AUT UM N ’18
‘THE DARKNESS IS PASSING AND THE TRUE LIGHT IS ALREADY SHINING’ PSALM 119:105
See the countries you pray for
Sending joy to the world
Dignity through sanitation
2 . PRAYER DIARY
WELCOME... FIRST OF ALL, PRAY It was wonderful that Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, joined us to celebrate Tearfund’s 50th anniversary at Coventry Cathedral in May (see Tear Times page 12 for more details). He spent some time after discussing issues of poverty and justice. When asked how Christians can play a part in ending extreme poverty, this was his reply: ‘First of all, pray. We always say that, because we are Christian. That’s what we do. But I think the longer I go on – particularly in this role – the more I realise that I can trace almost everything, anything good that happens, back to people praying. But prayer is so difficult because we don’t always see the outcome directly. ‘Very often, particularly on the great questions like extreme poverty, you pray and don’t see what’s happening. But remember the Jubilee Campaign in the late 90s. Look at what happened with the Millennium Development Goals and the Sustainable Development Goals. Of course we didn’t get there [fully], but the impact has been extraordinary. And that is answered prayer. So pray.’ Be encouraged by these words as you once again faithfully start a new season of prayer with this Prayer Diary. And, as we approach Advent, we have produced more devotional materials which you can follow in the lead-up to Christmas. Join us as we wait with expectancy for the arrival of an extraordinary God. You can sign up to receive daily Advent reflections by email at www.tearfund.org/Christmas
Peter Shaw, Editor twitter @TearTimes | email firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo: Ralph Hodgson/Tearfund
PRAYER DIARY . 3
‘WHOEVER DOES NOT TAKE UP THEIR CROSS AND FOLLOW ME IS NOT WORTHY OF ME’ MATTHEW 10:38
CONTENTS 04 Take the high road
Prayer for events across Scotland
05 Taking back power
Lifting up communities without electricity
06 Happy handwashing
Giving thanks for clean water
07 Celebrating you
Praising God for our supporters
08 Just conversation
Prayer for The Justice Conference
09 Horrors in Honduras
Praying for an end to violence
10 Kicking up a stink
Giving thanks for sanitation solutions
12 Prayer map
A world of prayer for you to keep
14 For comfort and peace
Prayer for the crisis in Nigeria
15 Promised you a miracle Lifting up the climate talks
16 Healthy relations
Week of prayer for Syria
17 Dreams swept away
Prayer for flooded communities
18 Pray your cards right
Lifting up the Christmas cards team
19 Prayer first
Giving thanks for answered prayers
20 Bridge of love
An amazing adventure in Myanmar
21 Full of mercy
Lifting up women in Mali
22 Bible bringing transformation Week of prayer for West Africa
23 Prayer resources
More opportunities to pray
Copyright © Tearfund 2018. All rights reserved. Permission is granted for the reproduction of text from this publication for Tearfund promotional use. For all other uses, please contact us. Cover image: Young boy reading the Bible in Madzangina village, near Bunia, Ituri Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Photo: Hannah Maule-ffinch/Tearfund
Photo: Tom Price/Tearfund
4 . PRAYER DIARY
‘WHATEVER YOU DO, DO IT ALL FOR THE GLORY OF GOD’
TAKE THE HIGH ROAD: 30 SEPTEMBER – 6 OCTOBER Each year we engage with people and communicate our work in Scotland through a series of church-based events. Three tours featuring 18 events will take place between October and Christmas: Celtic Worship, Cakes, Bakes and Faith, and the Tearfund Christmas Concerts. Our team in Scotland is looking for your prayer support, to make sure these events are a great success.
SUNDAY 30 SEPTEMBER Pray for the team at Tearfund Scotland as they make preparations for their sixth Christmas Concert Tour. Tearfund will put on 12 concerts throughout Scotland during December, bringing together a number of talented singer-songwriters. Pray for all the preparations, promotion, ticket sales and for a really great series of concerts.
TUESDAY 2 OCTOBER Tearfund’s Celtic Worship nights will take place on 24-26 October. These are exciting new events partnering with some of Scotland’s most talented folk musicians. Pray that these nights will draw people along for an evening of worship and to hear more about Tearfund’s work. Pray for lead singer Steph Macleod as he shares about his time in Uganda with Tearfund.
MONDAY 1 OCTOBER As part of our Christmas Concert Tour this year we are hosting an event at the Usher Hall in Edinburgh on 1 December to an expected audience of around 2,500 people. Pray for this event as we work with new friends, that we manage to successfully communicate our message.
WEDNESDAY 3 OCTOBER On 30 October 2018 Tearfund Scotland is hosting a 50th anniversary reception at the Scottish Parliament. Pray that the event will be of interest to many MSPs and government representatives, and Tearfund supporters. Ask that it will inspire and engage all those who attend to support the work of our partners across the world.
THURSDAY 4 OCTOBER Tonight, Tearfund Scotland is running a Cakes, Bakes and Faith event in Charlotte Chapel in Edinburgh. These events feature celebrity bakers Martha Collison and Will Torrent and will include live baking, interviews and an invitation for people to support struggling families in Lebanon. Join us in thanking God for these events and pray for tonight, for a great turnout and response from the audience. FRIDAY 5 OCTOBER Tonight Tearfund Scotland is running a Cakes, Bakes and Faith event at St Silas Church in Glasgow. Pray that tonight’s event will be a huge success, and lift up all the evenings in the tour, asking that they will be run ‘all for the glory of God’ 1 Corinthians 10:31 SATURDAY 6 OCTOBER On 17 November, churches across Scotland will take part in Tearfund’s Big Quiz Night, a fun evening to bring people together and raise money for those living in poverty. These fantastic events will be a great opportunity to reach out to new audiences in Scotland. Join us in thanking God for all the churches and communities that have decided to take part. Above: Martha Collison and Will Torrent are baking for Tearfund across Scotland Photo: Joel Upton/Tearfund
PRAYER DIARY . 5
Right: Renewable energy is lifting communities out of poverty Photo: Ralph Hodgson/Tearfund
TAKING BACK POWER: 7 – 13 OCTOBER At Tearfund, we long to see people released from material and spiritual poverty. Having access to electricity is vital to help people lift themselves out of poverty and to enable them to unlock their God-given potential – but one in seven people worldwide still don’t have electricity. We’re working to see this situation transformed through our Renew Our World campaign.
