Teach Us to Pray

Date posted: Thursday 28 September 2017

One day (Jesus) was praying in a certain place.
When he finished, one of his disciples said,
    "Master, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples."
 So he said, "When you pray, say,
      Reveal who you are.
         Set the world right.
   Keep us alive with three square meals.
      Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
         Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil."
- Luke 11:1-4 (The Message)
'Teach us to pray...'
This phrase, straight out of the Gospel of Luke, is what we will use to center our life and our time together at the 2017 Bega Kwa Bega Fall Festival. Prayer will be on the lips of newly consecrated Bishop Gaville as he shares a message with us. Prayer will be between us as we model different ways of incorporating it into our global relationships. And prayer will be before us, as we raise funds for an Evangelism Training Center in Northern Tanzania that will enable the ELCT to share their gifts and expertise with neighboring churches in East Africa and global partners in Western Europe and North America.
In Swahili, the verb 'to pray' is kuomba.
Kuomba is also a verb that means, at times, 'to beg for, ask for, petition, and request.' It is a verb that speaks to a heartfelt yearning and deep desire. Not simply written words recited from memory, prayer in Tanzania (and Minnesota too) is an activity that taps into the core of who we are as people of faith. It gives voice to our innermost being and shapes our outer actions with the world around us.
As one of the pillars of the Bega Kwa Bega relationship, prayer is a vital part of who we are and what we do. As such, it is right that we lift up the gift of prayer and practice it with one another.
And so, on behalf of the Iringa Committee, Bishop Gaville, and other invited guests, I plead, I request, I beg, and I ask for you to be with us on the morning of Saturday, Nov 11 at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Stillwater for a morning of prayerful inspiration and joyous celebration.
Mungu awabariki sana (God bless you all),
The Rev. Peter Harrits
Director of Bega Kwa Bega & Assistant to the Bishop