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.
Responding to recent acts of violence
All Creation Sings includes several for lament including “Lamenting Gun Violence” (Leaders Edition, p. 107) and “Service after a Violent Event” (Pew Edition p. 64-66, Leaders p. 110-113) as well as several collect prayers including the one below. This content is also available on SundaysandSeasons.com in the Library. (All Creation Sings/Prayers, Thanksgivings, and Laments/Resources for Lament)
Lord Jesus Christ, your own mother looked on when your life ended in violence. Our hearts are pierced with grief and anger at the [death of / mass shooting in_________]. We commend the slain to your wounded hands, and their loved ones to your merciful heart, trusting only in the promise that your love is stronger than death, and that even now, you live and reign forever and ever. Amen. (ACS, p.49)
For rescue, recovery, and cleanup efforts in Mexico following Hurricane Agatha…
For survivors, victims, and loved ones affected by recent mass shootings across the United States…
For safety, justice, and freedom from fear for all who live with the threat of gun violence in their communities…
For homes, communities, nations, and international relationships to be filled with peace and understanding…
For our Jewish neighbors as they celebrate Shavuot and the gift of God’s law to Moses…
With thanksgiving for the gifts of LGBTQIA2S+ people in the church and across our society…
For an end to homophobia, transphobia, and gender-based discrimination…
Other notable events and observances:
Pride Month, June 1-30
Shavuot, June 5-6 (Judaism)
Pentecost, June 5
Commemoration of Seattle, chief of the Duwamish Confederacy, died 1866, June 7
Commemoration of Columba, died 597, Aidan, died 651, and Bede, died 735, renewers of the church, June 9
Commemoration of Barnabas, apostle, June 11
Suggested prayers and hymns:
A prayer for understanding gender diversity:
O God, your divinity transcends distinctions of gender, and through the generations you widen our awareness of human diversity. We gather here before you in our various expressions of gender identity, all of us one in Christ Jesus. Bring our society to peacefulness concerning a wider understanding of gender. Give courage and healing to those who express outwardly the gender they testify as gift from you. Open the church to their witness. We ask that with your creative Spirit you cultivate new relationships, mend old wounds, and nurture communities of respect, for the sake of the one who embraces all persons in love, Jesus Christ, our Savior. Amen. (ACS p. 51)
A prayer for faithful living in society:
Eternal God, your Word brought forth creation, and your Spirit brings order out of chaos and confusion. You breathe upon us, and we are able to hear one another with language we can understand. Pour out your Spirit upon us now, that even when we disagree on the way forward, we may remain united in Jesus Christ, in whom we are known and accepted with a single love. Amen. (ACS p. 50)
Hymns for keeping faith during difficult times:
God of Tempest, God of Whirlwind (ELW 400)
Though the Earth Shall Change (ACS 1035)
God, We Gather as Your People (For All the Children) (ACS 1038)
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.
Follow this link to access resources to assist worshiping communities as they respond to the crisis in Eastern Europe. Several prayers are provided that could be used during the prayers of intercession or at other times, in public worship or for devotional use at home or in other settings.
Further assistance for composing prayers of intercession can be found here: Resources for Crafting Prayers of Intercession
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.