Corrymeela News

Corrymeela

Prayers for Community in a Time of Pandemic

13 Mar 2020

measures speaks to the greater need we have as humans to be in community. The world needs community like never before. 

5–7 March 2021

God of temples and houses, God of markets and bodies: we have crowded our lives with a clutter of desire. If zeal and anger can be righteous, may they drive us to clear out the tangled mess that we house of religion and faith, of money and worth, of purity and holiness. And then may we find an undying presence at home once again in ourselves: a temple that needs no protection. 

Amen.

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4 March 2021 

God of early morning birdsong, God of creatures creating their future: there is a seasonal rhythm and a yearly pattern that points to a continual cycle. We give thanks that this is more than simple repetition, or perpetual sameness. There is this forward drive, a pull into coming days fuelled by hope and possibility, a desire to be a part of something more; the instinct to build a nest for a life that’s yet to come. 

Amen.

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3 March 2021 God of those in love again with their own home towns; God of those coming to terms at last with home–grown divisions: In the work of bringing more peace to the world we begin with peace in ourselves. Remind us that where each of us starts affects what we see, and who we will meet, and what obstacles there are to overcome. May we never forget that when we come together, we have travelled different roads; and may we then have a greater respect for where each one has been, and what feeling at home can mean.

Amen.

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2 March 2021

God of a familiar light, God of a heavy familiarity: as we return to days like last year’s days, so much seems eerily the same and everything slightly different. This mix of comfort and discomfort highlights the change in ourselves, the power of our perspective and the difference our attitude makes. Help us turn our weariness into readiness; our hesitance into curiosity; our ending into beginning; so this heaviness becomes light. 

Amen.

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1 March 2021

God of this twelfth month, God of this next minute: may our warped sense of time, be it sped or slowed, never prevent us from counting each moment as the open chance to be in communion with you and with our neighbours; May this lifetime be marked not by days or years but by gestures of kindness that grow stronger with age. 

Amen.

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26–28 February 2021

God in truth’s open declarations, God in truth’s quiet rebukes: it is in our private relationships and in our wider connections that we we lose our life and find yours. When we pull others aside may it not be to convince them we are right; may it instead help us to turn our minds to higher things: to the divinity at work in the life of the whole.

Amen.

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25 February 2021

God in daffodils waiting to burst, God in lambs coming close to their birth: there is pent up excitement, a year’s worth of release, so many are longing to see. But such times are not for us to control. The miracle of spring arrives not on our watch. So even if the end of this pandemic winter disappoints us with further delay, may we know of the life still at work deep within us waiting for our moment to emerge. 

Amen.

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24 February 2020 

God of those who lead by learning, God of those who guide by helping: we give thanks for things settled, for hurts that have healed; but the end of an ordeal for one can mean its continuation for another. If and when a peace is imposed rather than co–created, it may be called a peace by some, but is truly a peace for none. And so we pray for rest, not in a sense of completion, but with the hope that, rested, we can continue forward together toward your lasting shalom. 

Amen. 

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23 February 2021 

God who continues to call for justice; God whose justice is linked to mercy: we have wrongs to be righted, and corrections to be made. May they never be pursued with an eye that glorifies punishment, but with minds that envision restoration and reconciliation. May justice fully arrive not with fear or with threat, but in the hope of our own wrongs being made right; our desires corrected toward kindness. 

Amen.

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22 February 2021

God who knows that even our good intentions can lead us astray; God who shows how the voices of others will call us back: we have come to a point when the choices seem to be yelling our opinions just to be heard, or keeping quiet in hopes of drawing no attention. Help us find a better way and a space shared by all of us where we can listen and be heard, where we can learn and add value, where the way forward draws from experiences we gather together. 

Amen. 

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12–21 February 2021 

God in the silence that speaks of grief, God in the silence that speaks of awe: we acknowledge the loss that comes when teachers and friends disappear from our view. The agony of Elisha is felt to this day. But we acknowledge, as well, the gift of the mantle that falls to us: the gift of learning; the life of service that is ours to take on. May we see as the clouds clear, your presence remaining with us, preparing us for a message still to be told of life rising up from the dead. 

Amen. 

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11 February 2021 

God with us in a year of much loss, God with us in a year of much growth: babies born in these last twelve months have only known pandemic. For a generation of schoolchildren distant learning is already a significant chunk of their life. Each of us will carry this time like a ring in the trunk of a tree. May it be a mark of inner expansion, a built–in record of personal growth, so that in years to come we can still note this time of developing our strength and our breadth. 

Amen. 

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10 February 2021

God of the exposure that protects us, God of the vulnerability that heals us: we give thanks for boundaries that keep us healthy and safe particularly at times of great risk. Yet we know that our bubbles present their own kind of harm. When we find ourselves cocooning in comforts and withdrawing from difference, may we free ourselves from the traps of contentment. Move us to the edge of ourselves, so that notions of self–sufficiency can be popped, and our interdependence with others can be restored. 

Amen.

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9 February 2021 

God of bursting early bulbs, God of links to last year’s growth: stored within us are lessons and corrections, a–ha revelations and moments still taking on meaning. As we open ourselves up to a brand new spring, may we display the colours we’ve hidden inside; and may the rooted life we hold in our cores ground us well for all coming seasons.

Amen.

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8 February 2021

God of the psalms of joy, God of the psalms of sorrow: we note that part of being human is acknowledging the brokenness in the world and in ourselves; and that part of being human is to love ourselves as you do, and to help you recreate from all these broken bits a new us and a new world.

Amen.

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5–7 February 2021

God in the healing of Simon’s mother–in–law, God in the city gathered close at the door: free us from our fever, cure us of our disease. When we return from our deserted places, may it not be into patterns of inequality, but into habits of mutual service. And in silencing divisive voices within us may we not quiet that searching plea for justice and peace and connection; for the healing your message proclaims. 

Amen.

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4 February 2021

God who is found in the Word become flesh, God who is found in what words won’t express: we give thanks that silence and art and movement help us make sense of life in ways that thinking and reasoning and masterful theses will always fail to achieve. Help us balance ourselves so we can find deeper wisdom in the gift of simplicity, in the work of being fully alive. 

Amen.

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With gratitude for the life and witness of Capt. Sir Tom Moore (1921–2021), we repost this prayer from last April. 

3 February 2021 

God of the fertile earth, God of the scattered seed: there are many lessons that could take root right now.We give thanks that when and where conditions are right the truth lands in good soil and sinks in. Just yesterday a 100–year–old man, a captain in a textbook war, a sower of an ancient truth, walked the length of his garden, and on that path a long–held power burst open for the world to see. May his example produce a crop a hundred–fold to wake a dormant spirit in us all. 

Amen.

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2 February 2021

God in the turning to spring, God in the waiting together: we give thanks that even in separation; even in this drawn out distancing, we make sense of this life and mark the passing of time not only as individuals in our own situations, but as part of a greater collection of your people, alive and alert in this world. May we enter this season all the more aware of fellow travellers; of other pilgrims on the road. 

