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Your Outreach Committee would like to offer a different way to recognize the season of Lent. Starting Ash Wednesday we have prayer themes for each week taking us to Easter Sunday. Please join us in praying for these areas of concern. Each week there is a short scripture and prayer, please add your own as you feel guided to.


Week 6: Palm Sunday, April 2

We pray for our young people who are our future and have experienced the loss of community, social supports and face to face interaction in schooling during the pandemic.

Jeremiah 29:11
‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’

Prayer
Loving Father, We thank you for young people, the energy, enthusiasm and potential that they have. We pray that the obstacles that can hold them back such as poverty, ill-health, and discrimination, will be removed. We ask that, inspired by your Spirit, young people will have courage to speak out for justice, find solutions to poverty and love their neighbours with word and action. May you strengthen them with joyful hearts, give them a vision of your Kingdom here on earth, and embolden them to act. Amen.

A prayer for young people – Our Coins for Care jar is located on the table at the back of the Sanctuary and coin donations received there are sent to Food for Kids (Let’s Feed Our Future – Food4Kids Ontario) which is a wonderful local charity supporting children in need.

Your Outreach Committee would like to offer a different way to recognize the season of Lent. Starting Ash Wednesday we have prayer themes for each week taking us to Easter Sunday. Please join us in praying for these areas of concern. Each week there is a short scripture and prayer, please add your own as you feel guided to.


Week 5: Sunday, March 26 – Peace and Disaster Relief

Ukraine and Haiti were top of mind when we started this project and now the Earthquake in Turkey and Syria have joined them in our concerns.

John 14:27
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Let us pray for Ukraine, Haiti and all the places in the world where there is no peace and people live in fear with the Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi (Prayer for Peace)
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace: where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Walton is accepting donations for Disaster Relief through the church office and online if you are able to help.

Your Outreach Committee would like to offer a different way to recognize the season of Lent. Starting Ash Wednesday we have prayer themes for each week taking us to Easter Sunday. Please join us in praying for these areas of concern. Each week there is a short scripture and prayer, please add your own as you feel guided to.


Week 4 – Sunday, March 19 – Environment

Mankind has always damaged the environment through living but in the beginning, there was more nature than people and there was a better balance. After the Industrial Revolution populations grew and the use of coal and later oil increased the output of Carbon Dioxide. This has led to the warming of the planet which will affect our climate and food production and extreme weather events. Pollution of all kinds threatens our future. There are still steps that can be taken but it is up to us whether that will be done. We need God’s help to achieve this goal. Over 2,000 years ago, the prophet Jeremiah, made known what man could do to God’s earth:

Jeremiah 2:7
And I brought you into a plentiful land to enjoy its fruits and its good things. But when you came in, you defiled my land and made my heritage an abomination.

Prayer
Lord, help us to take the steps that will be necessary for us to reduce the warming of the climate and the resulting changes on earth. Guide us to model the changes that need to be made.

This week we can observe Earth Hour: On 25th March 2023 at 8.30pm, as landmarks and homes across the world switch off their lights, we are asking everyone to spend 60 minutes doing something positive for our planet. It may not seem like much, but the magic happens when you, and those like you in Asia and Africa, North and South America, Oceania and Europe – supporters in over 190 countries and territories – all give an hour for our one home. Together, we can create a rare moment of unity that brings the world together, shines a spotlight on nature loss and the climate crisis on a global scale, and inspires others to act and advocate for urgent change. Take this hour to turn off as many lights as are safe and think of ways we can help here, to reduce usage and waste in our daily lives and also ways to respect and protect our green spaces.  9 things you can do about climate change

Your Outreach Committee would like to offer a different way to recognize the season of Lent. Starting Ash Wednesday we have prayer themes for each week taking us to Easter Sunday. Please join us in praying for these areas of concern. Each week there is a short scripture and prayer, please add your own as you feel guided to.


Week 3:  Sunday, March 12

Health: Physical, Mental and Emotional Well-being for us and for our world.

