Lord God, as today we begin our journey through Avent to the birth of your Son, the light of our world, we pray that you will help us to grow in our love for you and for each other.
In our longing to see you, we pray for all religious leaders. May their service light up the hearts and minds of the people who sometimes find it easier to see the darkness than to recognise the hope that you offer.
In our longing to see you, we pray for governments, scientists, and health care workers as Covid continues to cause concern. May they act with wisdom, sensitivity, and compassion to protect the lives of those who are vulnerable and afraid.
In our longing to see you, we pray for refugees and migrants who are escaping from violence, bloodshed, and poverty. Grant eternal life to all those who have died in their search for security and a new home. We especially remember the men, women and children who died in the Channel this week.
In our longing to see you, we pray for rough sleepers and all those who face homelessness and hunger as winter draws in. May they find the shelter, hope and support that they need to escape loneliness and hardship.
In our longing to see you, we pray for ourselves as we start our Advent journey towards Christmas. May our loving Lord be our light, our hope, our love, our beginning, and our end. May we support each other as we travel towards Bethlehem.
Loving God, light and hope of our world, be with us in all that we say, think and do. Almighty Father and Holy Spirit, fill our hearts as we pray, “Come, Lord Jesus!”