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Justice Prayers - January 26, 2021

Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly NOW. Love mercy NOW. Walk humbly NOW. You are not obligated to complete the work but neither are you free to abandon it. - The Talmud

Burkina Faso President Kabore Deposed by Army, Constitution Suspended

On Monday, Burkina Faso’s army said it had deposed President Roch Kabore, suspended the constitution, dissolved the government and the national assembly, and closed the country’s borders. According to 2 members of the military who made the announcement on state television, the takeover had been carried out without violence and those detained were in a secure location. The army broadcast came after two days of confusion and fear in the capital Ouagadougou, where heavy gunfire erupted at army camps on Sunday, with soldiers demanding more support for their fight against armed groups. Kabore – in power since 2015 and re-elected in 2020 – had faced waves of protests in recent months amid frustration about killings of civilians and soldiers by armed groups, some of whom have links to ISIL (ISIS) and al-Qaeda.

God, for the mystery that surrounds this crisis, we pray for clarity and for the lowering of weapons. We pray for the remediation of all circumstances - poverty, instability, poor governance - that lead to crisis. For the people of Burkina Faso, we pray.

U.S. Troops, NATO on Heightened Alert Amidst Fear of Russian Invasion of Ukraine

The US has placed 8,500 troops on heightened alert to deploy to Europe as Nato reinforced its eastern borders with warships and fighter jets, amid growing fears of a possible “lightning” attack by Russia to seize the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv. The alert order issued by the defence secretary, Lloyd Austin, reduces the number of days it would take to deploy but it is not itself an order to deploy. Denmark is sending a frigate to the Baltic Sea and four F-16 fighter jets to Lithuania. Spain has offered to send a frigate to the Black Sea and Eurofighter planes to Bulgaria. The Netherlands will also send two F-35 warplanes to Bulgaria. Emmanuel Macron has expressed his government’s readiness to send French troops to Romania under Nato command.

Lord, let us not make the mistakes of previous generations. For all the destruction, death, and years and years of conflict that would arise from an invasion, we pray boldly against a future such as that. Rather, God, we pray for the calming of hearts, the soothing of ambitions, and the wisdom to come to the negotiating table.

Truckers Fighting Government Vaccine Mandate March to Ottawa

A convoy of truckers started their march from Vancouver on Sunday to the Canadian capital city of Ottawa protesting the government's COVID-19 vaccine mandate for truckers, which the industry says would create driver shortages and fuel inflation. The convoy is expected to reach Ottawa on Jan. 29. The trucking industry is vital to ensure smooth flow of goods since more than two-thirds of the C$650 billion ($521 billion) in goods traded annually between Canada and the United States travels on roads. But as many as 32,000, or 20%, of the 160,000 Canadian and American cross-border truck drivers may be taken off the roads due to the mandate, the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) estimates. Canada imposed the vaccine mandate for the trucking industry from Jan. 15, under which unvaccinated Canadian truckers re-entering Canada from the United States must get tested for COVID-19 and quarantine themselves. Driver shortages are further expected to fuel inflation, which is at a three-decade high.

For all those plunged into economic hardship due to inflation, we pray. And for doctors, nurses, and healthcare workers who continue to battle this raging pandemic, we pray. God, help us find a sensible solution to this march.

Extreme weather in the U.S. cost 688 lives and $145 billion last year

Wildfires, hurricanes, tornadoes and a winter storm and cold wave were among 20 weather and climate disasters in the U.S. last year that cost $1 billion or more, totaling $145 billion and killing 688 people, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The events cited include Hurricane Ida, wildfires and a deadly heat wave in the West, three separate tornado outbreaks in the South and central parts of the U.S., and unusually cold temperatures in Texas that left millions of people without electricity. The NOAA overview came on the same day that preliminary data showed that U.S. greenhouse gas emissions rose 6.2% last year compared to 2020. Scientists have repeatedly warned that warming due to climate change would increase the frequency and severity of extreme weather events, driving up the cost, and likely the death toll, for such disasters.

You warn us, Lord, about the consequences of degrading your creation, and we’re seeing it all around us. The destruction of coastal communities, islands, and vulnerable populations across the nation are at great risk if we don’t act now. Empower us, Lord.

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