Skip to main content

“Ora et Labora” Pray and Work. 

Everyone knows there is work to be done. Our annual gathering, dubbed synod, has long-established rituals including the election of officers, seating of delegates, and advisory committee work that happens year after year. There are light-hearted rituals like finding the youngest and oldest delegates and getting gently prodded at coffee break by the sergeant-at-arms. There are ministry updates to hear, candidates to approve, and reports to receive. There is an agenda to work through. There are conversations to be had and decisions to be made. Work is before us⁠⁠—in predictable ways with unpredictable outcomes. 

As we began praying and preparing for synod prayer and worship this year, we found ourselves wondering if there are ways we can be more intentional about balancing the “work” with much-needed time for prayer.

In years past, the day began with worship. Prayers would be sprinkled in throughout the day as the Spirit moved, but worship and intentional times of prayer were the morning’s work, giving way to the actual work of the day. We began praying about ways to have our prayer and work go hand in hand, recognizing that every vote, every agenda item, and every 3-minute slot in the speaker queue is spiritual and Spirit-filled.

So how might we spend more time orienting and reorienting ourselves to God throughout the day? How might we be mindful of the Spirit’s presence in all of our work—the joyful and the difficult, the mundane and the impactful?

This year, we invite you to join us in a modified version of the Benedictine practice of “praying the hours.” Delegates are invited to join Early Morning Prayer by “praying the day ahead.” The morning prayer guides will also be sent to CRC members who sign up for the Synod Prayer Vigil (join us by signing up for 30-minute time slots to cover each day in prayer). 

Synod worship will look different this year as well. Shorter worship times will open each session (morning, noon, and evening). Each session will include singing, Scripture, prayer, and silence.  

Whether you are a delegate or not, we invite you to join us in intentional times of prayer and worship throughout each day of Synod. Join the livestream for worship. Set daily reminders to pray. Spend the first 60 seconds of each hour in prayer. Assemble a small team from your church, Bible study or prayer group and pray through the day. Pray while you watch the webcast. Go for short prayer walks. Sit in silence. Listen to the Synod 2023 Spotify playlist (coming soon).

Ora et labora. Let’s start practicing now. 


Thank you for posting this - I hope everyone who cares about the CRC will join in praying. Thank you for offering a variety of opportunities and suggestions for prayer. 

Let's Discuss

We love your comments! Thank you for helping us uphold the Community Guidelines to make this an encouraging and respectful community for everyone.

Login or Register to Comment

We want to hear from you.

Connect to The Network and add your own question, blog, resource, or job.

Add Your Post