“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 justice and peace among nations where war and violence rage, especially Palestine and Israel, Iran, Myanmar, Iraq, Haiti, Russia and Ukraine, Burkina Faso, Sudan, and South Sudan…
For children, the elderly, the disabled, all the vulnerable who suffer most in the midst of violence and conflict…
For all communities impacted Hurricane Beryl, especially in Texas; for the families of those killed in the storm…
For prophets, preachers, advocates, and all who have the courage to speak difficult truths in the face of opposition…
For stability and healing of creation in the midst of climate crisis; for people and ecosystems whose safety is threatened by increasingly severe heatwaves…
For restoration and renewal for all who are enjoying recreation and vacation time; for just policies that ensure all people a rest from their labors…

Events and observances:
July Observances: Disability Pride Month

Thomas the Apostle, July 3
Independence Day (USA), July 4
Benedict of Nursia, July 11
Nathan Söderblom, Bishop of Uppsala, July 12
Bastille Day, July 14

Prayers from ELCA resources:
A prayer for martyrs (ELW p. 59)
Gracious God, in every age you have sent people who have given their lives in witness to your love and truth. Inspire us with the memory of _______, whose faithfulness led to the way of the cross, and give us courage to bear full witness with our lives to your Son’s victory over sin and death, for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

A prayer for those who suffer for the sake of conscience (ELW p. 80)
God of faithfulness, you bless those who are persecuted. Strengthen those who suffer for the sake of conscience. When they are accused, save them from speaking in hate; when they are rejected, save them from bitterness; when they are imprisoned, save them from despair. Give us grace to respect their witness and to discern the truth, that our society may be cleansed and strengthened; for the sake of our merciful and righteous judge, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

A prayer for the stewardship of natural resources (ELW p. 80)
Almighty God, in giving us dominion over things on earth, you made us coworkers in your creation. Give us wisdom and reverence to use the resources of nature so that no one may suffer from our abuse of them, and that generations yet to come may continue to praise you for your bounty; through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.

A set of worship resources for the crisis in the Holy Land is 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 set of worship resources for national elections is available on ELCA.org. Scripture readings, prayers, and assembly song suggestions are offered, to be used in settings such as prayer vigils, Morning or Evening Prayer, regular weekly worship or personal devotion in the weeks preceding or following an election. PDF DOC

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.