DECEMBER PRAYER POINTS
SPECIAL PRAYER FOCUS
Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. (Luke 2:11)
We thank you, Lord God, for the greatest gift, Jesus Christ, who is both Lord and Saviour. May all peoples the world over come to see and trust that he is Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Emmanuel, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace—to the honour and glory of your holy name. Amen.
Friday 1 – South Africa and Namibia
Pray with Daniel and Olivia Webster that NETS students would have fruitful breaks with ministry and rest, and for the family as they plan for 2024. Pray with Nathan and Diane Lovell for the GWC international students travelling home to visit their families. Pray for sweet reunions and a safe return to Cape Town in late January. Pray with Co-Mission Partner Thulisile Mabe that she will continue to care well for students at JBC. Thank God with Kylie Zietsch that she can connect with family, friends and churches during her Home Assignment. Pray with Mike and Karen Roe for the family as they return to Cape Town this month.
Saturday 2 – Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya and Madagascar
Pray with Mike and Katie Taylor for their church carols event tonight, that Christ would be proclaimed and many from the community would come to hear. Praise God with Arthur and Tamie Davis for the way the Holy Spirit has been at work in Tanzania, growing Jesus’ church in breadth and depth! Thank God with Andrew and Margie Newman that nothing can thwart the purposes of the Lord and pray for a new, godly principal to be appointed for the Bible College, following the unexpected promotion and transfer of the previous new principal. Pray with Norm and Janelle Gorrie that all 60 churches across the Diocese will run Vacation Bible Schools for the children and youth coming home for the long holiday. Pray that Norm and Janelle will have quality time with family, and prepare well for Summer School. Pray with Anna Radkovic for the A Rocha Kenya team as the staff finish up work for the year and travel for holidays. Pray that God would keep everyone safe on the roads. Pray with Adam and Avril Friend for the 58 students who began at St Patrick’s Theological College in October, for their studies and growth in godliness and love for the Lord Jesus.
Sunday 3 – North Africa, DR Congo, Seychelles and Ethiopia
Pray with M to boldly share why Christmas is such a significant celebration for Christians, and pray for her friends to be interested. Pray with David and Jenny Juniper for free, fair and peaceful national elections, happening this month. Pray with Ryan and Lynne Verghese that they would observe and learn from their first Christmas on location and have opportunities to share the goodness of Jesus during this month. Thank God with Co-Mission Partners Anwar Berhe and Tsigereda Atankir for a healthy and growing children’s ministry, led by Tsigereda.
Monday 4 – Singapore, Timor-Leste and Philippines
Thank God with Marty and Jenny Foord for faithful and diligent students and pray for their evangelistic opportunities this month. Pray with Ian and Narelle Hadfield that many will hear and respond to the gospel over the Christmas period through the ministry of St George’s Singapore, despite the reduction in the number of events. Please continue to pray for Ian and Narelle as they negotiate their next steps. Pray with Christopher and Julie Dean for the new Moderator and Synod Executive of the EPCTL, elected at November’s General Assembly. Pray also for local EPCTL congregations, that they will seize the opportunity that Christmas presents to share the gospel. Pray with Chris and Grace Adams for travels and preaching in various churches over the Christmas period. Pray for printing of the Tetun Beginner’s Bible, nearing completion. Thank God with Howard and Michelle Newby for recent opportunities to share the gospel with unbelievers.
Tuesday 5 – South East Asia
Pray with K for opportunities to share the good news with students and others in the community as Christmas approaches. Give thanks with J that, overall, the students at the language centre did well in their recent mid-term exams. Pray that God will give ongoing strength as the language centre staff seek to grow relationships with students. Thank God with L and C that they are settling in to their new and final location. Give thanks to God with N that he has sent a larger number of students to the language centre this term, and that he’s opened some student’s hearts to learning about Jesus. Pray with I for the small group of believers led by workers Moon and Star in their village, that they will continue to grow in depth and numbers. Pray for Moon and Star working with the group and others to create appropriate worship material in the local language. Give thanks for I‘s opportunities to serve in the CMS VIC office at this busy time of year. Pray with Malcolm and Leanne for the Christmas outreach events their local church is involved in, as well as for follow-up opportunities from a large city event on Saturday.
