“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.” Psalm 107:1
Europe, the Middle East, North Africa
Malta: Prayer for the nation
We want to pray each week for a specific country where CMS people in mission work. This week, pray for Malta, that tradition will not be allowed to take the place of God in people’s hearts or lives. Pray for God to use local Christians to share his love with people, and to move powerfully through the Alpha Course and the JESUS Film.
Please also pray for mission partners Doug and Jacqui Marshall working with refugees and asylum seekers in Malta. Due to Malta’s location between Sicily and Tunisia, scores of immigrants come through the country on their way from Africa to the European mainland. Pray that Doug and Jacqui can link up with the right people, to help them invest their time wisely and to encourage them as they engage with many difficult life stories.
UK: Alastair Bateman: newly appointed chief executive officer
Please pray for Alastair Bateman, CMS’s newly appointed chief executive officer. He will have a great deal of information to absorb over the next few weeks as he looks forward to starting at CMS in May and finishing his current role at Resurgo.
Pray for the CMS trustees as they meet again on Thursday (28 February). Pray they know God’s blessing as they deal with complicated legal and financial issues and strive to ensure our strategy, systems and policies are fit for purpose and enable God’s work to increase.
UK: Fundraising vacancy
Please pray as we seek the right person for the role of Individual Fundraising Lead. Pray for God to clearly guide us as we receive and consider applications over the next couple of weeks, and as we plan for interviews in March. Pray also for applicants and for God to guide each one of them as they explore whether God might have something for them at CMS.
UK: Selection conference
We have two families discerning their call to long-term service with CMS this weekend (22–24 February) in Oxford. Pray for peace for the candidates and their children, the selection panel who have volunteered their time and for the staff as we all work together to discern God’s will. Please also pray for wisdom for our recruitment team and for those people who are still discerning a vocation with them.
The Middle East: Prophets’ Story recording
Two mission partners in the Middle East are currently preparing the Prophets’ Story video (introducing the gospel) for a persecuted ethnic group. The script has been translated into the group’s language and is now ready for recording. Praise God they have found a native speaker willing to read the script, and pray that God will bring this Prophets’ Story recording together and use it to touch people’s lives and draw them to him!
Philippines: New director needed
Founded by mission partner Tim Lee who now offers support from the UK, Jigsaw Ministries shares the love of Christ with children and families at risk from poverty and abuse, and is now working with over 800 children and their families through various practical outreach initiatives. Jigsaw’s previous director has moved into the role of chairman of the board, leaving the ministry without a director. Please pray for God to guide Jigsaw to the right person who can be mentored over the next two years to become the new Jigsaw director, to direct and oversee the ministry in the years ahead.
Pakistan: transforming theological education
Please pray for a theological educators’ conference taking place in Pakistan (Lahore) between 26–28 February, in which a mission partner (F) and a local partner (Q) are involved. Around 50–60 theological educators from all over the country are expected to gather with the purpose of transforming theological education in Pakistan.
Pakistan: Primary Education Project (PEP)
Please pray for local partner Lilian, coordinator of the Primary Education Project (PEP), as she oversees village schools throughout Sindh, mentoring teachers and helping to provide better education for children in the area. Pray for the team at PEP as they begin to work with the new government and get to grips with new policies and requirements. Pray for safety in the face of security concerns in Pakistan, and for health and strength of office staff and their families.
South Sudan: Continuing pockets of violence
Despite the new peace agreement, violence has been reported from Yei River State and Amadi State, and thousands have been displaced. Pray for sincere implementation of the peace agreement, access to those in need for humanitarian agencies, and the re-establishment of the rule of law.
While the violence continues, there are small signs of hope. Three children who have been separated from their family since 2013 as a result of the conflict have now been reunited with their parents. Two more siblings are still missing, but the children’s father is understandably overjoyed at being reunited with these three. Additionally, a new police emergency call centre has been opened in Wau, and prison inmates have topped the list of primary school examinations in the state. Give thanks for these positive signs, pray that lasting peace will bring more such dividends.
Sudan: Protests continue
Last Thursday saw mass protests again broken up by security forces with tear gas and arrest of many demonstrators. The government is threatening to sue the opposition, claiming they are calling for violence and "intellectual terrorism". Pray for a more measured response to peaceful protests, and for President Bashir seriously to consider his future.
Guatemala: Wrapping up and coming home for a while
Mission partners Mark and Rosalie Balfour ask for prayer as they prepare to fly to the UK towards the end of next week. Pray as they pack up their flat and put their things in storage, say goodbye to friends and colleagues and leave ministries behind for the next six months. Pray for them, too, as they settle back into life in the UK for a few months, visit link churches and prepare to return to Guatemala again.
Brazil: Evangelism week
“Christ Church Rio is celebrating its 200 year anniversary this year, and so we're kicking off the celebrations with a week's worth of evangelistic events targeting different demographics of the Rio English-speaking community,” write people in mission Alex and Jane Cacouris. Pray that this past week of events will have a lasting impact on the community, and draw people into relationship not just with Christ Church, but with Christ himself.