Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 ESV
Welcome to our October 2015 First Friday Call to Prayer. Our aim is to provide you with teaching that we trust will enhance your prayer experience and will be an encouragement to you. We will also provide you with praise items and prayer requests coming from within ANiC and the Anglican Communion.
We encourage you to set aside the first Friday, October 2nd, as a day of prayer and fasting for the Church in these critical days, ideally gathering with other believers in your parish or region for corporate prayer at some point in the day.
“Whether we like it or not, asking is the rule of the Kingdom. If you may have everything by asking in His Name, and nothing without asking, I beg you to see how absolutely vital prayer is.”
Charles H. Spurgeon 1834-1892
Two Highly Important Items for Prayer
This month, there are two very important events occurring that will have direct bearing on our lives as Anglican Christians: Canada’s federal election and our ANiC synod in Vancouver. We are asking you to take both of these events to the Lord in prayer during the first two weeks of this month. No matter who we are, or how disempowered we may feel, our prayers can and do make a significant difference.
The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. James 5: 16b ESV
Canada’s Federal Election – Oct.19th
Dear Friends, if I am totally honest, I have been deeply concerned by the political ranting that I have seen in social media as Canada’s federal election approaches, written by well-meaning Christians. So often, there has been an anger and personal bias in the writing without much care to research the facts.
I’m sure that much of it is borne out of frustration and a sense of helplessness over decisions by government or election promises being made that are clearly contrary to the teaching of Scripture.
But 1Timothy 2: 1-3 makes it patently clear that our mandate as Christians is to pray for those who are in authority over us, at whatever level, asking for God’s guidance, wisdom and courage to be made manifested in them. I, too, confess that I spend much more time and energy ranting than I do praying! When was the last time I prayed for an elected official that I didn’t vote for?
I recently came across a very helpful book by Rob Parker of the National House of Prayer in Ottawa entitled We Have A Voice. The book takes no political side but passionately urges Canadian Christians to exercise their right to vote and to do their homework on each party’s platform and those of their local candidates. The book also deals with questions like: why should a Christian vote, what if you don’t agree with any candidate, or what about one issue voting. (You can order the book online, either in printed or digital format at www.nhop.ca)
I have taken some of the author’s very helpful suggestions about how we should be praying in these days prior to the election. These are just a few of the ones submitted in the book:
Pray that God would give Canada government leaders who are full of wisdom and have characters of humility, courage, honesty and integrity.
Continue to ask God that our governmental leaders would be aware of their own inadequacies and will not hesitate to ask God for the necessary grace and wisdom to fulfil their role as servants of our nation. (Jas 1:5)
Pray that Canada will continue to see Christians making a positive contribution as politicians in our nation.
Pray Psalm 15 over our leaders and prospective leaders.
Pray for creative ways for churches and Christian ministries to encourage Canadian youth to be politically informed. Pray that their passion for social justice would be in alignment with God’s heart for their city and region.
Pray that news media will report the upcoming election in an unbiased and nonpartisan way.
Pray that through media, we will hear the voice of right and wrong rather than left or right.
Pray for unified and collective voice of the Canadian Church to begin to build authentic dialogue with our provincial and federal governments.
ANiC Diocesan Synod 2015
ANiC’s eighth synod will be held at Good Shepherd Vancouver on October 20-23. Clergy day is Tuesday, October 20, followed by a full-day of workshops for both laity and clergy on Wednesday, October 21. Synod officially begins Wednesday evening, October 21 at 7pm with the opening Eucharist and Charge from our Bishop. Synod continues through Friday, October 23, concluding at 3pm following the final key note address.
Before ANiC’s formation, diocesan synods were not always looked forward to with joyous anticipation. But since then, there is indeed a growing sense of expectancy to hear what the Lord has been doing in our midst and to receive clear vision for the future. In his Bishop’s Charge to synod on Wednesday evening, Bishop Charlie will be sharing his continuing vision for his ministry as bishop and our life together in ANiC. I know that his deepest prayer request is that the Holy Spirit would plant in synod delegates a clear
understanding of God’s will and purpose for us as we move forward in him. Please pray for revelation by the Spirit to all who are gathered.
Canon Paul Donison, who serves ANiC as Canon for Diocesan Events and bears much of the responsibility for the logistical details of our synods, has requested that we earnestly pray for the following people:
for our Bishops Charlie, Trevor, Stephen in their respective responsibilities at synod
for the Reverend Philip Soh and his Good Shepherd Vancouver volunteer team as they host this year’s synod
for Canon Paul and the synod planning committee with responsibility for so many logistical details
for our main synod speakers: Dr. Craig Bartholomew, Canon David Short, Canon J.I. Packer
for our morning Workshop Day presenters who will be sharing about their team’s progress on Bishop Charlie’s 5 Ministry Priorities
for our afternoon workshop presenters: Bishop Stephen Leung, Bishop Trevor Walters, Rev. Dr. Ken and Joan Deeks, Rev. David Little, Rev. Garth Hunt; and all those attending workshops
for our Clergy Day with Dr. Rod Wilson from Regent College who will be speaking on the subject of Clergy Care
for all attending (and those who are yet to register) that the Holy Spirit will give them openness and receptivity to what the Lord is saying to them
for safe travel and freedom from illness or injury during their time in Vancouver
and, most importantly, for a powerful moving of the Lord while we are gathered for ANiC’s Eighth Synod
Thoughts on Revival Prayer – The Five Priorities
At this time last year, Bishop Charlie Masters began his cross-Canada tour which was completed in April. Visiting every region where there are currently ANiC parishes has been the Bishop’s means of introducing his Five Ministry Priorities to our congregations, priorities which he first presented to ANiC Synod in November 2014 in Ottawa. His heartfelt desire is that we would “pray that God will make these five priorities a transformational reality in the life of every ANiC congregation.”