Matthew 11:28
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Prayer
Most gracious and loving Father, I want to thank You for all the blessings You’ve given me, my family and friends, and all those I hold dear. Many people are suffering from physical, mental and emotional illness and pain. Please strengthen them and provide the help needed to restore them to health. Amen.

If you feel called to help we can send donations to Health Partners International of Canada (HPIC) through the church office and online to help provide much-needed medicine to over 130 countries around the world. After their presentation on Outreach Sunday, we were overwhelmed by your generous support.

Your Outreach Committee would like to offer a different way to recognize the season of Lent. Starting Ash Wednesday we have prayer themes for each week taking us to Easter Sunday. Please join us in praying for these areas of concern. Each week there is a short scripture and prayer, please add your own as you feel guided to.


Week 2: Sunday, March 5

Affordable housing and homelessness. So many are struggling.

Proverbs 31:8-9
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.
Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.

Prayer
Dear God, we pray for our neighbours in need of safe and affordable housing, and for the many families in danger of losing their homes. May we work to build communities that create space for all people to live with dignity and peace.

Our support for Wesley Mission and Kerr Street Mission through Sockfest, the Mitten Tree and White Gift Sunday helps to provide some hope and necessities to underserved people in our communities.

Your Outreach Committee would like to offer a different way to recognize the season of Lent. Starting Ash Wednesday we have prayer themes for each week taking us to Easter Sunday. Please join us in praying for these areas of concern. Each week there is a short scripture and prayer, please add your own as you feel guided to.


Week 1: Sunday, February 26, 2023 – Hunger

Matthew 25: 35-36, 40 – For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me…The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me”.

Prayer: We pray for those among us in our wealthy country who do not have enough to eat. We ask our leaders to work towards a way for people to be able to provide for themselves or receive the help they need to meet their basic needs. Please guide us to help our neighbours where we are able. Bless all those who prepare meals and share food with those in need.

If you feel called to help we have Food Bank donation bins at each entrance and monetary donations are also accepted online or through the office.

Risen

Risen- Lent Devotional @ Walton United Church, Oakville, Ontario

Luke 24:4-5

While they were perplexed about this, suddenly two men in dazzling clothes stood beside them. The women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen.

If you are taking part in the Lent goal to read all of Luke, today read Luke 24. Congratulations and well done to all who took part!

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Out of defeat, triumph; from confusion, understanding; beyond death to new life. Christ is risen, hallelujah! In the final chapter of his gospel, Luke relates the news of the resurrection in three different accounts – at the tomb, on the road to Emmaus, and in the upper room. In each account Jesus’ followers are transformed through their knowledge of the risen Christ. The revelation of his resurrection, and the fulfilment of his teaching, evokes awe and wonder and, gradually, enlightenment. As we celebrate the joy of Easter Sunday, let us also worship in awe and wonder, affirming that this miracle was brought about to renew each one of us. As we let our voices sing with jubilation and triumph, we also appreciate the relationship we can have with God because of this day. Let us then, through prayer and worship, move closer towards an awareness of the path God would have us follow, and how we can respond to God’s love with our lives.


Risen and victorious God, we sing praises to You in triumph and celebration. In joy and thanksgiving, we proclaim the depth of Your love and the new life, the restored relationship, You offer us. Guide us, we pray, this day and always, bringing us closer to You. Shape our lives, loving God, to respond to Your love in who we are and all we do. Amen.


Thank you for joining us on this prayerful
journey of reflection through Lent.

Lent Devotional Home

Certain

Certain- Lent Devotional @ Walton United Church, Oakville, Ontario

Luke 23:47

When the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God and said, “Certainly this man was innocent.”

If you are taking part in the Lent goal to read all of Luke, today read Luke 23:44-56.

