Zimbabwe: churches unite to pray for peace

 Thousands of Christians from all denominations took part in the first Ecumenical Day of Prayer for Peace in Zimbabwe last week. Archbishop Pius Ncube presided over a service in Bulawayo's St Marys Cathedral on March 27, while anti-riot police kept watch. On the same day in Harare, prayers were held at the City Sports Centre led by pastors from the Zimbabwe National Pastors Conference (ZNPC), an ecumenical network of pastors, priests and clergy from all Christian denominations. Under the banner: 'Deliver Us from Evil, for Thine is the Kingdom', the event was organised by the ecumenical platforms, including Christians Together for Peace and Justice in Bulawayo and the ZNPC in Harare. "The initiative, supported by the Peace and Solidarity Trust of South Africa, was an attempt to encourage people in Zimbabwe not to lose hope, despite hardships and despair, but to trust in prayer and Christian faith," the Ecumenical Support Services told CISA in a statement. The congregations prayed for open political dialogue, stability, food sufficiency, intervention against HIV/AIDS, real peace and prosperity. Church representatives from Zambia, Botswana, South Africa and KwaZulu Natal attended to express solidarity, with their suffering neighbours, while German church organizations sent in goodwill messages. Source: Catholic Information Service Africa