Prayers

Prayer is a way of talking to God, sharing all that we are, and asking for his guidance and blessing in all we think, say and do.  Sometimes, we struggle to find words with which to pray.  Please find following some prayers you may find helpful in the many different situations you may find yourself in.

PRAYERS FOR LIFE EVENTS

For a first day at work or school

O God, the strength of my life,
make known your will for me in this place:
help me to discover friends among strangers,
to meet opportunities and challenges eagerly,
and to do my daily tasks in your name.
Give me strength to overcome my worries,
and preserve me in your safe keeping,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

(or)

Loving God, let me be strong today
as I meet new people in new places.
Make me brave when I am worried,
show me how to learn from everyone around me,
and help me to do my very best. Amen.

For a birthday

Loving God, bless your servant N
whose birthday is today;
give him/her a joyful heart as he/she celebrates
and remembers all who have brought riches to
his/her life;
and be with him/her,
over the coming year and for ever.  Amen.

Growing up; the passage of time

God of the ages,
you are the beginning of our journey
and our strength as we pause along the way.
Hold us by the hand as we grow,
show us where to seek you,
and guide our steps that we may find you.
Give us devoted hearts that we may love you,
and your peace when we reach our journey’s end.  Amen.

Moving house

Generous God,
help us to treasure the memories of the place we leave behind,
bless and protect the friends from whom we now part,
and give us confidence to reach out in hospitality to others
in our new home.
May your Spirit travel with us,
and meet us in the faces of new friends.
For our journey, now and throughout our lives,
begins and ends with you, Lord,
whose praises we sing wherever we make our home.  Amen.

Sport and competition

God our creator,
you have given us the talent and discipline
which help us to play and to compete together:
Whether we win or fail let us be gracious,
and let us never be glad at another’s setbacks;
Grant that when we use the skills you have given us,
we may recall you, the source of all our abilities.  Amen.

For a long journey

Be to us, O Lord,
a support in our setting out,
a comfort by the way,
a shadow in the heat,
a covering in the rain and cold,
a conveyance in weariness,
a protection in adversity,
a staff in unsteady ways,
and a port in shipwreck;
that, with you being our Leader,
we may reach the place we seek,
and at length we may return again to our home in safety.  Amen.

Retirement

O God, your hands made me and fashioned me,
and you know where I am going even when I feel uncertain:
thank you for the talents I have used in my work.
Calm my concerns, show me new opportunities,
and give me the freedom to discover myself afresh
in serving you.
Show me what you have stored up for me,
and give me the courage to put down my work and follow you;
through Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Read more
PRAYERS FOR THE WORLD

A simple prayer in troubled times

God of love,
turn our hearts to your ways;
and give us peace.
Amen.

A prayer for justice

Living God,
deliver us from a world without justice
and a future without mercy;
in your mercy, establish justice,
and in your justice, remember the mercy
revealed to us in Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

International unrest

Almighty Father,
whose will is to restore all things
in your beloved Son, the King of all:
govern the hearts and minds of those in authority,
and bring the families of the nations,
divided and torn apart by the ravages of sin,
to be subject to his just and gentle rule;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

A prayer at a time of despair

Restless with grief and fear,
the abandoned turn to you:
in every hour of trial,
good Lord, deliver us,
O God most holy, God most strong,
whose wisdom is the cross of Christ.  Amen.

For peace and safety amid unrest

O God, who would fold both heaven and earth in a single peace:
let the design of thy great love
lighten upon the waste of our wraths and sorrows:
and give peace to thy Church,
peace among nations,
peace in our dwellings,
and peace in our hearts:
through thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

A prayer for those coping with floods

God of compassion,
you hear the cries of all who are in trouble or distress;
accept our prayers for those whose lives are affected by storms and flooding:
strengthen them in their hour of need,
grant them perseverance and courage to face the future
and be to them a firm foundation on which to build their lives;
this we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

For those caught up in tragedy and disaster

O Lord our God,
source of all goodness and love,
accept the fervent prayers of your people;
in the multitude of your mercies look with compassion
upon all who turn to you for help;
for you are gracious, O lover of souls,
and to you we give glory, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
now and for ever.  Amen.

For the refugee crisis

Heavenly Father,
you are the source of all goodness, generosity and love.
We thank you for opening the hearts of many
to those who are fleeing for their lives.
Help us now to open our arms in welcome,
and reach out our hands in support.
That the desperate may find new hope,
and lives torn apart be restored.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ your Son, our Lord,
who fled persecution at His birth
and at His last triumphed over death.
Amen.