Amen. 

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1 February 2021

God of the home we know, God of the home we seek: we give thanks that a part of the human condition is the hope, the sense, the lingering feeling that even though this world is not as it should be, a better world exists, a different future is available, a home for all of us waits for all of us, and today can be a part of getting there. 

Amen.

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29–31 January 2021

God of our spirits, clean and unclean; God whose authority heals: as this Sabbath comes, let us sit and consider what teaching still astounds us. Is it the lesson of disappointment? A cautionary tale of unmet hopes? By your grace may it be the good news of life; a power that can silence our fears. And in being drawn out from the places we hide, may your healing amaze even us. 

Amen.

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28 January 2021

God who sees through our weaknesses, God who sees through our strengths, this constant becoming is something we learned from you. You love us not as a perfect treasure held firm in time, but in a relationship that changes and surprises, disappoints and perseveres. Help us to see each other’s strengths as shelter and our own weaknesses as invitation. 

Amen.

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27 January 2021

God who is older than then, God who is newer than now: we give thanks that you and your truth do not need our protection. We do not need to preserve or defend what is always true, and forever discovered: that in our life and in our death we belong to you; that in our life and in our death we belong with each other.

Amen.

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26 January 2021 

God of the nurses returning to shift, God of the families waiting at home: this long year has seen false hopes, crescendos and silences, but also a steadiness at work. We give thanks for the prayers prayed without ceasing alive on wards and in clinics, embodied in the care of women and men of all colour and creed, steadily doing whatever can be done with a compassion that is both profession and calling. 

Amen.

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25 January 2021 

God in a comforting blanket, God in a new day’s adventure: we give thanks for reminders of your perennial grace, and the surprising joy that can greet each morning. We pray for those whose reserves are low and whose anxieties are high, and ask that today we might lend as we are able, receive as we need, and arise with a sense of what is newly possible together.

Amen.

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22–24 January 2021

God in our prayers for Christian unity, God in our prayers for human unity: in the humbling of yourself we were exalted; in seeing equality with others we approach something more divine. May we discover in the emptying of ourselves a way to come together in a fuller human likeness. 

Amen.

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21 January 2021

God in catharsis, God in the part of us we call soul: when we find a spirit of gratitude, joy is not far away. May we, as we give thanks for the goodness still within us and in the lives of those around us, return to states of unity, and in the work of being with and for one another, may we weep with those who weep, rejoice with those who rejoice, and find ourselves again, out of many, one. 

Amen.

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20 January 2021

Today we repost a prayer based on words from Lincoln’s 2nd inaugural address (4 March 1865).

God of charity for all, God of malice toward none: be with us. Be with us as we ‘strive to finish the work that we are into bind up a nation’s wounds.’ Be with us as we ‘do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.’ Be with us on this and every day. Be with us all.

Amen. 

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19 January 2021

God of life, God of a child’s questions about God: let us take comfort in the fact that we do not have all the answers. Allow our lack of knowledge and our dependence on faith reassure us. If we could understand it all, it wouldn’t be worth knowing. If we could contain all that is, there would be less room for hope and no room for curiosity. And it’s through the curious questions that we grow. And find your life. 

Amen. 

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18 January 2021

God in a stranger’s hello, God in a raised hand of greeting: those simple gestures, be it a glance toward a passer–by who looks back with a nod or the friendly question about what breed of dog you’ve got there, give us moments of connection and remind us of days to come when instead of passing by or getting only as far as small talk, we will be able to draw close and learn more from each other. Until then, we give thanks for that stranger’s hello and the greeting we offer in kind. 

Amen.

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15–17 January 2021

God who calls us to follow, God who invites us to question: you allow us to come as we truly are and to see beyond our limited view. As we relocate ourselves within the reach of your grace, may our beckoning connections lead us from our set positions so we can gain a fuller sense of the good news we still can hear. 

Amen.

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14 January 2021

God of a mother’s instinctive compassion; God whose piety is an impulse to kindness: our societies are reflections of ourselves. The brokenness we lament out there in the world mirrors all the fractures within. May your maternal instinct to redeem us, through lessons of repentance and forgiveness, restore the bonds between us, so we can reveal both the hurt and the healing. And then, may a love like her love at our birth begin our new life together.

Amen.

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13 January 2021

God of tunnelling roots, God of winter growth: beneath the surface, and when the light is less available, the trees and shrubs use their time to strengthen themselves. Reaching out and feeling forward, they connect themselves more assuredly to their surroundings. May we use this time in a similar way, so the spring that arrives finds us already in fuller bloom. 

Amen.

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12 January 2021

God of a deep and deepening peace, God of a calm that steadies our pace: may we take whatever moment we need to gather ourselves for the journey ahead. May we feel the rock of your presence beneath us; the assurance of shelter you provide in embrace; and the promise of company gathered close by your spirit; so that as we approach the unknown ahead we remember a strength that can never give way.

Amen.

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11 January 2021

God of our honest concerns, God of our lingering joy: as holidays become memories and our resumption of work falls back into rhythm, may we not forget the moments that restore us, nor put away the gifts that give a healthy balance to our life. May we bring into this new year a pattern of self–care that keeps Christmas continuing, as a glimpse of something better, as a way to live today. 

Amen.

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8–10 January 2021

God of the resilience we build, God of the community we create: may what holds us together not push others away. May our finding a common purpose not rely on naming a common enemy. And may our held beliefs be not in what we want to be true but in what you reveal to be right: a love that undoes us by leading us to love others as we love ourselves.

Amen.

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7 January 2021

God of our fragile democracies, God of our peaceful transitions: be with us. Free us from divisive ideas of freedom. Empower a bravery that unites. May our lands and our homes safely house dissenting views and welcome our better angels, so that the fuller truth of a greater union might be secured. 

Amen.

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6 January 2021

God of the magi, God of the guiding star: we give thanks for the wisdom to see that you came not for one but for all; and that our salvation arrives from beyond ourselves, our private spheres of influence, the traditions we know by heart. May we be willing to step further out and become followers of something greater, worshippers of One born far away from realms we’ve personally mastered; asleep in the crèche of the whole. 

Amen.

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5 January 2021

God of these twelve days, God of these twelve months: May our times of rest restore us. May breaks from work rekindle our passions. May changes of view replenish our imaginations. And may the hope, peace, joy and love given at Christmas sustain us throughout the year, so that the good news born to us might live more fully in our flesh. 

Amen.

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4 January 2021

God of fresh starts, God of enduring truths: As we push out into this near year with a clinging caution and lingering trepidation give us the nudge to roll up our sleeves to meet our challenges with hope and courage; and with a renewed desire to see in each other the truth and joy of our inescapable interdependence.

Amen.

