Monday, March 10, 2008

The Micah Challenge

Micah Challenge is a global Christian campaign. Our aims are to deepen our engagement with impoverished and marginalised communities; and to challenge international leaders, and leaders of rich and poor countries, to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, and so halve absolute global poverty by 2015!

...what does the LORD require of you? To do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6:8)

Part of their mission is a weekly prayer emailing like the one you see below. You can receive it in your email box every week send a blank email to
with the words 'subscribe prayer' in the subject line.


To mark the International Women's Day 2008 on 8 March, our reflection today is on the effects of global poverty on women.

Poverty affects women more than men, and therefore poverty still has the face of a woman. Please click here to see a drawing that tried to capture the discussion on Integral mission and gender at a Micah Network consultation in Malaysia.

In first-century Palestine, the way Jesus treated women was considered revolutionary. Please reflect on Luke 8: 1-3 where we learn that Jesus allowed women to travel with him and his male disciples. He was not limited by the culture he lived in and allowed women to take part in his ministry to the world.


Let us pray:

* That we as individuals and in our churches can be more like Jesus and learn to evaluate our cultural norms through the word of God.
* Our prayer focus today is Micah Challenge in Burkina Faso.

Over the past few weeks the country has seen unrest and violence due to an increase of basic goods prices of over 200%. This may be due to the soaring global food prices which have triggered riots over the cost of living in several Sahelian countries which are highly dependent on imported wheat and rice.

Many demonstrators have been imprisoned without being heard by a judge and there are reports of torture.

Ines Lompo from Micah Challenge in Burkina Faso writes:

· Please pray for our government (the prime minister is attending an Assembly of God church in Burkina) that they will react wisely and effectively to the tension that has arisen by the increased prices and seek to act justly.

· Pray that the root causes of the increase of prices will be tackled.

· Pray for the economic sector of Burkina: for transparency, consumer protection and fair prices.

· Please also pray for our church leaders as they seek to respond to the crisis speaking of truth, justice and mercy.

* Reflecting on the statistic below: Lord, we pray for victims of violent conflicts and wars all over the world. We pray for the women and children in their suffering, have mercy!

Meditate on the Statistics

As you spend time in prayer and reflection, you may like to take a moment to silently understand with your heart the focus statistic we include each week (see below). Our hope is that you will find this series of statistics a useful resource in preparing presentations.

Goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women

Target 3.A: Eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education, preferably by 2005, and in all levels of education no later than 2015

‘At the beginning of the 20th century, 90% of war victims were soldiers and 10% civilians. In the wars of the last decade, 90% of the victims were civilians mostly women and children.’

Source: Newsletter Gender and Armed Conflict, 2007
The newsletter, although produced for Western Asia, provides a good overview of impacts of wars and armed conflict on women and recommendations on how to mainstream these gender concerns.

You can also find them on the web here:

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