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Justice Prayers - November 4th 2020

Hear my cry, O God
Listen to my prayer
From the ends of the earth
I call to You

And when my heart
Is overwhelmed
Lead me to the rock

- David Baloche 

“Public Charge” Rule Change Struck Down in U.S.

The Trump administration can no longer deny green cards to immigrants based on stricter measures of their financial status that it has sought to apply, a federal judge in Illinois ruled Monday, halting a controversial policy that officials claim would protect taxpayers but critics have called unfair and discriminatory. Trump tightened restrictions on green cards in a rule proposed last year, rejecting many low-income applicants and expanding the number of people who are denied permanent visas because they’ve used benefits like Medicaid. 

God, we give thanks for immigrants, who offer skills and ideas and vitality to our communities. We give thanks that you have created us to live in community together. We pray for poor immigrants who have found it so difficult to come to the U.S. and to be treated with dignity once the arrive. We pray for those impacted by this Public Charge rule change, that the court’s decision would lift a burden for them and move the U.S. closer to policies which treat people with dignity.

 Overworked drivers die in Korea

Drivers in South Korea are struggling to cope with the sheer volume of online orders during the COVID-19 pandemic. Fourteen drivers have died recently after months of grueling shifts, and while there is no official link to overwork, their families described the causes of death as "kwarosa,” a Korean term used for sudden death due to heart failure or a stroke as a result of extreme hard work. In South Korea, home deliveries are expected in hours not days. Logistics companies which hire the workers are pledging to reduce the workload for its staff, but most contracts signed by the workers are with independent agents who act as middlemen, rather than with the company itself, leaving them outside the protection of labor law. 

God, we pray for the people who are behind the “contact-less” consumption that has become such a part of our lives during COVID. Help us to recognize the human beings that make such luxuries possible, and to respect the dignity they inherently possess. Help us to be informed about their working conditions, and spend money in ways that honor them.

Amazon fires

The number of fires blazing in Brazil's Amazon region in October 2020 was more than double those in the same month last year, satellite data suggests. Advocates say the government is failing to stop the rise in fires, but the government denies it is to blame. In July, the government imposed a 120-day ban on setting fires and deployed the army to badly hit areas, but the latest figures suggest the measures have not curbed the blazes. Data reports the biggest number of fires in one month since records began over 30 years ago.

God, for the earth you created and love, for the plants, animals, and amazing created things, we lament this destruction. We lament that humans’ need for more has overtaken the natural world’s ability to sustain itself. We lament that these fires not only put pollution into the atmosphere, but destroy the trees which would help mitigate that damage. We lament, God, our short sightedness. Turn our eyes to you, so that we might change our ways.

Uganda Opposition Candidate is Arrested

Ugandan police have again arrested Bobi Wine, a popular singer and opposition presidential hopeful, just after he was successfully certified as a candidate in next year’s election. Wine, who is hoping to unseat Uganda’s long-time leader, was dragged from his car and put into a police van amid violent scuffles between police and his supporters. Critics say Uganda’s president, Yoweri Museveni, in power since 1986 increasingly depends on the armed forces to assert his authority. The president said of the incident, “The [ruling party] fought to bring peace in this country. Nobody has more guns than us. But we don’t scare people.” This east African country has never witnessed a peaceful transfer of power since independence from British colonial rule in 1962.

God, we pray for the people of Uganda. May their voices be heard. May their leaders use their power for the common good. May their upcoming election be safe, fair, and bring hope.

Becoming (part of) the Answer to our Own Prayers

A Prayer for the Fearful 

As we anticipate U.S. election ewaura with a complexity of emotions - anxiety, longing, passion, numbness, fear, & more - we share this Prayer for the Fearful from Rev. Kate Kooyman, calling on God our help in ages past and our hope in years to come.


Live Justly is a 10-session scriptural and practical study that challenges churches, campus groups, and small groups to examine attitudes and behaviors in comparison to a lifestyle of biblical justice.  What a great season to order and start this series! 

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