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Prayers of the People

September 16, 2012

God, you give us this word love;

you show it to us the moment we are born,

in the eyes of a mother or a father;

you will it for us in the love of family

and church, and community;

you lure us with as you reveal yourself to us

in nature, in our desires, in the joy of our partners and friends.

Though it is often challenged and cheapened,

denied and deformed,

by our own actions and those of others,

you call us to ever deeper and deeper understandings of love;

love that heals and hopes; that includes enemies and “Others”

love that transforms, and transcends;

love that can know the very worst and yet do the very best.

We weep this week

for Ambassador Stevens and his colleagues who were killed on Tuesday,

for the hopeful work they were engaged in that has been set back,

for the hard work of peace that must be done again, and again, and again,

even as we grieve at the tragic needlessness of it all.

We rage at the outrage that led to it,

the prevalence of hate and offence hiding behind free speech

disguised as faith, and masquerading as truth.

God, you are heartbroken at the way we treat one another,

and our hearts break at our capacity to do harm.

Love us again, God. Love us, and love us, and love us,

until we understand that our love for one another

must go as deep as your love for us.

Give peace to every heart, give peace to every heart,

Give peace, give peace, give peace.

 Stay the violence;

inspire diplomacy;

we especially remember the leaders our nation and other nations,

religious leaders and movement leaders

as potential and powerful voices for good.

Encourage all persons of faith and conscience

to witness for peace in this critical time.

Let there be peace on earth,

Let there be peace on earth,

and let it begin with me.

We pray for the community of your people.

We pray for all who suffer from neglect or abuse,

for the oppressed and exploited,

for voices long silenced,

for exhausted caregivers and faithful physicians,

for the hurting, the healing, the desperately hoping,

the loners, the lovers, those leaping in joy.

Hear our prayer for… (Specific prayers were offered as requested by the congregation…)

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