For the cold and homeless

God of compassion,
your love for humanity was revealed in Jesus,
whose earthly life began in the poverty of a stable
and ended in the pain and isolation of the cross:
we hold before you those who are homeless and cold
especially in this bitter weather.
Draw near and comfort them in spirit
and bless those who work to provide them
with shelter, food and friendship.
We ask this in Jesus’ name.
Amen.

Read more
PRAYERS FOR FAMILY LIFE AND CHILDREN

For the gift of children

Lord of life,
you shape us in your image,
and by your gracious gift
the human family is increased.
Grant to N and N the blessing of children.
Fill them with wisdom and love
as they care for their family,
so that they and their children
may know and love you;
through your Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

For a new baby

God our creator,
we thank you for the gift of this child,
entrusted to our care.
May we be patient and understanding,
ready to guide and to forgive,
so that through our love
he/she may come to know your love;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

When a pregnancy is difficult

Loving, tender God,
you know our sorrow and our joy,
be close to us as we walk this unknown path.
Send your light to lead us.
Comfort us when we are afraid,
so that, whatever we face,
we will know your strong arms supporting us.
Amen.

For a fragile new baby

Gentle God, giver of life,
you know each of us by name
and you love all that you have made.
Thank you for [name], our wonderful, tiny baby.
Come close to us, and to all who care for him/her.
Protect her in the treatment he/she faces,
and support us as we tend his/her fragile body.
Help us to know you near us, night and day.
Amen.

Adopting a child

Loving Father,
who through a Spirit of adoption
has made us his children and fellow-heirs with Christ,
grant that N, whom N and N now bring into their family,
may come to know their love,
and find in the fullness of their common life,
the joy and the glory
of Jesus Christ our risen Lord.  Amen.

A Prayer for Children

Loving God,
your Son told his disciples
to become like little children.
Lead us to work for the welfare
and protection of all young people.
May we respect their dignity
that they may flourish in life,
following the example of the same
Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

A Prayer for Family Life

God of compassion,
whose Son Jesus Christ, the child of Mary,
shared the life of a home in Nazareth,
and on the cross drew the whole human family to himself:
strengthen us in our daily living
that in joy and in sorrow
we may know the power of your presence
to bind together and to heal;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Read more
PRAYERS FOR PERSONAL SITUATIONS

 A prayer for God’s guidance

Almighty Lord and everlasting God,
we ask you to direct, sanctify and govern both our hearts and bodies
in the ways of your laws and the works of your commandments;
that through your most mighty protection, both here and ever,
we may be  preserved in body and soul;
through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  Amen.

For dealing with a difficult situation

Sovereign God,
the defence of those who trust in you
and the strength of those who suffer:
look with mercy on our affliction
and deliver us through our mighty Saviour Jesus Christ.  Amen.

For those who are lonely

O God, our sovereign and our shepherd,
who brought again your Son Jesus Christ from the valley of death,
comfort us with your protecting presence
and your angels of goodness and love,
that we also may come home
and dwell with him in your house for ever.  Amen.

For the day now past
Abide with us, Lord, for it is evening,
and day is drawing to a close.
Abide with us and with your whole Church,
in the evening of the day,
in the evening of life,
in the evening of the world;
abide with us and with all your faithful ones, O Lord,
in time and in eternity. Amen.

For justice

Living God,
deliver us from a world without justice
and a future without mercy;
in your mercy, establish justice,
and in your justice, remember the mercy
revealed to us in Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

For growth and transformation

Almighty God,
in Christ you make all things new:
transform the poverty of our nature by the riches of your grace,
and in the renewal of our lives
make known your heavenly glory;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

A prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Lord our God.
How sweet are your words to the taste,
sweeter than honey to the mouth.
How precious are your commands for our life,
more than the finest gold in our hands.
How marvellous is your will for the world,
Unending is your love for the nations.
Our voices shall sing of your promises
and our lips declare your praise.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God for ever.  Amen.

For those who feel guilt

Give us honest hearts, O God,
and send your kindly Spirit
to help us confess our sins
and bring us the peace of your forgiveness;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

For the healing of memory

Loving God,
you are merciful and forgiving.
Grant that those who are suffering the hurts of the past
may experience your generous love.
Heal their memories, comfort them,
and send them all from here
renewed and hopeful;
in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For those in pain

Lord God, whose Son, Jesus Christ,
understood people’s fear and pain
before they spoke of them,
we pray for those in hospital;
surround the frightened with your tenderness;
give strength to those in pain;
hold the weak in your arms of love,
and give hope and patience
to those who are recovering;
we ask this through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord.  Amen.

