Day 7: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

week_of_prayer_logo_216wDay 7, Hospitality for Prayer


  • Isaiah 62:6-7, Upon your walls, O Jerusalem, I have posted sentinels; all day and all night they shall never be silent.
  • Psalm 100, Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth. Worship the LORD with gladness.
  • 1 Peter 4:7b-10, Be serious and discipline yourselves for the sake of your prayers.
  • John 4:4-14, The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.


As long as God’s people are divided, and Christians are estranged from one another, we are like Jesus in Samaria, strangers in a foreign land, without safety, without refreshment and without a place of rest.

The people of Israel longed for a place of safety where they could worship the Lord. Isaiah tells us of the Lord’s mighty act; he posted sentinels on the walls of Jerusalem so that his people could worship him in safety day and night.

In the Week of Prayer our churches and chapels become places of safety, rest and refreshment for people to join in prayer. The challenge from this week is to create more places and protected times of prayer, because as we pray together, we become one people.


Lord Jesus, you asked your apostles to stay awake with you and to pray with you. May we offer the world protected times and spaces in which to find refreshment and peace, so that praying together with other Christians we may come to know you more deeply. Amen.

For Reflection:

  • How can we promote mutual hospitality among parishes and congregations in our locality?
  • Is there a place in our neighborhood where Christians from different traditions can gather in prayer, and if not can we help to create such a place?

Source: Greymoor Ecumenical and Interreligious Institute

My Ministry is a Privilege

By Sister Onellys Villegas

I am a counselor at the House of Ruth Family Safety and Support Center in Beltsville, Maryland.  I knew I was called to this ministry even as I went to the mailbox to send off my resume.  And, when I was told that the work would be in the area of domestic violence, I was sure that this was where I belonged.

I work primarily with Latina women who are referred to the Center by the courts, by other social service agencies that do not handle domestic violence cases, and by agencies that work with the Latino population in the area, which is a suburb or Washington, DC.

I see as many as 30 women each week—that’s too many, but I haven’t the heart to turn anyone away.  Entering into the inner world of another person’s life is an awesome privilege and responsibility.  Together, the abused woman and I explore her pain with love, with trust and with compassion.  We work together toward her healing.

She shares her story with me and I learn about her history of domestic violence, about her parents.  I get to know where she is coming from.  It takes a long time before the woman realizes what is happening to her and, very important, that she does not deserve it!

This is the key factor in my counseling.  I tell them that there is nothing they could possibly do that would justify being beaten.  Nothing!  At first this passes over them, but when they’re ready, they come to the realization:  “No. I don’t deserve this.”  Only then are they ready to move on—and out.

I have been blessed by the trust that these women have placed in me.  They have inspired me by their courage in telling their stories and in making choices for their future.  These sacred moments of shared human feelings have moved me and transformed me.

Reflection:  Whose “inner life” do you share?  Do you think of it as a privilege or a burden?