We are thankful for:
- the heritage of ancient trade routes, rich oral traditions and nomadic practices of people in the lands these countries now occupy
- humanitarian work to improve food security and livelihoods, especially for women
- pro-active efforts to preserve the environment in these desert lands
- welcome and provision for those who often must flee across borders.
We pray for:
- those impoverished who lack basic needs and rights, that these will be met
- desperate children and others who turn to crime or begging or become enslaved
- effective response to the frequent droughts and hunger in this area
- more stable political rule in these countries to stem violence and provide for all.
God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Eternal God, we pray in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ, for Mali, Chad, Niger, Mauritania and Burkina Faso.
We know that in our part of the world some people are getting carried away by hatred – people who are unable to think clearly, and turn furiously on the people whom you have placed in this part of the world to enjoy your creation and witness to you. We pray for girls and boys, women and men, children and adults, and the elderly, for you to grant them peace, your peace. In the name of Jesus Christ, Lord, change the hearts of all those who are carried away by hatred, that they may find in you the Hope of Salvation, and that they may become messengers of peace for ever.
We thank you, Lord, for you are faithful to your promise.
Glory and praise be given to you for ever and ever. Amen
(Pastor Kinda Tegwende Leonard/Sore Mahamoudou, Burkina Faso.)
Prayer for Mauritania
Your land, O Lord, is divided
and suffers from fighting between your children.
Injustices of all kinds, hatred and bitterness
are part of the daily life of the people.
Families seek reconciliation.
Tribes and ethnic groups need reconciliation and peace.
The country needs to be restored and reconciled with itself
in order to deal with its past.
The downtrodden still struggle to live a decent life.
The powerful continue to exploit the powerless and the voiceless.
Send your Holy Spirit to reveal your presence and might to all.
May your name be feared and judgment brought upon those
who continue to oppress the little ones.
Enter into hearts and lives and change them to become havens of love.
(© Dr Colette Bouka Coula, Cameroon, former staff member of the Lutheran World Federation in Mauritania)
Prayer for Mali, Niger, Chad, Burkina Faso and Mauritania
God, our Father, we bless you
for the gift of life that you grant us,
that strength of faith,
so fragile and so powerful,
which is nourished by the assurance of your love.
We pray to you, Lord,
for the sustenance of life for the people of these five countries,
Mali, Niger, Chad, Burkina Faso and Mauritania.
Stir up the strength and courage of all those who are engaged
in lifting these countries out of poverty.
(Prières pour le monde 2004 © Fédération protestante de France, Paris, France. English transl. Terry MacArthur, © 2005 WCC)