Service for Sunday 26th June 2022, which was conducted by Mr Geoffrey Webber.

Servicing the Bald Hills and nearby Communities

Service for Sunday 26th June 2022, which was conducted by Mr Geoffrey Webber.

Welcome: –

Call to Worship: – 

(based on Psalm 77: 11 to 15) 

I will remember your great deeds, LORD;

I will recall the wonders you did in the past.

I will think about all that you have done;

I will meditate on all your mighty acts.

Everything you do, O God, is holy;

In spite of the proclamations of others, we know that there is no god but you.

You are the God who works miracles;

You reveal your might and your majesty to all the Nations.

You saved your People in the past;

You save us who are in the present;

You promise to save those who kneel before you in the future.

We come to offer our worship to the One who is merciful,

We come to offer our worship to the One in whom we find comfort and peace;

Lead us, your People, as the good shepherd leads their sheep.

Comment on Psalm 77

The writer has had a living encounter with God, through which the reality and glory of God has been made manifest to them.  The writer has experienced the miraculous way that God has guided His People in the past and in the present.  The writer has experienced the unmerited grace of God as his redeemer from the hold of sin in his life.  The holiness and eternal nature of God has become so real to him.  With that same realisation, let us offer our praise and worship of God who is also our guide and our redeemer.

  (from Artur Weiser in The Psalms p532 & 533 and George Knight in Psalms Volume 2 p26) 

Prayer of Praise  

(from a prayer in UCA Assembly resource – 40 years of the Uniting Church) 

Almighty God, you have led your pilgrim people through centuries past, and are calling us to serve you today.  You have blessed us with gifts of the Holy Spirit.  You have given leaders to your Church who have guided us with courage and insight.  Despite the failings of your Church, you continue to claim us for yourself, to renew our faith and to send us out to a World in need.

We thank you for the inheritance into which we have entered:

   for the Reformers of the 16th century who preached the centrality of Jesus Christ,

   for the Evangelical Revival of the 18th century which reached out in fresh ways with the Good News,

   for the Ecumenical Movement of the 20th century which has brought Christians together across barriers of race, language, culture, and tradition.

We thank you for your revealing of yourself to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples over the millennia as they walked over and tended this Land, and for the ways that they sought to honour you in custom and tradition and stories. 

We thank you for those who led and guided the Congregational, Methodist and Presbyterian Churches over the two centuries since their first small Congregations were formed in Australia. 

We thank you for all who prayed and worked to bring the Uniting Church into being:

   for those who wrote the Basis of Union,

   for those in every locality who worked patiently to bring people together,

   for those who, for 45 years, have proclaimed the Gospel of Jesus Christ,

        who have ministered to the sick and suffering,

        who have been the voice of conscience to our Nation.

We ask for your blessing on your Church in the coming years:

   that you will empower us to be diligent in proclaiming your saving Gospel,

   that you will draw us closer to other Churches,

   that you will strengthen our work for justice and peace,

   that you will help us minister to the poor and distressed, the lonely and alienated, the confused and despairing.

May your Spirit of truth and love be our guide, now and in the future, that we may be a faithful servant Church, giving of ourselves and all we have, as Jesus gave himself for us.  Amen.  

We will sing 2 Songs:

‘There is a Redeemer’  Scripture in Song  volume 3  number 644

Verse 1 of 3

There is a Redeemer

Jesus, God’s own Son,

Precious Lamb of God, Messiah,

Holy One,


Thank you, Oh my Father,

For giving us your Son,

And leaving your Spirit,

‘Til the work on Earth is done.

Verse 2 of 3

Jesus, my Redeemer,

Name above all names,

Precious Lamb of God, Messiah,

Hope for sinners slain.


Thank you, Oh my Father,

For giving us your Son,

And leaving your Spirit,

‘Til the work on Earth is done.

Verse 3 of 3

When I stand in glory

I will see his face,

There I’ll serve my King forever,

In that holy place.


Thank you, Oh my Father,

For giving us your Son,

And leaving your Spirit,

‘Til the work on Earth is done.

[Repeat the chorus.]

Melody Green

Second song: ‘In the stars His handiwork I see’  He’s everything to me number 1

In the stars His handiwork I see,

On the wind He speaks with majesty,

Tho’ He ruleth over land and sea,

What is that to me?