Wednesday 6 – Cambodia
Pray with Tim and Olivia Mulherin for emerging Khmer leaders at MMC: for diligence, integrity and honesty as they learn about good Christian leadership. Pray with Maggie Crewes for the busy month ahead with a missionaries’ conference in Katoomba, visiting interstate contacts and friends, and seeing family for the first time since back in Australia. Pray as together Maggie and CMS consider future opportunities. Give thanks with Jeremy and Jill Horrocks for the visit of Jill’s brother over Christmas and a short break from classes. Pray the Holy Spirit will guide Cambodian Christians to share their joy as they celebrate Christmas.
Thursday 7 – Cambodia
Give thanks with Maurice and Amanda Jacobson for their arrival in Australia today. Pray for a fruitful Home Assignment. Pray for Craig and Samantha McCorkindale as the family settles into Australia for Home Assignment in 2024.
Friday 8 – South East Asia
Pray with Julie that she would daily share God’s words of comfort, hope and challenge with the students she is getting to know. Pray with Rebekah to finish the semester well and for fruitful and effective planning for the new year. Pray with Jon and Deborah for Ollie’s safety as he travels to their location for Christmas and for good family times together. Praise God with Josh and Nici for getting them through to the end of the year. Pray for a successful visa application, and the family as they seek to share God’s love with their neighbours and friends.
Saturday 9 – South East Asia
Pray with Nick and Rebekah for focus and faithfulness now, in the face of uncertain visa platforms. Pray with Andrew Buchanan and Abi Tandiseru that the many Christmas celebrations in non-church contexts—with a short service and Bible talk—will reach nominal Christians and others with the message of God’s love in Christ. Pray with Rowan that Christians across the country will have courage and wisdom in sharing the joy of Christmas with family members, friends and neighbours. Pray that Chris and Erin would make the most of opportunities to share Jesus this Christmas season.
Sunday 10 – Development and Training
Pray with Michael and Jean Burke for approval of their work and resident visas, and for patience and good health so that, in God’s grace, they can be sent to Tanzania soon. Thank God with S and E for their completed training at St Andrew’s Hall, and for missionary conference this weekend. Pray with Taulama that planning meetings for 2024 will be productive, encouraging and God-glorifying. Pray with Brenton and Mel Kilby for eternal perspective and comfort from God as they start to say goodbyes to family over Christmas who they won’t see again before they leave for their first term in Tanzania. Give thanks with Gillian Akers for the time of equipping at St Andrew’s Hall and pray that her relatively short deputation period before departure will bring many to partner with CMS in reaching gospel-poor people in France. Thank God with Anthony and Trudi Elyard for their time at St Andrew’s Hall, transition back to Sydney for deputation, and the arrival of a new grandchild. Thank God with Andrés and Annika Ruiz-Caro for a warm welcome to Chile and pray for them as they settle in. Mentac NSW: Pray for events the trainers and apprentices are involved in: Christian carols at Lakemba Anglican church, invitational Christmas dinner for women, and Christmas event for believers in Christ from Muslim backgrounds. Mentac VIC: Pray that God would use Mentac VIC to train new missionaries, as it prepares to launch under the name of ‘Across Cultures’ in 2024.
Monday 11 – Spain and Malta
Pray with Jim and Tanja French for their church family members who are suffering and in very difficult circumstances, and for the ongoing work of MOCLAM for students to grow in their understanding of how to read the Bible for themselves. Thank God with Miriam Bradshaw for a new volunteer at Misión Urbana who speaks fluent Arabic. Thank God with Chris and Kristy Galea for new and deepening relationships, and for people who are open to the gospel. Give thanks with Lauren Raiter for an incredible season of deputation and for the chance to celebrate Christmas with family.
