Prayer stations offer a practical idea for the Lenten season, with a focus on raising awareness of a number of social justice issues and hospitality. These themes and messages accompany us on a Lenten journey.
The original “Interactive Prayer Stations on Lent & Social Justice Issues” were developed by Rev. Theresa Cho, co-pastor at St. John’s Presbyterian Church in San Francisco, CA. Readers can access Theresa’s blog post with these prayer stations: /https://theresaecho.com/2019/05/27/interactive-prayer-stations-on-lent-social-justice-issues/
Luke 14: Table Fellowship and the Kin-dom of GodIn Judaism and early Christianity, the banquet was a metaphor for the heavenly or messianic feast. Sharing the meal table was also an important expression of hospitality. In Luke 14, the table fellowship is a metaphor for inclusion as the banquet over which the Lord presides. Special attention is given to the invitation extended to the marginalized, represented in these texts as the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind (vv. 13, 21). Genuine acts of hospitality and kindness are those that carry no expectation of reciprocity.
Each station is set with a display of information, poetry, and images that stir participants to recognize, reflect, and prayer for social justice.
Participants move about the prayer space, pausing at each station and taking in the information and images presented. Pre-printed cards and writing materials are placed at each station and include the same set of questions to reflect upon according to the information given.
An additional station of craft and color supplies is available for participants to respond through prayer and art. A prayer wall is set up and colored post-it notes supplied for posting individual prayers.
Interactive Prayer Station 1: Intersectionality — threads of connection between people and groups who face injustice, oppression, discrimination, violence
Interactive Prayer Station 2: Militarization, Mass Incarceration, Repressive Policing — “Injustice anywhere threatens justice everywhere.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
Interactive Prayer Station 3: Interconnected Struggles – connections across movements and borders
Interactive Prayer Station 4: Cross-Movement Connections — standing in solidarity, building a global community
Interactive Prayer Station 5: Movement for Justice – grounded in effective alliances
Church leaders who seek to develop similar stations are encouraged to collect up-to-date information that connects with their community and social justice concerns.
Given the sensitive information given in these stations, this activity may not be appropriate for younger children.
Pre-Printed Cards and Writing Materials
For Deeper Reflection:
- 3-5 struggles with which I connect . . .
- I see it connected with these other struggles . . .
- How do I stand in solidarity or engage?
- Why are they called to the banquet?
- What surprises me?
Mary F. Foskett, “The Gospel According to Luke” notes in The Discipleship Study Bible NRSV with Apocrypha, (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2008), 1812.