In order to keep them prayerfully before us, we will feature one of the five priorities each month as a visual reminder to pray fervently for these urgent concerns. Over recent months, we have shared the first four. Here is our prayer for the 5th Priority:
5. PLANTING AND GROWING CHURCHES
“It is clear from Scripture that God’s intention to reach this world for Christ is by the establishment of the church and churches as the platforms through which the gospel goes forward. We have made a good start, but we have a very long ways to go as we seek to plant churches in every major community in Canada. Every congregation no matter how large or how small needs to be thinking about church planting.”
+Charlie’s 2014 Charge to Synod
Heavenly Father, we are so grateful for the gift of your salvation and for the privilege of being members of Christ’s Body, the Church. We thank you that you plan to use churches, however humble, to reach the lost of our cities and towns. We are full of gratitude for the ANiC parishes and church plants that you have already established, and now, Lord, we ask you for more. We ask for courage for those that you are calling to leave the comfort of their existing church family and to launch a new work. Give to the leadership team around this priority wisdom and resources to assist each new plant as it emerges. May we see our vision of a biblically-faithful, gospel-sharing Anglican church planted in every city and town across our nations come to fruition, and may the power of your Holy Spirit rest upon our existing parishes, granting them a bountiful harvest with “fruit that remains”. In the mighty Name of Jesus, our Saviour and Coming King! Amen.
Praise God …
That He reigns supreme. Despite the chaos and evil in the world, God is working out His purposes for His glory and our good!
For the incredible gift that God has given us in prayer – immediate access to our Father at any time of day or night. Thank Him for the incredible privilege of participating with him through prayer in his grand redemption plan.
For faithful Anglican primates, bishops, clergy and laity – throughout the Communion – who are standing for truth even when their stand for Christ and His Word makes them targets of attack.
Confess if needed…
Our prayerlessness on behalf of our political leaders especially if we disagree with their policies and decisions.
For a major awakening, a sovereign move of God in our churches and across our nations like has not been seen in our lifetimes. Rise Up, O God we pray. Intervene, O Lord, in the midst of our decaying culture and society! Raise up an army of intercessors who will call out to you for a mighty visitation of your power and presence!
For our primate Archbishop Foley Beach (& Allison) - Pray for great wisdom, courage and strength as he gives leadership to our province. May God glorify Himself through the ACNA.
For Bishop Charlie Masters (& Judy) – Pray for our diocesan bishop as he leads ANiC. May God grant him vision, energy, spiritual protection, and spiritual and physical renewal.
For Bishop Don Harvey (& Trudy) – Pray for Bishop Don in his roles as ANiC’s episcopal vicar and senior chaplain to the ACNA College of Bishops.
For ANiC’s suffragan bishops: Stephen Leung (& Nona) and Trevor Walters (& Dede). Pray for discernment, energy and grace as they care for their clergy and congregations. Also pray for Bishops Ron Ferris (church planting in Langley, BC) and Malcolm Harding (retired in Brandon, MB).
For our Archdeacons: the Venerables Ron Corcoran (Vancouver Island), Dan Gifford (BC), Bruce Chamberlayne (Alberta & BC Interior), Paul Charbonneau (Ontario), Tim Parent (Ottawa Valley), Paul Crossland (Prairies), Michael McKinnon (New England, USA), and Darrell Critch (Atlantic Region & Quebec) – and our Dean of Multicultural Ministries, the Very Rev Dr Archie Pell.
For all ANiC clergy and families, especially those experiencing spiritual and physical attack.
For the ANiC congregations that have lost their places of worship and are meeting in rented facilities. May God comfort and pour out His blessing on them, giving them solid hope for the future.
For the Anglican Relief and Development Fund Canada (ARDFC) as it raises funds for farming tools, seeds, goats and agricultural training to address malnutrition and extreme poverty in 3 villages in Burundi - as well as for emergency aid appeals for Syrian Refugees, Myanmar flood relief, and earthquake relief in Nepal.
For Canon Andrew White and his ministry team in the Middle East. Pray for courage, safety and the provision of basic needs for them and the people that they serve.
For those who serve us and are in authority over us – our police forces, our armed forces, our emergency responders, our municipal elected officials, our provincial MLAs, MPPs and premiers, and our federal MPs and Prime Minister.
For God’s wisdom for world’s leaders with regard to the Ukraine, Syria, Iraq and other troubled nations. Pray that the evil one’s agenda for violence, hatred and bloodshed would be averted.
Pray for protection of innocent civilians – adults and children – who so often are the victims in today’s warfare. Pray especially for the many Middle East and African Christians who are brutally persecuted for their refusal to renounce their faith in Jesus..
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