God of us all,
You love us so passionately that you sent Your Son to help us experience the fullness of divine love. And while we love you, we are not often asked to risk our lives because of our faith.
This is not true for many of our sisters and brothers in Christ. Our hearts break as we see more of them suffering and dying simply because they are living as disciples of Jesus.
We pray for their safety and sanctuary. We pray that you will give them grace in suffering. We are humbled by the witness of these martyred for their faith. We pray for their persecutors, and that acts of violence and persecution will cease.
Help us to grow in our commitment to live as Jesus' disciples. Remind us that we are the One Body of Christ: when one member suffers, all suffer. Stir us to pray unceasingly. And empower us to speak boldly.
We pray all of this in the name of our Savior and Lord, Jesus the Christ.
Bishop Ken Carter
The Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church
450 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue
Lakeland, FL 33815
(863) 688-5563 or toll free (800) 282-8011