Sunday, March 20, 2005

Brothers and Sisters,

I bid you pray for our community, the world, and all in need.


For our community:

  • For the unemployed, for those who cannot attain independence, for those who struggle with financial insecurity;


  • For parents and their children, that their homes may always be nurturing and loving;


  • For those who suffer from addiction or mental illness. May we always provide loving support in their struggles;


  • For those who have experienced illness, whether serious or run-of-the-mill;


  • For those who are heartbroken, lonely, or isolated.


And we give you thanks for:

  • Our families and friends;


  • Satisfying work, access to health care, freedom of speech, and all good fortune brought by living in the developed world;


  • For spring.



For the world:

  • For peace in the Middle East, as violence and tensions there rise once again.


  • For the people of nations affected by the December 26th tsunami, the peoples of Darfur, Sudan, Afghanistan, and all places whose struggles take place below the reach of headlines;


  • For developing lands, that they may not repeat the mistakes of the First World. May they find the courage and patience to seek economic growth without oppression, impoverishment, and ecological catastrophe;


  • For the people Kyrgyzstan and other lands living under the weight of political repression;


  • For Ciudad Juarez, that the long string of murders of women and girls may finally come to an end.


For all those in need:

  • For President Bush and other leaders of the nations, that they may guide their people under the principles of fairness, equity, justice, compassion, and freedom.


  • For our enemies--personal, political, in business and community--that we may in time come to offer them compassion, service, forgiveness and understanding. Until the day come that we are to give them friendship, may we bear with them and never turn them to objects to be rejected.


  • For the City of York, Pennsylvania, suffering with six murders in ten days, and for all people affected by gun violence;


  • For the family of Jessica Lunsford, that their grief may be eased; for all those who have lost children, especially those lost to violence; for John Couey, that he may be judged fairly, and find the justice and mercy that surpasses this world;


  • For Terri and Michael Schiavo and their families, as their battles continue. May a decision come that does justice to all parties, may Terri's suffering be eased, and may these intense difficulties not be complicated by political interference.


  • For all those who grieve the senseless loss of the last two years of war, whether civilian or military.


  • For all people everywhere, that they may know us by our steadfast compassion, commitment to justice, and willingness to go the extra mile on their behalf.


For all these things spoken and unspoken, we lift our hearts, knowing that our hopes will not be dashed.

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