I will celebrate Nativity

For it has a place in History,

Sure, He came to set His People free,

What is that to me?

Till by faith I met Him face to face,

And I felt the wonder of His grace,

Then I knew that He was more than just a God who didn’t care,

Who lived away up there, and,

Now He walks beside me day by day,

Ever watching o’er me lest I stray,

Helping me to find the narrow way,

He’s everything to me.

Till by faith I met Him face to face,

And I felt the wonder of His grace,

Then I knew that He was more than just a God who didn’t care,

Who lived away up there, and,

now He walks beside me day by day,

Ever watching o’er me lest I stray,

Helping me to find the narrow way,

He’s everything to me.

David Evans

Prayer of Confession 

(This Prayer of Lament was prepared and led by Mark Schultz at the meeting of the Presbytery and Synod in June 2017, as part of the 40th Anniversary of the Uniting Church.) 

Merciful God, we gather in the knowledge that there have been times when the Church, in part or in whole, has caused loss, hurt and pain.  In humbleness and penitence, we bring these things before you.

For Congregations and relationships that have become broken or divided,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For people who have travelled with us but are no longer part of Your church,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For the too many years it took for the First Peoples of this Land to be embraced by the Church,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For the mistreatment, abuse and neglect of those vulnerable people who placed their faith in the Church and its care,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For the lack of welcome and cold hearts received by those who have come to us from other places,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For harsh words, lack of care, ignorance, insensitivity, and pride that have damaged relationships and the people so dear to You,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For the grief caused by those ministries of the Church which have come to an end, for those which were unsustainable, for those which did not succeed or did not provide the value or the benefit which had been hoped would be reaped from the effort, time & money invested,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

For the times when these things have been from the work of our hearts and our hands, and not work in line with your will,

Merciful God, forgive us, heal us, and renew us.

Gracious God, at times our hearts have been heavy, pained, and broken by these things and more.  We are grateful that You are a God who grieves with the people of God, sharing in their sorrow and loss.  

Thank you that You bring hope to those without hope, comfort to those in pain, and provide for those in need.  From the great stores of Your grace, we pray that You will plant a seed in our hearts which finds its growth, nurture and sustaining in You.  Amen.

Assurance of Forgiveness 

(Galatians 1: 4b) 

In his letter to the Church in Galatia, the Apostle Paul tells them that Christ gave Himself for their sins, in obedience to the will of God.  Having confessed our sins before God, we, too, can rest on this assurance that Christ has died and has been raised again so that our sins are forgiven and forgotten.

Thanks be to God.

Prayer of illumination 

(from Uniting in Worship Book 1 number 13 & 14 p599)  

  Prepare our hearts, O Lord, to be guided by your Word and the Holy Spirit, that in your light we may perceive your mercy and grace, that in your truth we may find freedom, and that in your will we may discover peace, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Bible Readings

2 Kings: 2

1  The time came for the LORD to take Elijah up to Heaven in a whirlwind.  Elijah and Elisha set out from Gilgal,  2  and on the way Elijah said to Elisha, “Now stay here; the LORD has ordered me to go to Bethel.”  But Elisha answered, “I swear by my loyalty to the living LORD and to you that I will not leave you.”  So they went on to Bethel.

6  Then Elijah said to Elisha, “Now stay here; the LORD has ordered me to go to the Jordan River.”  But Elisha answered, “I swear by my loyalty to the living LORD and to you that I will not leave you.”  So they went on,  7  and fifty of the prophets followed them to the Jordan.  Elijah and Elisha stopped by the river, and the fifty prophets stood a short distance away.  8  Then Elijah took off his cloak, rolled it up, and struck the water with it; the water divided, and he and Elisha crossed to the other side on dry ground. 

9  There Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me what you want me to do for you before I am taken away.”  “Let me receive the share of your power that will make me your successor.” Elisha answered.  10  “That is a difficult request to grant.”  Elijah replied, “But you will receive it if you see me as I am being taken away from you.  If you don’t see me, you won’t receive it.”

11  They kept talking as they walked on; then, suddenly, a chariot of fire pulled by horses of fire came between them, and Elijah was taken up to Heaven by a whirlwind.  !2  Elisha  saw it and cried out to Elijah, “My father, my father!  Mighty defender of Israel!  You are gone!”  And he never saw Elijah again.

