Today we pray for the people of Manchester, England:
For parents whose children will never return,
For children, youth and young adults whose safe world has been shattered,
For first responders who arrived on the scene
To care for the injured, the traumatised, the deceased.
We give thanks for courage and generosity in the face of tragedy:
For taxi drivers, hotels and public citizens
Who shared the resources they had
To care for all those stranded, afraid, injured or without a safe place to go.
And, knowing that you call us to love even our enemies,
We pray for the perpetrators of Monday night’s bombing.
We pray that your love may find a way into hardened hearts,
And that peace and hope may replace anger, hatred and despair.
Even as we remember Manchester,
As we mourn the deaths of children and adults whose lives resemble our own,
As their deaths remind us of the fragility of our own lives,
We remember, too, those whose lives look so different from our own:
The people of South Sudan, Somalia, Yemen, and Nigeria.
We mourn that the deaths of hundreds and thousands of children and adults
Go largely unnoticed, largely unmourned, by the global community
As conflict, drought and resulting famine kill people gradually.
Open our hearts, holy God
That we may do whatever we can to support the people of England
After a terrorist attack and the deaths of so many innocents.
That we may do whatever we can to support
the people of South Sudan, Somalia, Yemen and Nigeria
To prevent further deaths of so many innocents
Due to the lack of something so basic as food.
Grant us wisdom and courage to discern your call.
Holy God, in your mercy, hear our prayers.