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1–3 January 2021

God of this new year, God of this new breath: as we meet this day with relief and hope, with sorrow and with grief, may our bodies find the strength to endure an extended separation. May our eyes begin to see a coming season of reunion. And may our hearts provide the courage to create encounters shaped by joy and relationships filled with grace. 

Amen.

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25–27 December 2020

God of incarnation God who is Emmanuel: this year we receive the good news that the divine gift is being with and for one another. May we who are brought together by your grace even if we are physically apart, carry with us hope, peace, joy and love into a new year and into a world that longs for truer community. 

Amen. 

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24 December 2020

God of silent nights, God of heavenly peace: your light shines in the darkness so that even our darkness becomes a place to find hope. Still our hearts and minds. Quiet our concerns, and ease our anxieties so that in this moment we might hear the initial cry of new life born to us in a place of glorious humility; with the strength of human and divine vulnerability. 

Amen.

h/t Inderjit Bhogal for his reflection on light IN the darkness.

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23 December 2020

God of carols we know by heart, God of traditions that reassure us: there is comfort in knowing that beneath all the tinsel and fuss the message of Christmas continues to speak truth. May those who are separated from loved ones this year and all of us unable to take part as we’d wish, find the gift of your presence and spirit with us; the warmth of love that is felt in the flesh. 

Amen.

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21–22 December 2020

God of this deeper winter solstice, God of a southern summer height: as friends far away mark daylight’s full stretch, and we note the lowest notch of the sun, let us give thanks for local and global neighbours alike who, in sharing what extra they have, create a community of giving and receiving, of lending and borrowing, of weeping and laughing, of darkness kept within its bounds; a growing light upon the horizon.

Amen.

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18–20 December 2020

God of colleagues who start to wind down, God of children already wound up: this season will meet us wherever we are, to offer a message of hope. We give thanks for connections that have strengthened this year, and the resilience we’ve managed to show. As many take time to gain much needed rest and to focus on family at home, may our sense of being your people together give all of your children some peace. 

Amen.

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17 December 2020 

God who walks with us in our darkness, God who draws out an inner light: even in the brightness of day, there is a limit to what one can see. Our ignorance and bias; our narrowed views and chosen positions prevent us from seeing the whole, and from seeing ourselves. In the welcome of others’ perspectives we gain greater sight. May we fear neither the uncertainty of night nor the exposure of day, for in both we are known by you.

Amen.

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16 December 2020

God of Joseph, God of those who find supporting roles in stories they presumed would be about them: help those who have the power to push others away find gentle ways to draw them closer. May those who have the means to walk away from problems, find the strength to remain so that solutions can be found and made together; and so we can be found and remade together.

Amen.

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15 December 2020 

God of incarnation, God whose presence arrives with a word: there are friends who connect so well and so genuinely that even though they wear a mask, their eyes can tell a story. There are loved ones who are so close to us, that even from thousands of miles away their voice can do enough to calm our bodies and steady our breath. May we remember that with a word you entered this world; and with a message of unconditional love, you bring our true humanity to life. 

Amen.

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14 December 2020

God of Mary, who pondered your greeting; God of good tidings that brought us great joy: the first words she heard were ‘be not afraid’. And now in this year we, too, must consider whether we will accept a message of endless salvation when so much would make the idea sound absurd. May your power and spirit overshadow our fears so that our choice can be to bear light in this world.

Amen.

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11–13 December 2020

God in the conversations that manage to change us, God in the encounters that change the conversation: rarely is it the argument that convinces us. It is more likely the experiences of others that, because they are shared and accepted, become a part of our own experience. Help us in this time of separation and waiting to connect to each other in ways that convey not just ideas or images but the spirit of community that forms us anew.

Amen.

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10 December 2020 

God in the return to a simplified Christmas; God in the advent of extravagant joy: may we, who are so accustomed to connecting happiness with an accumulation of things, receive the gift of valuing the connections we already have. May a stripped down celebration and a slower pace to the season reveal the treasure that was ours all along. And may we find in the strangeness of this year’s Christmas the wonder that was present in its first incarnation. 

Amen.

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9 December 2020

God of those we’ve lost this year, God of what we’ve found: our grief speaks to the beauty of life and the toll that comes at the end of each connection. Death can offer a lesson to the lasting goodness of life, a pain that means that love is real. May we never forget that our grief gives proof of something that was and continues to be true: that our hope endures in being held by your undying love. 

Amen.

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8 December 2020

God of friends in hospital, God of families of friends in hospital: be with those who are receiving care, and those who wait to hear the news. Be with those who offer care, and those who wait for them at home. May we know your presence with us. And may those of us held together in a moment both critical and routine, be embraced by a community more aware of the extraordinary gift of those who tend to us on each and every day. 

Amen.

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7 December 2020 

God of watchers in the night, God of lanterns lit: our waiting turns from anxiety to anticipation when what is hoped for feels like a sure thing. May the lamps we raise and the light we cast cut the gloom around us, so that we become a beacon for your brighter day to come. 

Amen.

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4–6 December 

God of the songs our parents taught us, God of the songs our children make up: if lucky, we get to hear one generation reappear in the next, with ourselves in the midst of a much fuller chorus. As we welcome another Advent season may we rejoice in an ongoing arrival of a strangely familiar refrain. May we find our homes again filled with the presence of those far off, whose lives linger on in held moments and whose voices are blended with ours. 

Amen.

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3 December 2020

God of separated families, God of grace–filled reunions: as we turn to go home or imagine how we might, may a clearer sense of how far we are not diminish the extent of your welcome. May an extended season of distant togetherness not obscure the view or lessen the excitement of an expectant parent who longs for the return of one, until now, thought lost. 

Amen.

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2 December 2020

God of the lowering December sun, God in the early morning watch: be with us in this work of waiting and keeping alert; in the practice of not being the one in control. May we find beauty in the quiet acceptance of being dependent on a promise of returning light as we watch the days grow shorter; on an Easter dawn as the hours grow dark. 

Amen.

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1 December 2020

God with us in our individual struggles, God with us in our common ordeals: there is a freedom that comes in knowing that life is simply hard; not because we’ve done something wrong, or because we fail to see something obvious to others, but simply because life itself is hard. May that never become the licence to devalue another person’s hardships or the invitation to let our fears fill the space that opens up. May it become instead a moment to marvel at your gift of unconditional love: the security that provides us with a confidence not our own. 

Amen.

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30 November 2020

God of days with multiple arcs. God of the stars in the sky: there are countless reminders and signs of your grace, your promise to always be near. May we in our habits and the stories we tell remember the truth underneath. May we notice and witness to a steadying strength: the love that cradles us all.

Amen. 

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20–22 November 2020

God of those who hunger and thirst, God of the ones we imprison: you meet us in the lives of others. Too often we seek you by pulling away,by retreating into ourselves or by assembling some body of like–minded souls. And yet, the way to find you is not in separating ourselves one from another, but in seeking your presence alive in encounter;
in meeting the needs of the people before us: the ones in your family we’ve sought to exclude.

Amen.

