Creating God,
Mother of us all.
We are your beloved,
     formed in your image and nurtured in the depth of your dark womb.
You breathed life into our flesh and sent us to do your work in the world,
to care for each other and for all of creation as we would care for you:
     our life and our breath.
Wherever we are in your world there are survivors, victims, bystanders, and perpetrators of gender-based violence.

This violence is destroying your sacred creation,
     breaking and mutilating bodies,
     crushing spirits,
     stealing dignity,
     abusing trust,
     seizing power, and
     violating your beloved.

As long as violence exists among your people, anywhere, we will not be whole.
Until your creation is healed, we will wear black in solidarity with people around the world to honour the courage and resilience of the victims and survivors of gender-based violence while committing to work toward an end to such violence. 

May black remind us of the unimaginably deep love that you have for us and the cavernous well of tears shed by communities broken by violence.

And may black remind us of the hope for transformation that you have planted within the dark belly of the earth.
A hope that grows stronger every time a cycle of violence is broken and nurtured by each action against violence and rape.

Creating God,
as long as we have breath,
may we work with perseverance toward restoring your creation.
Amen.

—a prayer to end gender-based violence, to mark International Women's Day