Welcome to the Pilgrimage of Prayer ~
Day 2 of a 40-day journey of prayer leading us to General Council 42.
For the past three years, the General Council 42 planning team has been preparing for this important gathering.
For the last two years, the Newfoundland and Labrador Conference local arrangements team has been arranging a warm welcome. Soon, we will be able to say “All is now ready!”
The scripture passage that has informed our preparations is Revelation 21:5, “Behold, I make all things new.” The Moderator, The Very Rev. Dr. Gary Paterson, has been intentional to have it inform his leadership and reflection on the work of the General Council during this time. As the commissioners to GC42 prepare to make a physical pilgrimage to Corner Brook, Newfoundland, we invite the entire United Church of Canada into a prayer pilgrimage.
This is the 2nd day of 40 days we will pray together. The following prayers have been prayed, written, and shared with us as a daily prayer practice. As you pray each day, please hold in your heart our whole United Church. Think of the power of all of us praying together. So “May it be so.” Amen.
With gratitude for the gifts and competency of the Gathering editorial team, and the wisdom and tenderness with which these prayers have been offered to the church, let us pray.
Rev. Maya Landell, Coordinator of Worship at GC42
We invite you to say the following prayer out loud each day in the 40 days of the Prayer Pilgrimage leading up to General Council 42, along with the specific prayer for the day. We also invite you to pray this prayer during each day of General Council.
May I love this day and all that it brings
The dust, stones or mud beneath my feet
The air I breathe, food I eat, water I drink
May I open my heart to mysteries along the way
Greet fellow pilgrims with welcome and grace
Move lightly and simply through the day
May I give thanks for the Earth, our fragile home
For all my relations who have gone before me
And for all who will follow… I am not alone
May the spirit and blessing of the One who is love
– Holy One among us, all around us, and within us –
Be with me today, and surround me with love
Allison Rennie and Diane Ransom, Naramata, B.C. Created in 2010 by Allison Rennie and Diane Ransom and said aloud each day while walking the Camino de Santiago.
Prayer for Day 2 – Tuesday, June 30
Holy One, our voices rise together in thanksgiving for all the beauty that surrounds us.
For the beauty of space to pause in the summer, at work, at study or at play:
alone, with family, with friends, with creation, with pets, with community, with other pilgrims,
all time to proclaim the sacredness of the spiritual practice of prayer.
For the beauty of your creation:
the mountains, the prairies, the birds, the forests, the oceans, the tundra, the rivers, and the animals,
all proclaim the miracle of your handiwork around us.
For the beauty of your people throughout the world:
communities gathered in homes, in sanctuaries, in tents, in gymnasiums, in chapels, in cabins, and in sacred spaces,
all proclaiming the mystery of faith that draws us ever closer to you.
For the beauty of this United Church of Canada:
the struggling, the celebrating, the discerning, the laughing, the wondering, the crying, and the praying,
all yearning for the wisdom and integrity to be your hands and feet in our communities, struggling for justice and peace.
And finally, for the beauty of the pilgrims preparing for the 42nd General Council 2015:
the youth, the volunteers, the children, the staff, the commissioners, the families, the Moderator,
all hoping for clarity, wisdom, patience, and faithfulness as a glimpse of your called and gathered people in Corner Brook.
Help us, we pray on this journey together to be ever mindful of the abundance and the beauty in our lives, in our church, in our communities, and all around us.
We ask this in the name of the Christ who walks with us on every path as our companion and our guide. May it be so. Amen
Tracy Murton, St. Martin’s United Church, Saskatoon, Sask.
Photo: Yasin Hassan, Flickr (CC BY 2.0)