In grief Elisha tore his cloak in two.  13  Then he picked up Elijah’s cloak that had fallen from him, and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan.  14  He struck the water with Elijah’s cloak and said, “Where is the LORD, the God of Elijah?”  Then he struck the water again, and it divided, and he walked over to the other side.  15  The fifty prophets from Jericho saw him and said, “The power of Elijah is on Elisha!” 

Galatians 5:

13  As for you, my sisters and brothers, you were called to be free.  But do not let this freedom become an excuse for letting your physical desires control you.  Instead, let love make you serve one another.  14  For the whole Law is summed up in one Commandment: “Love your neighbour as you love yourself.”  (Leviticus 19: 18, Matthew 22: 39, Luke 10: 27 & 28) 

16  What I say is this: let the Spirit direct your lives, and you will not satisfy the desires of the Human nature.  17  For what our Human nature wants is opposed to what the Spirit wants, and what the Spirit wants is opposed to what our Human nature wants.  These two are enemies, and this means that you cannot do what you want to do.  18  If the Spirit leads you, then you are not subject to the Law.

22  The Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  23  humility, and self-control.  There is no Law against such things as these.  24  And those who belong to Christ Jesus have put to death their Human nature with all its passions and desires.   25  The Spirit has given us life; he must also control our lives. 

[Today’s English Version]

This is the Word of God.

Praise to you Almighty God.

Luke 9:

51  As the time drew near when Jesus would be taken up to Heaven, he made up his mind and set out on his way to Jerusalem.  52  He sent messengers ahead of him, who went into a village in Samaria to get everything ready for him.  53  But the people there would not receive him, because it was clear that he was on his way to Jerusalem.

54  When the Disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from Heaven to destroy them?  55  Jesus turned and rebuked them and said, “You don’t know what kind of a spirit you belong to; for the Son of Man did not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them.”

56  Then Jesus and his disciples went on to another village.

[Today’s English Version]

This is the Gospel of our Lord.

Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ.

Passing the Peace 

(from Romans 1: 7b) 

We are gathered in this place, and in the homes of friends, to acknowledge the holiness and authority of Almighty God.  Trusting in His grace and mercy, let us lift up our hands and share with each other, with those who are here and with those in their homes:

“May the peace of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be always with you.”

And also with you.

We will sing the Hymn ‘With gladness we worship, rejoice as we sing’  MHB11

[This YouTube video has organ music only – it is for a different hymn so disregard the title.]

Verse 1 of 4

With gladness we worship, rejoice as we sing,

Free hearts and free voices how blessed to bring,

The old, thankful story shall scale your abode,

You, King of all glory, most bountiful God.

Verse 2 of 4

Your right would we give you, true homage your due,

And honour eternal, the Universe through,

With all your Creation, earth, sea, sky so blue,

In one acclamation we celebrate you.

Verse 3 of 4

Renewed by your Spirit, redeemed by your Son,

Your children revere you for all you have done.

O Father, returning to love and to light,

Your children are yearning to praise you aright.

Verse 4 of 4

We join with the angels, and so there is given,

From Earth “Hallelujah!”, in answer to Heaven,

Amen!  Be you glorious below and above,

Redeeming, victorious, and infinite love!

George Rawson


Screen 1

assume the mantle

“to take, inherit, or receive the responsibilities and duties associated with a certain position or job, especially one regarded as important or powerful”


  Who has heard of the phrase:

“to take on the mantle” or “to assume the mantle”?

  Who is willing to attempt a definition of this phrase, or to put it in a context?

  If you search under Google, you will receive this definition:

“If you take on the mantle of something such as a profession or an important job, you take on the responsibilities and duties which must be fulfilled by anyone who has this profession or job.”

  The FreeDictionary on Google provides this definition of the phrase, ‘assume the mantle’:

“to take, inherit, or receive the responsibilities and duties associated with a certain position or job, especially one regarded as important or powerful”


  Today’s reading from 2 Kings 1, involving Elijah and Elisha, provides just such a context for this phrase.

  In 1 Kings 19 we find the Prophet Elijah on Mt Sinai.  There, God gave him several instructions, one of which was to “anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed (him) as prophet”  (1 Kings 19: 16b)  .  We read that, subsequently, Elijah found Elisha, and his act of anointing Elisha as his successor was to “(take) off his mantle and (to) put it on Elisha”  (1 Kings 19: 19b)  .  The Hebrew word used in the passage is addehreth, which has the understanding of being something large or ample or expansive  (Strong’s OT155)  .  In the King James Bible, this word is translated as ‘mantle’, whereas, in the Good News Bible, this word has been translated as ‘cloak’.

