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Justice Prayers - November 13th

We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.  - Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Bolivia Crisis

On Sunday, Bolivian President Evo Morales resigned in a televised address in which he said it was his obligation "to look for peace" as protests alleging fraud in last month's presidential election shook the country. An audit report had been released, finding clear manipulation of a computer system used to tally votes in the election in which Morales was reelected to a fourth term in office. Police began to abandon their posts, and the military announced that it would not stop the protests. Bolivia is left with a vacuum of power, a lack of clarity for how new leaders should be selected, and clashes between Morales supporters and protestors continuing. Morales has sought asylum in Mexico. 

God, for we lift in prayer the people of Bolivia -- especially those most vulnerable to violence, poverty, and sickness in times like these. We pray for protection, and for a path toward peace to emerge that protects truth and transparency, and the dignity and flourishing of Bolivia’s people.

Pastor Held in India

Pastor Bryan Nerren has been trapped in India for more than a month and prohibited from returning home following a six-day imprisonment. While Indian officials charge him with failing to fill out proper paperwork to declare the cash he was carrying, Nerren’s attorneys call the charges unjust and the detention an example of religious persecution. Nerren is pastor of the nondenominational International House of Prayer in Shelbyville, Tennessee and has been taking mission trips to South Asia for 17 years. Released on bail October 11 in the Indian state of West Bengal, Nerren had his passport seized by a judge while he awaits a December 12 court date. Despite backchannel work by the Trump administration and three US senators, Nerren’s family doesn’t know when he will return home.

God, for the family of Rev. Nerren, we pray -- bring peace, and comfort, and support during this time. We pray for Rev. Nerren to remain courageous and steadfast -- draw near to him. We pray for those in power in India to act with justice and with actions that uphold the values of religious liberty and freedom.

Kids in Jail

New government data shows that a staggering 69,550 migrant children have been held in U.S. government custody in the past year. That’s more kids detained away from their parents than any other country, according to United Nations researchers. Of these 69,550 children, some have been deported, some reunited with family in the U.S., some are still in government custody (about 4,000), and more are arriving every week. In Canada, despite a two-year old government commitment to stopping family separations and the detention or housing of minors, a new report says that 118 minors were housed or detained at an immigration holding centre in the most recent fiscal year.

God, for children who are being held in jails and prisons, in camps and under the care of people who aren’t their parents, for children whose only crime is seeking a safer future, we offer our prayers. Protect and defend them, Lord. Bring changes to the laws and policies which make it possible for them to be incarcerated. Bring words to our voices to cry out for these changes.

Canada among the least likely to hit G20 targets

Climate Transparency issued its annual report Monday grading all the countries in the group of 20 with large economies on their climate performance. It found Canada's plan to meet its greenhouse-gas emissions targets is among the worst in the G20. The G20 nations account for 85 per cent of global economic activity and in 2018 produced 80 per cent of all greenhouse-gas emissions. The report says about half the G20 members — 19 countries with advanced economies plus the European Union collectively — are on track to meet their current targets for cutting emissions by 2030 but those targets are much too mild. If every G20 member does not drastically scale up its targets, the G20 overall will produce more emissions in 2030 than it does today, Climate Transparency said.

God, we pray for real, measurable, meaningful change to come. We pray for a global  commitment to change our policies, our practices, our habits, our desires. We pray that we might have the will to repent of our destructive ways, and change course. We pray for a bright, healthy future for the world’s children. Change our hearts, O God.

Becoming (part of) the Answer to our Own Prayers

CRC Leaders Talk About the Climate Crisis 

In the wake of the United States taking action to pull out of the Paris Agreement, Greta Thunberg’s impassioned speech at the United Nations’ Climate Action Summit, numerous climate-care marches in cities across North America, and environmental concerns taking a primary place in last month’s Canadian federal election, several CRCNA leaders are adding their voices to this ongoing conversation.  Read more here.

Sign up for Advent Devotions Today

How Long, Lord? is an email devotional series put together by World Renew and the CRC Office of Social Justice that features reflections from CRC ministries around the world during Advent 2019. Witnessing destruction and injustices can often lead us to ask the same question that God’s people and the prophets in the Bible asked: “How Long, Lord?” As we continue to wrestle with that question we can also have hope that our pain will not be forever and that the God who made us is with us, now and forever. Each devotion will be delivered to your email inbox every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, starting December 2, 2019, through Christmas Day. Go to to sign up today!

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