Prayer response to violence, 1 John 4:20

Adapted from a prayer written by Revd Terri Hord Owens, USA, originally forged in response to peaceful demonstrations and violent response in Charlottesville, North Carolina USA.

God of Love,

our hearts break at the violence in our world,

the loss of life,

the dishonoring of children of God,

the vile insults hurled

and the wounds of history reopened.

We pray for the families of those who have died

and all the wounded.

We pray in praise of those who persist in demonstrating and working for peace.

Guide our feet and minds that we do not take backward steps fueled by hatred.

Guide our mouths and hearts that we do not remain silent when the humanity of others is being assaulted and terrorized.

Convict us anew to follow Christ’s commandment.

Hold us to account.

“Those who say, ‘I love God,’ and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars;

for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen,

cannot love God whom they have not seen.

The commandment we have from him is this:

those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.”*

Strengthen us to love one another as we love you.

With such love, we are compelled to stand for justice, and walk in peace.

*1 John 4:20

Terri is the General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) USA.