Tuesday 12 – Italy and Germany
Pray with Simon and Jess Cowell for the GBU ‘Press’ national conference this month, that those who attend might be challenged to engage well with atheism, and that it would deepen relationships with members of local churches. Pray with Jason and Hannah Fairclough for their Christmas evangelistic event, that students would be bold to invite friends and speak about Jesus. Pray with Co-Mission Partner (CoMP) Andrea Becciolini (and Geanne) that they will have energy as they parent their son Ben and keep up with many commitments. Pray with Gillian Law for a good response among students in Rome to a public lecture held last night on the historicity of the gospels. Pray with Klaus and Jude Hickel that the gospel would change hearts at their Christmas services and events. Thank God with CoMP Jotham Booker for time spent visiting partner churches.
Wednesday 13 – France and Slovenia
Pray with Karina Brabham that students who come to the GBU Christmas event would understand the good news of Jesus. Pray with Colin and Catherine Puffett for the witness of their church over the Christmas season, that God’s gift would be understood and received with joy. Thank God with Josh and Susannah Apieczonek for the Christmas holidays and time to rest and remember the gift of Jesus. Please ask for God’s help to kick off the new year with renewed purpose and energy. Pray with Co-Mission Partners Bostjan and Lidija Cifer for a new General Secretary for Zvesh, the student movement.
Thursday 14 – Eurasia, Belgium and The Netherlands
Pray with J and P for P’s wisdom and energy while teaching kids at school and settling into a new work environment. Pray with R in asking for relationships in Eurasia to be transformed by the love of Christ. Pray with Michael and Rani Grivas-Allison for protection from sickness so that they can focus on French language learning. Thank God with Howard and Patricia Spencer for their visit to the Belarus Student Ministry Board to assist with Governance Training. Pray also for good outcomes from the GBU Belgium Board Governance Training this month. Give thanks with David and Cathie Sandifer for a fruitful and encouraging time on Home Assignment so far, with many answers to prayer—including the provision of multiple cars.
Friday 15 – South Asia
Pray with Bruce and Libby Hayes that the PSC school Christmas play will faithfully present the good news of Jesus especially to parents and hospital patients. Thank God with Co-Mission Partners (CoMPs) Sam and Sharmila Budhathoki for the opportunity to study theology. Pray with CoMPs Jiwan and Binita that the gospel will continue to bear fruit in Nepal’s northern areas. Give thanks with Gordon and Ruth Russell for Nepali Christians’ growing awareness of cross-cultural mission opportunities. Pray for the gospel of grace to be widely shared this Christmas. Pray with CoMPs Ashish Christian and Karuna Sharma for good discipleship of the young leaders they are mentoring.
Saturday 16 – South Asia and Central Asia
Pray with A that God will be with the believers in South Asia and that he will draw many closer to Christ. Ask God with E that as she and her colleagues decorate and bake for Christmas, there would be spiritual hunger from those they get to share with. Pray with J and S that workers from their NGO will find hope in Jesus. Pray with M and K for the gatherings of believers from a Muslim background taking place today, the day many believers celebrate Christmas together in their location. Thank God with K (and A) that A has a visa and pray that he will make wise decisions about his use of time.
Sunday 17 – Middle East and South Asia
Pray with J in celebrating the coming of the King, that churches would learn to take this news out beyond their walls. Pray for peace in the Middle East region. Pray with Dan and Marg for Arab staff of Whitman Academy, particularly those who have relatives and friends in Palestine, that they will be guided by Jesus’ words of peace. Pray with Derk and Susan in the midst of all the Christmas food and gatherings: that many traditional Christians who attend these gatherings would have Christ revealed to them by the Spirit. Pray with S and M for peace in the Middle East and for increased trust and obedience in every situation, remembering that God has a good, perfect plan. Pray with Malcolm and Charissa Forrest that Summer School will be a blessing and that they finish their time with CMS well. Thank God with Co-Mission Partners Tim and Sam for new ministry opportunities. Pray with Gavin and Megan Rosser for their family as they prepare to go to location in January.
Monday 18 – Middle East
Give thanks with C and J for the trust that they have seen grow between the women from the exercise group. Ask for an openness to consider Jesus together. Thank God with S and P as they celebrate one year of the underground church meeting. Pray for a new place to meet as they grow. Pray with B for women refugees to find their security in Jesus. Pray with M that S and her family decide to follow Jesus. Thank God with Craig and Lisse for the 100 students doing an introductory course at the Bible college. Pray with W and S as they begin to say goodbyes to family and friends while finishing up visits to partner churches.
