11/13/2016 4:55:58 PM
Reflection: From our Presiding Bishop
[Today's reflection is a letter sent to ELCA pastors, congregations, and members from our Presiding Bishop, the Rev. Elizabeth Eaton.]
You who live in the shelter of the Most High, who abide in the shadow of the Almighty, you will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress; my God in whom I trust.” (Psalm 91)
During the week of Veterans Day (Friday, Nov. 11), I invite you to join across this church to pray for service members, veterans, chaplains and their families. Let us pray for an ordered civic life and respect for the dignity and worth of every person. In worship on these days, please remember the impact of family separation and mobility for veterans and those currently serving, many of whom are members of our congregations and communities.
In New Orleans this year, the ELCA Churchwide Assembly adopted a memorial asking, “the Office of the Presiding Bishop to establish a Sunday of prayer and action closest to Veterans Day each year to unite this church in prayer and encourage practical assistance for military members, veterans, ELCA chaplains and families.” I invite you to pray for the pursuit of peace and for the right use of power in cases where war is a response to aggression. Pray for those who have answered a vocation of military service and for their families. Through prayer, let us encourage our ELCA chaplains as they witness for Jesus Christ and make Christ present in word and sacrament. Prayer is powerful, and knowing this church remembers in prayer those who serve helps sustain their hope in Christ. For worship resources, prayer aids and other ideas visit: elcachaps.com.
Whether your congregation is new to addressing military concerns or has a history of prayer and action for those touched by war-time service, I ask for your prayers. Consider making the Sunday closest to Veterans Day an opportunity to care for those who have served as together we turn to God as our refuge and strength.
The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton
Presiding Bishop Evangelical Lutheran Church in America