In these extraordinary times, Duke PCM+ is finding new ways to be a community of faith. One of those ways is through regular email reflections and group prayers. This morning, an adapted prayer from a bishop in the Church of Scotland was distributed to our students, and we hope it might be an encouragement for you as well.
In our hour of need we turn again to you, for we have nowhere else to turn.
We put our faith in you, because you have proved your faithfulness time and again.
We reaffirm our love for you because you have never let us go.
We thank you that you are not distant from us but have drawn near in Jesus Christ.
Jesus has shared our life, tasted our death and defeated it.
He understands our worries and our fears.
Help us to respond as your children now.
We pray for this pandemic spreading across our world,
remembering all who have lost loved ones and praying for those who are ill at this time.
We pray for doctors and nurses and all in the caring professions, who work to help and support people.
We pray for our government as it works with the best medical advice to guide us on how we should respond.
May this crisis bring out the best in us, not the worst.
Help us to live by faith and not by fear; to build bridges not barriers,
May we not forget our responsibility to one another,
not least to the vulnerable and voiceless in our communities.
Help us to find ways of keeping in touch and offering reassurance
to those with underlying health issues and for any who feel particularly vulnerable or in danger at present.
As the virus spreads, we pray for the disruption it causes to normal life,
bringing new fears and anxieties:
We pray for those who have been laid off as their work disappears;
for financial hardship for individuals and businesses.
We pray for those whose trips have been cancelled;
and others where events, long anticipated and planned for, have been postponed;
for those making plans for home-based work or child care or exams.
May our inconvenience not blind us to others’ loss.
We remember those who cannot visit loved ones in locked-down nursing homes;
for the elderly whose social contacts have been severely limited.
Help us to find creative ways of keeping in touch,
of assuring others that they are not forgotten or ignored.
May campus ministries find new ways of living though this time.
May we not forget our faith but draw strength from it.
So may our worship be heartfelt, our fellowship deepened, and our service increased.
Strengthen us, by your Spirit, so that:
we may carry on our lives as best as we are able,
looking out for others,
showing love in action,
being faithful in prayer,
and bringing encouragement, hope and peace, always trusting in you.
In Jesus’ name.