SUNDAY 7 OCTOBER The UK government spends money to improve access to energy for people in poverty through the World Bank, which aims to end extreme poverty by 2030. This year, we’re calling on the World Bank to invest more in off-grid, renewable energy that best serves poor communities by shifting funding away from fossil fuels. The World Bank holds its annual meetings in Indonesia this week – give thanks that Tearfund staff and local partners have the opportunity to attend, and pray for our influence. MONDAY 8 OCTOBER Give thanks for thousands of Tearfund’s campaigning supporters who have spoken up to stand alongside those living in poverty by signing Tearfund’s petition calling on the World Bank to invest more in off-grid, renewable energy. Pray that the campaign will be successful. Visit www.tearfund.org/action to find out more and to add your voice to the campaign.
TUESDAY 9 OCTOBER Tearfund staff, our partners and civil society representatives are due to be meeting with World Bank staff over the coming days. Pray for powerful conversations that highlight the vital importance of ensuring that people living in poverty have access to clean, affordable and reliable energy by 2030. Pray too for Tearfund staff as they share stories of how solar energy can help the poorest communities. WEDNESDAY 10 OCTOBER Earlier this year Stephen Timms MP visited Tanzania with Tearfund. Speaking with the Bishop for the Rift Valley, he heard about how individual solar panels, bought through self-help groups, are helping people lift themselves out of poverty. Pray for these self-help groups and dioceses as they bring transformation in Tanzania and reduce the negative impacts of climate change. THURSDAY 11 OCTOBER Tearfund Vice President Stephen Timms MP says, ‘I encourage Tearfund supporters to contact
MPs like me, to press the British government to take action on climate change. MPs would be delighted to hear from constituents.’ Pray for many MPs to have positive meetings with Tearfund supporters this year. A briefing guide for MPs is available at tearfund.org/speakup FRIDAY 12 OCTOBER To support Tearfund’s Renew Our World campaign, Saffron Walden Community Church’s young people did a 24 hour electricity fast and then asked the congregation to sign action postcards. The church invited their MP to a Light Service which included candlelit conversations with the young people. Give thanks with us for churches like this that are taking action. SATURDAY 13 OCTOBER Dear Lord, we lift up to you all who suffer because of poverty, injustice or climate change. We pray that World Bank staff would be guided by principles of justice and sustainability. And we ask you to inspire and equip us to speak up, act and pray for a fairer and more sustainable world.
6 . PRAYER DIARY
‘I WILL POUR WATER ON THE THIRSTY LAND, AND STREAMS ON THE DRY GROUND’
HAPPY HANDWASHING: 14 – 20 OCTOBER The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a beautiful and water-rich country, and yet only 42 per cent of the population have access to a safe water supply (and only 21 per cent in rural areas). Join us this week to celebrate Global Handwashing Day and to pray for Tearfund’s water and sanitation work in the DRC.
SUNDAY 14 OCTOBER ‘Whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.’ John 4:14 Pray that the work of Tearfund will bring more than just physical water, but would point people towards the one who can give eternal life. MONDAY 15 OCTOBER Happy Handwashing Day! Salama lost her youngest child, only one-year-old, to cholera, a disease associated with lack of safe water and poor hygiene practice. Thanks to Tearfund this has changed around. Now Salama laughs as her children sing songs about remembering to wash their hands. Thank God for the amazing change water and sanitation can bring to a family.
TUESDAY 16 OCTOBER Salama and her two daughters used to walk 25 minutes to collect water from the river, carrying the heavy jerry cans home again. Women and girls often bear the biggest responsibility for collecting water and looking after the family’s health. But they face significant personal risks in collecting water from remote locations. Pray for the safety of vulnerable women and girls in DRC, for their protection against violence. WEDNESDAY 17 OCTOBER As president of the committee that looks after the new well, Salama continues to maintain it to make sure it is not contaminated. ‘Together with Tearfund, we have found solutions for our problems,’ says Salama. Pray for faithful and determined community volunteers like Salama.
THURSDAY 18 OCTOBER Ongoing instability in Ituri province has led to thousands fleeing their homes. Tearfund’s partner Programme de Promotion des Soins de Sante Primaire has provided emergency water points and latrines for displaced people, halting the spread of disease. Pray for peace for this region and for the 340,000 people who are away from their homes. FRIDAY 19 OCTOBER The church has been involved in advocating for clean water. In one remote village, the local church and Tearfund’s partner Action Entraide worked together to provide fresh spring water for a group of pygmies. Praise God for the church in the DRC that is responding to Jesus’ call to care for the marginalised and the outsider. SATURDAY 20 OCTOBER ‘For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.’ Isaiah 44:3 Dear God, thank you for the gift of water. We ask you to provide for those who do not have access to safe water and sanitation. Give them your eternal life that is so much greater. Amen. Above: This community of Mubuti pygmies in the Democratic Republic of Congo do not have a clean water supply Photo: Hazel Thompson/Tearfund
PRAYER DIARY . 7
SUNDAY 21 OCTOBER In an average week, our supporter teams come into contact with around 1,800 of our supporting Christian brothers and sisters by phone, letter or email – and sometimes it’s many more than that! Pray that these encounters would be mutually encouraging, reflecting our shared desire to serve and glorify Christ. MONDAY 22 OCTOBER ‘Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else.’ 2 Corinthians 9:13 Praise God for the example of perfect service and generosity that we have in Christ. Pray that we would each be more like him in our own lives. TUESDAY 23 OCTOBER We regularly hear from those of you who pray daily through this Prayer Diary, which has been published since the 1990s. That’s more than 20 years of daily prayers lifted up for people in the greatest need. This year, we’ve seen thousands more join us in prayer at events around the country. Thank God that we can approach him with our requests, and ask him now that he would bring an end to extreme poverty. WEDNESDAY 24 OCTOBER We often receive prayer requests from supporters facing difficult times in their lives. It is humbling how many of you continue to give sacrificially of your time and finances during these periods. Thank God for people’s generosity, and pray his hand of comfort on any supporters facing times of trouble or uncertainty.