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19 November 2020

God of the softness of night, God of the brightness of day: the change that comes at twilight and dawn arrives with no fuss, yet is reliably revolutionary. In a matter of moments what was hidden is exposed, and what we wrestled with can be put to rest.  May we, in these daily transitions, find comfort and solace, and learn how to ease into
transformation with a grace you build into each day. 

Amen.

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18 November 2020

God of Martha, God of Mary: in opening our homes to you, in opening our lives to you, may we also open ourselves, so we are able to simply receive. May we quiet our need to impress and allow ourselves to be moved; May we still an impulse to stay busy, and turn to the task of being still. And then may we find a better thing, in the company of loved ones and rivals: new purpose in the things we attend to. 

Amen.

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17 November 2020

God of the stories that include us, God of the inclusions that restore us: we need each other to thrive. Without the other we are incomplete. In our fiercer independence we grow smaller and less true. It is our inter–dependence  that reveals what’s best within us all. If we should be cut off from our fullness, stunted by a sin of self–assurance, show us that the lack in ourselves is the space for something greater: and our work with others a discovery of the holy in ourselves.

Amen.

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16 November 2020

God of each breath, God of this next breath: may this moment we’re in be a moment now filled with reassurance and grace; with kindness and patience for ourselves and for others. May it be marked by hope and compassion, by learning and unlearning. May it be a moment unencumbered by mistakes we’ve made or results we fear. May it be a moment of peace and renewal; a breath of new life.

Amen.

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13–15 November 2020

God of those in acute need, God of those in chronic need: months and months in, we still struggle to know how cautious to be, how much risk to accept, how ‘normal’ we safely can act. As hospitals fill up and shops remain shut; as political postures blur into policy decisions, may we gain wisdom from you so that our cures may not do more harm than disease, and our wants not outweigh neighbours’ needs. 

Amen.

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12 November 2020

God of our faith, God in our uncertainty: in our shock and in our lack of shock; in our constant surprise, and in our numbed sense that nothing may surprise us anymore; you have been present. You remain with us, giving reassurance when things seem lost;
reinvigorating us when we grow complacent; telling us it’s okay to be tired when we need a break. May we find the balance of neither doubting your steadiness nor take it for granted.

Amen. 

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11 November 2020

God of sacrifice, God of silence: after years of battle, the moment came to quiet the guns
and acknowledge the loss. That moment, extended now for over a lifetime, continues to witness to others’ valour and honour, and also to our madness of turning to war again and again. May we in this silence do more than remain still. May we commit to lives lived
worthy of peace.

Amen.

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10 November 2020

God of hope–filled trials, God of a cautious release: as we begin to imagine good news arising from the measured process of labs and computers, of heroes and scientists, of incomplete successes and instructive failures, may we allow ourselves a sigh of relief,
but draw in more strength so that a winter of waiting may bring a spring of renewal.

Amen.

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9 November 2020

God of those we call enemies, God of those you call family: may we learn that democracy
is not about outnumbering the opposition in a struggle for dominance. It is about learning more about those with whom we disagree, our fellow citizens; so that instead of drawing more to one side or the other we can co–create a greater whole. 

Amen.

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8 November 2020 

God of Mary, God of Martha: in opening our homes to you, in opening our lives to you, may we also open ourselves, so we are able to simply receive. May we quiet our need to impress and allow ourselves to be moved. May we still an impulse to stay busy, and turn to the task of being still. And then may we find a better thing, in the company of loved ones and rivals: new purpose in the things we attend to. 

Amen.

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17 November 2020

God of the stories that include us, God of the inclusions that restore us:  we need each other to thrive. Without the other we are incomplete. In our fiercer independence we grow narrow and less true. It is our inter–dependence that reveals what’s best within us all. If we should be cut off from our fullness, stunted by a sin of self–assurance, show us that the lack in ourselves is the space for something greater: that our work with others is the discovery of the holy in ourselves. 

Amen.

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16 November 2020

God of each breath, God of this next breath: may the moment we’re in be a moment now filled with reassurance and grace; with kindness and patience for ourselves and for others. May it be marked by hope and compassion, by learning and unlearning. May it be a moment unencumbered by mistakes we’ve made or results we fear. May it be a moment of peace and renewal; a breath of new life. 

Amen.

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13–15 November 2020

God of those in acute need, God of those in chronic need: months and months in, we still struggle to know how cautious to be, how much risk to accept, how ‘normal’ we safely can act. As hospitals fill up and shops remain shut; as political postures blur into policy decisions, may we gain wisdom from you so that our cures may not do more harm than disease,and our wants not outweigh neighbours’ needs. 

Amen.

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12 November 2020

God of our faith, God in our uncertainty: in our shock and in our lack of shock; in our constant surprise, and in our numbed sense that nothing may surprise us anymore; you have been present. You remain with us, giving reassurance when things seem lost; reinvigorating uswhen we grow complacent; telling us it’s okay to be tired when we need a break. May we find the balance of neither doubting your steadiness nor taking it for granted.

Amen.

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11 November 2020

God of sacrifice, God of silence: after years of battle, the moment came to quiet the guns and acknowledge the loss. That moment, extended now for over a lifetime,continues to witness to others’ valour and honour, and also to our madness of turning to war again and again. May we in this silence do more than remain still. May we commit to lives lived worthy of peace.

Amen.

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10 November 2020

God of hope–filled trials, God of a cautious release: as we begin to imagine good news arising from the measured process of labs and computers, of heroes and scientists, of incomplete successes and instructive failures, may we allow ourselves a sigh of relief, but one that draws in more strengths so that a winter of waiting may bring a spring of renewal.

Amen.

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9 November 2020

God of those we call enemies, God of those you call family: may we learn that democracyis not about outnumbering the opposition in a struggle for dominance. It is about learning more about those with whom we disagree, our fellow citizens; so that instead of drawing more to one side or the other we can co–create a greater whole. 

Amen.

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6–8 November 2020

God of our exposed divisions, God of your uniting spirit: there is a rawness to democracy. A revelation occurs as we see more of who we really are. And with that clarity comes a choice to stand with or against each other. Remind us that you stood with us, when you knew we were wrong, when you didn’t agree with our choices, when we were quick to turn against you. So may we now choose to stand with all those we can, and in the choice to be together, may we find new ways to thrive.

Amen.

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5 November 2020 

God of those who agree with us, God of those who don’t: keep us from dividing the worldinto us and them, for or against, good and bad. Remind us that humans and human systems are always more complex than the binary choice of on/off, up/down. As you have met us in the reality of a living, breathing human life, may we meet each other againas three–dimensional people and not as another yes or no. 

Amen.

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4 November 2020

God of the moment we are in, God of the time it takes: even though tensions build over days and weeks and months and years, we still expect results to arrive in minutes or in hours. As we wait for human beings to do the work of counting and accounting, may we respect the time it takes to process human endeavours; to calculate beyond an instant the expressions of will and faith and hope that are more than mere moments.

