Finding More Reasons to Pray

Finally, my semester exams are complete, and my internship will end today. I can concentrate less on studies and more on preparing for Advent.

As I have glanced through the news via my Google Reader, I’ve been finding more reasons to pray. Here are some of the intentions I wish to share with you today which have stood out to me:

In Egypt, Christians (generally Catholics), are viewed as “mistakes” in the government’s eyes, leaving them without jobs. Read more here.

In Wales and England, the House of Lords are considering legislation which would put the Church at risk of lawsuit and imprisonment should they not allow women, sexually active gays or transsexuals into the priesthood. Read more here.

In Iraq, more Christians (generally Catholics) are being injured, kidnapped and killed because of their religion. Churches are also being destroyed in bombings. Read more here.

In Nairobi, many Christians are arrested and held prisoner for their beliefs. Read more here.

In Kenya, an Irish missionary priest was murdered in his home. Read more here.

In China, millions more Christians are joining underground churches in order to practice their religion separate from government-run establishments. Recently, Chinese police destroyed a church and injured several of its members. Read more here.

These are just a few of the many intentions we have to include in our prayers. I’ll leave you with a prayer and blessing that every graduate of my Marianist Leadership program receives:

May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half-truths, superficial relationships, so that you will live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you will work for justice, equity, and peace.

May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, and war,so that you will reach out your hand to comfort them and change their pain to joy.

And may God bless you with the foolishness to think that you can make a difference in the world, so that you will do things which others tell you cannot be done.

Amen.

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