The church’s prophetic response to a humanitarian health crises
Diocese of Cape Town, 2020
Led by: The Archbishop of Cape Town
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
We have come together as the family of God
in our Father’s presence
to offer him praise and thanksgiving
to hear and receive his holy word
to bring before him the needs of the world
to ask his forgiveness of our sins
and to seek his grace
that through his Son Jesus Christ
we may give ourselves to his service.
Healing comes in the Name of The Lord
Let us worship and praise him.
Hymn: God whose will is health and wholeness (Tune – Who can save
our land and people)
God whose will is health and wholeness, hear your people as we pray:
Many now are facing illness; more face sickness every day.
As we lift our song t’ward heaven, may we use the gifts you give—
science, justice, and compassion— to help others safely live.
Jesus taught that your commandments call for us to use the mind.
May we use the gifts of science to seek health for humankind.
Bless the ones who work for healing; bless the ones who seek to be
Builders of a health care system that protects society.
God, you call for love and justice, yet our laws are far from wise:
Many don’t have good insurance; lack of health care threatens lives.
Many workers must keep working, sick or not, to pay the bills.
Turn us round when we have sanctioned greed that leads to greater ills.
Loving God, we ask your blessing on the sick and those they love,
And we pray for those now grieving as they lift their cries above.
There is trouble all around us; illness causes pain and fear.
Give compassion, love and kindness as we serve your people here.
Let us pray
Please sit or kneel
People are frightened, and many people are isolated. People are sick, and
vulnerable people are dying.
We notice how little control we have over what really matters – and that what
really matters is loving concern. So, we ask for your comfort and support for
those who are frightened.
Heal us from our fear, which prevents nations from working together and
neighbours from helping one another.
Heal us Lord Jesus Christ
Heal us from our pride, which can make us claim invulnerability to a disease that
know no borders.
Lord Jesus Christ, heal us
Lord Jesus Christ, stay by our side in this time of uncertainty and sorrow.
Lord Jesus Christ, stay by our side
Be with those who have died from this coronavirus. May they be at rest with you
in eternal peace.
May they have eternal rest
Be with the families of those who are sick or who have died. As they worry and
grieve, defend them from illness and despair. May they know your peace.
Lord Jesus Christ, may they know your peace.
Be with the doctors, nurses, researchers and all medical professionals, who seek
to heal and help those affected and put themselves at risk in the process. May
they know your protection and peace.
Lord Jesus Christ, may they know your protection and peace.
Be with the leaders of all nations in the world, in Africa and Southern Africa. Give
them the foresight to act with charity and true concern for the well- being of the
people they are meant to serve.
Lord Jesus Christ; give to our leaders a true concern for your people.
Be with our Archbishop and all Bishops of our Church and leaders of all faiths,
give them wisdom to work with the leaders of the nations, to invest in long term
solutions that will help prepare for or prevent future outbreaks. May they know
your peace, as they work together to achieve it on earth
May they know your peace, Lord Jesus Christ.
Wherever we are, at home or abroad, surrounded by many people suffering from
illness or only a few, Lord Jesus Christ, stay with us as we endure and mourn,
persist and prepare. In place of our anxiety give us peace.
Lord Jesus Christ, give us peace.
The Archbishop continues:
We pray that churches will be outgoing communities of welcome and support, so
that people will have someone to call on when they are in need. Let us also use
this as an opportunity to slow down, reflect and look at our neighbours in a new
way; to rethink our relation to nature and to be awake to the need to change the
way we live.
We pray together:
We remember that we are surrounded by your love.
Help us to be open to the people around us and
to find the way together through this crisis.
Help us to be present with people,
in the name of Jesus who was in the midst of those who were
frightened, isolated, sick and dying,
announcing the Kingdom of God
The litanist continues:
Almighty God, you have given us grace to bring before you our common
supplications and you promise that when two or three are gathered together in
your name you will grant their requests:
Fulfil now, O Lord the desires and petitions of your servants as may be most
expedient for them, granting us in this world knowledge of your truth and in the
world to come the fullness of eternal life.
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
Your kingdom come,
Your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and for ever.
Hymn: Lay your healing hand upon us (Tune – Neighbour let me be your
Lay your healing hand upon us,
Jesus, when we cry with pain;
bind our wounds with your compassion;
bring us back to health again.
Hold us like a gentle mother,
heal the hurt we feel inside,
set us on our feet, and make us
strong to take life in our stride.
With the confidence you give us,
give us your compassion too,
so that we may offer others
comfort, healing, strength from you.
Then, whatever grief awaits us,
as we learn your gentle ways
we will share your joyful Spirit
and for ever sing God’s praise.
Blessing by Archbishop Thabo
Based on the Litany in the Anglican Prayer Book 1989,
The Coronavirus Prayer was found on the website “America: The Jesuit Review” 6
March 2020 and a Prayer from Interdiac Prayer Letter March 2020.
Led by: The Archbishop of Cape Town