Amen. 

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3 November 2020 (with words from Lincoln’s 2nd inaugural address):

God of charity for all,God of malice toward none: be with us. Be with us as we ‘strive to finish the work that we are in to bind up a nation’s wounds.’ Be with us as we ‘do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.’ Be with us on this and every day. Be with us all. 

Amen.

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2 November 2020

God of childhood stories, God of grownup concerns: democracies are about faith. We choose to believe, not just in ideals, but in people. We choose to trustsomething as unpredictable and unreliable as ourselves. Democracy rests on the faith that we ourselves can rule ourselves not only when we get what we want but also when we don’t. Be with us in this test as you have been with us in the past so that we might reward the faith you place in us. 

Amen.

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30 October – 1 November 2020

God of the dust to which we return, God of the ash that enriches the soil: there are seeds from trees that open only after a fire has passed through. They push the tips of their roots down when the sunlight above has space. May we remember that after all we see passes away, the gifts you promise remain. Faith. Hope. Love. And the greatest of these is taking root now in the soil of compassion and kindness.

Amen.

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29 October 2020

God of the long to embrace, God of the reunion to come: so much of what you told us about separation and waiting, about sons and brothers and widows rejoicing, takes on new meaning these days. As we note how part of ourselves is aching for connection and completion, for ghost limbs of a shared humanity, may the bone of our bone and the flesh of our flesh return in the form of those among us we had not fully counted before. 

Amen.

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28 October 2020

God of serenity and courage, God of serenity and wisdom: may we know the difference your promise makes as we struggle to be patient; as we steel ourselves for disappointment, and speak our will out loud. We pray that in a raw and honest vulnerability, as we wait and fret and hope, we remember that the truth you ask us to accept is the good news brought by the better angels of our nature: news of justice and mercy and peace, of those left out brought in. 

Amen.

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27 October 2020

God of healthy disagreements, God of principled stands: we need not have the same mind to sit around the same table. We need not share precise beliefs to fit within a home. We need not speak the same dialect to be a part of a loving family. And we need not see the world the same to know it’s big enough for all. As we hold firm to what we know is right may we honour the ground where others stand so that more of the earth, and more of our imagination, may be hallowed in your name.

Amen.

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26 October 2020

God of late night chats, God of early morning thoughts: the time we make with friends, and the time we devote to friendshiprestores and rewards us. We pick up the phone or join up for a stroll, or simply look in the eyes of those closest to us. As creatures of connection, we come alive as we relate our place and our own story to others, to shared memories and dreams. So help us to dream ourselves into a fuller and richer humanity, with those we already know we love and those who are always loved by you. 

Amen.

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23–25 October 2020

God of the friends who change our minds, God of friendships that change who we are: we give thanks that in being with and for others, we become something different ourselves. Instead of pretending to know another’s experience, or believing the worst of what we’ve heard; we can assume that what’s best in us is also true for others. To lead with trust instead of fear is to have the faith that you are God not just with one, but with all; not just for us but for everyone. In finding you in the lives of others, we find more of you within. 

Amen

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22 October 2020

God of a welcomed pause, God of a calming exhalation: we can move so fast in our thoughts, our actions, our reactions and whims, we can’t quite catch up with ourselves. Even in lockdown, even on days cleared of scheduled tasks, we can fail to stop and accept from you a moment’s gift of rest. When time seems both to barrel on and hardly move at all, may we catch our breath and settle in to your unhurried pace, so that we might then with steady minds approach the task at hand. 

Amen. 

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21 October 2020

God of the hope we cling to, God of the hope that won’t let us go: be with us as we push forward and as we pull back. Be with us we loan courage to friends and receive some back in return. Be with us as proclaim a truth with certainty, and when we harbour real doubts. Be with us as we dream up crazy new plans and when we are brought to our senses. Be with us this moment as you always have been with a hope that never has faltered. 

Amen. 

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20 October 2020

God of cleared fields, God of replenished stores: the season that passes from seeding to harvest does not bring us to our destination. It brings to us the substance we need to carry ourselves further along. As we look back at how far we’ve come and see the journey ahead, let us give thanks for our progress and the produce of time, so our growth may continue each day. 

Amen. 

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19 October 2020

God of waking children, God of ageing parents: right now, our world contains those we’ve known for all our lives and those whose lives are just beginning. In this moment, as surreal as it is, we can still hold together a family of friends and companions with lines of communication and daily short connections. We give thanks for these domestic and digital bonds. But may we also, through your spirit, extend our reach to actively commune with others still unknown to us but likewise dwell with you.

Amen.

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16–18 October 2020

God of the chaos we fear, God of the day we create: the eternal nature of your love is something greater than permanence. We don’t so much rest upon it because it is fixed and unchanging, as we continually discover it: surprising and true. Morning by morning new mercies we see. Give us faith not in what we hope can still last from the first breath of creation, but in what arrives in this newborn moment: your voice bringing light with news that is good.

Amen.

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15 October 2020

God of prudent precautions, God of corrective adjustments: in community, we make decisions based not on personal convenience or private preference, but on what is best for the whole. As we pull back from a desired outcome, and let reality have its say, give us the grace to accept what is right for the many, so that life is more than survival, but a harvest that continually thrives.

Amen. 

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14 October 2020

God with us in our policies, God with us in our politics: there are rarely easy answers to the problems that confront us. We do our best and make mistakes and fix the damage done. We try and fail and try again but remain connected with each other. We pray for those who represent us, as well as those who don’t. May we find new ways to compromise without compromising what’s essential, so that in fighting for what we need in life we include the needs of others. 

Amen. 

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13 October 2020

God of the strength that lifts us each morning, God of the weight that drops us down in our beds: this constant fight against gravity, this struggle to push up and away is a marker of life. It is our daily battle of no and yes. No, we will not lie still. Yes, we will live and move and have our being. We give thanks for the rest that preserves our life for tomorrow, so that as we rise from our night’s slumber, we begin again and gain a victory in each waking, determined moment; and see a glimpse, if only faintly, of an endless rising dawn.

Amen. 

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12 October 2020

God of narrowing autumn light, God of branching autumn colours: as we hunker down for these darker months, may we wrap ourselves up in the memories of days together. May our homes house the laughter of visits from friends, and sounds from a kitchen in the midst of a party. May our cosier moments in the season ahead give us the feel of the company we keep even in our separation, even in our waiting for spring to arrive. 

Amen.

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9–11 October 2020

God of pilgrims who share this journey, God of travellers upon this road: This path changes us. The conversations we’ve had, and the views we’ve gained; the hurt we’ve endured, and the muscles we’ve trained: they bring us to a new place and to a newer sense of us. As we unpack the things we’ve carried and recount for what we’ve lost, may we marvel again at the journey itself, the gift of walking with others along a path that takes us into and beyond ourselves. 

Amen.

