The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2023
January 18th to 25th
Do good; seek justice
Canon Isaac Delamere, Rector of Tullamore Union of Parishes, Co Offaly, Ireland (Africa Magazine January/February 2023)
"…As we approach Christian Unity Week we are mindful of Jesus’ greatest desire that we ‘would be one’ (John 17:21). I firmly believe that the more we connect with the earth and allow ourselves to be led by the Holy Spirit the more we will experience a greater sense of that unity which is God’s desire for us.
Through reconnecting with the earth we discover our shared origin and destiny, a common homeland. We become aware of our humanity, a shared humanity. We discover that we are all connected as God’s people. It makes no difference what version of Christianity we profess. Once we recognise this then we can no longer turn our backs on the cry of the earth for us to protect it and the cries of its peoples for justice. The prophet Isaiah says that we should “learn to do good, seek justice, rescue the oppressed and plead for the widow” (Isaiah 1:17). We have seen changing weather patterns this summer throughout Europe, the UK, and the USA, signs that we need to seriously address climate change. For too long we have happily ignored the suffering that climate change has caused in faraway developing countries, but now it is an issue for us too. We need to recognise that all of our lives are connected and that if my brother and sister is experiencing the effects of climate change then I have a responsibility to address this and to strive for climate justice.
As churches we face many challenges, however one of them is clear. The Spirit of God is certainly moving us to become more ecologically aware. I feel in many respects that the Spirit is ahead of us on this issue and that we are desperately trying to play catch up. We need to see ecological awareness as part of our call to discipleship and as an important dimension of our mission today. In doing so we will be more connected with the earth, with ourselves, with our fellow Christians and ultimately with God. "
For the complete programme for the Week of Prayer visit the website of the World Council of Churches:
Or download the booklet here: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2023