These prompts are provided for worship leaders as they prepare the prayers of intercession for weekly worship. The prompts are prepared by several leaders in the ELCA and reflect current world and national events. You are encouraged to adapt and add other concerns for your local context, including staying informed of events and concerns in your synod.
For faith formation teachers, leaders, and students in this new program year…
For those undergoing treatment or who are in remission for cancer…
For migrants detained in detention facilities and those awaiting asylum hearings…
For wildlife harmed and in danger due to the oil spill off the coast of Huntington Beach, California…
For the work of the Supreme Court of the United States hearing significant cases this term…
Other notable events and observances:
Day of Thanksgiving (Canada) (October 11)
Indigenous Peoples’ Day (October 11)
Commemoration of Teresa of Ávila, teacher and renewer of the church (October 15)
National Hispanic Heritage Month (through October 15)
Domestic Violence Awareness Month (through October 31)
LGBT History Month (through October 31)
Breast Cancer Awareness Month (through October 31)
Suggested hymns and prayers:
Prayer of the day for the Day of Thanksgiving (ELW p. 61)
Almighty God our Father, your generous goodness comes to us new every day. By the work of your Spirit lead us to acknowledge your goodness, give thanks for your benefits, and serve you in willing obedience, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.
A prayer for those who are chronically ill and those who support them (ELW p. 85)
Loving God, your heart overflows with compassion for your whole creation. Pour out your Spirit on all people living with illness for which there is no cure, as well as their families and loved ones. Help them to know that you claim them as your own and deliver them from fear and pain; for the sake of Jesus Christ, our healer and Lord. Amen.
A prayer for those who are incarcerated (ACS p. 52)
Mighty God, merciful and just: we pray for our jails, prisons, and detention centers, that they be places of fair and humane treatment for all. Lead us to end solitary confinement and other cruel and demeaning practices. Guide police and corrections officers, attorneys and judges to use wisely the power entrusted to them. Inspire prison worshiping communities and chaplains. Rouse us to eradicate racism, corruption, and greed in the criminal justice system. By your Spirit, transform our society, that the dignity and worth of every incarcerated person be honored. We ask this through your resurrected Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
A prayer for courts of justice (ELW p. 77)
Lord of all, you have declared what is right: to seek justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with you. Bless judges and courts, juries and law officers throughout our land. Guard them from retribution and from corruption. Give them the spirit of wisdom, that they may perceive the truth and administer the law impartially as instruments of your divine will. We pray in the name of the one who will come to be our judge, your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Hymn suggestions for the Day of Thanksgiving (Canada):
Come, Ye Thankful People, Come (ELW 693)
God of the Fertile Fields (ACS 1063)
Hymn suggestions to call attention to the concerns of migrants and those who are detained:
Gentle Joseph Heard a Warning (ACS 1060)
Build a Longer Table (ACS 1062)
Hymn suggestions for lament, peace, and justice in observance of Indigenous Peoples’ Day:
O God of Every Nation (ELW 713)
This Is My Song (ELW 887)
When Our World Is Rent by Violence (ACS 1052)
God Weeps with Us Who Weep and Mourn (ACS 1054)
Music suggestion for the commemoration of Teresa of Ávila:
Nothing Can Trouble (ACS 1033)
Additional topical prayers are found in Evangelical Lutheran Worship (pp. 72–87) and All Creation Sings (pp. 46–55), as well as in other resources provided in print and online at sundaysandseasons.com.
Prayer Ventures, a daily prayer resource, is a guide to prayer for the global, social and outreach ministries of the ELCA, as well as for the needs and circumstances of our neighbors, communities and world.
Image from All Creation Sings, © 2020, Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Used with permission.