CELEBRATING YOU: 21 – 27 OCTOBER Earlier this month it was National Customer Service Week. At Tearfund, our Supporter Services team take this opportunity to remember and thank you, our supporters, for your involvement throughout the year.
‘BECAUSE OF THE SERVICE BY WHICH YOU HAVE PROVED YOURSELVES, OTHERS WILL PRAISE GOD’ THURSDAY 25 OCTOBER Equally, many of our supporters are able to give in exciting circumstances, such as a promotion, financial bonus, or unexpected gift. Many of you choose to fundraise through special occasions like birthdays and weddings. Thank God for his goodness and grace shown to each of us.
FRIDAY 26 OCTOBER One of the highlights of our contact is hearing from many of you who have been with Tearfund since the early days. In this special anniversary year, thank God for the faithfulness and dedication of those who have supported us for most of our lifetime – and praise God for continuing to raise up new supporters. SATURDAY 27 OCTOBER Father God, thank you that you have made us one body, each with different skills to bring and tasks to fulfil in the work of your kingdom. This week, we thank you for supporters who contribute their prayers, time and money to help release the potential of the global church and break through the chains of poverty. Amen. Above: Amazing Tearfund supporters Andrew and Zena Butterfield Photo: Peter Shaw/Tearfund
8 . PRAYER DIARY
JUST CONVERSATION: 28 OCTOBER – 3 NOVEMBER The Justice Conference is a global movement encouraging thousands of Christians to live out the message of Jesus and transform their communities by making justice a way of life. It has already taken place in six countries around the world, uniting thousands of people. It’s a huge privilege for Tearfund to play a key role bringing the conference to the UK for the first time on 2-3 November. Find out more at www.thejusticeconference.co.uk
SUNDAY 28 OCTOBER ‘He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!’’ ’ Revelation 21:5a The theme of The Justice Conference is ‘All Things New’. We know that poverty is not just economic or physical but also social, environmental and spiritual. God is making all things new, and he’s inviting us, to join his story of restoration. Pray that we may see how God is restoring relationships. MONDAY 29 OCTOBER The Justice Conference is taking place in Australia, Hong Kong, South Africa and other countries during October and November. Pray for the ongoing impact of these conferences on individuals and churches, equipping them to pursue justice in their countries and communities.
TUESDAY 30 OCTOBER The arts are an important part of The Justice Conference and have been used throughout history to challenge the status quo and subvert injustice. Pray for the many artists – painters, musicians, graphic designers, dancers and more – around the world who use their skills to direct people to God. Ask that God would give them fresh inspiration. WEDNESDAY 31 OCTOBER ‘Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?’ James 2:15-16 Ask God to show you today one practical thing you can do for people in need.
‘AND OVER ALL THESE VIRTUES PUT ON LOVE, WHICH BINDS THEM ALL TOGETHER IN PERFECT UNITY’
Tearfund is helping to bring The Justice Conference to the UK Photo: Margaret Chandler/Tearfund
THURSDAY 1 NOVEMBER ‘And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.’ Colossians 3:14 Pray today for all the speakers, organisers, volunteers, partner organisations and production teams involved in The Justice Conference as they work together over the next few days. May God bind together in perfect love all who are organising and all who are attending together. FRIDAY 2 NOVEMBER Today hundreds of Christians are gathering at The Justice Conference, following a call to tackle the injustices they see around them. Pray that those attending would be inspired by the Holy Spirit and be equipped to live out their commitment to the oppressed and vulnerable. Pray also for the speakers and organisers as the event unfolds over the two days. SATURDAY 3 NOVEMBER As attendees leave the conference and return to their day-to-day lives, pray for refreshed vision and renewed passion. Pray that the event will be a catalyst for the UK church in its pursuit of justice. Ask that, across the country, God’s people will be making justice a way of life and sharing his message of restoration.
PRAYER DIARY . 9
‘HEAVENLY FATHER, WE PRAY FOR THESE HORRIFIC ACTS OF VIOLENCE TO END’ HORRORS IN HONDURAS: 4 – 10 NOVEMBER Honduras is one of the world’s most violent countries with an average of 20 murders committed every day. Violence connected with drug trafficking has become increasingly worse and the situation is made near impossible when there is corruption within the justice system. In the midst of these dark and distressing times, Tearfund partners continue to be a shining light. SUNDAY 4 NOVEMBER Gang warfare is rife within Honduras and it often proves an irresistible but dangerous lure to young people. Our partner Allianza runs a programme which provides a Christinspired alternative to the prevailing culture of violence. Pray for more young people to be saved from a life of violence. MONDAY 5 NOVEMBER Last year we told the story of Angela’s family living in a riverbank slum along with 40,000 other families – all in desperate conditions with no help from the government. Tearfund partner CASM is helping communities to call for change so that families have safe places to live. Pray that the government will listen to and act on the demands of these families. TUESDAY 6 NOVEMBER It is difficult for justice to prevail in Honduras because of police corruption. Many officers have been implicated in past crimes
which has made it difficult for civilians to trust those in authority. Pray for the Honduras police, that they will become known for being just and fair. WEDNESDAY 7 NOVEMBER The church in Honduras faces many challenges, church leaders are witnessing great trauma in the communities they serve – a huge burden to bear. Pray that the church in Honduras will be a shining beacon of light. May leaders remain strong and courageous – bringing the word of God to those who desperately need it. THURSDAY 8 NOVEMBER In January 2018, President Hernández’s inauguration sparked protests because of allegations of election fraud by the opposing party. Hernandez has been in office since 2014 and, according to Honduras’s National Autonomous University, the nation’s homicide rate has fallen. However, there have often been rumours of corruption and drug trafficking
which have cast a shadow over his government. Pray that Hernandez can serve Honduras with truth and justice. FRIDAY 9 NOVEMBER Drug trafficking is a huge problem within Honduras as gangs use the country as a transit point en route to the United States. It is often the cause of horrific acts of violence with many innocent civilians being killed. Pray that Honduras would become a country of peace and that those involved in drug trafficking will be brought to justice. SATURDAY 10 NOVEMBER Heavenly Father, we pray for corruption, injustice and violence to end and for Honduras to become a country of peace. Thank you for Tearfund’s partners, we pray for protection and strength so that they can continue their life-changing work. In Jesus’ name, Amen. Above: Sign outside a church in Honduras: ‘Jesus Christ, the spark of life’ Photo: Zoe Burden/Tearfund
10 . PRAYER DIARY
Margret from Malawi says her children are safer thanks to improved toilets Photo: Tearfund
KICKING UP A STINK: 11 – 24 NOVEMBER Access to a safe toilet and clean water brings lifechanging benefits for families in poverty – especially women and girls. This fortnight we thank God for the tap stands, toilets and training funded through our Toilet Twinning initiative. They don’t just help to protect families from disease, they also restore people’s dignity, safeguard women from attack and help keep girls in school.
