Wednesday, 23 November 2016

A Call to Pray and Fast for the Church on Saturday 26 November

A few weeks ago, Fraser Lawton, Bishop of Athabasca and Anglican Renewal Ministries Canada board member, sent the following email message:
While attending the recent gathering of the Global South,  it occurred to me that this might be a good time to call people across the country to prayer.  We do spend time talking together about the situation in Canada, about possible responses, in encouraging one another, etc.  I was reminded…that this is all also a spiritual battle, and we also need to engage at that level.  I do know that people are praying.  However, I thought it would be good to have a specific day when as many as possible could join together. …I am hoping…that November 26 be a day of fasting and prayer for the Anglican Church.  That is the last day of the Christian year, and we can enter the new one in this place of prayer." 
As  a St Barnabas parishioner and the Chairman of Anglican Renewal Ministries Canada, I've decided to answer Bishop Fraser's call to fasting and prayer for the Anglican Church of Canada on that day.

I've arranged to be in the church from noon to 430pm on Saturday the 26th to lead worship in song and prayer.

Please consider answering Bishop Fraser's call to pray, to fast from one or more meals that day and to join me in the church on Saturday afternoon if even for a short time.

In the meantime, please remember the Anglican Church of Canada, in your prayers this week. This prayer is a good to pray for our church:
For the Church Universal. 
MOST gracious God, we humbly beseech thee for thy holy Catholic Church. Fill it with all truth; in all truth with all peace. Where it is corrupt, purify it; where it is in error, direct it; where any thing is amiss, reform it; where it is right, strengthen and confirm it; where it is in want, furnish it; where it is divided and rent asunder, make it whole again; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP, p39)
Here are some additional prayer points by Anglican Renewal Ministries Canada's Jane Jones for the Anglican Communion Alliance:

Prayer Bulletin #2 November 14, 2016

2 Chronicles 17:6 

His heart was devoted to the ways of the LORD; furthermore, he removed the high places and the Asherah poles from Judah.

Father, like Jehoshaphat may we be so devoted to your ways in our lives and our churches that we remove the high places and idols which hinder our becoming more like You.  We ask you to reveal them to us; remove the blinders from our eyes where we are blind to them.  Give us courage to face those things and strength to deal with them.

Just as Jehoshaphat sent out teachers to instruct the people, we ask that godly teachers will be in every pulpit to teach the truth of the Word so that all may hear and all may know Your ways and Your perfect will.  We ask that Your favour will rest upon them so that the word will be received.  May your word go forth from them like a hammer and break in pieces the rock of the most stubborn resistance.  May Your word of truth burn like a fire to ignite our church with revival fires.
Jeremiah 23:29.

2 Chronicles 20:3-4 (ESV) 3 

Then Jehoshaphat was afraid and set his face to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. 4 And Judah assembled to seek help from the Lord; from all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord.

Lord, like Jehoshaphat we have enemies that are coming against us and we are gathering in this fast to seek Your face, coming boldly to Your throne of grace for help in time of need.  We ask for strategies and prayers that will bring a revival of Your truth and cause the enemy to flee.  Help us to remember that in You we have victory and show us clearly how to enforce that victory.

Pray Psalm 51 for the church - a prayer of cleansing and pardon

Cleanse my Heart - a prayer by John Wesley

O Saviour of the world, God of Gods, light of light, you who are the brightness of your Father's glory, the express image of his person; you who have destroyed the power of the devil, who have overcome death, "who sits at the right hand of the Father"; you will speedily come down in your Father's glory to judge all men according to their works. Be my light and my peace; destroy the power of the devil in me, and make me a new creature. You who cast seven devils out of Mary Magdalene, cast out of my heart all corrupt affections.

You who raised Lazarus from the dead, raise me from the death of sin. You who cleansed the lepers, healed the sick, and gave sight to the blind, heal the diseases of my soul; open my eyes, and fix them singly on the prize of my high calling, and cleanse my heart from every desire but that of advancing your glory