Churches join together in prayer on Sunday 5 July

This Sunday (5 July), Christians across Scotland will once again join together in prayer at 7pm in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Churches in Scotland are once more encouraging people to pray at 7pm on Sunday evening
Churches in Scotland are once more encouraging people to pray at 7pm on Sunday evening.

Acting in unity as they have throughout the health crisis, 14 churches and organisations across the country, including the Church of Scotland, have co-signed the letter calling Christians together for prayer.

Rt Rev Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, will be joining Scottish Christians in answering the call to pray together on Sunday evening.

"I’m delighted to have read that in the last couple of months online searches for ‘prayer’ have increased dramatically,” Dr Fair said.

"But reading about what prayer is and how to do it is only the start of it. After that it’s time to actually pray.

"And what better than to join with brothers and sisters from across the nation at 7pm on Sunday to pray our way through this ongoing crisis. I commend it to you and look forward to being with you, in Spirit, on Sunday evening."

This week's letter accompanying the prayer, which is also available in Gaelic, quotes the Gospel of Matthew:

“‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.’ Matthew 11: 28 (NRSV)”

The letter goes on to say:

“These are words of Jesus that we all need to hear. We need to hear these words because they speak into the depths of the experience of so many of us at this time.

“The words create a picture in the mind’s eye.

“The picture is of ourselves in the times when we are indeed weary and burdened by the particular loads that we have to bear.

“Alongside this, the picture is of the One who offers to us rest.

“The picture is of human need met by divine promise and finds its context in the affirmation that Jesus is the One who knows the Father and holds in God’s trust all that has been committed to him.

“He holds our lives in his keeping and offers renewal to those who seek his presence. (Matthew 11: 25-30)

“Wherever we are and whatever our load, the promise of Jesus is that we will find his renewing presence.”

Prayer

We pray:
Lord, we come to you as we are
For we can come no other way.
We come acknowledging the burdens we carry
And trusting in your promise of rest.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Lord, we come to you
In the sure knowledge that we are not alone.
We come in the company
Of all who know the challenge of these days.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Lord, we come to you
Acknowledging that you have already come to us.
We journey to the place where you are to be found
And rediscover that you have always been with us.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Lord, we come to you
As the One who knows our past and sees our present.
Set us free from that which binds us to our past
And liberate us to serve you in the present.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Lord, we come to you
Through the One who is the same, yesterday, today and forever.
May he hold our lives safe
As we embrace the future and the promise of his rest.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Dr David Pickering, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Jim Ritchie, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)