SUNDAY 11 NOVEMBER Purna, who lives in Sikre, Nepal, nearly died of severe diarrhoea a few years ago. It took all day for her son to carry her to hospital on his back. The family built a proper toilet after our partner showed them that their water supply was being contaminated by human waste. Ask God to make a way so this teaching can spread to remote areas of Nepal and other nations.
was attacked while in the bush. Pray that more villages will set up health clubs and work together to improve hygiene and sanitation.
MONDAY 12 NOVEMBER In Ethiopia, Tadelech used to watch in despair as her children frequently fell sick. Now the family have a proper toilet and have learnt about hygiene, life is very different. Money once spent on medicines is now used to send Tadelech’s children to school. ‘We believe we will live a long life,’ she says. Praise God for the way he is opening up people’s horizons and restoring hope.
WEDNESDAY 14 NOVEMBER In Margret’s village in Chikwawa district, Malawi, our partner Eagles Relief and Development is helping communities produce reusable concrete slabs (or ‘sanplats’) to make pit latrines safer to use and easier to construct. Margret says women can now build toilets on their own, without help. Thank God for the way that toilet building projects are building women’s confidence.
TUESDAY 13 NOVEMBER Bawili is president of the Community Health Club that Tearfund helped set up in her village in South Kivu, the Democratic Republic of Congo. She teaches her community about hygiene and encourages them to build toilets. She took on the role after her daughter
THURSDAY 15 NOVEMBER When our partner Sahara Community Health Association came to her village in Pakistan’s Sindh province and started teaching people about sanitation and hygiene, Kanchana set about telling all the women they needed a toilet – and they listened.
What’s more, they persuaded their husbands to build one. Kanchana’s success has boosted her confidence and her social status. ‘I was alone,’ she says, ‘but now I have the strength of the people.’ Praise God! FRIDAY 16 NOVEMBER Some 2.3 billion people worldwide still do not have a safe, hygienic toilet and 844 million people don’t have clean water near their home. Pray that governments and donors will make a fresh commitment for firm action to improve access to water and sanitation dramatically by 2030, to reach Sustainable Development Goal 6. SATURDAY 17 NOVEMBER Thank you, Lord, for the bare essentials that we so often take for granted, including basics such as clean water and a safe, hygienic toilet. Teach us contentment: help us to count our blessings, not our woes. Amen.
PRAYER DIARY . 11
‘I WAS ALONE, BUT NOW I HAVE THE STRENGTH OF THE PEOPLE’ SUNDAY 18 NOVEMBER In rural villages in southwest Guatemala, our partner Ami San Lucas is partnering with local churches to train indigenous families to build toilets for the first time. Before they had toilets, the women in San Juan Mocá had to crouch among the trees and risk having stones thrown at them. ‘It was so embarrassing to have to find a place to go where no one was looking,’ says María Olga. Praise God for the way toilets restore dignity. MONDAY 19 NOVEMBER Today is World Toilet Day – an opportunity to draw attention to the global sanitation crisis. Pray for the success of our Big Squat campaign event on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral this afternoon, in solidarity with the one in three women worldwide who don’t have a proper toilet. TUESDAY 20 NOVEMBER Spencer, a village leader in Rumphi district, Malawi, used to despair that local people were so often ill. Thank God that, since our partner Soldev taught local people how to build toilets and keep clean, villagers have more time for one another. ‘People used to have to go to hospital a lot but now they are working for the improvement of our community,’ says Spencer.
Above right: Tadelech from Ethiopia believes her family will ‘live a long life’ now they have a proper toilet Photo: Richard Hanson/Toilet Twinning
‘IT WAS SO EMBARRASSING TO FIND A PLACE TO GO WHERE NO ONE WAS LOOKING’ WEDNESDAY 21 NOVEMBER Three remote villages in northern Shan state, Myanmar, now have piped water for the first time – after our partner World Concern laid a pipe system to connect them to their water source which had previously been an hour’s walk away. Others had told the villages it was impossible to pipe water to them: praise God that he makes a way. THURSDAY 22 NOVEMBER A lack of proper toilets in school is a significant contributor to school drop-out rates in developing countries, especially for girls when they reach puberty. Girls who leave school early are more likely to marry young. Thank God that our partner North Kigezi and Kinkiizi Dioceses in south-west Uganda is working with households and schools to provide toilets – with many girls re-enrolling in school as a result.