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7–8 October 2020

God of the billions alive on this earth, God of the one who feels most alone: we all share this crisis, this moment; we all hang on this hinge in our history. Yet we know that some are more affected than others: more vulnerable to disease, more at risk from injustice; who can’t afford to return to the normal. As this pandemic has exposed a common fragility, may it reveal a common desire to learn and to change, restore and protect, so that all may enjoy a sense of belonging, and know that what comes will be good. 

Amen. 

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5–6 October 2020

God of power that is not brute strength, God of connections that empower us all: when will we learn that not every obstacle demands that we force our way through? When will we see that that admitting our limits does not leave us in want or at risk? When will we trust that our dependence on others is not a symptom of weakness, but the glory of humans made complete in relationship? May that understanding, that insight, that faith be part of our being today. 

Amen.

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2–4 October 2020

God of this full moon, God of our eyes that cannot see the moon is always full: so much of reality is hidden from us because of where we stand. As this season turns and our attention naturally wanes, may we not forget what we have seen or try to cloak in shadow what we pretend was never there. And may we start to recognise how our positions blind us from what is really there.

Amen. 

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1 October 2020

God who was before all the chaos, God who will be in the Eden to come: set us down in this moment with our boundaries fixed. As we look to each other to make sense of this world, remind us that there is no horizon that will not lead us to you; our spirits will not find a place to hide from your searching love. So may that knowledge inspire new courage to build again structures of justice, and bring out anew from an unsettled state a community whose heart is steadied by you.

Amen.

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30 September 2020

God of the truth beneath our truths, God of the foundation beneath our facades: we give thanks that there is something beyond our control firmly devoted to our wellbeing. We give thanks that there is strength available to us in the moments we want to give up. We give thanks that sounding clear through the noise and distraction is a whisper from you calling our name with the promise that you’ll always be with us. 

Amen. 

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29 September 2020

God with us in difficult conversations, God with us in difficult silences: each moment and every mistake gives us the chance to learn, to understand and to change. Before we react in fear or anger, may we steady our breath and calm our minds to remind ourselves that your love for us is not in jeopardy. And with that reassurance, may we seek the truth we need to hear, and receive the grace we mistook as threat. 

Amen. 

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28 September 2020

God with those on the margins, God with those on the edge: as we confine ourselves to what we know and retreat to spaces we deem safe, remind us that are less likely to find you there. We will find ourselves alone with the idols we carve and coddle and miss the chance to touch your hem as you head out to those in need. But even as we fold ourselves into our comfy pockets, your grace doubles back to find us and, with a cut, reveals the edge we stand against when we see ourselves as central.

Amen.

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25–27 September 2020

God who knows our fears, God who knows our hearts: we’ve taken your world and created an endless game of winners and losers. We’ve set up a ladder that gets us no where but up and down. Bring us down to earth. Free us from this hierarchical nonsense so we can see each other face to face and respond to real needs without the fear of falling.

Amen, 

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24 September 2020

God of changing winds, God of steadying hands: be with us on days when we find ourselves in doubt, so that we can be for others when they need some reassurance. Give us extra strength when we are feeling weak, so we can lend a little muscle to those who need support. Grant us a double portion of your grace, so that when we are lacking enough for ourselves, we can still extend the peace that comes from resting in your steadfast love.

Amen. 

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23 September 2020

God of persistent widows, God of eventual justice: as some sit in the luxury of reflecting on how much can be take for granted, others add their weight and their voice to causes that may never benefit them directly, but can make it more likely for rising generations to experience what all should enjoy. May we see privilege not as a reward, deserved or not, but as a tool in hand to build a better world.

Amen.

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22 September 2020

God of earth’s effortless turning, God of this cycle of seasons: one day on the calendar marks both the beginning of autumn and the beginning of spring; the end of the north’s summer and the end of the south’s winter. While distant from each other, we are connected by a rhythm, a push and pull of light. May it remind us that our journey is not one we take alone, and that the darkness we enter cannot stop the coming dawn. 

Amen. 

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21 September 2020

God beneath the encompassing sky, God above the hardening earth: in this thin space between, the great human drama plays out with deep and deepening pains and endless moments of joy. Even as we take note as to how small our part may be, may we take heart that our next breath can hold a message of light and love, like the one that brought your creation to life.

Amen.

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18–20 September 2020

God of justice, God of grace: in trying to make sense of this world and our place in it, we train ourselves to expect reward for our work, and that our worth will correspond to our effort. As you give us today what we need, may we consider not where we stand in relation to others, but how we might stay in communion with those who, like us, are dependent on divine generosity.

Amen.

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17 September 2020

God of risky love, God of divine courage: to be ready to listen we should know what it’s like to be heard; to be good at giving support, we should know what it’s like to be held. We give thanks that our best relationships not only provide additional strength; they help us practice the skill of being human by being vulnerable. And therefore, strangely, of being more like you.

Amen.

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16 September 2020

God of our great ideas, God of our better angels: when we are sure that we are right and that our solution is the best, warn us of the danger that we pose. Often, the insistence on one way will make it harder for others to agree, particularly when we think it’s the only answer that makes sense. Help us as we choose to let go of what we might want to impose so that in the space that opens up, a co–created possibility might emerge. And then help us see that what is mind is hardly ever as nice as what is ours.

Amen. 

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15 September 2020

God of lifelong companions, God of sudden discoveries: we know that to be honest with others risks pushing them away; we know that their honesty with us will show what we’d hide. Let our relationships be the process of our becoming, so that we are shaped by laughter and tears, by squabbles and smirks, by courage and comfort, by another who sees us better than we can.

Amen. 

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14 September 2020

God of long walks with friends, God of the longer walk of friendship: we give thanks for the accidental encounters, the weekly catch–ups, the second cups of tea. We give thanks for the desire to pick up the phone, the thought to send a line, the time we make when we have none. We give thanks that humans are relational creatures, begun before birth in contact with another, and forever after made not for efficient productions, but for deeper connections. 

Amen.

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11–13 September 2020

God of our distinct identities, God of our shared possibilities: if we want the world to change, and ask others to change, we must be willing to change ourselves. We give you thanks for the faith to believe that what is true and good in us will remain and be revealed. Through this transformation, and even in our letting go of what we want to protect, may we trust that we will find you holding on to who we are meant to be.

Amen.

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10 September 2020

God of righteous anger, God of unsettling compassion: even if we do not seek it, we can find ourselves with much that can leave us upset. Too often we choose to dwell there, taking residence in resentment. We pray that we you would move us, and unseat us from this state with a grace we hope that we can carry forward. May we take the lessons gathered and change direction as is needed, so we end up in a new place on the path of peace you show us.

Amen.

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9 September 2020

God of the long hard look in the mirror, God of steadfast love: the knowledge of your undying love does not give us permission to do what we want, or license to act with overconfidence. Instead, may it may it give us courage to address what is broken in ourselves and the will to change what we can. May our faith in your grace reassure us that no matter what we find staring back at us, it will be accompanied by your ever–loving presence.

