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Month of Prayer & Awareness

Each January, we call one another to a month of awareness, discussion, prayer, fasting and action toward significant areas of mercy and justice in our neighborhoods, region, nation and world. During each of our worship services, we’ll share and pray together. Additionally, each Sunday morning at 9am during our weekly prayer gathering, we’ll focus on these topics.

Check back to this page throughout the month for a schedule and further details.

Worship Service Schedule

January 5: Foster Care and Adoption
January 12: Special Needs and Disabilities
January 19: Sanctity of Human Life
January 26: Global Mercy Opportunities (Water is Basic)

Opportunities to Engage


Foster Care and Adoption (January 5th focus)

Learn:

  • Visit http://jasonjohnsonblog.com for some ideas, books and blog about foster care and adoption in partnership with the local church. See especially this graphic about the other kinds of care foster and adoptive families need.
  • Some other key facts:
    • At any given time there are around 15,000 children in Pennsylvania in need of a foster home or adoption. 
    • Around 1,000 children “age out” of foster care annually without a permanent family. 
    • As of 2010, Pennsylvania had a little more than 15,000 churches. So if one family from each church in our state would become a resource family for foster and adoption, all of the children in our state would have a home to live in.
    • In almost all cases, adoption from the child welfare system is at no cost to the foster/adoptive family. The Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network (SWAN) subsidizes the home study and adoption process for families committed to providing permanency for a child in Pennsylvania. In most cases, families also receive reimbursement to care for their adopted child until they are 18 years old. 

Pray:

  • Visit www.adoptpakids.org and click on “Waiting Children” to see some real kids in our state who are currently looking for a foster or adoptive home. Pray specifically for a few of these children: for health, safety and shelter. Pray they will be brought into loving families who will provide education, well-being, and spiritual care.  
  • Pray God would lead one or two families from our church to begin foster care or adoption this year. Pray that other families in our church would provide an incredible network of support and care.
  • Pray for those on the front lines of orphan care to be encouraged, supported by the local church, and strengthened to press on in the work they have been called to do. This includes foster and adoptive parents, those who work within the foster care system, those who facilitate foster care or adoptive services, case workers, social workers, psychologists and therapists.  
  • Pray for state and federal policy makers, judges, attorneys, penitentiary and correction officers and workers, and national organizations committed to helping orphans. Ask the Lord to give them wisdom as they make decisions directly affecting children, particularly the orphan.  
  • Foster care and adoption are typically the result of some other problem or situation (alcohol / drugs; abuse, trauma, financial, etc. etc.) Pray for freedom from the bondage of addictions; healing for those abused and, generally, the restoration of families. 

Act:

  • Diakon Ministrieswww.diakon.org 
    • Informational meeting on Wednesday, Jan 8 from 6-8pm at 960 Century Drive, Mechanicsburg.
    • Informational meeting on Thursday, Jan 9 from 6-8pm at 836 S George Street, York
    • Contact Heidi Storey: storeyh@diakon.org 
  • Bethany Christian Services – (consider foster care or adoption) – www.bethany.org/
  • Safe Families (a temporary, volunteer placement parents can use for a short season to help get their lives back on track without having their kids enter the foster care system) – safe-families.org

 Special Needs and Disabilities (January 12th focus)

Learn

  • Joni and Friends International offers lots of educational and training content through their website, including a curriculum called, Beyond Suffering, Joni Erickson Tada has been at the forefront of helping Christians and churches engage with and care for those with disabilities for more than 40 years.
  • Read an article by TIm Challies containing a letter from parents introducing their newborn, special-needs child to the church 
  • Engaging Disability – part of the Mission to North America of the PCA – includes a handful of both stories and resources to help you learn more about caring for those with special needs in the church.

Pray

  • Pray for the Knecht family. Thank God for the gift they are to our church and lives. Pray for Anna’s health and protection especially in these tough winter months. Pray God would continue to sustain Mark and Deb and Kaitlyn. Pray God would provide skilled nursing care for them – they qualify for 16 hours of nursing a day, but there aren’t enough nurses able or willing to provide the hours they need right now. 
  • Pray our church would show sacrificial, gospel welcome to those with special needs and disabilities. Pray we would be sensitive to the needs of others even if those needs don’t directly affect our own lives. Pray we would love and serve and care for those who face debilitating mental and physical conditions.

Act


Sanctity of Human Life (January 19th focus)

Learn

Pray

  • Pray for every mom and dad that is considering abortion, that they would choose life for their baby.
  • Pray for those who adopt and foster, that thousands of families would consider this calling to provide safe, loving homes for children who might otherwise be aborted.
  • Pray for elderly and terminally ill people in our world who are considering physician assisted suicide. Pray that they would choose to live and that God would meet them in the midst of their suffering and bring peace and comfort.
  • Pray our government would pursue and secure legislation to help stop abortion.
  • Pray Jesus’ Church would combat systemic devaluing of human life – from the local to national to international levels – that we holistically care for people and uphold the sanctity of all life: born and unborn, infant and elderly, healthy and sick.

Act


Global Mercy Opportunities (January 26th focus)

Learn

Pray

Act