“I am so concerned about so many of my coworkers. For many of them, both the husband and wife are federal employees and many are parents with no income coming whatsoever. One of the best ways to help federal workers like these is for churches to make an extra donation to local food pantries. As I a have walked and talked with staff who are suffering, as employees use up their limited savings on rent, mortgages, and paying creditors, they often have little, if any, for food.” – Rev Will Hoyle, Chaplain, Federal Correctional Complex in Butner
Dear United Methodist friends in Christ,
Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ.
As the government shutdown continues in the United States, federal employees and their families are in need of our support, generosity and prayers. The Cabinet and I are seeking to support clergy families who are impacted – our chaplains in federal prisons and others whose spouses are federal employees.
I ask of you three things: 1) Please actively seek out and help families in your church and community who are impacted by the government shutdown. (see example below) 2) Be advocates with those who have political power for resolution of the impasse affecting many of our neighbors. 3) Provide food and other resources for families in need as a result of the governmental impasse.
As we gather for mission, study, worship and prayer, let us name before God the human brokenness we are experiencing, the faith we share for strong tomorrows and the hope we carry as Christ-bearers in the world. In this time, let us live generously the community Jesus creates as we remember and embody our baptismal vows.
Compassionate and eternal God, we give you thanks and praise for a higher vision for human life and community. We confess that the powers of our time are endangering women, men and children in our communities, our nation and the wider world. We pray for resolution of the current governmental impasse, for those directly impacted by the shutdown of government, and for fullness of life for all people. With confidence in the way of Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit, we pray with the prophet Isaiah that justice will roll down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream in this time, in our country, now and into the days ahead. Amen.
With gratitude to God for our shared life in Christ,
Bishop Hope Morgan Ward