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As the crucifixion came to its climax, as Jesus cried out his final words and breathed his last, his passing proclaimed his power to all those who were there. Moreover, this event inspired the first acknowledgement of the truth of Jesus’ sacrifice. “Certainly this man was innocent.” Hanging dead between two thieves, the truth of Jesus’ ministry could not be silenced. And it is not a disciple or follower making this assertion, or even one of the crowd, who had in turn cheered and then condemned Jesus. Jesus’ power compelled the centurion supervising his execution to speak out – a man who was only there to carry out an order, a disinterested, detached member of the Roman Army. His conviction, his compulsion, can renew and inspire our own confidence in the redemption we have through Jesus. On this day of waiting, between death and triumph, we can be certain of the power of God’s love and mercy, given for us.


Steadfast God, You determined to save us, even up to the point of crucifixion and death. Your truth will not be silenced. Your love cannot be repressed. As we remember Christ’s death, we affirm also the immensity of his love and the power of his sacrifice. Deepen our certainty in the love You have for each one of us and renew our gratitude for Your everlasting grace. Amen.
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Thank you for joining us on this prayerful
journey of reflection through Lent.

Lent Devotional Home

Grace

Grace - Lent Devotional @ Walton United Church, Oakville, Ontario

Luke 23:42-43

Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” He replied, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

If you are taking part in the Lent goal to read all of Luke, today read Luke 23:1-43.

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This is arguably one of the most memorable of Jesus’ acts of forgiveness. In his last minutes of life, Jesus forgives one of the thieves hanging – dying – next to him. The thief simply acknowledged that he had been wrong, and asked Jesus to remember him. All that he had been – by his own admission, a condemned criminal, deserving of his punishment – was erased by God. And nothing was asked of him – for there would be no time to repair the damage he had caused, or to compensate for what he had taken from others. Just asking was enough. God’s desire to love each one of us overrides all our faults. All that we need to do is reach out and ask Jesus to remember us – as the thief did from the cross. The immensity of this forgiveness is breathtaking. The abundance of God’s love and mercy, shown to each one of us, is perhaps ultimately incomprehensible. Today, let us humbly pray: “Jesus, remember me.”


Gracious God, remember us we pray and bring us closer to Your eternal love. We give thanks that You accept us, with all our mistakes, our inadequacies, and our stubborn self-interest. And that despite this, You remain steadfast, patiently waiting for us to return to Your way. Though we may never comprehend the depth of Your forgiveness and mercy, we give thanks for Your unquenchable desire to know us. Humbly, we reach out for Your love. Amen.
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Thank you for joining us on this prayerful
journey of reflection through Lent.

Lent Devotional Home

Grief

Grief - Lent Devotional @ Walton United Church, Oakville, Ontario

Luke 22:61-62

The Lord turned and looked at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said to him, “Before the cock crows today, you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly.

If you are taking part in the Lent goal to read all of Luke, today read Luke 22:24-71.

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Today’s reading describes a moment of immense humanity and deep shame, to which perhaps we can all relate. Despite everything that had gone before – all that Peter had seen and experienced – when accusations enveloped him, fear took over and Peter panicked. Uncertainty surrounding what would happen next, confusion over Jesus’ submission to his arrest, fear of more arrests or reprisals; each compounded the anxiety Peter felt. And so he denied knowing Jesus. Not once, but three times – just as Jesus foretold. As well as empathizing with Peter’s plight, we should also be moved, and even inspired, by Peter’s grief. In his bitter tears, there is no sense of self-justification or evasive excuses. Peter wholeheartedly accepts his failings, and accepts too Jesus’ knowledge of that failure. And yet, Peter is embraced by God’s grace and empowered to keep going; to greet the risen Lord, and to lead the disciples after Jesus’ ascension. This moment of despair and grief is the turning point for a life of conviction and faith.


Forgiving God, You see all our fears and doubts, our flaws and inadequacies, and yet You still reach out with love and forgiveness. Thank You for Your infinite grace that desires always to have a relationship with each one of us. Thank You for persisting in love to know and care for us, no matter how often we ignore or deny You. Be with us today and sustain us to turn our lives to You. Amen.


Thank you for joining us on this prayerful
journey of reflection through Lent.

Lent Devotional Home