Wednesday, 16 March 2022

Candlelit vigils for peace in Ukraine


Hello dear friend,

I hope you are keeping well in these difficult times! Thank you for dropping in.

With the cruel war devastating Ukraine, feeling upset and angry and powerless I went along to join with a group of people at church to pray for peace. As soon as a friend mentioned that the meeting was happening for the first time that evening I felt compelled to join in.

At 6pm on the dot I approached the church and wondered if anyone had arrived yet as all seemed to be in darkness and quiet. But as I pushed open the door and walked inside I was met by the sight of a bank of blazing candles on either side of the altar and a group of people in silent prayer.  I moved into a pew and sank to my knees and began to add my own silent petitions to God alongside the others. 

I don't mind telling you that I first apologized to God for all the times I have let Him down. For the times I have not been loving; which is what He ask us to be. Then, well, I wept for the people of Ukraine being attacked and bombed and terrified all under the instruction of one man.  And though I had already prayed for the same thing countless times since this war began, I really did feel that saying these prayers with the group made them even more potent. 

After a while there was a CD of Taize music playing gently in the background and as I gazed up at a crucifix suspended above the altar, contemplating Christ's death and resurrection - which was His triumph over death - I simply put my trust in Him. 

We have been praying as a group for over two weeks. We bring our hour of prayer to a close as we stand, holding lit candles, and say together the following prayer, which you may like to say too.

A Prayer For Ukraine

Loving God,

We pray for the people of Ukraine,

for all those suffering or afraid,

that You will be close to them and protect them.


We pray for world leaders,

for compassion, strength and wisdom to guide their choices.


We pray for the world

that in this moment of crisis,

we may reach out in solidarity

to our brothers and sisters in need.


May we walk in Your ways

so that peace and justice

become a reality for the people of Ukraine

and for all the world.

We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.  

Joining in prayer to pray for peace is giving me a personal focus. Yes, I was, and am, praying for this many times throughout each day and night. But as Jesus said, "Whenever two of you on earth agree about anything you pray for, it will be done for you by My Father in heaven.” (Mat. 18:19). So, mindful of His promise, praying together adds great power to our prayer. 

If you would like to join us in spirit, even for a few moments, we are meeting between 6pm and 7pm on Monday to Friday until  further notice. The times are GMT so if you are in a different time zone you could check out what time that is in your country.

Wishing you every blessing.


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