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03/22/2011

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Elizabeth Nordquist

You would be impressed at both Seventh Avenue Presbyterian Church in San Francisco and at Companions on the Inner Way conferences where each time they meet, the prayers of the people begin with bidding prayers for the world, with specific places in the world lifter up.

Dan DeBevoise

Thank you Teresa for this very thoughtful post on "prayers of the people". I especially like the example of praying according to a pattern as a way of regularly lifting up the needs of the world to God rather than just sharing the weekly hospital list during worship. I've posted your blog on our church's facebook page and hope you'll friend us and be a part of our conversation.
Dan DeBevoise, Park Lake Presbyterian Church, Orlando, FL

Teresa Stricklen

Yes, it's a beautiful thing to pray for the world, isn't it, Elizabeth. There are many of our churches who are faithful in this practice, which I guess is why I'm so disturbed when it doesn't happen--they're missing out on something so much grander.

Among the other things I failed to say: The Book of Common Worship has several examples of intercessory prayer on pp. 99-117 that can serve as a guide to writing our own prayers that will help our own particular people pray.

Off to Facebook to be Park Lake's friend now.

David Gambrell

I would also commend the sets of Thanksgivings and Intercessions in Morning and Evening prayer in the Book of Common Worship (496-501 and 517-522, respectively) as a great model for brief yet full prayer for the church and world.

The Directory for Worship (W-3.3506) also has good guidance here:

"As the people respond to the Word, prayers of intercession are offered for (a) the Church universal, its ministry and those who minister, that the world might believe; (b) the world, those in distress or special need, and all in authority, that peace and justice might prevail; (c) the nation, the state, local communities, and those who govern in them, that they may know and have strength to do what is right.

Prayers of supplication are offered for (d) the local church, that it have the mind of Christ in facing special issues and needs; (e) those who struggle with their faith, that they be given assurance; (f) those in the midst of transitions in life, that they be guided and supported; (g) those who face critical decisions, that they receive wisdom; (h) those who are sick, grieving, lonely, and anxious, that they be comforted and healed; (i) all members, that grace conform them to God’s purpose. (W-2.1000)

Prayers of confession may be included at this time. (W-3.3301) When the service does not include the Lord’s Supper, prayers of thanksgiving are offered and the prayers are concluded with the Lord’s Prayer. (W-3.3613)"

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