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PRAY

AUGUST 2014

Photo: VOM

August 1:  Almighty God, pour out Your Holy Spirit upon the nation of China, bringing comfort and hope to Your suffering children. Lord, please give them strength and encouragement as they endure daily persecution.

August 2:  Dear God, we pray for Your protection and power upon Christians in China as they cope with persecution and intimidation. Shield them from danger as they faithfully serve You.

August 3:  Demolition of churches and removal of religious symbols in Zhejiang, China, highlights tensions between churches and the state. Pray for peace among local and provincial authorities and their approaches to different religions.

August 4:  Pray for the Chinese city of Wenzhou, known as "China's Jerusalem." In April and May, at least 20 churches in Wenzhou and around Zhejiang Province were threatened with demolition or had all or parts of their structure removed or demolished.

August 5:  Please pray for the congregations of churches in Wenzhou, China. Several churches were established by missionaries over 100 years ago. One of the demolished churches, Shangwan Church, was built in 1868.

August 6:  Pray for Chinese authorities to make consistent efforts to enter into dialogue with religious leaders on all matters relating to their activities, with a view to promoting mutual trust and positive relations.

August 7:  Dear Lord, open the hearts of those in authority in China, to know Your love and power through Your Holy Spirit. Give them a desire to change their ways and stop persecution.

August 8:  Please pray for Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority nation. It has a long history of respecting other faiths, but militant Islamists have recently pushed through a number of measures which could have serious, long-term implications for religious freedom and minority rights.

August 9:  Ask God to guide Indonesia’s leaders to rule for the good of all Indonesians, regardless of their religious beliefs. Pray the Indonesian government would allow the UN Special Reporter on freedom of religion or belief to visit the country.

August 10:  Pray for protection of Pastor Bernhard and his congregation in Indonesia. His church has been left traumatized by violent attacks.Pray the government would intervene when radical groups act against those of minority faiths.

August 11:  Pray for CSW’s major new Indonesian report which outlines the challenges facing Indonesia if freedom of religion is not respected.

August 12:  Please pray for church leaders in Indonesia whose congregations have been forced from their places of worship. Pray for pastors to have strength, wisdom and safety as they lead their churches in very difficult circumstances.

August 13:  Pray for Christians who are living in the midst of hostile communities in Indonesia, such as in East Java. Ask God to give them strength to show love to their neighbors despite the circumstances.

August 14:  Pray for churches in Indonesia coping with fear of being closed down. Pray God would give them peace and protection and provide alternative places to meet for churches whose properties have been forcibly closed.

August 15:  Pray for religious freedom in the island nation of Sri Lanka. Its famous for its idyllic beaches, but the reality of life for religious minorities is far from idyllic.

August 16:  Pray for an end to the increasing attacks on Christian communities in Sri Lanka and for justice and healing for victims of the violence. There were 64 incidents of violence against Christians in 2013. The Bodu Bala Sena (Buddhist Force) is responsible for stoking religious hatred against Christians across large parts of Sri Lanka.

August 17:  Much of the violence in Sri Lanka is linked with the Bodu Bala Sena, an extremist group established in July 2012. Pray for changed hearts and minds among leaders and members of extremist groups.

August 18:  Pray the Bodu Bala Sena would cease its hostilities toward Christians in Sri Lanka. Christian communities face threats and harassment, with church services disrupted and Christians accused of meeting illegally.

August 19:  Pray for church leaders and their families in Sri Lanka facing threats of violence and church closures, especially in remote areas. Dear Lord, shelter Your children under Your wing of protection.

August 20:  Please pray the international community would challenge Sri Lanka on its deteriorating human rights situation. Ask God to strengthen and protect human rights activists who are under immense pressure.

August 21:  Pray for Sri Lanka’s President Rajapaksa and all government leaders in the country. Pray for a national reconciliation process that protects and promotes religious freedom.

August 22:  Ask God to protect all human rights activists, including those working to promote inter-religious and inter-ethnic harmony in Sri Lanka. Pray for the restoration of relationships between the different religious and ethnic groups.

August 23:  Please pray for an end to attacks on Christian communities in Sri Lanka, and for justice and healing for victims of communal violence. Ask God to protect activists working against religious persecution in the nation.

August 24:  We pray for justice in the government of Sri Lanka. We pray leaders would not push through threatened restrictions on freedom of religion. Pray for protection of activists working to promote religious and ethnic harmony in the nation.

August 25:  Pray the Sri Lankan government and President Rajapaksa would choose a path that upholds the rights of all communities in the country. Pray for peace and safety among those facing persecution and discrimination.

August 26:  Please pray for CSW’s partner organization, the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL). Dear God, please protect and encourage the staff and bless its work.

August 27:  Pray for the safety of Sri Lankan human rights defenders and journalists who live in constant fear of abduction. Pray for members of extremist groups, such as the Bodu Bala Sena, that God would change hearts and minds with His love and truth.

August 28:  Praise God for politicians and other decision-makers across the world that support human rights. Thank God for the support of those who work with CSW to further religious freedom and end oppression.

August 29:  Lord, we thank You that even in the darkest places of the world, You are sovereign. Thank You for breaking through situations of injustice and suffering with the shining light of Your hope. We pray You would continue to use CSW to bring hope to Your Persecuted Church.

August 30:  Please pray for Christian human rights groups seeking justice, which have been the recipients of harassment and death threats. Pray for all organizations working for religious freedom around the world.

August 31:  Almighty God, we pray for all those who have lost loved ones, homes or material possessions because of religiously-motivated violence. We ask for Your protection upon those who work to bring justice, often in the face of intense opposition.