  Now, there is no value in going too deeply into the difference in the translating of these two words, other than to highlight that the Hebrew word translated as ‘cloak’ in the King James Bible is meheel  (Strong’s OT4598)  , which has the understanding of being an outer covering or something used to cover up.  So, there is the suggestion that Elijah’s mantle was a larger garment than a cloak.  In 2 Kings 1: 8, there is the understanding that it was made of animal skins.

  But, again, there is little value in the conjecture of what it was made or of its dimensions.  Instead, we need to recognise the symbolism involved in Elijah placing his mantle upon Elisha.  Elisha immediately recognised what this act meant; that he was to follow Elijah and to take on the task to which God had appointed him, the task of taking on the role and responsibilities of being God’s Prophet to the King and the People of Israel.  (William Sanford La Sor in 1 Kings in The New Bible Commentary p345) 

  That Elisha took this call from God to be a Prophet seriously can be understood by his desire to always be in the presence of Elijah, as we read in today’s passage from 2 Kings 2.  Elisha needed to ensure that he would be equipped to be a prophet in the same mould as Elijah, faithful to God and through whom God could demonstrate His power.  If Elisha could remain in the presence of Elijah, then he would be doing all that he could to guarantee that he would be there when the opportunity arose for God to bless him, when he could inherit the prophetic powers and abilities of Elijah, in the same manner that the eldest son of a family inherits the authority and power as the head of the Household.  This is the meaning of his answer to Elijah’s question which we find in 2 Kings 2: 9. 

  Elisha dedicated himself to take on the responsibilities and duties which must be fulfilled by a prophet of God.  Elisha, literally, took on the mantle of being Elijah’s successor as God’s prophet.  Elisha willingly gave up his former life and responsibilities to take on this new role and new responsibilities.  We understand this because, upon receiving the call from Elijah, Elisha sacrificed his oxen, with which he had been ploughing the family’s fields, using his yoke as fuel for the fire  (1 Kings 19: 21)  .  Elisha recognised that there was no returning to his former responsibilities, and that he must dedicate himself wholly to the service of God in his new role and new responsibilities.

Screen 2

“a chariot of fire pulled by horses of fire came between them, and Elijah was taken up to Heaven by a whirlwind”  2 Kings 2: 11

  Elisha was granted his request.  Elisha was present when Elijah was taken away, and God granted to him the powers and abilities for which he sought.  The 50 prophets from Jericho recognised this when they said, “The power of Elijah is on Elisha.”  (2 Kings 2: 15)  .

Screen 3

“the Son of Man did not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them”  Luke 9: 55

  Jesus was ‘grooming’ his Disciples to follow him in the role as witnesses to God’s mercy and grace.  Jesus made this explicit at the end of his Earthy ministry, as we read in Luke 24: 48.  At this stage in their relationship with Jesus, were the Disciples as eager and equipped as was Elisha to take upon themselves the “mantle” of being God’s witnesses?  Were they empowered to assume the role and responsibilities of preaching to the Nations the message about repentance and the forgiveness of sins”  (Luke 24: 47)  ?  Had they dedicated themselves wholly to the service of God in these roles and responsibilities?  Hardly!

  Michael Wilcock, in his Commentary on Luke’s Gospel, describes the Disciples at this point in time, as “unbelieving, slow-witted, swollen-headed and narrow-minded”  (Michael Wilcock in The Message of Luke p113) 

  John Carroll observes that “the formation of the Apostles for leadership had a long way to go.”  (John Carroll in Luke  A Commentary p230) 

  The Disciples failed to recognise that the hostility shown towards Jesus by the people in the Samaritan village in which Jesus had hoped to spend the evening, although tinged with racial and religious intolerance, was really based upon a rejection of his message of repentance and forgiveness of sin.  This hostility would be no different to the hostility shown towards Jesus in the near future by the religious authorities and leaders in Jerusalem, which would ultimately lead to the people of Jerusalem calling for his execution.  For the leaders and the people of Jerusalem would, too, reject the “good news” which Jesus sought to share with them.

