 1998, p.179)
For the Government of Nepal
Since democracy was achieved in Nepal in 1990, the country has suffered from unstable governments and a prolonged violent insurgency. Although peace was negotiated in 2006, successive governments have struggled to provide a new Constitution and governance process.
Heavenly Father, we pray for those involved in government in Nepal, from local to national level. We pray for men and women of integrity in government, who will take decisions in the best interests of ALL Nepalis, regardless of caste, religion, gender or ethnicity. We pray for a government of vision, commitment and compassion.
For the Church in Nepal
Nepal's religious tradition is strongly Hindu and Buddhist; Christian and Muslim minorities have in the past suffered restrictions on how they practise their beliefs, and sometimes even persecution and imprisonment. Since 2006, Nepal has been a secular state, and Nepali churches, independent, indigenous and strongly evangelical, have begun to take a stronger role in their communities.
Heavenly Father, we praise you for the way you have moved in the hearts of Nepali people, and raised up a church filled with love for you, for each other and for its neighbours. We pray for Christians in Nepal, as they seek to serve you in villages and towns across the country. We pray for wisdom, harmony and unity, that the Church in Nepal will shine for you.
For the poor in Nepal
Nepal remains one of the poorest countries in Asia on most indicators. The earthquakes of April-May 2015 have plunged families and communities into even deeper poverty, and placed development gains at risk. Women and girls, people in remote communities, people with disabilities and those suffering from HIV and AIDS are particularly vulnerable. Unemployment is high, sending thousands of Nepalis to work outside the country.
Heavenly Father, we know your heart is with the poor, so we pray for those in Nepal who struggle against poverty. We pray for those affected by disasters, particularly earthquakes, and those whose livelihoods threatened by the effects of climate change. We pray for those working towards the protection and empowerment of the poor, and for wise, effective government policy.
© Lyn Jackson, UMN/Nepal