“For what shall we pray?” is a weekly post inviting individuals, groups, and congregations to lift up our world in prayer. This resource is prepared by a variety of leaders in the ELCA and includes prayer prompts, upcoming events and observances, and prayer suggestions from existing denominational worship materials. You are encouraged to use these resources as a starting point, and to adapt and add other concerns from your local context. More information about this resource can be found here.


Prayer prompts:

For peace in the world, especially Palestine and Israel, Syria, Myanmar, Russia and Ukraine, and Sudan…
For stability amidst political transition in Haiti…
For safe passage of aid ships as they travel to Gaza…
For safety for all who travel and for protection and provision for all migrants…
For blessings upon Muslim neighbors observing Ramadan, and for greater interreligious appreciation and collaboration around the world…
For all victims of gun violence, especially in Apple Valley, CA; Worcester, CA; Jonesboro, AK; Berkeley, MO; Punxsutawney, PA; Lakeland, FL; Laurel, MD; and Dallas, TX…
For those grieving friends and family members following a school bus crash in Rushville, IL and a van crash in Dewhurst, WI…
For fair wages and sustainable employment, especially for those who are marginalized, exploited, underpaid, and underemployed…

Events and observances:

March observances: Women’s History Month

Ramadan (Islam, continues through April 10)
Gregory the Great, Bishop of Rome, died 604 (Mar 12)
Patrick, bishop, missionary to Ireland, died 461 (Mar 17)
Joseph, Guardian of Jesus (Mar 19)
Thomas Cranmer, Bishop of Canterbury, martyr, died 1556 (Mar 21)
Fast of Esther (Judaism, Mar 21)
Jonathan Edwards, teacher & missionary, died 1758 (Mar 22)
Purim (Judaism, Mar 24-25)
Holi (Hinduism, Mar 25)

Prayers from ELCA resources:

A set of worship resources for the crisis in the Holy Land is now available on ELCA.org. 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. PDF DOC

A prayer of Mother Teresa of Calcutta (ELW p. 87)
Make us worthy, Lord, to serve our fellow human beings throughout the world who live and die in poverty and hunger. Give them through our hands this day their daily bread, and by our understanding love, give peace and joy. Amen.

A prayer for interreligious cooperation and understanding (ACS p. 51)
O God, whose name is above all names, your grace cannot be contained within human limits. We offer our thanks for holy wisdom that comes in other voices, in religions and worldviews different from our own, and in prayers offered in the wideness of your love. Move us more deeply into understanding and partnership, willing to work together in mutual respect, always open to the grace that we have experienced in Christ Jesus, our light and our life. Amen.

ELW = Evangelical Lutheran Worship
ACS = All Creation Sings: Evangelical Lutheran Worship Supplement

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.

Crafted intercessions for every Sunday and festival are provided in the Sundays and Seasons worship planning guide published in-print and online by Augsburg Fortress. 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.