Pastoral Prayer—June 23, 2019

Pastoral prayer offered at
Danville Congregational Church, UCC

This morning we come to you oh God with many joys and concerns on our hearts. We turn to you in prayer because we know—we claim and believe—that you hear our prayers.

We pray for the Peréz-Oliveras family. Specifically, we pray that Alejandro Peréz-Oliveras’ request for asylum be approved so that this family may be reunited immediately. We pray also for one of their daughters who has already been deported to Nicaragua and for her protection from the violence her family fled there.

We pray especially for children being held in detention prisons under circumstances that no child—no human being!—should ever have to experience, under circumstances we would never want for our own children, much less any child. Convict us in this moment, inspire our faith in you, a God who loves all the children of the world, that we will use our voices, our gifts, our witness to advocate for those who are far from home, the strangers among us, and especially for children. Comfort those children and families who are separated in a way that only you can and soften the hearts of those who are assigned to watch over these children, those who are seeking refuge, so that every effort be made to increase the hospitality of our country.
God in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those immigrants among us who have made homes here among us who perceive they are being watched, who fear every knock on their door, who make their way to jobs or the grocery and fear the looming risk of deportation. Be with them, many of them with children born here, as they face this anxiety. For every child, God, who comes home from school each day wondering if their parents will be home or if they have been taken into custody for deportation. The anxiety these families, these children, must feel, O God, we cannot imagine. Inspire our compassion for these families who are trying to make for themselves a safer, better life, who contribute to our communities and our culture. 
God in your mercy, hear our prayer.

God we pray for your spirit to move among all the delegates and friends of the United Church of Christ, thousands gathered right at this moment in Milwaukee. Strengthen our church, the church Universal, that those who return to their home churches carry with them the fervor and passion and mission that you, O God, would have us be about. 
God in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Oh God, for the one who suffers silently, the addict on the street, the one who thinks they have no one to pray for them—be in this moment real and present to them in a physical, meaningful way. 
God in your mercy, hear our prayer.

And now we pray the prayer modeled by our sibling Jesus…

Our Loving God, who is in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For yours is the kingdom, and the power and the glory, forever. Amen.

A tale of two “equal” men


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