Map: Nations Online Project
The Bishop of Oxford, the Rt Revd Dr Steven Croft, shares a message with the Diocese of Oxford calling for parishes and churches to pray for peace in Ukraine.
Many will have woken this morning shocked by the terrible news from Ukraine and the reality of war in Europe on a scale not seen since 1945. Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Ukraine as the devastating scenes unfold.
Our immediate response is to cry out to God for those caught up in the fighting, for wisdom for our government and leaders across the world and to pray for peace.
Our Archbishops of Canterbury and York have issued the following statement calling for every parish in the Church of England to mark this coming Sunday 27 February as a day of prayer for peace in Ukraine and Russia and for a cessation of hostilities. I encourage each of us to take part in this time of prayer and reflection.
In addition, the Archbishops welcome us to support Pope Francis’ call to a day of fasting and prayer for peace on Ash Wednesday.
We are also invited to pray with the Diocese in Europe and their congregations in Ukraine and Russia on Tuesday 1st March at 1800 GMT.
In the days to come, there will no doubt be a call for us all to respond in practical ways for the relief of the awful suffering which follows war and we stand ready to play our part.
Read the pastoral letter from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to all clergy and people of the Church of England.
Liturgical resources for Praying for the Peace of the World are available from the National Church website as well as the following prayer offered by Bishop Steven:
A Prayer for Peace in Ukraine
God of compassion,
Have mercy this day on the people of Ukraine.
Restore to them the gift of peace.
Grant wisdom to the governments of the world.
Bring good in the midst of evil and suffering,
For the sake of Jesus Christ your Son,
Who gave his life to bring peace to your world