God of peace,
give us the courage, strength and perseverance needed,
to challenge the systems of racism,
so that we can clear a path for your justice, peace, and equity.
We believe racism is present
in our society and in our church,
and throughout time has manifested itself in many forms and in varying degrees.
We know racism is alive
in our language and in our structures,
and through our systems it actively works to deconstruct your glorious design,
blocking the path to justice, equity, and peace that Jesus brings.
A prayer for the church inspired by John 17:21 and based on The United Church of Canada’s “A New Creed” and the United Church of Christ’s “Statement of Faith (in the Form of a Doxology).” Congregations are invited to share in this prayer on Sunday, October 18, 2015, in celebration of the full communion of these two denominations.
God of our ancestors,
in a world where chaos and ruin are as close as the wind,
where fires rage out of control in Fort McMurray destroying homes, businesses, and livelihoods;
Help us to find strength and courage from the stories of those who took refuge in you during their times of trial and despair.
And so with the psalmist who cried laments,
we pray for all who are in need of food, shelter, and healing… [add specific prayer requests or space for silent prayers]
Our failure to care for creation continues to cause pain and suffering beyond imagining.
lush lands are becoming barren;
water is becoming scarce;
soil is eroding;
livestock are dying;
and people are in growing need of food assistance.
we are surrounded by images of violence, and we are called to wrestle with how to respond to the devastation, death, fear, and hatred around us with compassionate and prophetic love.
We encourage people to pray with all those affected by acts of terrorism, including
those who were killed or injured as a result of the horrific bombings in Brussels
those who mourn the death of loved ones
and those in our global and local communities who are the victims of violence and who mourn the loss of life and the loss of security.