Monday, August 15, 2016

2016 Theme

Helping Our Children Heal from Violence

The Light a Candle Prayer Vigil uses a different focus scripture each week related to the overall theme. You may follow along each day with us online as daily reflections are posted or reflect on these ahead of time with your own church group. 

September 11-October 16, 2016

Week 1: Listen
Romans 8:26-27 “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”

Week 2: God is a Safe Place
Psalm 46:1-3 “God is our refuge and strength,
    a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
    though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam,
    though the mountains tremble with its tumult."

Week 3: Acceptance & Trust
Colossians 3: 12-15
As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience.  Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful.

Week 4: Healing
John 9:1-12 As he walked along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned; he was born blind so that God’s works might be revealed in him. We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming when no one can work.  As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”  When he had said this, he spat on the ground and made mud with the saliva and spread the mud on the man’s eyes, saying to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means Sent). Then he went and washed and came back able to see.  The neighbors and those who had seen him before as a beggar began to ask, “Is this not the man who used to sit and beg?”  Some were saying, “It is he.” Others were saying, “No, but it is someone like him.” He kept saying, “I am the man.” But they kept asking him, “Then how were your eyes opened?”  He answered, “The man called Jesus made mud, spread it on my eyes, and said to me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’ Then I went and washed and received my sight.”  They said to him, “Where is he?” He said, “I do not know.”

Week 5: Honesty
Philippians 4:8-9 Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.
 
Dear Lord, please help stop as much as violence as possible. Because I feel like it is setting a role for todays children. Amen.
Illustration and prayer by Stephanie, Age 11 as part of the 2015 Light a Candle for Children Prayer Vigil 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Thank you!

Thank you so much to all the children, churches, and families who submitted their writing and pictures for the Light a Candle for Children Prayer Vigil! Your submissions were meaningful and heartfelt and helped us all focus on our daily prayers for children.

We also thank ALL those who participated each day through prayer and in their congregation's Children Sabbath celebrations.

To keep in touch and learn about more ways to help, subscribe to the Disciples Family & Children newsletter http://eepurl.com/QwcwX or take action through the great advocacy work of the Children's Defense Fund at www.childrensdefense.org/take-action.

May we continue to pray and advocate for children, not just on one day or in one season but throughout the year and through every opportunity we have to improve the life of a child.


Sunday, October 18, 2015

October 18, Children's Sabbath: How long until I blossom?


Weekend of Children's Sabbath, October 16-18 The fact is, it was our suffering he took on himself; he bore our pain. But we thought that God was punishing him, that God was beating him for something he did. But he was being punished for what we did. He was crushed because of our guilt. He took the punishment we deserved, and this brought us peace. We were healed because of his pain. -Isaiah 53:4-5
 
Do you have a kid you know who is bullied? How do we help those kids who are in pain? 


"How long until I blossom?"

"How can I help kids that are bullied?"

Grace, Age 11
Jake, Age 11
Erlanger Christian Church
Erlanger, Kentucky

Saturday, October 17, 2015

October 17: A family prayer


Weekend of Children's Sabbath, October 16-18 The fact is, it was our suffering he took on himself; he bore our pain. But we thought that God was punishing him, that God was beating him for something he did. But he was being punished for what we did. He was crushed because of our guilt. He took the punishment we deserved, and this brought us peace. We were healed because of his pain. -Isaiah 53:4-5
 
Do you have a kid you know who is bullied? How do we help those kids who are in pain? 


"It's tough when you know anyone is in pain - but especially when it is children. They don't always have the vocabulary to explain why they are upset and they aren't old enough to understand that this hurt is not caused by something they did. 

Dear God - please help me learn to spot the signs of hurt and guide me to find the ways to help."

Elkins, Denson, & Wheat families
Clintonville Christian Church & First Christian Church, Mt. Sterling
Kentucky





Friday, October 16, 2015

October 16: Down with bullies!



Weekend of Children's Sabbath, October 16-18 The fact is, it was our suffering he took on himself; he bore our pain. But we thought that God was punishing him, that God was beating him for something he did. But he was being punished for what we did. He was crushed because of our guilt. He took the punishment we deserved, and this brought us peace. We were healed because of his pain. -Isaiah 53:4-5
 
Do you have a kid you know who is bullied? How do we help those kids who are in pain? 

Group drawings from Jake, Grace, Larkin, and Grace
Erlanger Christian Church
Erlanger, Kentucky



Thursday, October 15, 2015

October 15: A prayer to end hate from Hanna

Week of October 11 God, I have heard the news about you.  I am amazed, Lord, at the powerful things you did in the past. Now I pray that you will do great things in our time.  Please make these things happen in our own days. But in your anger, remember to show mercy to us.   - Habbakuk 3: 2

What are some amazing things God has done? This is a song. Write a song or prayer that you want God to hear for our world. 

"Dear God, 
You are powerful & amazing. You are good & kind. You have given us food & a place to live. But in this world, people are bad. They steal & bully. They also kidnap. They murder. Also, people do not like differences. One difference is color & race. White people hating, bullying, murdering other people just because they are different. Help us to stop this, all of this. This picture is what I think it should be like, people get along. Friends! Please, Help us, God.
Hannah"

Hannah, Age 9
St. Peter United Church of Christ
Seven Hills, Ohio

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

October 14: A "Thank You" to God from McKenzie

Week of October 11 God, I have heard the news about you.  I am amazed, Lord, at the powerful things you did in the past. Now I pray that you will do great things in our time.  Please make these things happen in our own days. But in your anger, remember to show mercy to us.   - Habbakuk 3: 2

What are some amazing things God has done? This is a song. Write a song or prayer that you want God to hear for our world. 

"God, you have helped us find water with wells, have helped us make friends of enemies, created the earth, encouraged us to reach out to others, brought music into the world and made us silly as well. Thank you for all the things you have done."

McKenzie, Age 10
Central Christian Church
Lexington, Kentucky