FRIDAY 23 NOVEMBER Our Toilet Twinning initiative recently reached a major milestone in its eight-year history: 90,000 toilets twinned across the world. Pray that it will reach new audiences – so that even more households overseas can have a lifesaving latrine. SATURDAY 24 NOVEMBER ‘The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love.’ Psalm 33:5 Lord, stir up in me a righteous anger about the things in this world that grieve you. When I feel helpless to tackle the big issues, show me, Lord, the small steps I can take to make a difference. Use me, Lord, to sow love and bring justice. Thank you, Lord, that whatever I give back to you, you multiply. Amen.
A WORLD 0F PRAYER
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUGGESTIONS We’d like to thank the many Prayer Diary users who have contacted us asking for a map of the countries where Tearfund works to help you pray. We hope that this is useful to you to see the location of the countries we work in.
While we will occasionally update this map and feature it again in the Prayer Diary, it won’t be in every edition, so please open up the staples and remove these pages for future reference if that’s helpful. If you have any comments or suggestions for improving the Prayer Diary please contact Peter Shaw at email@example.com
ND P TA A OU IS M LL TH PU EP KE
15 40 46
23 38 7 44 27 50
The 50 locations where Tearfund works 1. Afghanistan 2. Angola 3. Bangladesh 4. Bolivia 5. Brazil 6. Burkina Faso 7. Burundi 8. Cambodia 9. Central African Republic 10. Central Asian States 11. Chad 12. Colombia
13. Democratic Republic of Congo 14. Egypt 15. Ethiopia 16. Guatemala 17. Haiti 18. Honduras 19. India 20. Iraq 21. Ivory Coast 22. Jordan 23. Kenya 24. Lebanon 25. Laos
26. Liberia 27. Malawi 28. Mali 29. Mozambique 30. Myanmar 31. Nepal 32. Nicaragua 33. Niger 34. Nigeria 35. Pakistan 36. Peru 37. Philippines 38. Rwanda 39. Sierra Leone
40. Somaliland 41. South Africa 42. South Sudan 43. Syria 44. Tanzania 45. Thailand 46. Uganda 47. United Kingdom 48. Yemen 49. Zambia 50. Zimbabwe
14 . PRAYER DIARY
This week we pray for north-east Nigeria Photo: Andrew Phillip/Tearfund
FOR COMFORT AND PEACE: 25 NOVEMBER – 1 DECEMBER This week we pray for our work in Nigeria, the humanitarian crisis in the north-east and ongoing work with Tearfund’s partners across the country.
SUNDAY 25 NOVEMBER An estimated 1.8 million people are internally displaced in north-east Nigeria following the Boko Haram insurgency. Tearfund’s Nigeria Joint Response project, funded by the Dutch government, aims to tackle the humanitarian crisis. Pray for God’s protection for Tearfund and our partners in Nigeria as we open a new office in Maiduguri, one of the most isolated areas in northeast Nigeria. MONDAY 26 NOVEMBER ‘The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid.’ Deuteronomy 31:8 North-east Nigeria’s Borno State remains unstable due to Boko Haram. Pray for stability and for liberation of the areas still overrun by insurgents. Lift up families forced to flee their homes because of conflict. TUESDAY 27 NOVEMBER Tearfund’s sexual and genderbased violence (SGBV) work in Nigeria aims to give church leaders and congregations insight into biblical perspectives that advance the dignity of women and
promote peaceful coexistence for all. Pray for wisdom for the Tearfund Nigeria country staff who are leading work on SGBV, and for continued good relationships with churches. WEDNESDAY 28 NOVEMBER The Jos Green Centre is a youth-driven initiative that encourages eco-innovations, eco-entrepreneurship and policy influencing. In March, the centre and a Tearfund partner collaborated on a waste management educational programme for ten Nigerian communities. Pray for the programme’s continued success, and for more opportunities for the project to grow. THURSDAY 29 NOVEMBER ‘Sermons are not supposed to end in the pulpit, you should go out and implement,’ said one church leader during a review of Tearfund’s church and community transformation (CCT) work in Nigeria. Pray for Tearfund’s CCT partnerships and collaborations in Nigeria Ask that these would result in communities being better equipped to use their available resources, and empowered to bring transformation.
‘SERMONS ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO END IN THE PULPIT, YOU SHOULD GO OUT AND IMPLEMENT’ FRIDAY 30 NOVEMBER Nigeria is a country with many ethnicities and tribes. Uprising of the nomadic Fulani herdsmen has caused extreme violence, causing the deaths of 73 civilians and displacement of 40,000 people in January alone. Pray for comfort and peace for those affected by this violence and ask that God will raise true leaders within communities that will have the spirit of love and unity. SATURDAY 1 DECEMBER Dear Lord, thank you for the work you’re doing through Tearfund in Nigeria. We ask for your protection over Tearfund staff and partners, that they would continue bringing hope to people in greatest need. We pray your blessing over the people of Nigeria. Amen.
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PROMISED YOU A MIRACLE: 2 – 8 DECEMBER This week we’re focusing on the annual UN climate talks, which begin in Poland on 3 December for two weeks. We are praying that world leaders keep their promise to turn the Paris Agreement – a global agreement to tackle climate change – into action. We will be praying and following the talks as part of our Renew Our World campaign.
SUNDAY 2 DECEMBER ‘I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people – for kings and all those in authority…’ 1 Timothy 2:1-2 Give thanks for the Paris Agreement, through which nearly all countries across the world have come together to tackle the causes of climate change and address the impacts. Pray that leaders will make the progress that’s needed to turn this international agreement into action, so that it can come into force by the agreed deadline of 2020. MONDAY 3 DECEMBER Pray that the UK government will continue to lead with ambitious action to meet its obligations under the Paris Agreement. This includes setting a legally binding target of cutting UK emissions to net zero before 2050. This would protect people and landscapes we love, and make our air cleaner.
