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Mission Leader Endorses Ecumenical

Call for Prayers for Zimbabwe
 


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The Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia, general secretary of the World Council of Churches.

The Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia, general secretary of the World Council of Churches.
Image by: Peter Williams
Source: United Methodist News Service

New York, NY, June 17, 2008--The head of the United Methodist mission agency has endorsed a call from the World Council of Churches that Christians worldwide join in a day of prayer on June 22 for Zimbabwe as that country faces a run-off in a deeply contested national election.

Bishop Felton E. May, interim general secretary of the General Board of Global Ministries, said he welcomed the initiative of the World Council to unite all Christians to join Zimbabwean sisters and brothers in prayers for peace and justice.

The run-off election is set for June 27. The day of prayer was initiated by Christians in Zimbabwe.

Bishop May commended a prayer, written by World Council leader Dr. Samuel Kobia, that remembers Zimbabwe in its time of trial and prays "with and for Zimbabwe in this hour of national decision."

The full text of Bishop May's endorsement and of the Kobia prayer follows:

I welcome and endorse the call of the World Council of Churches for Christians around the world to join in prayer for the nation of Zimbabwe and its people on Sunday, June 22. This observance, initiated by Christians in Zimbabwe, comes at a time of crisis for the African country, which on June 27 will hold a run-off election to select national leaders, including a president.

Prayer is a powerful offering that Christians can make in politically troubled times and places. I urge United Methodists in our global mission connection to pray diligently with Zimbabwean brothers and sisters for a peaceful electoral process that will lead to justice and prosperity for their country.

Dr. Samuel Kobia, a Kenyan Methodist and the secretary general of the World Council of Churches, of which The United Methodist Church is a member, has offered a model prayer for Zimbabwe on this occasion. I commend his words to our people:

Eternal God:
In your sight nations rise and fall, and pass through times of trial.
We pray with and for Zimbabwe in this hour of national decision,
and we ask your divine blessing on all the people of the land.
May Zimbabwe's leaders seek justice by means that are just;
May the voters take action to promote the common good;
may international observers and mediators be guided by your wisdom.
Lead us not into temptation, Lord, and deliver your people from evil:
Empower us all to overcome anger, jealousy, division and violence;
help us to respect one another despite our differences;
and teach us the things that truly make for peace.
This we pray in the name of Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

The full call of the World Council can be read online at oikoumene.org.

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Topic: Advocacy Christian love Communities GBGM news Global connections International affairs Peace Prayers United Methodist Church
Geographic Region: AfricaZimbabwe
Source: GBGM Press Releases
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Date posted: Jun 17, 2008