Amen.

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8 September 2020

God of changed minds, God of changed hearts: sometimes a good argument can affect our thinking, and in turn our affect our behaviour. But more often, it’s a better relationship that with someone we thought we’d figure out that reveals what our minds had missed, exposing the flaw in our certainty. No matter how we come to know that your truth is different to what we imagined, may this revelation lead to a gentle revolution, and may our turning around bring us closer to you.

Amen.

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7 September 2020

God of incremental changes, God of seismic shifts: this year has seen the world transformed, even if we sometimes feel that we have barely moved. As we assess where we are now in this stranger, familiar place, may we take heart in knowing that the simply acts of kindness and compassion we extend help shape the world that’s yet to form and affect what happens next. 

Amen.

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4–6 September 2020

God of the spaces between us, God of the fractures within us: in the gap between what is and what should be there is room for empathy and learning. There are truths that we don’t yet see, but could come to understand if we care enough to ask, if we imagine the reality of others, if we have the courage to change. May we enter that space knowing well you are there, waiting for us to join you in a recreation of what was empty into a garden full of life. 

Amen.

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3 September 2020

God of form and frame, God of tension and resistance: to grow we need something to push against. We need conflict to reveal what we think, how we feel, and for whom we’re willing to fight. We need conflict to train us how to be kind when we really don’t what to; how to make room for others because we simply have to, and because it makes a better space for us all. As we struggle and strain, may we hold our own but always in connection with others. 

Amen.

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2 September 2020

God of new lessons, God of old truths: this faith of ours is in what lies beyond us, not just within. As we release ourselves from the trap of thinking we have it all figured out, and turn to you and others for help, for the strength and insight we don’t possess, may the fear of not being in control be replaced by the assurance of never being alone. 

Amen.

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1 September 2020

God of our knowing selves, God of our inquisitive selves: when we stop being curious, our relationships wither. May we encounter others today not with our minds made up, but our ears pricked up with interest and fascination. May we form questions still open to the possibility of surprise, finding something wonderful in the answers we weren’t expecting, and discovering how everyday experiences can still change us, when we let them.

Amen.

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31 August 2020

God in our conflict, God in our learning: to be human is to find ourselves in relation to those with different goals, different needs, different ways of being. Remind us that our disagreements are the not the end of our connection. May our differences inspire curiosity. May our questions lead us to better conversations, letting us see the world through others’ eyes. 

Amen. 

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28–30 August 2020

God of friends, God of enemies: perhaps the great act of faith these days is not a belief in you, but a belief that you are present in the people we want to turn away. Help us discover that there is always more to love when we see others as you do; there are differences not just to tolerate, but to celebrate. As you have remained with us and for us despite all we have done to withdraw, may we remain with and for others, judging not as you could judge, but loving more than we deserve. 

Amen.

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27 August 2020

God of good folk doing their best, God of lost sheep who have lost their way, we need patience: with ourselves, for others, in the midst of this pandemic. You have patience. If there’s one thing you’ve got, it’s patience. So be with us as we take a breath, as we reach out for your hand, and as we take another next step with you. 

Amen. 

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26 August 2020

God of honesty, God of grace: opening up to others raises a fear of being judged, for reasons both legitimate and imagined. And so we pray you would let us love ourselves the way you do: to recognise another child of God. May we also find you alive in those who listen to us and hear our story, so that instead of judgement we are given compassion; and instead of rejection we are offered embrace.

Amen. 

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25 August 2020

God of differing views, God of growing consensus: our noticeable disagreements can easily obscure the agreements that hardly need mentioned. We don’t expect to hold the same opinions or to view the world the same. But may we keep the points that distinguish us from becoming the wedge that divides us; and may our multiple perspectives provide a fuller glimpse of you.

Amen.

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24 August 2020

God of humility, God of courage: each conversation we enter, if honest and meaningful, will expose a vulnerability. We share our life experiences, the good and bad, and open up to pain. We reveal our ignorance of things, both consciously and not. And so we pray for your grace to be with us in these imperfect conversations. For acknowledging our weakness will reveal your loving strength; and facing our fear together will lead to something better.

Amen.

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21–23 August 2020

God of opening possibilities, God of grace at the table: faith in you is faith in humanity. You have loved us enough to remain with us through death. You see in us what we fail to see ourselves: that each person we encounter is a child of a loving God, a partner for a better world, a voice that adds meaning to this prayer. May we be freed to be ourselves, to live the life you want, and in that freedom find communion, and your presence in our midst.

Amen.

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20 August 2020

God of welcome, God of boundary: we give that that each of us can be our full selves in the community you create. And we pray that with your grace, our way of being our true selves will never harm others or prevent them from being their true selves. May we welcome one another as you have welcomed us, so that the lines we draw together trace the image of your love.

Amen.

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19 August 2020

God of empathy, God of embrace: your image rests in all of us, even those we push away As we find the courage to welcome ones we have seen as other, may we find a clearer glimpse of your eternal presence with us, and discover in our encounters, our truer, better selves. And then may we, despite our brokenness be received into your wholeness, into a family where no difference can deny that we belong.

Amen.

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18 August 2020

God of the people, God of the daoine, God of the Rén, God of the ashkhas, God of the bobl, God of the personas, God of the Menschen, God of the log, God of the lydui, God of the watu, God of the dhaoine: may our glorious human diversity, which we confuse with babble, be the way our spirits unify in your incarnate love.

Amen.

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17 August 2020

God of the guest house, God of the rooms we prepare: the ones we welcome and the ways we welcome will reveal a great deal about how we receive your good news. May we, in this time of social distancing and human longing, accept your invitation to meet you again in the stranger, and to meet you ourselves in the emotions we house, and at doors we either open or close.

Amen.

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14–16 August 2020

God of friends we’ve lost, God of friends we’ve kept: these surreal days we’re sharing do not meet us all equally; the private agonies that some are experiencing can be obscured by our universal ordeal. Remind us that today may be more difficult for others for reasons we do not fully see. May our solidarity in one experience not blind us to others’ pain, and may we be for them in ways that meet their needs.

Amen.

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13 August 2020

God who holds us in our brokenness, God whose healing makes us whole: the biggest event of our lives is still unfolding. It is not something to be outmanoeuvred or outwitted. This story is still incomplete, and our recovery has yet to begin. That unknowing is part of our pain. There is wisdom in accepting the things we cannot change. But there is strength in remembering that nothing, not even what we can’t control, will separate us from your embrace.

Amen.

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12 August 2020

God of childhood summers, God of lifelong memories: these present days are unlike any that have come before, but remind us a little of surprising moments that appeared when we were growing up; days of discovering ourselves for the first time in the context of others; seasons of actively figuring out who we thought we were. May we all renew our license to explore again who we can be, so that when this crisis is over, we’re all a little more grown up.

Amen.

