At St. John’s we believe in the power of prayer. Prayers are an important part of our worship services, all church gatherings, and in our quiet times alone. We have a Prayer Group who meets each month to pray for those who need our prayers, we have a Prayer Walking Group who meet twice a month at Whites Road Park, and at both services we share the ‘joys and concerns’ of our congregation in prayer. You are always welcome to share your prayer requests with our pastors, or in our book of ‘joys and concerns’ in the front of the sanctuary near the lectern (by the door to pastor Sue’s office).
To email a prayer request to Pastor Sue: [email protected]
There is a Daily Devotional with a daily prayer in the red section at the bottom right of the home page of our website, updated each day by the United Church of Christ.
Click here to read today’s Daily Devotional AND an archive of past Daily Devotionals on the UCC website. On the webpage, click on each Daily Devotional TITLE in RED above the date to read the full archived Daily Devotional.
You are invited to join St. John’s early morning “Prayer Walkers” group!
Rev. Sue, leader of this informal group, describes the gatherings this way: “We gather at Whites Road Park on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month at 7:00 am, weather permitting. I originally chose the early time so that folks who needed to head to work afterwards would be able to join us. As we begin, I share a thought, quote or Scripture verse to get folks thinking. Then we walk in a relaxed manner (the intent is to make this walk not too strenuous for those who might have difficulty doing a walk that would be physically challenging), often engaging in conversation about what I have shared, or going in a totally different direction as we get to know the folks walking alongside of us. We greet walkers we pass along the way and enjoy being in the midst of God’s creation. We usually walk for about 45 minutes and end our time together by sharing a promise to be holding each other in prayer as we journey through the day.” For more information, contact Rev. Sue at the email address at the top of this page, or just show up at the park on the listed days in the parking lot circle near the outdoor pool.
There are many variations of The Lord’s Prayer spoken in churches around the world. These are the words of The Lord’s Prayer we pray each week at St. John’s:
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven, Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into
temptation but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom, and the power,
and the glory forever. Amen
At our 10:15 am service we recite The Lord’s Prayer at the end of the Children’s Message, to help the children as well as all gathered memorize and regularly recite this prayer that Jesus taught us to pray. We also include it in our 8 am service each week, and at the end our our monthly church council meetings, our council members gather together and hold hands and recite The Lord’s Prayer, as well as reciting it at all special worship gatherings.
St. John’s Monthly Prayer Group
Rev. Sue, leader of this group, describes it this way: “We meet on the third Monday of each month in the Church Library at 7:00 pm. When we meet, we update the prayer list that has been created as church folks and others have given us names of people for whom to pray. This prayer list often contains well over 50 names, and after updating the list, we spend time in prayer for those on our list, and for our church, our community and our world. The people who attend Prayer Group tend to be those who are also part of the Prayer Chain, passing along names of persons in need of prayer as we become aware of them.” If you are interested in joining or have questions or prayer requests, please contact Rev. Sue using the email address at the top of this page.
Each year St. John’s holds a Prayer Vigil from noon on Maundy Thursday to noon on Good Friday. Volunteers sign up to silently pray for one full hour on that day. You are encouraged to be in St. John’s sanctuary during your prayer time but can choose to pray from wherever you need to be at your selected hour. The sign up sheet is displayed in the sanctuary in the weeks leading to Maundy Thursday.
From the UCC Website: A Morning Prayer:
O God, open my lips and my mouth shall proclaim your praise. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore me to the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.
Below: A prayer taken from the St. John’s Herald, Nov. 3, 1935, still relevant today:
The following prayers come from the website of Church World Service,
supported at St. John’s on Blanket Sunday and CROP Walk Sunday.
Dearest Lord, teach me to be generous,
teach me to serve you as I should,
to give and not to count the cost,
to fight and not to heed the wounds,
to toil and not to seek for rest,
to labour and ask not for reward,
save that of knowing that I do your most holy will.
St. Ignatius Loyola – 16th century
Prayer of the Farm Workers’ Struggle
Show me the suffering of the most miserable;
So I will know my people’s plight.
Free me to pray for others;
For you are present in every person.
Help me take responsibility for my own life;
So that I can be free at last.
Grant me courage to serve others;
For in service there is true life.
Give me honesty and patience;
So that the Spirit will be alive among us.
Let the Spirit flourish and grow;
So that we will never tire of the struggle.
Let us remember those who have died for justice;
For they have given us life.
Help us love even those who hate us;
So we can change the world.
César E. Chávez © César E. Chávez Foundation