Tuesday 19 – Middle East
Thank God with Morgan and Olivia for how the Lord has been working in their Tuesday night small group. Pray for those in it who are exploring ministry, growing in different areas, or have recently come to faith. Pray with John and Deb for their big Christmas Eve events, for preparation and for many friends and visitors to be present as the gospel is clearly proclaimed. Thank God with Elizabeth for ongoing gospel opportunities; pray that she will take them up. Thank God with Ray and Sandy for Sandy’s opportunities to influence the children’s ministry at Fellowship.
Wednesday 20 – CMS Australia
Thank God for the recent end-of-year missionary conference, a time of edification and relationship. Thank God for the CMS-A board and pray that they will serve with wisdom, knowledge and understanding.
Thursday 21 – East Asia and Taiwan
Pray with E for good ministry opportunities to open up in 2024. Pray with L that she will continue to be faithful in Bible reading and prayer. Pray with D and T for their complicated visa requirements to be negotiated successfully. Pray with Sam and Shan-Shan Chrisp for Christmas-themed outreach events this month: that students would be brave in inviting friends, and that newcomers would be willing to come and connect.
Friday 22 – Japan
Pray with Matt and Jen Lim for wisdom for both the Lims and CMS as they meet to discuss future ministry options. Pray with Matt and Bex Ooi for their first Christmas in Japan and that Japanese people might discover Christ amidst their increasing interest in the popular Christmas traditions. Thank God with Dave and Beck McIntyre for their children growing in knowledge and love of God. Pray with Steven and Sandra Parsons that God would help all the workers preparing Christmas events to express the message of Christ in a month of Christmas events, when Japanese people often hear about who Jesus is for the first time. Pray with Adam and Helane Ramsay that God would be glorified in their hearts as they celebrate Jesus at Christmas. Pray for outreach, hospitality, their kids having a break, and for visits from relatives, that all would be for the glory of God.
Saturday 23 – Japan
Give thanks with Kellie Nicholas for those who attend Christmas events, and pray that they may come to know Jesus personally. Pray with Elle Bryce for her first Christmas season in Japan! Pray for comfort for Elle and her family as this is her first Christmas away from her family. Pray with Dene and Rachel Hughes for continued energy to take up ministry opportunities. Thank God with Chenny Thie for Christmas and pray that students will be bold in inviting their non-Christian friends to Christmas events at their church and/or KGK. Thank God with Nathan and Maki Clapham for their commissioning, and pray for safe travel to Japan. Give thanks to God with Roger and Noriko Dethlefs for the great privilege of serving him in Tokyo over the last six years, including many opportunities to share of the joy of knowing Jesus as Saviour and Lord with family, students, and friends.
Sunday 24 – Vanuatu, PNG and Solomon Islands
Give thanks with Matt and Ellen Tyler for their time at AFES National Training Event (NTE). Please pray for time with family over Christmas and for Summer School in January. Thank God with Joel and Tiffanie Atwood for J and M attending the NTE conference in Canberra. Pray for the joyful and faithful celebration of Jesus’ coming this month. Thank God with Keith and Marion Birchley for Keith’s current health issues being addressed in Australia this year. Please pray that they will follow God’s leading about returning to PNG, possibly in early 2024. Thank God with David Pettett for graduating students looking forward to fruitful gospel ministry.
Monday 25 – North Australia
Pray with Chris and Karen Webb for opportunities to share the gospel around Christmas, and for an attitude of joy because of Jesus in their church. Pray that their three kids might grow in their love and trust of Jesus as they get older. Pray with Matt and Lisa Pearson that God would teach humility, reminding us of the humble birth of Jesus and encouraging us to put others before ourselves. Pray with Josh and Steph Mackenzie for the church at Numbulwar as they celebrate Christmas and share the hope of Jesus with their community. Pray with Zoe Creelman for continued trust in the restoring grace of the Lord Jesus, both for her, and for those in her location. Pray with Geoff and Hannah Harper for their son Simeon, who has finished year 12 and is moving to Victoria for university. Pray for the family with this big change.
