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Believers are encouraged to choose a Canton and a minister of the government to pray for. “A special strength and hope for our nation is found in prayer”, the Swiss Evangelical Alliance says.
Christians in Switzerland have been called to prayerfully engage in the upcoming federal (national) parliamentary election, to be held on 20 October.
The “Pray for Switzerland” website is designed to encourage believers to take the command to “seek the peace of the city” seriously by “going to vote and praying in advance”.
The initiative has been backed by the Swiss Evangelical Alliance, and aims to be a “visible sign” that Christians take the responsibility of engaging with the future of the country.
Although Switzerland has two parties which hold to an explicit evangelical worldview, and further evangelical candidates standing for a range of parties, the platform emphasised that it is neutral and does not call to vote for a specific option on election day.
One of the verses that inspires “Pray for Switzerland” is 1 Timothy 2:1-2 where the Apostle Paul says: “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people – 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness”.
The Swiss Evangelical Alliance started the initiative following the example of “Pray for Austria”, which was launched recently in the neighbouring country.
“A democracy needs peace, reciprocal respect and goodwill”, the evangelical body in a statement. “The aim of ‘Pray for Switzerland’ is to support politicians in Switzerland with prayer and to place politics under the guidance and blessing of God. A special strength and hope for our nation is found in this”.
HOW IT DOES WORK
On the website, every participant can choose one of the Swiss Cantons to pray for as well as one of the 6 ministers of the Federal Council - the country’s government in Bern, the capital city.
One can choose how frequently (daily, weekly...) he commits to pray in the weeks before the election.
Suggestions for different forms of prayer are offered on the platform, including free prayer, fasting, worship, Bible verses and intercession.
More than 130 people had committed to pray for Switzerland on the website at the time this article was written. They were encouraged to share their prayers and thoughts on social media using the hashtag #PrayForSwitzerland.