  James and John saw themselves in the role of Elijah the prophet, calling down fire from Heaven to consume those who, they perceived, offended Jesus, whose actions in refusing to show hospitality towards Jesus, in not allowing him to stay overnight in their village, justified their prejudiced image of Samaritans as under God’s judgement, beyond the receipt of God’s compassion and deserving only of God’s condemnation.  They saw no hope for the Samaritans.  Jesus, in contrast, “anticipated a more favourable future for the people of Samaria”  (John Carrol in Luke  A Commentary p229)  .

  Throughout his ministry, Jesus had preached a message of God patiently calling people back to a right relationship with Him.  Throughout the millennia of His relationship with the People of God, God had always shown a willingness to welcome those who sought to turn their lives around.

  In Jesus, God was signalling an “extension of clemency and mercy” towards Gentiles, to the people of all Nations, including the people of Samaria  (Joel Green in The Gospel of Luke p406)  .  It was this that the Disciples failed to comprehend.

  But are we any different?  How often do we seek to condemn those whose actions, we feel, are offensive to God?  How often do we find ourselves calling for God to bring down His punishment upon those who, individually, or, corporately as a Nation, demonstrate a hostility towards “the message about repentance and the forgiveness of sins” or towards the call to “love your neighbour as you love yourself”?  How often do we act like James and John in seeing no hope for such people, and fail to focus on the good news that Jesus sought to proclaim, that “the Son of Man did not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them”.

  Jesus suffered opposition without seeking retaliation,  (Howard Marshall in Luke in The New Bible Commentary p904)  because God, in His mercy, sought to work in and through Jesus to achieve His great plan for the salvation of Humanity  (Titus 2: 11)  .  How willing and able are we to take upon ourselves the “mantle” of Jesus and to proclaim to all we meet this message of hope and the promise of reconciliation with God?

Screen 4

Paul writing to the Churches in Galatia

  The Apostle Paul faced a problem with the believers in the Churches in Galatia, located in the central part of modern day Turkiye.  He had received reports that they were being misled by false teaching.  And he didn’t hold back on his criticism.

“I am surprised at you!” Paul states, “In no time at all you are deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ.”  (Galatians 1: 6) 

“You foolish Galatians!  Who put a spell on you?”  (Galatians 3: 1) 

“I am worried about you!  Can it be that all my work for you has been for nothing?”  (Galatians 4: 11) 

“You were doing so well!  Who made you stop obeying the truth?”  (Galatians 5: 7) 

  Instead of the message of hope and the promise of reconciliation with God that Paul had preached, others had followed, “who opposed Paul and claimed that one must also observe the Law of Moses in order to be put right with God.”  (Outline to Paul’s Letter to the Galatians in Good News Bible p962) 

  In his letter, Paul sought to emphasise the message which God had led him to preach and that he had always preached wherever he journeyed:

“we know that a person is put right with God only through faith in Jesus Christ.”  (Galatians 2: 16) 

  But does this mean that our faith in Jesus Christ negates any responsibility towards living the lifestyle defined by the Law of Moses?  On the contrary says Paul, for our lifestyle should reflect what is written in the Law of Moses.  This is done in two ways.

  Firstly, it is not that obedience to what is written in the Law of Moses puts us right with God, but, rather, that our response to the love that God has shown to us should be to express that same “unselfish, self-giving, outgoing love” to our neighbours  (Galatians 5: 14)  (Alan Cole in Galatians p156)  .  To demonstrate such love to those around us is the fulfillment of all that is contained in the Law of Moses.  (Leviticus 19: 18) 

  This was the teaching of Jesus, as we read in Matthew 22: 36 to 40 (and Mark 12: 28 to 31).  Jesus commended the Teacher of the Law who came to the same conclusion, as we read in Luke 10: 25 to 28.  This was the teaching that Paul had given to the Church in Rome, as we read in romans 13: 9.  And it was the teaching of James, the brother of Jesus, as we read in his letter  (James 2: 8)  .

  As Paul writes to the Galatians, to seek to live out this love will make us serve one another and not to live in conflict or competition with others  (Galatians 5: 13)  .  It is this serving one another that complies with both the spirit and the word of the Law of Moses.