‘RENEW OUR SPIRITS AND CLEANSE OUR HEARTS’
TUESDAY 4 DECEMBER Give thanks that across the world millions of people are responding to the challenge of climate change by making changes in their lives, and speaking up and praying for those most affected. Ask God what he’d like you to do in response to the changing climate and how you can engage your church and community in action. WEDNESDAY 5 DECEMBER Lift up countries like Bangladesh, Malawi and Haiti that are already experiencing the impacts of climate change, such as droughts and floods. Pray particularly for the poorest and most vulnerable countries, which are often hit first and hardest. Pray they will be equipped to speak out – and be heard – during the UN talks. THURSDAY 6 DECEMBER Thank God for the support promised by rich countries, including the UK, to help the poorest and most vulnerable countries adapt and develop sustainably. Pray that the
money set aside will be delivered and distributed wisely – and the financial commitment increased. FRIDAY 7 DECEMBER Tearfund staff will be at the UN climate talks to urge government leaders to keep their promises to tackle climate change. Pray that Tearfund, and our partners who are working with us as part of the Renew Our World campaign, will be able to meet with government delegations. Pray too for wisdom to guide our conversations. SATURDAY 8 DECEMBER Lord, Renew our spirits and cleanse our hearts Renew our minds and transform our lives Renew our cities and rebuild our ruins Renew our world, in Jesus’ name we pray, Amen. Above: Desertification is an increasing problem in Chad as temperature rises Photo: Peter Canton/Tearfund
16 . PRAYER DIARY
DECLARE HIS GLORY AMONG THE NATIONS, HIS MARVELLOUS DEEDS AMONG ALL PEOPLES. 1 CHRONICLES 16:24
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Right: Sunrise over Chitwan National Park, Nepal Photo: Tom Price/Tearfund
DREAMS SWEPT AWAY: 16 – 22 DECEMBER Nearly 50,000 people in Banke District, southern Nepal were severely affected by flooding in August 2017. In a few short hours families lost everything – loved ones, homes and livelihoods. This week we pray for those whose lives are turned upside down by disasters and for the Tearfund partners working to bring hope in the midst of the storm.
SUNDAY 16 DECEMBER Puna and Maya were sleeping when they realised that flood waters had entered their mud house and it was collapsing. Frantically, they started to gather all their belongings and escaped with their family. Many of those who lost homes had to seek refuge in cowsheds, under bridges or with neighbours. Pray for God’s protection for those forced out of their homes because of floods. MONDAY 17 DECEMBER Maya was desperately worried. How would she feed her family of three small children and an ageing mother, when they had lost everything – their food, home and livelihoods? Thank God that he is our provider and pray for those, like Maya, who find themselves in a desperate situation, that he will supply their every need. TUESDAY 18 DECEMBER Ram, who lost everything in the flood, said ‘All of my dreams were swept away by the river. It left me numb and in tears, my whole community is mourning.’ God weeps with those weep. Let’s pray that he would be close to those who are in despair, like Ram and his community.
WEDNESDAY 19 DECEMBER In the aftermath of the floods, many of those affected, including Maya, Puna and Ram received food packages from Tearfund partners. This enabled them to feed their families. Puna said: ‘I had never thought there are people out there who understand our pain and care for us and the terrible situation we are in. We have food and hope for the family now.’ Thank God for those who work to bring life-saving aid and hope in dark places. THURSDAY 20 DECEMBER ‘There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off’ Proverbs 23:18. Homes had been washed away in the floods, and rebuilding for the future seemed impossible, but Tearfund partner International Nepal Fellowship has provided cash transfers and tools enabling families like Maya and Puna’s to rebuild their homes. Give thanks for this renewed hope for communities as they look to the future.
FRIDAY 21 DECEMBER Bhadralah, aged 84, said that he’d never seen a flood like this in his lifetime. The increasing severity of natural disasters is likely to be as a result of climate change which so often severely impacts those least able to cope. Let’s prayerfully consider our actions and choices and how they can affect others. SATURDAY 22 DECEMBER Dear Father, thank you that you are a God of hope, who came to heal the brokenhearted. I pray that you would give hope to those who are discouraged and that you would provide a way for those who feel trapped by their circumstances. For those who have lost everything, please supply for their future from your abundant resources. Show us the part that you would have us play in your plans for provision. Amen.
‘THANK YOU THAT YOU ARE A GOD OF HOPE’
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Left: Tearfund-scripted nativity play performed in Jalisco, Mexico Photo: Lisa Lopez Smith/Tearfund
PRAY YOUR CARDS RIGHT: 23 – 29 DECEMBER Neil and Sue Batty set up Potter’s House, the Christian distribution company that produces Tearfund’s Christmas cards, in 2001. Each year they supply around three-quarters of a million Christmas cards to Tearfund supporters. It’s a great job, but has its challenges. This week we pray for Potter’s House, and for the impact of Tearfund’s Christmas cards around the world.
SUNDAY 23 DECEMBER On this biblical day of rest, pray for energy and strength for Neil, Sue and all their staff. ‘It was our prayer to work together,’ explains Sue, ‘so we have to honour what we asked for!’ Pray too for protection and enrichment of Neil and Sue’s relationship as they work together to lead their staff at this busy time. CHRISTMAS EVE 24 DECEMBER ‘There’s nothing finer than knowing that God’s word is going out there and impacting people’s lives,’ reflects Neil. Pray for everyone receiving a Tearfund Christmas card this year – that they will be blessed and encouraged by the card they receive. Pray too for increased awareness and support of Tearfund as a result of the cards that will be sent.
CHRISTMAS DAY 25 DECEMBER ‘We want to see the high street keep a Christian presence and would urge everyone to support their local Christian bookshop,’ says Sue. Pray for Christian bookshops around the country, that they would thrive within a difficult marketplace and that bookshop owners would find new ways to boost business.
