Praying for Children | Karakia Mo ngā Tamariki
21-27 August 2022
For a number of years PresCare, a partnership between the PCANZ and Presbyterian Support, have looked for ways in which our shared faith and commitment can respond to the needs and nurture the wellbeing of children and families in Aotearoa. One of the ways we have done this is through Praying for Children week where we offer resources to the PCANZ in order to help the church to reflect on and hold children before God in prayer.
Last year Praying for Children week came in the midst of the national COVID lockdown and so the resources we provided were not able to be fully utilised. We have revised them for 2022 and are excited to offer them to our faith communities.
The 2022 Praying for Children resources reflect on Jesus’ words in Matthew 19:3b-4: Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven and invites reflection on seven childlike qualities.
Praying for Children Week Bookmarks
We have created a bookmark, which lists the theme for each day during Praying for Children week. The bookmarks are available in English, Te Reo Māori, Samoan and Korean. We hope you can distribute these bookmarks to your congregation for them to take home and make use of during Praying for Children week.
Remembering… Giving Attention
Prayer: Dear God, today we pray for children as we think about how they pay attention…to the snail crawling along the path and the daisy opening to the morning sun, to the sounds, smells and sights all around them, to both the words said to them and the tone in which they are said. All taken in, all means for shaping and informing their lives.
Open our eyes and ears, our hearts and spirits to slow down and pay attention to what is right in front of us today. May that be enough for us.
We pray in the name of Jesus, Amen.
Prayer: Dear God, today we pray for children and give thanks for their innocence. For their clear, open and uncluttered view of the world.
May we treasure, respect and learn from the innocence and openness of children. May we discover the delight of innocence in our openness to others, to new discoveries and insights.
We pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Prayer: Dear God, today we pray for children and give thanks for their curiosity. We give thanks for their exploring, poking, tasting, getting up really close for a good look.
May we create pathways which encourage children’s curiosity and discovery. May we also remember how to be curious about the world around us and all that is in it.
May we not be satisfied with easy answers or rushed responses. May we always want to know more, to come up really close for a good look at your love for us.
We pray in Jesus’ name, Amen
Prayer: Dear God, today we pray for children and give thanks for their playfulness. We give thanks for their running and jumping, their gleeful laughter, their excitement and energy as they discover the world around them. May they be our teachers helping us to be open to the energy and joy of life. We pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Remembering… Ongoing Questions
Prayer: Dear God, today we pray for children and give thanks for their ongoing questions. Questions which don’t let us off the hook. Questions which seek to get to the bottom of things. Questions which make us think about life and meaning and you God.
May we be open to both children’s and our own questions…to the honesty of not knowing…to the wisdom of our years which is our gift for others…to the exploration together about this life which we share.
We pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Prayer: Dear God, today we pray for children as we think about their willingness to trust…to trust in those who parent them and have responsibility for their wellbeing. May we be worthy of their trust, that our children might grow in strong and healthy ways. May we be willing to trust in your ways of love and compassion, that we might grow as your people reflecting Jesus’ love and life.
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Praying for Children Week 2022 is made possible by the generous support of the following organisations