Prayers for 20th May

Today’s thoughts and prayers in Cardiff Circuit’s Month of Prayer are provided by Rev. Delyth Liddell, Coordinating Chaplain at Cardiff University.

You can download a copy of these prayers here. 

“For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, so that by steadfastness and by the encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope.”  (Romans 15:4)

Universities, and schools and colleges, are one of the places where we learn; where those things that were written in the former days are studied for instruction, and new things are written to help and give hope for those who will come to learn after us.

Many students at Universities around Wales will be in the middle of their exam period.  In previous years, we would have seen row upon row of students in large halls, furiously scribbling away to get every last scrap of information down before the exam ends.  Of course, this year, things have changed, and most students are now sitting in their homes taking ‘open-book’ exams, with 24 hours to complete an exam paper and upload it to the University computer system.

The University staff have had to work fast to move teaching and exams to on-line platforms.  They have had an unprecedented challenge to accommodate both students individual needs (after all, not everyone has access to a computer and Wi-Fi at home), and to ensure that students meet the criteria for the courses that they are studying.

Over the past eight weeks, students have been completing essays, assignments and dissertations at home, in environments which are not always conducive to study.  It can be great to have Mum or Dad on hand to make food for you and hand you a cup of tea, but it can also be distracting to have homelife go on around you and little brothers and sisters wanting you to play with them.  It is hard for a student who has left home and begun to find out who they are in adulthood, to return to the nest and be cooped up with parents again.  For those students, whose homelife is difficult at the best of times, this can be a constant pressure, and give a real sense of isolation.

As we approach the summer, Graduation ceremonies have been cancelled, with virtual graduation ceremonies being offered by the university and in hope that the students will be able to return and graduate in person in the summer of 2021.

These changes have brought challenges to both staff and students of universities, and today I invite you to pray for the young people throughout Wales, and for those who teach them.

The opening Bible verse was of course pointing to the instruction that we find within the Bible, so I challenge you too, to read the scriptures today that, through your steadfastness in study of the Bible, you might find encouragement and that we might have hope.

Holy One,
Who by the instruction and guidance of the Holy Spirit as we read your word,
enables us all to have hope in these times.
We pray for students and staff of universities, schools and colleges throughout Wales
That they might continue their studies diligently and steadfastly.
We pray for those who have difficult home lives,
That they might find hope and peace in their situations.
We offer our prayers in the name of our Saviour Jesus
Who came to teach us the best way to live in love,
And through whom we have the best hope of all, life in You, Lord.

“May the God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in harmony with one another, in accordance with Christ Jesus, so that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Amen.   (Romans 15:5)

Posted by Lisa Medina