Jackson, Mississippi has been coping with a long-term drinking water crisis. Recently, heavy rains caused severe flooding, and the city’s water treatment plant failed completely. Some 150,000 residents were left with no water to drink, bathe or even flush toilets. Open Door Mennonite Church in Jackson requests prayers for this ongoing situation.
The following prayer request was written by Rhoda Byler Yoder, elder, Open Door Mennonite Church in Jackson, Mississippi.
First, we offer thanksgiving that the national attention has brought much-needed resources to Jackson. Tractor-trailer loads of water have been delivered to people’s homes, with more water being distributed daily. Engineers with specific skills are repairing the crippled water plant. We are seeing action after years of lurching from one water crisis to another.
Second, we pray for the repairs underway at our water plants, to restore clean drinking water to all homes and businesses and to be resilient enough for the next flood, freeze or other situation that could bring the plant to its knees again.
Third, we pray that officials at all levels will put aside their differences, their assumptions and their politics − and move forward together. There are miles and miles of brittle, century-old pipes between the water plant and the spigots in our homes. We need a plan. Funding. Ongoing action.
Finally, we pray for our church, Open Door Mennonite, located in the most underserved part of Jackson. May we connect ourselves and our community to God’s living water that satisfies our soul thirst. May God bless our relationships − our social media feeds, our neighbors and the interfaith organization called Working Together Jackson where we are deeply involved. We also ask for prayers for a community event we are planning on September 28 at our still-under-renovation building. This event will feature a shared meal, presentation and conversation and will launch our Peace and Justice Center of the Deep South! Pray for good attendance and workable logistics.
We want to be a voice that calls people together, to be a space where people can safely share the hurt and anger that has built up after years of disregarded crumbling infrastructure, to be a word of hope for united action.
Pray that we will continue to discern how to bring peace and justice to bear on these long-term issues.