Archbishops invite nation to join them in daily prayer from this evening amid Covid-19 pandemic


The Archbishops of Canterbury and York are inviting the nation to join them in prayer every evening at 6pm - from today.
An open bible with hands clasped resting on it in prayer

Archbishops Justin Welby and Stephen Cottrell are encouraging people of all backgrounds to set aside time each day for prayer – if possible stopping wherever they are at 6pm each evening.

It follows their call last week for people to pause, ‘reflect on the enormity of this pandemic’ and pray for the nation and all those affected.

The call followed news that that more than 100,000 people have died within 28 days of a positive Covid-19 test.

This evening Archbishop Justin will lead a prayer session on Facebook Live from 6pm (GMT) on his Facebook page.

He is encouraging people to post prayer requests in the comments section and he will pray with them.

In a letter to the nation last week, the Archbishops wrote: "We encourage everyone who is feeling scared, or lost or isolated to cast their fears on God.

“We also know that poorer communities, minority ethnic communities and those living with disabilities have been afflicted disproportionately and cry out for the healing of these inequalities.”

They added: “One thing we can all do is pray. We hope it is some consolation to know that the church prays for the life of our nation every day. Whether you’re someone of faith, or not, we invite you to call on God in prayer.

“Starting on 1 February we invite you to set aside time every evening to pray, particularly at 6pm each day. More than ever, this is a time when we need to love each other. Prayer is an expression of love.”

The call to prayer is also being supported by a number of prayer organisations and denominations including  the Methodist Church of Great Britain and 24-7 Prayer GB.

Prayer resources are available on the Church of England website.

More information

The first prayer of the month, which will be prayed at 18:00 on Facebook Live by Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is:

Gracious God,
as we remember before you the thousands who have died,
surround us and all who mourn with your strong compassion.
Be gentle with us in our grief,
protect us from despair,
and give us grace to persevere
and face the future with hope
in Jesus Christ our risen Lord.

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