Hear the prayer - Read the full text below:
Archbishop Thabo Makgoba is calling for prayers for proceedings in Parliament in the coming days, when MPs will debate the state of the nation.
President Jacob Zuma will deliver his annual State of the Nation Address in Parliament on the 11th February at 19hrs, under the theme “Following on Our Commitments to the People”. The planned dates for the debate on the State of the Nation Address are on the 16th and 17th February and the President will reply to the debate on 18th February.
At an Ash Wednesday service at St. George's Cathedral, packed with parishioners and attended by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, Archbishop Thabo stressed the importance of prayer for the renewal of Southern Africa and the Church in particular.
With the Director of Peace and Justice at Bishopscourt, the Revd Canon Desmond Lambrechts, he has composed the following prayer for use in churches:
Prayer for Parliament
Celebrating 20 years of democracy in South Africa, we thank you for your faithfulness and providence to all of us.
As Parliament reopens this year, we acknowledge our past failings. We have not been conduits for a just and peaceful society; we have turned our faces away from the daily challenges of crime, corruption, unemployment, and violence against women and children.
Lord, we have trodden this road before, one on which the vast majority of our people suffer exclusion, trapped in poverty and inequality.
We pray for the leaders of our beloved country, especially those responsible for upholding our constitutional principles and values to ensure these are realised in our future;
We intercede for those who execute parliamentary procedures to do so with a sense of accountability, transparency and a commitment to serve the people with honour and dignity;
May your Holy Spirit guide the deliberations of this session of Parliament so that all South Africans may experience a better life for all through the Constitution as the embodiment of our democracy.
These prayers and deep longings we express with a sure hope and belief in the Holy Spirit of God who guides all into truth, even Jesus Christ our Lord.