Intercession Prayers 03/02/2008

Intercession Prayers, at Parish of St Mary the Virgin, Barton-upon-Humber, Parish Communion, 3 February 2008 09:30, the Candlemas service, as written by or adapted by Adrian Worsfold set into a structure provided by The Archbishops' Council 2000, 'Order One: The Liturgy of the Word: Prayers of Intercession', Common Worship: Services and Prayers for the Church of England, Church House Publishing, 174.

[After the Creed]

Let us pray:


We pray for dedicated peoples of faith, in the various religions, and the people who serve them through leadership.

We also pray that, waxing not waning in faith, and through the dignity of human differences, we can be lights to our own humanity, trusting one another in a broken world, even through our inevitable failings.

Our prayer is not to seek purification alone, but the gift of grace that is itself purifying, and ask that rites and rituals of purification that seek grace do not then classify the other as polluted, do not prevent all humanity being as one, whatever we believe, and in whatever state we find ourselves.

We pray for Christians in particular, being dedicated to God this Candlemas, and their serving leaders too: Chrsitians of so many denominations and other [was Independent Sacramental M] ministries. Particularly among Anglicans we include the Church in Brazil, and in the Canterbury Province we focus on the diocese of Coventry. Within this our own diocese, we mention the West Wold deanery, and again present to God Bishops John, Tim and David. Grant all these Christians holiness in their attempts to build clean hearts and purposes in the work of God.

Locally we pray for individuals of faith, and those who worship in the town's churches and meeting places, namely: Barton Evangelical Church, and Pastor Gareth James; the Salvation Army Citadel and Major Michelle and Captain Carl Huggins; St Augustine Webster Roman Catholic Church and Reverend John Cahill; Trinity Methodist Church and Reverend Gillian Belford; and this parish Church and our own reverends David and Alan as well as those retired and in training, Lay Readers and visitors, and all who assist. We do not forget our neighbouring Anglican parishes too.

Lord, in Your mercy
Hear our prayer


We pray for the world.

Blessed three in one, the seasons are given,
     May each time give more richness;
     Blessed three in one, the earth is given,
     May it become fertile and rich;
Blessed three in one, the skies are given,
     May the air be clear and sweet, and the clouds give soft rains;
     Blessed three in one, the sparkling waters are given,
     May the streams and rivers flow pure and clear once more.
     O winds from the East blow sweet and free,
     O warmth from the south bring life from the sun,
     O waters from the west, glisten clear and fresh,
     O land from the north, grow rich and bring forth.

(Based in part on 'Full Moon and Beltane Rituals' in A Book of Pagan Rituals, 56 and 68)

We pray regarding social and political tensions.

We look for peace throughout the Middle East, and we pray in the hope that the intended Global Anglican Future Conference, discussed this past week in Lagos, and set to take place in the Holy land in June, does not inflame tensions between Palestinian and Israeli Christians, given  GAFCON's pro-Israel stance, and does not upset Muslims who may feel targeted.

We pray for progress towards political change in Burma; for the restoration of law and freer politics in Pakistan, given the continued tense fallout from Benazir Bhutto's assassination. We offer concerns about Afghanistan after the recent rejection of Paddy Ashdown as United Nations Envoy to the country that has again exposed the fragile nature of political organisation there. We focus again on the continuing humanitarian disaster of Darfur and Sudan's lack of co-operation regarding basic humanitarian concerns. We pray too for signs of breaking the oppression that continues its stranglehold in Zimbabwe.

We also pray for reduced tribal violence in Kenya. In looking for solutions we consider the positive role of the United Nations and indeed the former Secretary General Kofi Annan and his reconciling work in Kenya. We add our concerns for P & P in Kenya.

Then we bring to God the work of our government as it faces the impact in Britain of the international credit fall-off including within our own banking system. So many Britons, like Americans and other Europeans, live as if debt is acceptable, and are thus especially exposed to economic downturn when the inflated supply of money falls back. We pray that the government manages the economic downturn with consideration for all those who find themselves living on the edge and who become destitute.

Thus we pray for all those whose lives are blighted by poverty, hunger, terrorism, slavery or warfare.

Considering all the tensions of the world and their impact:

Lord in Your Mercy
Hear our Prayer.

[People, Sick and Dead]

In the Parish Cycle of Prayer we bring to God the work of Churchwardens, the PCC that has just met, and other church committees.

We also pray for the disappeared, and add prayers for all those in need, and locally, including people's names and conditions put on to our prayer board.

Regarding the sick we mention especially:

G C, E and N, B and F, E W, G B, and B Z.

Among the departed we mention D O and M S.

Lord in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

Yet, despite all this, we can say:

     Praised be the fathomless universe for life, whose gifts outrun our farthest fancies; for love, sweet love; for all things beautiful; for wisdom, work and wit.
     Every child that wakes with a smile and laughs with the dawn;
     Every young soul, ardent and high, rushing forth into life's hot fight;
     Every worker who works as may do and takes the reward;
     Every thinker who strikes with voice or with keyboard for the triumph of right;
     Every home of happy content, lit by the mystical light of love;
     All these know that life is good; all these with a constant mind read the legend of time with a light in their eyes, and that which they read is "Rejoice"!
     Exult and rejoice, O my soul! Rejoice and be sure! Be at peace with thyself and at peace with the Infinite All.

(Non-sexist; Youlden, H. (1914), Manual of Ethical Devotion, Liverpool: Committee of the Liverpool Ethical Church, 69-70)

Merciful Father
accept these prayers
for the sake of your Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ.


Candlemas Painting


Adrian Worsfold

Pluralist - Liberal and Thoughtful