Back to Top

Justice Prayers - June 16, 2021

The path leads on to love,
And love is fearless in its ways,
For Love Himself was not afraid
To die that we'd be saved.

- The Way of Wisdom (Michael Card) 

Group of 7 Agrees to Cut Half Emissions by 2030, But Challenges Lie Ahead

On Sunday, leaders of the world’s wealthiest nations met to take action aimed at addressing climate change and curbing emissions by addressing greenhouse gas emissions. U.S. President Joe Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, along five other leaders of the Group of 7 nations - France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom - promised to cut collective emissions in half by 2030 in addition to stem the extinction of plant and animal species. Despite this agreement, the inability of the G7 nations, which together produce about a quarter of the world’s climate pollution, to agree on a specific end date for the use of coal is already being remarked upon as a failure that will weaken their ability to convince 200 nations to strike a bold climate agreement at a United Nations summit in Scotland later this year.

Creator God, we offer thanksgiving for all of the work being done to curb greenhouse gas emissions and limit climate change. We boldly ask for commitments from nations across the globe to protect the poor and vulnerable, your creation, and our collective future. And Lord, we specifically pray you impart your wisdom upon the nations who have contributed the most to this crisis in order to be held to account: Lord, may your justice roll down like water.

Global Vaccination Efforts Progress with Much Work Left

While the United States and other wealthy countries are beginning to reach vaccination thresholds that allow for the further opening of economies and a return to public facing activities, most of the world still faces the threat of the coronavirus as access to vaccines has been sparse. Over the weekend, at the Group of 7 summit, a commitment was made to share at least 1 billion vaccine shots with struggling countries. That includes a pledge from the U.S. President Joe Biden to share 500 million doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine to COVAX, and a promise from Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson for another 100 million shots. While a commitment to shipping vaccines across the globe is a promising sign, 1 billion doses is merely a drop in the bucket for the demand and it remains a global health concern that worldwide vaccination thresholds for herd immunity may be years away.

God, we are reminded in this moment of Jesus’ teaching in the Gospel of Luke that, “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” There are still so many at home and abroad living under the threat of the coronavirus, and Lord, you’ve so blessed scientists and doctors with the ability to create a vaccine that keeps us safe. We pray that the distribution of vaccines be vast and wide, sparing no expense to ensure all your beloved live whole, healthy lives. 

Refugee Olympic Team Preparing for Tokyo Games in July

Last week, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) declared that the refugee team of 29 athletes competing across 12 sports at next month's Tokyo Games will provide inspiration and hope to the world. The team, which will compete under the Olympic flag and include people from countries including Syria, South Sudan, Eritrea, Afghanistan, and Iran, is almost three times as big as the inaugural team at the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympics. The athletes, who will march into the stadium during the opening ceremony in second place behind ancient Games founders Greece, were selected from a pool of 56, supported by Olympic scholarships from 13 different countries. The IOC unveiled its first refugee team at the Rio Games to raise awareness of the issue as hundreds of thousands of people were entering Europe from the Middle East and elsewhere escaping conflict and poverty.

Amen, Amen, and Amen! We give thanks for each and every athlete who is competing at the peak of their physical prowess to show the world that remarkable ability has no borders, nor is it limited by geography or citizenship. We pray the perseverance of these athletes be celebrated and they compete proudly for each other, for themselves, and for their hopes and dreams of a future without refugees. 

Muslim Canadian Family Targeted and Killed

A Canadian Muslim family was run over and killed by a man driving a pick-up truck on June 6th in an attack the police described as a hate crime. The four victims, spanning three generations, were killed when a man ran into them while they were out for an evening walk near their home. The attack sparked outrage across Canada, with politicians from all political backgrounds condemning the crime which spurred growing calls to take action to curb hate crimes and Islamophobia. The father - Afzaal, a 46-year-old physiotherapist, immigrated to Canada 14 years ago - and mother - Madih, 44, was working on a Ph.D. in engineering at London's Western University - along with the rest of the family were revered for their hospitality and activity in the community. 

God of justice, how much longer will our world be ravaged by violence and hatred? Lord, in the strongest terms, we condemn all violence and ask those who perpetrated this crime to be brought to justice. We ask for a continued outpouring of support for this family, and community, and pray for actions within houses of worship, community groups, and legislators to curb violence and hatred. We pray Ontario would be a home for all.

Becoming (part of) the Answer to our Own Prayers

Prioritize Enviornmental Justice 

Regardless of whether you are in Canada or the United States you can take action for prioritizing environmental justice in our governments.  Take these actions today!  

Immigrants Are A Blessing Not a Burden 

Show your support for this important message by purchasing a Blessing Not Burden shirt.  We've parterned with the Treetops Collective to make it easy for you to order one wherever you live.  

The Reformed family is a diverse family with a diverse range of opinions. Not all perspectives expressed on the blog represent the official positions of the Christian Reformed Church. Learn more about this blog, Reformed doctrines, and our diversity policy on our About page.

In order to steward ministry shares well, commenting isn’t available on Do Justice itself because we engage with comments and dialogue in other spaces. To comment on this post, please visit the Christian Reformed Centre for Public Dialogue’s Facebook page (for Canada-specific articles) or the Office of Social Justice’s Facebook page. Alternatively, please email us. We want to hear from you!

Read more about our comment policy.