Pastoral prayer by Rev. Arlene Bodge
O God, who stands beyond both the darkness and the light, who is hidden by the names we give you and yet who moves in great mystery to touch our lives, wake us from our indifference and cynicism to see your grace and to respond to it.
We pray for all our brothers and sisters who stand beyond the margins of our comfort and our security: for all who are alone in this season which affirms love and community; for all who are homeless and jobless in this season of compassion and new life; for all who live in pain of body or mind in this time when love is declared incarnate.
We pray for the children of this earth; for all who are abused or neglected; for all who suffer the consequences of our carless acts or words. Link us again with their sense of play and wonder, their capacity to trust and to forgive;
We pray for all who are victims of hate and oppression, including all we unknowingly hurt through our blindness. Enable us to feel their pain and rejection. Help us to reach out in understanding and reconciliation.
And for ourselves we pray that we might find the time to consider the direction of our lives, the values and people we cherish, and so discipline ourselves to be more intentional as agents of hope, as channels of your grace, as a people who have seen your presence in their lives.