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Weekly Prayer

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018

 

LEADER:       In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

                       

Welcome back from the long weekend.  On Thursday we celebrate the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China.  Pope Benedict, the pope before Pope Francis, asked that May 24th be observed as a day of prayer for the persecuted Christian church in China.  He chose this date because May 24th is also the Feast Day of Our Lady of Help of Christians. Thus, in addition to our prayers for China, we ask that Mary would also pray for China. 

In Canada we enjoy religious freedom.  We are able to attend whatever church we want, we can believe what we want and we can pray in our schools.  Unfortunately, that isn't the case in China.  The religious freedom that we enjoy in Canada is something that the people in China can only dream about.  The persecution in China is so bad that a Catholic bishop spent decades in a Chinese prison.  His crime was that he wouldn't say that the Chinese government was the head of the Catholic Church.  The bishop rightly pointed out that the head of the Catholic Church is Jesus and that Jesus' representative here on earth, the Pope, had the right to make decisions about the church, not the government. 

Today let us pause to pray that the persecution of Christians in China would stop. 

  

LEADER:       The response to the intentions is Lord, hear our prayer.

 

ALL:               Lord, hear our prayer.

 

LEADER:       That the people in China would enjoy the religious freedom that we have in Canada.  We pray to the Lord.

 

ALL:               Lord, hear our prayer.

 

LEADER:       That all who are imprisoned for their faith would be set free.  We pray to the Lord.

 

ALL:               Lord, hear our prayer.

 

LEADER:       That God would strengthen all Christians in China that they could endure the persecution they face.  We pray to the Lord.

 

ALL:               Lord, hear our prayer.

 

LEADER:       Loving God,

                        Through our prayers and the prayers of Mary, Help of Christians may the hearts and minds of the Chinese government be opened so that the Chinese people may worship you in freedom.  We make our prayer in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

 

ALL:               Amen.