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Dr Jonathan Oloyede: "We pray that fear will not reign"

by Hannah Tooley

Dr Jonathan Oloyede, Convenor of the National Day of Prayer and Worship, spoke on Premier's Big Breakfast and said now is the time to seek comfort in the Lord.

He was speaking after two suicide attacks and a bombing near the Stade de France stadium, as well as shootings at restaurants and a massacre inside a popular music venue killed at least 128 people have been killed.

AP Photo/Thibault Camus

He said: "We pray that fear will not reign, terror and depression and anger or reaction against foreigners will not spike.

"We pray that this will not create racism or xenophobia in any form in Paris, across Europe, we pray that humanity will come together at this time."

AP Photo/Jacques Brinon

He said that: "As Convenor of the National Day of Prayer and Worship, I want to urge Christians to pray, pray, pray following the events in Paris.

"Last night at the National Prayer Retreat, which has seen over 200 delegates from across the whole of the British Isles come together, we prayed for the events in Paris as news began to break on social media.

"As the night became day, we are awaking up to the full extent of the tragedy which happened as hundreds have innocently lost their lives on multiple sites across Paris. Even within the first couple of hours of the day, the number is rising.

"News of what has happened in Paris is both graphic and cruel for people simply going about their daily lives.

"Many people, even Christians are waking up numb and confused about what has happening asking questions of where was God in Paris and what was the motivate? As yet , we don't know.

"However, the one thing we do know is that God was and is in the midst of what is happening in Paris.

"As we gather as Christians from across the UK this morning, I will be urging delegates at the National Prayer Retreat to pray, pray, pray for Paris - but we need to see this ripple effect across the whole Nation.

"Fear divides people but I am calling on Christians not to fear and come together in unity.

"As we struggle to come to terms with events, we need to be honest with God about how we feel in prayer and know that when we call on heaven, we will gain a perspective on how we can respond individually and collectively to this tragedy."

Archbishop Eamon Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, shared this prayer: 

"Once more we are all shocked and deeply saddened to hear about terror on the streets of Paris. 

"The sounds and images of these attacks make for frightening viewing. 

"Like myself, many Irish people have relatives or close friends living in Paris and have happy memories of visiting this beautiful city. 

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Paris today and we express our solidarity with the French community living here in Ireland. 

"I ask everyone to remember, at Mass and in prayer this weekend, all those who have died and their families.  We also pray for those injured and all who are caring for them.  

"These horrific events challenge us to pray and work even more earnestly for an end to the evil of terrorism everywhere. 

"Each of us by our own thoughts, words and actions is called to spread mercy, love and peace so that the horrors of evil shall never conquer the world. 

"May Saint Denis and Saint Genevieve, patron saints of Paris, intercede for us."

Listen to Premier's Anna Cookson speak to Dr Jonathan Oloyede here:

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