Prayers of Adoration & Confession

Living God,
You are with us and among us.
You come to meet us,
with arms open wide to embrace us.

We find you in unexpected places:
we only need to look
and we can see you.

Jesus refugee,
You know what it is to be displaced,
to be vilified,
to be blamed,
to be unjustly accused,
to be the scapegoat.

Spirit of freedom,
You open up possibilities.
You move among us,
bringing creativity from the darkness,
offering hope from surprising places
and in unexpected ways.
We adore you.

Forgive us, living God
When we do not realise that you are right here,
When we do not see you,
When we do not look for you among us, 
When we do not recognise you in the refugee, the outcast. 

Jesus refugee, forgive us,
When we do not stand up for refugees,
or asylum seekers, for people who have been displaced.
When we do not raise our voices
and lift our feet and hands to dispel blame and false accusations. 

Spirit of freedom forgive us,
When we do not see the possibilities before us,
When we do not see you at work in the creativity that is all around us,
When we do not look for hope in the darkness,
When we do not embrace your freedom. 

Today the psalmist calls us from a place of darkness, but with hope.
In the midst of oppression, the writer looks to God and sees God.
May we also look to God, and be confident that our sins are forgiven.
Thanks be to God.

by Kirsty Bennett, offered for worship, 23/6/19

Prayers of the people

Gracious God, it’s cold now and we draw together here in your house,
in safety and community, to warm and renew ourselves in your presence.

We pray for those throughout the world who have no safe place,
no comfort from friends and no protection from Governments.
For those who are fleeing from war, genocide, and injustice,
we pray that they find, safety, welcome, friends, and protection.
Open our hearts that we welcome and not fear the different.
That we are not selfish and miserly with this land and all it offers.

We give thanks and pray for all the refugees who have come here in the past
and helped to create this society. For Lawyers, artists, scientists, doctors, surgeons,
teachers, cooks, farmers and workers, who have enhanced and enriched all our lives.
For, our families have all been refugees here from past persecution,
wars and in the hope of a better life, and the land has welcomed and nurtured us.

Liberating God, we pray for the Refugees on Manus and Nauru,
and in detention here in Australia.
Give them hope for the future and we pray that our own Government
has a change of heart and allows them to come here,
or to have a future in countries which will welcome them.

Nurturing God, we pray for our own First peoples.
We have made them refugees in their own country.
The oldest culture in the world is ignored and under valued.
We pray that we learn from them, to love and listen to the land
and nurture our inheritance for future generations instead of exploiting it.

God of all hopefulness. Throughout your world, we pray for hope for the hopeless.
For the hungry, the homeless, prisoners, the sick, the bewildered,
the old, the angry, the exploited, the dying and the grieving.
And we pray for all those dedicate their lives in work and care for them.

Life giving Spirit, we pray for your Church throughout the world.
For Church leaders, thinkers and workers.
For all those who hunger and thirst for You
in many other Philosophies and Religions,
for You are our hearts desire.

We pray for your work here in Brunswick.
For Ian, Dave and Peter, and all who work and worship here.
May we find You in the people we meet, in families, friends and strangers.
Inspire and ignite us with your Spirit to go out into our lives
and share You with our world.

by Helen Burnham, offered for worship 23/6/19