‘THERE’S NOTHING FINER THAN KNOWING THAT GOD’S WORD IS OUT THERE IMPACTING PEOPLE’S LIVES’
WEDNESDAY 26 DECEMBER ‘I immediately felt welcome as part of the Tearfund family,’ reflects Neil as he remembers his first visit to the Tearfund office. ‘There’s a sense of oneness about what we’re doing.’ Pray for the partnership between Potter’s House and Tearfund – that both organisations would continue to be blessed as they work to make a difference in the world. THURSDAY 27 DECEMBER ‘We have the victory in Christ but that doesn’t mean we don’t face our battles,’ explains Neil. ‘It’s always a challenge to source new good quality products at the right price.’ Pray for wisdom in decisionmaking for Neil and Sue, and for the right doors in business to open. FRIDAY 28 DECEMBER This year we’ve increased our range of Tearfund Easter cards,’ explains Neil. ‘We also produce fairly-traded ethical gifts. Our Dalit candles are really popular.’ Pray for success for these new ventures which have the potential to impact, not just those receiving the cards and gifts, but suppliers in the developing world as well as the work of Tearfund. SATURDAY 29 DECEMBER ‘Even in a work environment, we never step far away from our faith, we’re in it all the time,’ says Sue. Pray for Neil and Sue, that their faith would be strengthened by what they do and that they would continue to be a witness to the world around them.
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PRAYER FIRST: 30 DECEMBER – 5 JANUARY ‘Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.’ Mark 11:24 At the start of this year, we look back and praise God for powerful answers to prayer that have transformed people’s lives across the world.
SUNDAY 30 DECEMBER Longstanding mistrust of the church was preventing a local church pastor in Cambodia from helping his congregation escape poverty. With much prayer and by starting a new unity programme, thanks to training from a Tearfund partner, relationships improved and the community started working together. Give thanks for God changing hearts and minds.
prompted by a Bible study at her church in Kenya, Cecilia discovered that she could forgive and love her in-laws, despite their mistreatment of her. Her love softened their hearts and they forgave and loved Cecilia, ending years of family conflict. Thank God for the power of his word to change people’s hearts and heal relationships.
Bible study in Dinajpur, Bangladesh Photo: Ralph Hodgson/Tearfund
‘FOR 15 YEARS I PRAYED EVERY DAY’ without having to fetch water. ‘I feel God heard my prayer,’ Lamin says, ‘even though I am a child and poor.’ Pray that Lamin can continue to attend school.
MONDAY 31 DECEMBER Beatriz is a garbage picker from Brazil who lives with her family in terrible conditions. She prayed for ‘something good’ to happen in her neighbourhood. With the help of the Flor do Sertão Project, run with a Tearfund partner, lives are improving. Praise God as people are empowered to discover their potential, and pray that many will come to know Jesus.
WEDNESDAY 2 JANUARY Otilia, aged 80, from the Travessia community in east Brazil, believed that for the rest of her life she would continue spending nearly two hours every day collecting water. So she decided to ask God for a breakthrough. ‘For 15 years I prayed every day,’ she says. Praise God that Tearfund partner Evangelical Action helped the community construct a well in her village.
FRIDAY 4 JANUARY Mother and widow Nerambaye, from Chad, is living with HIV. Ostracised by her family she felt suicidal until she prayed with her local church pastor. Now released, she took out a loan and set up a business, supported by a Tearfund partner project. She is now self-sufficient and helps others with HIV. Praise God for renewal and regeneration in Nerambaye’s life and ask that stigmatisation of HIV will be eradicated in her community.
NEW YEAR’S DAY TUESDAY 1 JANUARY As we look to a new year, here’s the story of Cecilia who – through prayer – started a new chapter in her life. Through dedicated prayer
THURSDAY 3 JANUARY Tearfund partner Scripture Union constructed a well for the Mayaya community in Sierra Leone. Lamin, whose parents died from Ebola, can now get to school on time
SATURDAY 5 JANUARY Heavenly Father, thank you that you hear and answer our prayers, improving lives and giving hope and strength to people across the world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
20 . PRAYER DIARY
SUNDAY 6 JANUARY Everything we do at Tearfund can be summed up in these words: following Jesus where the need is greatest. We don’t travel alone and we don’t travel without purpose. Compassion is our compass, God our guide. Thank God for the people that your compassion connects you to – both at home and across the world. MONDAY 7 JANUARY ‘It’s helped me mature in my faith,’ says Rowan Smith. Prayer and financial giving, then the opportunity to see God’s work in action and meet Christians from different backgrounds – these are the ingredients God used to teach Rowan. Pray that God will use your prayer, giving and connections with other Christians to deepen your relationship with him. TUESDAY 8 JANUARY For Hannah Hobden, IMPACT:LIFE has affected her relationships. ‘Being part of God’s local and global family… I have built a stronger local community and also deep care for people I have never met in a country I had never been to.’ Pray for the appetite and the opportunity for you to go deeper with God’s local and global family. WEDNESDAY 9 JANUARY ‘Being part of IMPACT:LIFE has been life-changing,’ says Rowan. ‘It was really the kick-starter in my journey of giving generously, not just of money, but of time and prayer to a cause outside of my own sphere.’ Pray for Rowan and the many others who are part of IMPACT:LIFE, that they would continue to be challenged.
BRIDGE OF LOVE: 6 – 12 JANUARY Tearfund’s IMPACT:LIFE network helps young professional Christians begin a journey of connection and generosity. After a year of praying and raising money for a Tearfund partner project in Myanmar, one group from London paid the community a visit. They took a four day trek through dense jungle, but the difficult journey was worth every step... THURSDAY 10 JANUARY Lucy Eastcott’s opinion of IMPACT:LIFE has changed a lot since signing up. ‘When I started it was about me committing to give money to something – but actually we are a team. The best thing has been to see that team grow in relationship with each other.’ Thank God for IMPACT:LIFE, and the Christians who inspire you. FRIDAY 11 JANUARY Money raised through the IMPACT:LIFE team is helping to finance a new bridge which the community in Myanmar have decided to name ‘love’. Thank God that his love can span any divide, and that some of our hardest journeys often lead us closest to his love.
Above: IMPACT:LIFE group member Sarge meets the community in Putao Photo: Amy Ford/Tearfund
SATURDAY 12 JANUARY The villagers knew exactly why they wanted to call the bridge ‘love’. In the process of working together with other villages – as well as receiving support from the IMPACT:LIFE team thousands of miles away in London – they had learnt to love one another more deeply. Praise God for the lessons he teaches us through doing his work alongside others. Ask God for fresh opportunities today.
