MC Canada updates and prayer requests

MC Canada biweekly updates

 

Here is collection of updates from MC Canada's International Witness and Indigenous-Settler Relations programs and from CommonWord. The information on this page is updated every two weeks and is shared with the Regional Churches. Please hold these items in prayer and share them with your church community.

Published January 10, 2020

 

Call to Prayer 

Mennonite Church Canada congregations are encouraged to join our sister congregations in MC USA who are praying for peace amidst political turmoil.   

Lament for a New Year (paraphrased from MC USA release) 

Creator God, in your mercy, you have made all things new and given us the power to live into the new creation that is in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17). Yet, instead of trusting and seeking the renewal of our minds in Jesus who is our peace, we have begun the year trusting in chariots and horses again (Romans 12:2, Psalms 20:7). 

As we see escalating tensions, we denounce violence and war and pray for peace. 

We pray for the spirit of mercy to slow us down to remember those who will be most impacted by war. May we not rush to actions that cannot be reversed. 

We pray for political leaders to reason together and discern the ways that lead to equity and justice, that we may live as peaceably as possible with all. 

We recognize the image of God in the face of our enemies and those who we despise. 

We pray for prophets who clamor in the streets for peace and justice. May they be heard in heaven and on earth. 

We pray for the capacity to see that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12). 

Deliver us, O God. Guide our feet in the way of peace. 

 

Indigenous-Settler Relations

 

Prayers for the Wet’suwet’en, prayers for the state 

In 1977, the Conference of Mennonites in Canada passed a delegate resolution on Northern Development that  

1) “recognised the non-ceded territories inhabited by the Native peoples from time immemorial as belonging to the residents of such territories,” 

2) called for a settlement of “land claims before proceeding with major industrial developments,” 

3) advocated for environmental protection “before proceeding with industrial development.” 

This week, Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs evicted Coastal Gaslink from their territory in north-central BC, stopping them from work on a 670 km pipeline that runs from Dawson Creek to Kitimat. Tensions are rising. Last year, the RCMP raided a Wet’suwet’en encampment trying to protect their lands and waters from unwanted resource development.  

British Columbia passed legislation to abide by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples this past November (Bill 41). The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination recently called on Canada to “immediately halt construction of the Coastal GasLink pipeline in the traditional and unceded lands and territories of the Wet’suwet’en people, until they grant their free, prior and informed consent” (December 13, 2019). 

Please pray for a restorative response and a just peace. In the days ahead, solidarity actions and prayers vigils will be taking place across Canada. For a list of events, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/3117435991815112/

 

International Witness

 

More requests for Korean Witness worker to give peace lectures 

Pray for wisdom and discernment as Bock Ki Kim continues his peace work in South Korea in this next year. After three lectures given to teachers in the Chuncheon school division on conflict transformation and restorative discipline, he’s received requests from school principals to do lectures like this in individual schools. Also, Praise God that an editorial chair has been found for the Peace Journal.  

KAC to hold Anabaptist conference 

Every year Korea Anabaptist Centre celebrates the anniversary of the Grebel/Blaurock baptism on Jan. 21, 1525, by holding an Anabaptist conference on the nearest Saturday.  This year the theme is discipleship and will be held on Jan. 18th.   

Prayer: Please pray for speakers and participants. May this conference will transform the lives of those involved.  

News from our partners 

From Jan. 17 to 24 teachers, student interns and staff of Mennonite Partners in China will gather for their annual conference. Those gathered include George and Tobia Veith, Mennonite Church Canada International Witness workers. This is a time of worship, learning, sharing and resourcing.  

Prayer: Please pray that God will lead in the discussions taking place and give peace, joy and renewed strength to those gathered.  

 

CommonWord 

 

Worship Calendar: 

Jan 19                   Mennonite World Fellowship Sunday - www.commonword.ca/go/1663  

Jan 19-25             Week of Prayer for Christian Unity - www.commonword.ca/go/1453  

Jan 27                   Holocaust Memorial Day - www.commonword.ca/go/1599  

Feb 20                  World Day of Social Justice - www.commonword.ca/go/1690  

Feb 23                  Transfiguration Sunday – www.commonword.ca/go/1886  

Feb 26                  Ash Wednesday - www.commonword.ca/go/1691  

Mar 8                    World Women’s Day - www.commonword.ca/go/1692  

Mar 21                 International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination -                                                                                                                -                 www.commonword.ca/go/1693  

Mar 22                 World Water Day - www.commonword.ca/go/1694  

  

Epiphany: 

The New Year is upon us, which means we’ve moved right into the season of Epiphany. If you’re looking for resources for the season visit www.commonword.ca/go/1662

 

Share Your Works: 

Did you write an original resource for Advent or Christmas? Or maybe you’re working on something for Lent. CommonWord would love to share it further by posting it on our site. Please see www.commonword.ca/go/1666 for more information about our community-developed materials. 

 

Featured Resources: 

Anabaptist World Fellowship Sunday is an opportunity to remind our communities of faith that we are all part of one body. It is an invitation to visibly proclaim that now there is no discrimination among us. On this day we celebrate that, in Christ, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, the cultural and national boundaries that separate us are overcome by the cross. 

The theme for AWFS 2020 is “Jesus Christ: Our Hope.” In 2020, Anabaptist World Fellowship Sunday will be on Sunday 19 January or any Sunday that is convenient for your congregation. Even in the midst of deep troubles, we come together from around the world to follow Jesus, who gives us hope. For a Sunday series of resources, visit www.commonword.ca/go/1888