Screen 5

The call to Discipleship – the practice of Godliness

  Secondly, Paul reminds the Galatians that, since the Holy Spirit is the source of our life in Christ, we are obliged to let the Holy Spirit “control our lives”  (Galatians 5: 25) 

  Paul assures them that if they let the Spirit direct your lives, they will not satisfy the desires of their Human nature.  To direct our lives so that we do not satisfy the desires of our Human nature is the intent and purpose of the Law of Moses.  (Galatians 5: 16) 

  The Holy Spirit will produce in our lives those behaviours and attitudes that reflect the very nature of God:

“love, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control”  (Galatians 5: 22 & 23) 

  Alan Cole writes that “no law forbids qualities like these, …. this means that (living by) such virtues (is) in fact the ‘keeping’ or ‘fulfilling’ of the law”.  (Alan Cole in Galatians p169) 

  And, these verses contain the understanding that it is a continuous lifestyle.  Some translations have verse 25 reading “walking in the Spirit”, such words having the understanding that it is a “steady, progressive marching toward a purposed end”.  (James MacGregor in Galatians p117) 

  How willing and able are we to take upon ourselves the “mantle” of this call to Discipleship, this call to practical ‘godliness’?  How able are we to disregard the voices of false teaching, so that our focus is maintained on the message that Paul pleaded for the Galatians to follow:

“we know that a person is put right with God only through faith in Jesus Christ.”  (Galatians 2: 16) 

  I would like to conclude with this poem:

“I live so that all whom I met could see His holy Spirit shining through me;

O friend, is this what our hearts can say As we sit and think at the close of day?”

  (from Our daily Bread 20 February 2001) 

We will sing the Hymn ‘I could not do without Thee’  MHB522

[This YouTube video has organ music only – it is for a different hymn so disregard the title.]

Verse 1 of 4

I could not do without you,

O Saviour of the lost,

Whose precious blood redeemed me

At such tremendous cost;

Your righteousness, your pardon,

Your precious blood must be

My only hope and comfort,

My glory and my plea.

Verse 2 of 4

I could not do without you,

I cannot stand alone,

I have no strength or goodness

No wisdom of my own;

But you, beloved Saviour,

Are all in all to me,

And weakness will be power

If leaning hard on Thee.

Verse 3 of 4

I could not do without you,

No other friend can read

The spirit’s strange deep longings,

Interpreting its need.

No Human heart could enter

Each dim recess of mine,

And soothe, and hush, and calm it,

O blessed Lord, but Thine.

Verse 4 of 4

I could not do without you,

For years are fleeting fast,

And soon in solemn loneness

The river must be passed,

But you will never leave me,

And, though the waves roll high,

I know you will be near me

And whisper, “It is I.”

Francis Havergal


Offering Prayer    

“For the life that you have given”  TiS774 

[This YouTube clip is for another hymn so disregard the words – only the one verse is needed.]

For the life that you have given,

For the love in Christ made known,

With these fruits of time and labour,

With these gifts that are your own:

Here we offer, Lord, our praises;

Heart and mind and strength we bring;

Give us grace to love and serve you,

Living what we pray and sing.

Ralph Vaughan Williams

Prayers for Others

Almighty God, knowing your love for all of Humanity, especially your compassion for the needy, we come to you with our cares and our concerns.

Holy God, you embrace us with your love and grace.  May we not forget you nor neglect to give to you the praise and adoration that you deserve.  Knowing your love for all Humanity, and your compassion for the needy, we come to you with our cares and our concerns.

We pray for the Church, that we will live giving and sharing ourselves, as Christ continually does for us, so that all may have life.

We pray for all who hunger for deeper meaning and truth, that our witness may help them find Christ who will fulfill the longings of their hearts.

We pray for all who lack food and nourishment, that we may hear Christ’s challenge to “give them food” and open our hearts more fully to all who are in need.

We pray for greater awareness and reverence for Christ’s presence, that we may recognize the many ways Christ is present in the Sacrament of Communion, in the Scriptures, and in one another, and approach our celebrations with faith and reverence.

We pray for a greater spirit of openness and hospitality, that we may welcome all whom God sends our way and share with them the gifts that God has shared with us.

We pray for all who bring the Body of Christ to the homebound and hospitalized, that they may be renewed through their service and be a support and a source of joy for those whom they serve.

We pray for leaders in all levels of our Governments, that you will give them a new vision of how to address violence, oppression, and the use of force in our Society.

