This week was my week to write for World in Prayer. It was an odd one to write because, of course, this Sunday is Independence Day, but I didn't want to focus on independence. I also didn't want to focus on the U.S. (Incidentally, the lectionary page notes that Monday, July 5th, is Independence Day (transferred), which I love. Nothing takes precedence over the feast of the resurrection!)
I noticed as I looked through the news that there was a lot going on related to world leaders and/or elections, and so my focus ended up being on praying for our leaders and for us as we elect, support, or challenge them. I tried to end with the understanding that we truly have only one leader, no matter who our earthly leaders may be. At any rate, here they are.
As Congo celebrates 50 years of independence from colonial rule, Canada celebrates its national day, and the United States celebrates its independence day, we pray for nations and leaders around the world that all may live in justice, freedom and peace.
We pray for the Philippines where Benigno Acquino III has been sworn in as its new president and vows to root out corruption.
We pray for Germany where Christian Wulff has been elected president after three rounds of voting.
We pray for Mexico where this Sunday’s elections have been marred by the drug-gang-related assassination of Rodolfo Torre Cantu during his bid to become governor; and we pray for his brother, Egidio, who is running in his place.
We pray for Nepal whose prime minister, Madhav Kumar Nepal, has been pressured to resign.
We pray for Guinea where last Sunday’s first free election since 1958 faces accusations of fraud.
We pray for Kenya whose prime minister, Raila Odinga, is recovering from a procedure to drain fluid from his brain.
We pray for Haiti as they prepare for elections in November without the benefit of the electoral council's headquarters and records which were destroyed in the January 12 quake.
We pray for the United States as Congress votes on the confirmation of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court. We pray also for the United States as candidates and voters prepare for November elections.
We pray for those leaders and nations we name...
O God, we seek leaders who will serve the people and strive for peace among all nations. Inspire the hearts of all who wish to lead with your wisdom and your righteousness.
Let your ways be known upon earth, your saving health among all nations. And may we who pray together for faithful leaders be faithful witnesses to your kingdom on earth. For you, O Lord, are our only Lord, and to you we give glory this day and always, through your Son our Savior Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.