Blog Entry #05 – International Day of Prayer for Peace
September 21st is the annual International Day of Prayer for Peace which is sponsored by the World Church Council (WCC). The WCC is a worldwide organization of churches and parishes representing the Christian population. This organization prays to overcome violence around the world and in 2004 coordinated its efforts with that of the UN which was conducting an International Day of Peace (also known as World Peace Day) on September 21st.
These two events were coordinated between the WCC’s Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia and the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. You might remember that Kofi Annan was the recipient of the Noble Peace Prize in 2001 for his work with the UN to better organize a more peaceful world. Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia is a Methodist clergyman and the first African to become the leader of the WCC.
On the International Day of Prayer for Peace, the WCC invites churches and parishes from around the world to pray for peace and nonviolence for that 24 hour period. Similarly the UN International Day of Peace is meant to cease fire for one day and put all armed conflicts on hold. All people are invited to commit to non-violent and peaceful resolution of disputes.
I wasn’t really aware of this date until I started this project, but I think it’s a great idea. It gets a large number of people all over the world to think about peace and a non violent way to end disputes across the world. As the International Day of Prayer for Peace is approaching, below are a few prayers for peace and an end to violence.
Prayer for Peace
Breathe in us the wind
of truth, wisdom and righteousness.
May your Presence inspire us
to create labyrinths of peace.
Make our hearts burn with love,
honoring all peoples and creation.
Bless all nations, every family and community
while we seek to work for justice and unity.
Prince of Peace,
Lead us to ways of healing and reconciliation
we pray with those who suffer and struggle.
Bless us with your reconciling love that knows no boundaries
as we seek to live in community, justice and peace.
So be it.
– Rev. Elizabeth S. Tapia, Global Ministries
PRAYER FOR THE END OF VIOLENCE, WAR AND DEATH
… O God, our maker, God of Abraham and Sarah, from which three great religions stemmed.
We pray for peace.
We pray for peaceful existence between Israelis and Palestinians, Sunnis and Shiites, Muslims, Jews and Christians.
We pray negotiations which can reach the roots of historical conflicts.
We pray for a commitment to human rights by all sides and the protection of all lives.
We pray for effective international intervention to ensure justice for all sides.
We pray for humanitarian aid and rebuilding where destruction has occurred.
We pray for peace and for justice in our homes and on our city streets.
Wrap all and each of these your people in your love.
Let them hear: “Come to me you who sufferand are burdened and I will give you rest.”
We pray for an end to violence, war and death.
Grant us this, peaceful God.
Grant us a peaceful world.