Tuesday 26 – North Australia
Thanks God with Ian and Jenny Wood for the churches in Darwin and remote places over Christmas, that the good news of Jesus would continue to be communicated very clearly. Pray that God would have mercy on the Top End throughout cyclone season. Give thanks with Derek and Rosemary Snibson for Christmas celebrations with family, and visiting friends, supporters and colleagues during Home Assignment. Pray for guidance for fruitful partnerships for mission in each context. Give thanks with Simon and Claire Koefoed for two recent ordinations in Urapunga and Numbulwar. Pray for Simon’s travel to the Roper area through December supporting these ordinands and other clergy. Pray for Claire as she finishes up a literacy project in Wadeye and plans for 2024. Thank God with Co-Mission Partners Mandy Manggurra, James Woods, and Marlene Andrews that they will celebrate Jesus’ birth well with their communities.
Wednesday 27 – Chile, Bolivia and Peru
Thank God with Malcolm and Ainsley Purdey for the end of year break and ask that God would give them a good rest over summer. Pray with Frances Cook for three graduating CEP students who will return to Bolivia or Argentina, that God will use them greatly for his marvellous kingdom. Pray with Chris and Stef Overhall for safe travel during family holidays and that their time off is refreshing and re-energising. Pray with Nick and Kysha Davies in their preparation for a conference in January. Give thanks with Adrian and Anita Lovell for a safe arrival to Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Pray for God’s provision of housing, a church and a school in a new city. Pray for Co-Mission Partner Álex (and Karina) Córdova, that they may daily grow in the knowledge and love of God.
Thursday 28 – Uruguay, Argentina and Ecuador
Pray for Amy Stephens to make good use of her counselling skills in her relationships with students. Give thanks with Martin and Julie Field for refreshing holidays with family during December, and pray for their return to Argentina on 5 January. Pray with Peter and Terry Blowes for ABUA Buenos Aires Summer School in mid-January, that lots of people will participate and be built up in knowledge, capacity to serve and love for God. Pray for those teaching workshops and courses. Pray too for planning for 2024 staff training. Thank God with Pedro and Joy Oliveira Woolmer for sustaining them through a year of transitions, and for the work he is doing in Australia and in Uruguay. Pray for safety and gospel fruitfulness as Pedro travels to Chile for an IFES conference. Thank God with Co-Mission Partners Bryan and Sarah Haro Leon for their new baby Eliot Tekoa.
Friday 29 – CMS Partners
Thank God for the churches and organisations that CMS partners with. Pray that more partners will continue to offer to work with and support CMS missionaries in difficult locations, to give continuity to long-term ministry. Pray that Mission Support Fund scholarship recipients will be diligent in their studies and grow in faith, godliness and Bible knowledge.
Saturday 30 – CMS Branches
NSW & ACT: Pray for our branch staff as final preparations for Summer School commence. Give thanks for the CMS NSW and ACT Board and pray for wisdom for its new members.
QNNSW: Pray for the upcoming Summer School from 5-10 January at Mt Tamborine. Pray for our speakers, Andrew Shead and Archbishop James Wong, and for our missionaries as they share their experiences from their location. Pray that all who attend will be encouraged and inspired about global mission.
SANT: Pray for good preparations for next month’s Summer School with speakers Andrew Reid and James Wong.
TAS: Give thanks for the safe arrival of Maurice and Amanda Jacobson from Cambodia. Pray for refreshment and joyful family times over the Christmas/New Year period and for wonderful reconnections with their link churches.
VIC: Give thanks for the generous donations to the Christmas Appeal and pray that the final preparations for Summer Under the Son would go well.
WA: Thank God for the appointment of an Events Coordinator and pray that CMS-WA events would be able to effectively engage new partners and inspire mission thinking.
Sunday 31 – CMS Fellowship
Continue to pray for CMS missionaries who have recently resigned, including Dave and Leoni Painter, and Matt and Kate Vinicombe, together with their families. Pray for new supporters and churches to join our fellowship in 2024.