10 July 2024

Daily prayer in Ordinary Time 2024:
62, Wednesday 10 July 2024

‘Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples and gave them authority’(Matthew 10: 1) … the Synaxis of the Apostles’, an icon in the church in Panormos, east of Rethymnon in Crete (Photograph: Patrick Comerford)

Patrick Comerford

We are continuing in Ordinary Time in the Church Calendar and the week began with the Sixth Sunday after Trinity (Trinity VI). I am staying this week at the High Leigh Conference Centre at Hoddesdon in Hertfordshire, where the annual conference of the Anglican mission agency USPG (United Society Partners in the Gospel) began yesterday (9 July) and continues until tomorrow (11 July).

Later this evening, undoubtedly, I shall find an appropriate place to watch the England v Netherlands semi-final in Germany, and appropriate company to share the excitement and anxiety. I remember when England and the Netherlands last met in a fixture like this it was 1996 and I was on holiday in Crete, staying in Mika Villas in Piskopianó, in the hills above Hersonissos. But, before today begins, I am taking some quiet time this morning to give thanks, for reflection, prayer and reading in these ways:

1, today’s Gospel reading;

2, a reflection in connection with this week’s USPG conference;

3, a prayer from the USPG prayer diary;

4, the Collects and Post-Communion prayer of the day.

The 12 disciples in an icon of the True Vine in the church in Piskopianó in Crete (Photograph: Patrick Comerford)

Matthew 10: 1-7 (NRSVUE):

1 Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness. 2 These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon, also known as Peter, and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee and his brother John; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Cananaean and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed him.

5 These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Do not take a road leading to gentiles, and do not enter a Samaritan town, 6 but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 As you go, proclaim the good news, ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near’.”

The Very Revd Dr Kelly Brown Douglas is the keynote speaker at the USPG conference in High Leigh this morning

This morning’s reflection:

The annual conference of the Anglican mission agency USPG (United Society Partners in the Gospel) began yesterday in the High Leigh Conference Centre near Hoddesdon in Hertfordshire and continues until tomorrow. The conference theme this year is ‘United Beyond Borders’, and I am reflecting on the conference in this prayer diary throughout this week.

Today begins with morning worship led by Derby Guerrier from Haiti, a member of the Tsedaqah Community (Triangle of Hope), a missional community based at Liverpool Cathedral and made up of young people living together in community for a year. The Triangle of Hope links the Diocese of Kumasi in Ghana, the Diocese of Liverpool in the Church of England and the Diocese of Virginia in the US.

Tsedaqah community members work in a variety of social justice projects across the Liverpool City Region in conjunction with the Anglican Diocese of Liverpool and Liverpool Cathedral.

Tsedaqah is a Hebrew word that means ‘righteousness' or ‘to do justice', the very reason that the community was formed. The instruction in Micah 6: 8 inspires its mission as a community. Community members seek to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God. These values are echoed in the words of the Tsedaqah Prayer.

The conference Bible studies later this morning are being led once again by Bishop Dalcy Badeli Dlamini, Bishop of Eswatini in the Anglican Church of Southern Africa. She is the second woman bishop in Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), and she is leading the Bible studies throughout this week, bringing fresh perspectives on leadership, faith and community.

The Very Revd Dr Kelly Brown Douglas is the keynote speaker this morning. She is a leader in womanist theology and racial reconciliation, and is the Dean of Episcopal Divinity School at Union Theological Seminary and Canon Theologian at Washington National Cathedral.

Bradon Muilenburg, the Anglican Refugee Support Lead in Northern France, is the keynote speaker at the conference this afternoon. He works along border lines and his day-to-day experience of ministry in Calais is expected to bring many of this week’s discussions to life.

I have a choice between three workshops during the day:

1, Beyond borders: Gender Justice female Leadership in the Anglican Church – this workshop is an invitation to explore the opportunities, strengths, and challenges for female leadership in the Anglican Church. The facilitators are USPG’s Senior Regional Managers Fran Mate and the Revd Davidson Solanki.

2, The Past in the Present: Mission, Empire and Racial Justice – this workshop explores the legacies of a history marked by slavery and racism that offer unique possibilities in the present. The facilitators are Dr Jo Sadgrove, the Revd Dr Evie Vernon and the Revd Garfield Campbell.

3, Seeing Differently – an interactive workshop using a real-life case study, to help us recognise and reveal attitudes leading to exclusion of others in plain sight, and it involves Gypsy Roma and Traveller Friendly Churches workshops.

Bradon Muilenburg, the Anglican Refugee Support Lead in Northern France, is the keynote speaker at the conference this afternoon

Today’s Prayers (Wednesday 10 July 2024):

The theme this week in ‘Pray With the World Church,’ the Prayer Diary of the Anglican mission agency USPG (United Society Partners in the Gospel), is ‘United Beyond Borders.’ This theme was introduced on Sunday with reflections on this week’s USPG conference by Rachael Anderson, Senior Communications and Engagement Manager, USPG.

The USPG Prayer Diary today (Wednesday 10 July 2024) invites us to pray:

We pray for all who are gathered for the USPG conference. Give wisdom to all who speak and grant that all attending have open hearts and minds.

The Collect:

Merciful God,
you have prepared for those who love you
such good things as pass our understanding:
pour into our hearts such love toward you
that we, loving you in all things and above all things,
may obtain your promises,
which exceed all that we can desire;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

Post Communion Prayer:

God of our pilgrimage,
you have led us to the living water:
refresh and sustain us
as we go forward on our journey,
in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Additional Collect:

Creator God,
you made us all in your image:
may we discern you in all that we see,
and serve you in all that we do;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The logo of the Christian Conference Trust, which runs the High Leigh Conference Centre, in reception area at High Leigh (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2024)

Yesterday’s reflection

Continued tomorrow

Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version, Updated Edition copyright © 2021, National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

No comments: