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Urgent_prayer

Urgent Prayer Request – Canterbury

URGENT PRAYER REQUEST | Can we ask you to join together to pray for the wellbeing of our young people in Canterbury?

(Letter from Mike Dodge, our regional youth enabler in Christchurch)

All of us who are working with young people are very concerned at the alarming increase of suicides across the region this month. In my 36 years of youth work I have never seen anything like this before. We strongly feel the need to call “the whole church” to prayer together over this (PUSH – Pray Until Something Happens)

Can you as a church pray this Sunday (and the following weeks) – as we stand together with all the churches of Canterbury – praying for breakthrough in this area of mental health. We would love you to ask and encourage your congregation to pray over the week, in their personal prayer times and small group gatherings.

Over the last year at least 6 different prayer gatherings have all had a similar picture of a black cloud/heavy fog/pollution/smog and darkness covering the Canterbury region.
We’re asking that you would pray against this dark cloud of anxiety, depression, despair, self-harm and suicide – especially among the young people of our region. Pray for hope instead of hopelessness, light instead of darkness, love, power and a sound mind instead of fear so that we would see a change in the mental health and wellbeing of our young people.

We are in need of a miracle and I love that as the body of Christ we get to stand together, pray together and see what the Lord does in response. He is the only one who can bring light and change to these situations.

phone

Liturgy Of The Cell Phones

Kara Root has put together this awesome liturgy to use in youth group or youth services when collecting and returning devices.

RELEASING PHONES

We surrender our phones
To acknowledge that we are not as essential
as we would have ourselves believe.
And to recognise how essential we are
to this moment, this conversation, this process.

We put down our phones
to put down the false belief
that we can be more places than here,
doing more things than this.
And to commit to being fully present, here and now.

We turn off our phones
to turn to each other and to the moment at hand,
with full attention, creativity and welcome.
May we receive the gifts of full presence and essential connection.
May God meet us in this moment.

Amen

 (phones are shut down and surrendered eg basket passed around and phones placed in them)

 

RETRIEVING PHONES

We return from this moment, taking with us the gift of being fully present.
May we return with gratitude and perspective
to the tasks before us and the noise around us,
a little more willing to resist the urgency
and a little more able to receive the quiet gifts of each moment
where God is present alongside us.

Amen.

(Cell phones are retrieved)

 

Copyright Kara Root

Shared with permission.

common-prayer-cover-image

Common Prayer App Launches, Allowing Users to Pray In Sync

Social activists Shane Claiborne & Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove offer a modern take on an ancient way of practicing faith with this new cutting-edge Common Prayer App

Grand Rapids, Mich., Nov. 29, 2012 – In a world where social classes are extremely divided and cultures remain separate rather than unified, the Common Prayer app may just be the common prayer that a socially, racially and politically segregated world needs to be transformed.

Following the release of Common Prayer on paperback, which sold 56,000 copies, the Common Prayer app is available for iPhone 3Gs, 4, 4s, 5 and iPod Touch (with an iPad version available following). Here is the link for downloading the Common Prayer app:https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/common-prayer/id573743333?ls=1&mt=8

“This is truly a different kind of app,” authors Claiborne and Wilson-Hartgrove share. “It’s not one you try to pick up and simply read. In fact, this is a daily tool to be used at users convenience…meant to bring ultimate convenience and community. It’s a devotional broken up into days and times, so that everyone can essentially pray together.. on their schedule.”

Broken into easy-to-follow tabs, the Common Prayer app is accessible to someone who’s followed the Christian faith their whole life and someone who’s never held a Bible in their hands. Divided into tabs for different parts of the day, Common Prayer aims to connect people of faith around the globe, across cultures, theologies and continents. For one year, they will be praying the same prayers every day (at their desired time) and subsequently discover the richness and power in this tradition. The Common Prayer appcontains:

  • Evening prayers: Seven prayers; one for each night of the week
  • Morning prayers: 365 prayers; one for each morning of the year
  • Midday prayer: One prayer; to pray during the day throughout the year
  • Occasional prayers: Multiple prayers; to be used on special occasions like holidays and gatherings
  • Songbook: Collection of best-loved songs of faith from all around the world

At the basis of the Common Prayer app, social activist, renowned author and the often controversial Shane Claiborne and sought after speaker and author Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove are setting out to enliven the ancient and historical practice called “liturgy.” An all-inclusive invitation, Claiborne holds certain that liturgy, a traditional act of praying collectively, has the power to transcend culture, create community and move hearts.

“Liturgy,” the authors note “invites us into a new ‘we’…The Church actually reflects the most diverse community in the world—white, black, and all shades in between, rich and poor, all walks of life… called together to bring our lives and our cultures and become a new community.”

“The world the liturgy reveals may not seem relevant at first glance, but…the world it reveals is more real than the one we inhabit day by day…outlasting McDonalds and Wal-Mart, America and South Africa,” they write. “The songs and readings and prayers of the liturgy are more ancient and true than any culture or empire.”

With the Christian faith home to more than 38,000 different denominations, it’s a known fact that the greatest barrier to becoming a Christian is the alarming amount of division seen within the church. Perhaps not any longer.

Common Prayer App from Andy Anderson on Vimeo.

FOUNDATION3

Apply for a Presbyterian Foundation grant

Applications for the 2016 round of Presbyterian Foundation grants are now invited, and application forms can be downloaded from the Church website. The Presbyterian Foundation is a trust fund, the interest of which is distributed to support the mission of the Church, particularly innovative mission at the local and regional church level. Applications close on 15 September.

Full information about Presbyterian Foundation

angry

A very angry Christmas quiz

This quiz has circulated around the internet for a long time. I have used it with a variety of age groups. I have often found that students get a bit angry and incredulous when the answers are revealed. They find it outrageous that the ‘facts’ they know about the Christmas story don’t really appear in the Bible but are the result of tradition. In fact while many of the things we have added in tradition may be reasonable assumptions this quiz is a good reminder to us all at Christmas to go back to the source of the nativity stories. Children can find this quiz confronting and I have even had students say to me: Do you even read the Bible?!?!

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