The Crisis in Ukraine

Image by akitada31 from Pixabay 

God of all peoples and nations,

Who created all things alive and breathing,

United and whole,

Show us the way of peace that is Your overwhelming presence.

We hold before you the peoples of Ukraine and Russia,

Every child and every adult.

We long for the time

When weapons of war are beaten into ploughshares

When nations no longer lift up sword against nation.

We cry out to you for peace;

Protect those who only desire and deserve to live in security and safety

Comfort those who fear for their lives and the lives of their loved ones

Be with those who are bereaved.

Change the hearts of those set on violence and aggression

And fill leaders with the wisdom that leads to peace.

Kindle again in us a love of our neighbour,

And a passion for justice to prevail and a renewed recognition that we all play a part in peace.

Creator of all hear our prayer

And bring us peace. Make us whole.

Amen

From donating to the DEC appeal to prayers and other actions, the United Reformed Church website has published a list of the different ways you can help support those affected by the conflict in Ukraine:

HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT THOSE AFFECTED BY THE CRISIS IN UKRAINE

Local initiatives:

You may also find the following videos helpful:

The video below shows people from Ukraine reading from the Psalm –

HOW PSALM 31 IS BRINGING COMFORT AT A TIME OF CRISIS 

Resound Worship have provided this recording of a Kyrie with the Ukrainian flag superimposed on the video. It may be helpful as we pray for those involved in this conflict –

LORD HAVE MERCY

Prayers for Ukraine from the URC

Could You Smite Him Lord? 

Oh Lord,
I really want to ask you smite Mr Putin;
it hasn’t got to be a big smite,
just enough to remove him from power,
topple him from his throne,
remove his advisors,
disable his armed forces,
and make him see sense.
Is that a big ask Lord?

After all you seem to have smote a lot in the Bible;
powerful kings brushed away,
invading generals confounded by your power,
or had their heads chopped off by some pretty feisty women,
so that your people would be free.
Even your mother sung of your power to remove tyrants from their thrones
and she faced the might of Rome.

The problem with asking you for some smiting,
is that I see myself as a trendy leftie,
what they call a snowflake,
I don’t really believe in violence,
I think anger can be used more productively,
I know you call us to solve our problems and not depend on you to sort out our messes,
but just this once Lord?
A bit of a smite?
A localised precision smite?

In the meantime, Lord,
please look after Mr Zelenskiy,
inspire him to continue to use his skills to defend his people;
protect him as you protected his ancestors of old.
Give hope to the people of Ukraine,
hope in your providence,
hope that the world won’t ignore their plight,
hope that the invaders will go,
and if, after that, you’ve got time for a smite….
Amen

By the Revd Andy Braunston, URC Minister for Digital Worship

Prayer for Hope

God of all time,
God of this time,
these times are difficult, and we bring them to you.
There have been other times like this when countries have invaded others.
You show us countries seized a village or settlement at a time and countries facing full invasion.
You reveal, when we dare to look, how national boundaries have changed like waves on the sand.
We feel so powerless; it all is so human and so tragic.
We bring it all to you in our confusion and worry.
Remind us, as ever, that worry is not what we must carry.
Remind us that worry makes us smaller, makes our powerlessness real.
Fill the place that worry has taken in our hearts and replace it with hope.
Give us courage to read the news as we can, to listen, to watch, to understand.
As we face the reality of these times, we pray for your hope to carry and fill us.
Let hope be the insight which we gift to each other.
Fill us with your knowledge that hope is as real an act as giving our money and our welcome.
You will bring peace, as ever you do.
Give us courage to gift your hope to that process.

In the name of your incarnated Christ and in the power and presence of Holy Spirit,
Amen

By the Revd Elizabeth Gray King, pastor in the North Western Synod