‘THE BEST THING HAS BEEN TO SEE THAT TEAM GROW IN RELATIONSHIP WITH EACH OTHER’
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FULL OF MERCY: 13 – 19 JANUARY According to Unicef – approximately 89 per cent of women in Mali between the ages of 15 and 49 have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM). The practice is deeply rooted in culture, and often justified by religion. Tearfund and our partner Agence Protestante de Santé au Mali (APSM) raise awareness of the dangers, and provide medical and psychological support to women who have endured the procedure. SUNDAY 13 JANUARY Mariam attended Tearfund’s Healing Memories workshop last year, and has since been empowered to advocate against FGM. ‘The training really helped us, it taught us how to listen to others,’ says Mariam. ‘Over time, by speaking to women, I see them change their minds, and decide not to cut their daughters’. Give thanks for the impact Mariam is making in her community.
TUESDAY 15 JANUARY ‘But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerable, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.’ James 3:17
MONDAY 14 JANUARY APSM deliver sensitisation sessions around the practice of FGM to groups within local communities, including churches. Pray that we will continue to equip the local church to become powerful agents of change, and that leaders would be emboldened to speak out against this practice within the church and community.
WEDNESDAY 16 JANUARY After receiving training from Tearfund, a group of women in the town of Kayes decided to ‘adopt’ a village, and regularly visit women in the community to listen to their FGM stories, and support their healing. Praise God for these women and pray that they will be used powerfully in their adopted village.
Above: Project officer from Tearfund partner Agence Protestante de Santé au Mali discusses sanitation outside a church in Kayes, Mali Photo: Jade Beakhouse/Tearfund
Addressing FGM is a very delicate issue in Mali and all sensitisation activities require great sensitivity. Pray for continued wisdom for APSM, local churches and all women who are involved.
THURSDAY 17 JANUARY ‘I have been called here, not to stay in my house, but to speak to the women in my neighbourhood about FGM’, says pastor’s wife Christiane, who has been supported by APSM to deliver sensitisation
training in her neighbourhood. Give thanks for Christiane’s passion and courage, and pray for continued boldness for her as she works to protect more young girls. FRIDAY 18 JANUARY ‘I was 13 when I underwent FGM... I didn’t know there were consequences, but I had problems in childbirth. Even now, I still have problems because of what I went through,’ says Aminata, who has received support from APSM. Pray for Aminata and many others like her, whose health has been permanently affected by FGM. SATURDAY 19 JANUARY Heavenly Father, we thank you for the many brave women, supported by APSM and Tearfund, who work tirelessly to sensitise communities on the dangers of FGM across Mali, to protect a new generation of girls. We ask that the practice of FGM will dramatically decrease, and eventually end in Mali. Amen. All names have been changed this week to protect identities.
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BIBLE BRINGING TRANSFORMATION: 20 – 26 JANUARY Tearfund has run church and community transformation (CCT) programmes – working with churches as they empower their local community to escape poverty – in West Africa for ten years now. It starts with Bible studies about being made in God’s image, and how we can use our talents and resources to be salt and light in the world.
SUNDAY 20 JANUARY One Nigerian community, which has been doing CCT for five years, has built three boreholes, started a farming cooperative, tripled their harvest yields and built a primary school. Nearby communities were impressed and wanted the same and so there are now 36 boreholes in the locality. Thank you, Lord, for your faithfulness and the power of your word. MONDAY 21 JANUARY In Central African Republic (CAR), CCT has inspired churches to encourage their communities to develop, in spite of the huge challenges the conflict-hit country faces. Tearfund is working with leaders and local churches in CAR, bringing them together as the body of Christ, to strive for peace. Pray for strength for these inspirational leaders, and for peace to reign.
TUESDAY 22 JANUARY ‘God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them.’ Genesis 1:27 Inspired by the biblical teaching from CCT, one woman from Sierra Leone said, ‘I always thought of myself as having nothing, but now I know God can use me.’ Thank you, Lord, for using church and community transformation to help people realise who they are in your eyes. WEDNESDAY 23 JANUARY One pastor in Niger was challenged by the CCT training to increase his church’s care for an influx of refugees in his community. The church became a refuge, an advocate for and distributor of emergency aid – a source of hope for the community. Dear God, as you bless us, help us to bless others.
This week we pray for countries across West Africa, including Ivory Coast Photo: Tom Price/Tearfund
THURSDAY 24 JANUARY In Ivory Coast, CCT Bible studies have helped people to recognise their existing resources and start to use them. This included learning how to save and manage finances, start small businesses and improve livelihoods. God, we pray for wisdom to recognise all you have given us and to use it for your good. FRIDAY 25 JANUARY In Liberia, CCT has helped restore relationships between churches and their communities. Luke 10:25-37 challenges us to ask, ‘Who is our neighbour?’. In response Liberian churches have reached out to the poorest and most marginalised in their communities. Lord, we pray that the church would be a place of inclusion and comfort to everyone in need. SATURDAY 26 JANUARY Lord, thank you that you have given each one of us gifts, talents and resources to use for your glory. Thank you for your church, we pray that churches across the world will be inspired to be salt and light. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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PRAYER RESOURCES We want to equip you to join us in praying for an end to extreme poverty. Visit www.tearfund.org/pray for more resources and opportunities to pray. email WEEKLY PRAYERS BY EMAIL
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‘FIRST OF ALL, PRAY’ MOST REV JUSTIN WELBY, THE ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY
Worship at the Big Church Day Out Photo: Will Clarke/Tearfund
We pray you would strengthen your church to be a beacon of hospitality for the poor. We pray that, seeing the light of Christâ€™s love, the nations and peoples of the world may fight not to kill, but to outdo one another in care for the poor, and in actions of gracious generosity. Amen. A prayer by Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury
Archbishop Welby at Tearfundâ€™s 50th celebration at Coventry Cathedral
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Tearfund's Autumn prayer magazine.