We pray for peace, that you will protect all who are caught in warfare or violence, that you will bring an end to armed conflicts, and give strength to all who are working for peace.

Copyright © 2022. Joe Milner. All rights reserved.<br> Permission is hereby granted to reproduce for personal or parish use.

We pray for the people of Botswana and Zimbabwe. 

We thank you for the prophetic witness of churches to protest injustices and advocate good governance, for the efforts that have been made to stem the spread of HIV and AIDS and to treat those affected, for economic progress that improves the lives of all, and for the iconic animals and minerals in these lands and measures to protect them from being exploited.

We pray for fair election of democratic governments to counter instability, violence and human rights abuses, for stable economies that enable all people to prosper and live in justice and peace for effective measures to improve the health and life expectancy of all, and for the herders and farmers who continue to raise cattle and food, despite droughts and desertification.

Leader: Loving Father, on this day we remember Botswana and Zimbabwe. Grant that your love that endures forever will strengthen and encourage all the churches and peoples in your beautiful lands. Lord, in your mercy,

All: Hear our prayer.

Leader: Jehovah-Jireh, you know the needs of your children, even before they plead their case. We pray for all who toil in the fields – the farmers, the mothers, the old and young. Grant that their crops and livestock find nourishment. Where hunger and misery stalks families, may your children not want but find fulfilment. Lord, in your mercy,

All: Hear our prayer.

Leader: Holy Father, we pray for the leaders of Botswana and Zimbabwe. In their service to your people, may they be anointed with courage, integrity and wisdom to strive for welfare and prosperity for all, not just a few. As they lead the whole community of Southern African states, may all their plans and actions help bring enduring transformation for the entire region. Lord, in your mercy,

All: Hear our prayer.

Leader: The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; the statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.

Gracious God, we pray that your statutes and your judgements be established. We pray for healing and justice where there has been conflict and pain. Grant your holy protection to the prisoner, the widow and the orphan. Lord in your mercy,

All: Hear our prayer.

Leader: Faithful God, the same yesterday, today and forever, we pray especially for the women and girls of Botswana and Zimbabwe.

As they rise with the morning African sun in villages and towns as care-givers, providers and workers, bless them; as they teach and learn, guide them; as they walk, drive and fly to find sustenance for their families, protect them.

Lord in your mercy,

All: Hear our prayer.

Leader: Almighty God, we commit all creatures, large and small, into your hands. After you saw the work of your hands, you called it good. Let it be so forever, in Jesus Christ our Lord.


© 2015 Marlon Zakeyo, Zimbabwe

Prayer from Botswana

Dear God, our builder,
you have all the building materials needed to construct our societies.
You have all the strength to put wisdom on all that has fallen apart in our lives.
You have the wisdom to reshape our world.
Inspire us with all your wisdom, strength and love,
to rebuild the broken walls in our community.

By Rev. Cheryl Dibeela, Gaborone, Botswana. Africa Praying: A Handbook on HIV/AIDS Sensitive Sermon Guidelines and Liturgy, ed. Musa W. Dube, WCC, 2003, pp.57, 175, 187-88.

Prayer from Zimbabwe

Lord God,
we give you thanks for sending your only Son to give us life.
In the midst of wealth we are crushed by poverty,
and while we are offered Christ-life in all its fullness,
we are surrounded by disease, death and destruction.
We are tempted to despair, and yet keep hoping,
knowing that you care.
At times we weep silent tears, and cry out with deep emotion.
We come to you, our only hope and refuge.
Thank you for the gift of laughter,
even when the going is tough.
With you, O Lord, we may be troubled but not destroyed.

By Rev. Farai Chirisa, Zimbabwe.

Botswana, Zimbabwe | World Council of Churches (

We pray for the work of The Leprosy Mission in Chad.  We pray for good health and a positive spirit for the staff and their partners within the different teams, that there will be no negative impact upon them from suffering endemic diseases such as malaria and typhoid fever.  We pray for zeal and enthusiasm for the leprosy work within the different health districts under the responsibility of government health supervisors.  We pray for good collaboration between the TLM team and the different local authorities in the areas of health, social welfare and education.  

We pray for those involved in the National Leprosy Control Programme as they receive training to keep up with new developments in leprosy control and disability prevention.  We pray for wisdom and skills for the Coordinator so they can lead the team towards quality work that will be put it into practice.  We pray for TLM Chad’s CBR work which has been extended towards the Am Timan area.  Many young children with disability are coming forwards for physiotherapy, walking aids and subsidised school education. We pray for this work as it reaches these young children and their mothers, bringing them hope for a better future.

