Oh God, Oh God, Why have you forsaken me?
Jesus cries out from the Cross, and the Psalmist cries out from the depth of despair. But, we your faithful people know that you are never far from our cries. You were with Christ upon the Cross, you were with the Psalmist in the darkness, and you were with the 9 victims in Charleston. You weep with those who weep and mourn with those who mourn.
We remember those who were murdered on holy ground – in your very house – and we pray that they are raised as saints eternal…
Reverend Clementa Pinckney
Ethel Lee Lance
Daniel L. Simmons
Rev. Depayne Middleton-Doctor
Welcome these beloved children into your glorious kingdom.
We pray for the Community of Mother Emmanuel AME Church. We pray for the families, the friends, and the community shaken by this terrible crime. God, you are never far from the words of our groaning; send your spirit of comfort and healing upon Charleston.
We pray for all victims of racially-motivated violence. We pray especially for Haitians in the Dominican Republic, who too are targeted as victims of racial violence; and for the Church of Fishes and Loaves in the West Bank who were attacked by arsonists. God, do not be far from your children in their time of trouble.
God we pray for our community leaders and our national leaders. Give them a spirit of boldness, that they may be willing to confront this giant of racism. Give them hearts full of righteousness and yearning for justice.
We are poured out like water. Our hearts are like wax and melt in our chests.
Send your peace upon us, O God. Send your spirit of wisdom that we may see the ways we participate in sinful systems. Give us the courage to confront our own complacency, and the strength to change.
Merciful God, we pray even for our enemies. We pray for those who hurt and harm. We pray for Dylan Roof, and other like him, that you may break their hearts. That you make take their hearts of stone and replace it with a heart of repentance and love. We pray that you deliver those who are mangled by hate from themselves, and give them a spirit of resurrection.
God of all nations and families, we pause and in silence lift the prayers of our hearts up to you…
God you are the deliverer of the nations. You are proclaimed from every corner of the earth. Hear our prayers, our petitions, and lamentations that we turn over to you, our refuge and our rock. We pray all things in the name of Jesus Christ, the Risen Lord, Amen.
Rev. Laura Brekke, Santa Clara University chaplain, Santa Clara, CA