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Church leaders in Africa call for prayer over Ebola

Around 1,000 people are known to have died from the disease.

It's been found in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea and threatening other countries in West Africa.

Most Revd Jonathan Hart, Archbishop of Liberia said: "The Ebola virus is having a very bad effect on the lives of citizens in Liberia.

"We have joined hands with the council of churches, the government and other organisations in the fight against Ebola.

"Churches are educating our members to avoid contact with infected people, wash hands with chorine, and not to panic."

Ade Renner-Thomas is the Chancellor for the Diocese of Freetown in Sierra Leone.

He's been thanking people for this prayers: "Here in Sierra Leone the government has declared a state of public health emergency.

"It means there are quarantines in the areas most affected. Movements are restricted in certain areas, and gatherings of more than five people are prohibited.

'When we have met as a church, there are no more handshakes when we share the peace, etc.

'We need as much prayer as you can offer."

The Anglican charity US has issued two prayers for the crisis:

God of our anguish, we cry to you
For all who wrestle with Ebola.
Grant we pray, peace to the afraid,
Your welcome to the dying and
Your comfort to those living with loss.
And, merciful Father,
bless those many loving hands
That bravely offer care and hope.
By the Revd Canon Edgar Ruddock, Us

God of healing,
whose Son healed those who were brought to him.
Hear our prayer for the peoples of West Africa
suffering from the Ebola outbreak.
Inspire and enable your church
to be a source of healing, comfort and hope to those affected,
and an agent for the education
and equipping of communities
to stop the spread of this disease.
For the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord.
By the Revd Tim Harford, Us

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