Churches are being urged to mark Sunday May 12 as a special day of prayer for the media – and to contact their local newspaper, radio and TV station to find out what they would like prayer for.
The call comes from Christian charity the Church and Media Network which works to promote links between the church and the media.
The Day of Prayer is being supported by the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu and the Bishop of Bradford, Nick Baines, who have both provided prayers for the event.
Dr Sentamu’s prayer reads:
Lord Jesus Christ, you speak and bring all that is seen and unseen into being: we give you thanks for the gift of the media to reach the far flung places of the earth with messages of hope and life.
We give you thanks for those who risk their security and even their lives to expose injustice and to bring news of hope.
May they strive to be the bearers of good news that all people may come to know the abundant life for which we have been created; and yet more wonderfully redeemed in Jesus Christ.
We offer our prayer in your name, in the power of the Holy Spirit for the glory of the Father. Amen.
The prayer from Bishop Nick Baines reads:
Whose ‘let there be’ kicked life into being,
Enliven us who by our word and image
Shine light on truth.
Whose ‘word made flesh’
Showed us the face of the father,
Open our eyes to see through your eyes
The truth about the world.
Whose breath gives life to creation,
Breathe through us,
That our words and work might bring life and hope
In the light of the truth you show us.
In the name of the word made flesh
Who turned flesh into word. Amen.
BBC Radio 2 ‘Pause for Thought’ and Premier Radio broadcaster the Rev Tony Miles chairs the Church and Media Network. He said: “The British media is under scrutiny as never before. Illegal and unethical practices by some journalists have combined with tough economic times and pressures from new technology to make these challenging times for everyone working in the media.”
Tony, a Methodist minister and media chaplain based at Methodist Central Hall, Westminster, added: “As Christians, we want to affirm that the media can be a positive influence for good in society and has a vital role to play in our national, local and international life. We also want to affirm those numerous people of goodwill and of faith working within the media.”
Churches are being encouraged to contact their local media to ask for points for prayer, and to invite local editors to speak at church events.
They are being asked to tweet their support for the Day of Prayer @churchandmedia and use #pray4media.
Materials for the day, written by Peter Crumpler, former Director of Communications for the Church of England’s Archbishops’ Council, are available on the Church and Media Network’s website at: http://www.churchandmedia.net/prayerday .