We pray for the efforts of TLM Chad in partnering with Organisations of Persons with Disabilities in the Guéra and the Salamat regions of Chad. We pray for positive developments, especially in the areas of transparency, equity, dignity and autonomy. We pray for peace, justice, safety and stability in a country where the staff of TLM Chad have to travel long distances, sometimes in remote areas.

  (The Leprosy Mission Prayer Diary 2022) 

We pray for the work of the Church in North India as they combat religious and caste discrimination, one of the leading causes of poverty and social exclusion in India.  We pray for their programs to improve access to basic services, including education, health facilities and other government services and schemes for large sections of society.

We pray for support for the local church as it seeks to provide study centres for children of illiterate families, and connecting through them to empower marginalised communities, enabling them to be organised, educated and healthy, involved in local governance and capable of accessing government services and schemes.

We pray for the success of the study centres with trained teachers providing remedial education (and healthy snacks!) for children of illiterate families.  We pray for the success of skills training for women and farmers in rural areas to enable them to grow their incomes and prevent them from having to travel far away for work.  We pray for COVID-19 emergency relief and prevention activities, and for the means for critical information for marginalised communities about how to access government support services to be shared with local families and villages.

We pray for the leaders, helpers, youth, and children attending Scripture Union camps being held over the School holidays.  We pray for the health and safety of those attending the camps.  We pray for guidance for the leaders and helpers, that you will equip then so that they will know what to do and say in all circumstances.  Please give them patience and understanding as they relate to children from different backgrounds and experiences

SU Prayer Guide June 2022

We pray for the young family at Bald Hills that has recently lost their father following cancer.  Please continue to comfort and reassure them of your constant care for them.

We thank you for those who lead Religious Instruction classes at Bald Hills State School, that you will continue to encourage and guide them in this important task.  We pray that your Holy Spirit will work in the hearts and minds of the children who attend the classes, opening their understanding to the good news of your offer of redemption and reconciliation in their lives.

We thank you for the work that Kylie Conomos is undertaking with the children, parents, and teachers at Bald Hills State School.  Please encourage her in her role as chaplain, giving her the strength and wisdom to deal with situations as they arise.  We thank you for generosity of school families in donating so many items that Kylie can use to compile grocery hampers to give to needy families for relief in their time of stress.  We thank you for the willingness of people to volunteer to be ‘Chappy Chums’.  Please be with these people and bless their work with troubled children.  We thank you for the work of those involved in the ‘Top Blokes Program.  Please bless their work mentoring Grade 6 boys.

We pray for the Deception Bay Congregation, for your guidance and insight for them with their call for a new Minister of the Word.

We thank you for Jillian and her work with the Church Council and the people of the Congregation to clarify our vision and mission goals as your people in the Bald Hills area.  We pray for your blessing on the deliberations of those on Church Council as they continue to consider how the Congregation is to move forward in the future.

We pray for those who we have not seen for some time.  Please guide and comfort them in their particular circumstances.  May they be aware of your care for them as they meet what each new day brings.

Loving God, we bring these prayers to you, trusting in your compassion and care.  To your glory we pray.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father in Heaven,

 hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.

Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil,

For the Kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours,

Now and forever.  Amen.

We will sing the Hymn ‘Love lifted me’  Alexander’s Hymns No. 3 number 379


(from A Year of Prayer p139)  

There is no merit nor any atoning value in our good works or our good intentions, nor in the rites and patterns of our worship.  Only in and through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ have we been redeemed from our sin, our lives refined and our relationship with God restored, as He had ordained before the foundation of the World, according to His will and Purpose for Humanity.  Let us live, then, as redeemed people, honouring and serving God in all we think and do and say, to His glory and praise.

And may the blessing of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, rest upon you and remain with you always.  Amen.


Benediction Song

“Now to him who loved us, gave us”  TiS771

[This YouTube has music only, and is for a different song – only the one verse is needed.]

Verse 1 of 1

Now to him who loved us, gave us

Every pledge that love could give,

Freely shed his blood to save us,

Gave his life that we might live,

Be the Kingdom

And dominion

And the glory evermore.

Samuel Waring