For the Healing of the Nations

Date posted: Friday 05 June 2020

On Sunday, May 31, I joined others in the global community for a time of prayer for our companion church bodies in Africa. The focus was on the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic but we know our God is never limited to hearing prayers for only one issue at a time. From around the globe, prayers were offered for protection in the midst of this pandemic, for justice, for relief from famine, for the very well-being of creation.


We prayed for leaders in all the churches in Africa and the mighty challenges they are facing with good courage and prayer. We prayed for the synods and congregations in this country and the mighty challenges before us to face the ravages of racism, to build just communities, and to really listen to persons of color as they witness to their experiences and give voice to their hopes. Amen.


During this digital prayer vigil, two voices sang “For the Healing of the Nations,” an anthem that calls out prayers for every nation around the world. I took the accompanying photo as the church in Tanzania was lifted up in prayer. (A vigil later that same day focused on concerns for Central and Latin America with prayers for our church partners in Guatemala.)


And so we pray with siblings in Tanzania for God’s protection and healing. We pray daily for our BKB partners in Iringa and their tireless work in these very difficult days. We remember partner congregations, whose witness to Christ is a daily link to our own lives of faith. We remember friendships built over these years and across the miles.


It is very tempting to shift focus from one crisis to another – the death of George Floyd in the custody of police officers, protests in the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul and many other cities, concerns about the un-quelled spread of COVID-19, isolation from our family members, and economic distress all around. We don’t need to choose only one issue for our prayers or our attention. Because of our common humanity, every issue links together with every other concern. We pray, we listen, we work together for the healing of the nations.


In God’s service,
Bishop Patricia Lull