Home / Mission and Growth / Rural Issues / National call to Prayer for Farming Communities /
Church of England Prayer for Lancashire Farmers
The Church of England has published a prayer for farming communities recovering from weather conditions that have led to thousands of sheep and cattle being lost and crops being sown weeks late or ruined.
The initiative is backed by the Church of England in Lancashire (Blackburn Diocese).
Rev. Chris Halliwell, Blackburn Diocese Rural and Environmental Project Officer said: “The Church is here to support and help ALL our local communities, urban and rural, and we encourage all parishes across Lancashire to use this prayer collectively in their regular services as well as individually in personal prayer.
Farmers across the region have suffered during the recent cold spell and will continue to feel the effects of the weather as the year progresses. To give just one example, it is already apparent that the exceptionally damp year of 2012 and the long, cold start to 2013, are already having a very serious impact on the availability, price and quality of fodder for livestock in Lancashire.”
The Rt Rev James Bell, Bishop of Knaresborough, who chairs the Church of England’s Rural Affairs Group added: “We grieve for the loss of so many livestock in the recent appalling weather conditions. We grieve, too, for the farmers who have worked so hard to feed and shelter their animals so that we can have good food to eat.
This prayer is an expression of solidarity with those who have experienced hardship or distress, in the hope of a fruitful and kind season to come, and in commitment to see farmers properly supported and rewarded.”
The Prayer, written by Canon Dr Jill Hopkinson, the CofE’s National Rural Officer based at the Arthur Rank Centre in Stoneleigh is as follows:
you provide us with food from the earth through the work of human hands:
after a poor summer and long winter,
we pray for all those who grow and produce our food
in the most difficult conditions.
We remember the physical hardships
and distress of farmers dealing with livestock that have died,
and those who are still to sow crops to harvest this year.
Bless the work of all those who care for your land and animals so that we may have food to sustain us.
This we ask through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Revd. Chris Halliwell, Diocesan Rural and Environmental Project Officer August 2012