For those who mourn

O God, who brought us to birth,
and in whose arms we die,
in our grief and shock
contain and comfort us;
embrace us with your love,
give us hope in our confusion
and grace to let go into new life;
through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Father,
you know our hearts and share our sorrows.
We are hurt by our parting from those whom we loved:
when we are angry at the loss we have sustained,
when we long for words of comfort,
yet find them hard to hear,
turn our grief to truer living,
our affliction to firmer hope
in Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Gracious God,
surround us and all who mourn this day
with your continuing compassion.
Do not let grief overwhelm your children,
or turn them against you.
When grief seems never-ending,
take them one step at a time
along your road of death and resurrection
in Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Read more
WEDDING PRAYERS

Prayers are a big part of what makes a church wedding unique. It’s not just the vicar who prays – everyone gets involved.  In the church we believe that God is alive, loves us and answers our prayers.  So prayer is our greatest gift to the couple, and it can be yours too.


Before the wedding

Prayers are said in church a few weeks before the big day when the couple’s banns are read out. This happens in three separate church services during the three months before the wedding date. It may also happen in more than one church, but always in the parish where the couple presently live, as well as in the church where they’re getting married.  If you live locally to any of those churches, going with the couple to their banns readings and joining in with the prayers is a lovely way to show your support.

On the day
If you’re going to a wedding, you will pray with the vicar and everyone else as part of the service. You might even have been asked to lead the prayers, or say a special prayer for the couple. The vicar will be happy to guide you on this.

Keep praying
Long after the wedding day, prayer is a gift you can keep on giving. You can pray for the bride and groom in the good times, for example if they move to a new home, start new jobs or their family grows with the arrival of a baby. You can pray on their anniversaries. And they will need your prayers during the tough times which inevitably arise in any lifetime.

Here are just a few examples of simple prayers you might like to use at different times:-

A prayer for those just engaged
Loving God, We thank you for the journey on which you have led [bride’s name] and [groom’s name] to bring them together. On this happy engagement day, as they celebrate their love, and begin to plan their wedding day, we pray that you will give them wisdom and joy, surround them with good friends and wise advice, and help them to know more of your great love for them. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

The night before the wedding
Loving God, give [bride’s name] peace this night and be close to [groom’s name] who will become her husband tomorrow; surround all those we love with your love, especially [name of someone who may need special prayer on this day]. Bless all those who will play a part, whether at the church or at the reception, and help everyone to work together so this is truly a day of love and joy. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

A prayer for the first anniversary
Father God, thank you for always keeping [bride’s name] and [grooms’ name] in your care. As they celebrate their first wedding anniversary, we pray it will be a time of joy and happiness. Surround them with your loving protection, so that their love for each other, and for you, may grow stronger, year after year. Amen.

Read more
BAPTISM PRAYERS

God our Creator,
we thank you for the wonder of new life
and for the mystery of human love.
We give thanks for all whose support and skill
surround and sustain the beginning of life.
As Jesus knew love and discipline within a human family,
may these children grow in strength and wisdom.
As Mary knew the joys and pains of motherhood,
give these parents your sustaining grace and love;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Faithful and loving God,
bless those who care for these children
and grant them your gifts of love, wisdom and faith.
Pour upon them your healing and reconciling love,
and protect their home from all evil.
Fill them with the light of your presence
and establish them in the joy of your kingdom,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

N and N,
today God has touched you with his love
and given you a place among his people.
God promises to be with you
in joy and in sorrow,
to be your guide in life,
and to bring you safely to heaven.
In baptism God invites you on a life-long journey.
Together with all God’s people
you must explore the way of Jesus
and grow in friendship with God,
in love for his people,
and in serving others.
With us you will listen to the word of God
and receive the gifts of God.  Amen.

God of grace and life,
in your love you have given us
a place among your people;
keep us faithful to our baptism,
and prepare us for that glorious day
when the whole creation will be made perfect
in your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Read more
WELL-KNOWN PRAYERS

 The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever.  Amen.

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters;
he restores my soul.
He leads me in right paths
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I fear no evil;
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff—
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
my whole life long.  Amen.

Make me an instrument of your peace

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love,
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith,
Where there is despair, hope,
Where there is darkness, light,
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much
seek to be consoled as to console,
not so much to be understood as to understand,
not so much to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
it is in dying that we awake to eternal life.  Amen.

The Irish Blessing

May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields and,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.  Amen.

The Jesus Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.  Amen.

The Serenity Prayer

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.  Amen.

From St Patrick’s Breastplate

I bind unto myself today
The power of God to hold and lead,
His eye to watch, his might to stay,
His ear to hearken to my need.
The wisdom of my God to teach,
His hand to guide, his shield to ward;
The word of God to give me speech,
His heavenly host to be my guard.  Amen.

Christ be with me,
Christ within me,
Christ behind me,
Christ before me,
Christ beside me,
Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ in quiet,
Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.  Amen.

Read more