Praying for the crisis in Ukraine with our children

If your family is anything like mine, you may have children asking lots of questions about the invasion of Ukraine.

It’s a worrying time for the world, and our children see that and have concerns of their own. Having studied World War II in school, my kids aged nine and 11 asked whether their dad will have to fight if the UK does join the war, and whether Russia will attack the UK. Their developing minds are racing – thinking about the possibilities and implications for them, but also a growing awareness of how it must feel for those suffering in other countries right now. As the crisis unfolds they have been more keen to talk and pray than they are at other times.

We don’t have all the answers, but we can help our children to process their feelings and emotions.

Here are some ideas and links to other resources that might help, best of which is taking some time out to pray with our children – to pray for those impacted, but also to cast their cares upon Jesus and to ask that he would bring peace.

  1. Help them understand what is happening in an age-appropriate way. For children aged seven plus, Newsround on CBBC is really helpful.
  2. Ask your children how they feel about the situation. Remember you don’t have to have all the answers, but acknowledge their feelings are valid and normal.
  3. Pray together. We have a heavenly Father who cares for us and wants to take our worries away. 1 Peter 5:7 says “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” What a reassuring truth!
  4. Pray for the situation with your children: praying for the people of Ukraine, Russia and politicians across the world.

Helpful resources

Parenting for Faith have a great article on helping our children to process the news, looking at how much they need to know and steps that parents can think through to figure out what’s best for their child.
Read it here 

Newsround has a helpful video for children about what to do when the news worries you.
Watch now

If your children seem particularly anxious there are some helpful websites focused on children’s mental wellbeing.
Dealing with anxiety in young children – Family Lives
Supporting a child with anxiety – Young Minds

Muddy Church have some helpful ideas to help you pray for the situation.
Take a look

24-7 Prayer has a prayer that can be read together, suitable for older children and teens.
Read here

The Archbishop of Canterbury and Archbishop of York have written a prayer to help you pray together.
Read here

 

 

 

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