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11 August 2020

God of this shared earth and this shared experience: may this great leveller of a disease, this reminder of our common fragility, our mortality, and our recognisable fears, be also the great correction in our collective story. May this be the moment when we start again with clearer eyes and kinder hearts, and with a renewed resolve to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly together.

Amen.

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10 August 2020

God of receding tides, God of rising waters, more has become exposed from around us and within: beauty and ugliness, resilience and hurt. May we hold what we discover from these pools of hidden life with gentle curiosity. And may what we find lead us into a daily rhythm of extending your grace further across near and distant shores.

Amen.

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8–9 August 2020

God who withdraws into quiet, God who returns with reassurance: after you took time for yourself, you approached the disciples with a calming power. May we, even as we fail to match your miraculous ways, find peace like yours in the care we offer ourselves. And then may we, in the midst of new storms, quiet the fears that unsettle our hearts.

Amen.

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7 August 2020

God of deeper conversation, God of deepening relationships: with so little known about what lies ahead, may we take the time to meet ourselves again, and to encounter anew the people we say we know. These strangers who may be close to us have more to share when we open ourselves to renewed curiosity and trust that undiscovered joys lie within the connections we already have.

Amen.

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6 August 2020

God of our protective impulses, God of the common good: help us as we make decisions in the dark that will affect not just ourselves but those we love and those we should love. Give us the courage to trust not just our primal instincts, but the good news that what is best for the whole, for the neighbour and the stranger, is what protects the best in ourselves.

Amen.

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5 August 2020

God of those who make good trouble, God of those who prize peace, we have been blessed by two who testified to the light just like their namesake before them: one Baptist, one Catholic; both fearless. We give thanks that on bridges in Selma and Derry, in marches and decades of politics, they continued to spill their sweat and blood so that love would overcome hate, and to show that a struggle, if righteous and just, should never have to be armed.

Amen.

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4 August 2020

God of our growing hope, God of a learned caution: guide us now as our experiences diverge. Some are eager to move forward, with a certain degree of risk; others continue to rely on the shield of our collective respons. Grant us patience. Increase our courage. Give us the sense to know when we’re being overly careful, and when we’re being cavalier. But keep us united, so we might find our hope together.

Amen.

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3 August 2020

God of gardens we never noticed before, God of the time we didn’t know we had: we give thanks for weeks of renewal, for changes of scenery, for hours set to a different clock. We rejoice in the eyes we have to see this beautiful, hurting world again. We pray that as we return to scheduled patterns, we will continue to note the realms of glory all around us, the saints who have struggled on, and the joyful, urgent work we have to do.

Amen.

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3 July 2020

God of community, God of our deepest self: in this time of isolation and protective separation, the truth of our connection has risen to the fore. Although our fear–based structures are more fragile than we thought, the bonds of human kindness contain the strength of godly love. We give you thanks that beneath this worldly tumult and within our beaten hearts we know that God is with us and will be with us still.

Amen.

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2 July 2020

God of extraordinary kindness, God of ordinary folk: as we reform ourselves in these rebuilding days, we are bound to mimic the behaviour of others. May we not get distracted by those who sound and fury signify nothing. Remind us of a divine potency alive in those who quietly carry on with compassion; whose simple goodness, their gift from you, can recreate the world.

Amen.

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1 July 2020

God of the prodigals’ return, God of the rivals’ reunion: when the son neared the father, he bowed as a servant and relinquished all familial rights. It was the same gesture Jacob made when he came near Esau in fear. Their repentance and humility were immediately engulfed in a full–bodied embrace, into a restoration of what was lost and a fuller celebration of what was found. As we return to patterns of work and life, and find ourselves face to face again, may we be restored will all our humility and repentance intact.

Amen.

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30 June 2020

God of eternal life, God of letting go: throughout this long season and over a century of days, you have remained constant as we’ve rediscovered ourselves. There is more change ahead. This pandemic is not finished. Nor are we. As we continue to be transformed, may we cling to kindness and mercy; to courage and trust; to faith and hope; to undying selflessness. May divine love be made flesh and given breath in the life that changes with you.

Amen.

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29 June 2020

God of the second mile, God of the turned cheek: some who receive more hardship respond with greater love. Their faith runs all the deeper and their hope becomes like rock. With acquired humility they keep accumulating lessons and accomplish more beyond a terminal sentence than those who barely start. We give you thanks for saints whose shortened lives contain enough for several books; whose every thought and prayer and pause deserves an extra page.

Amen.

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27–28 June 2020

God of prophets at the door, God of cool cups of water: justice is hard to define and harder to apply, but love lived out in public is never out of reach. Help us all to welcome the instinct in ourselves to do the right thing in the moment we’re in. As we greet the one before us with the kindness we’d expect, may our reward be no stranger than an offer of a drink.

Amen.

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26 June 2020

God of caught breath, God of welcomed pause: so much has happened so quickly that we can lose a sense of time. As we continue to pace and prepare ourselves for more unknown to come, we are grateful for the faithfulness you promise: the ‘strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow’ we find morning by morning. Give us that song. Have us hum it by heart. May we share the new mercies we see.

Amen.

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25 June 2020

God whose face is never seen, God whose image shall not be made: you knew –– even before we melted gold to worship a beast –– that we would be quick to put our face, our skin, our accent, our culture up on a throne and give it your name. Save us from this idol that we want. Remind us that you not you are not the best version of us, so that might rank ourselves in second place. Show us again that to be divine is to relinquish power, to empty one’s self in love. May we find you again alive in community rather than lifeless in our reflection.

Amen.

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24 June 2020

God of honest conversation, God of ever–listening saints: how we wish we’d found the words and the courage in the moment to say what needed said when loved ones were much closer, and the time was almost right. Remind us of the time we have alive with you right now. Yours is an ear alert for prayer; ours a communion in which to listen. Help us in silence with you, in words for others convey both love and concern, and may those who hear and those who speak receive the message of your peace.

Amen.

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23 June 2020

God of human touch, God of spiritual embrace: this biggest event of our lives will live on in our tissues, something our bodies are actively learning to hold. And so the kindness we show to ourselves, and the support we offer each other, is not just for right now. May the soothing techniques we practice and centring breaths we take hold us in this moment and train us for moments to come, so that without thinking we can find ourselves again, in your presence.

Amen.

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22 June 2020

God of midsummer light, God of midwinter snow: as our tilted earth rounds the bend and turns along its course, we note the connection we have with those around the world, whether they are basking in the fullness of the season or rejoicing in the sun’s return. May we know that even though our highs and lows rarely coincide, the story of this year and the shared rhythm of this life provides a commonality with all, even those to whom we are opposed.

Amen

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20–21 June 2020

God of uncovered secrets, God of fearless truth: to have faith in your goodness is to trust that after all we would hide is revealed, and all of our whispers are heard, your undying love will remain, and your truth will stand unchanged. May we forgo our protection of self, and find life made whole in shalom.

Amen.

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19 June 2020

God we see in familiar faces, God in the strangers we think we know: as we meet again and see each other on the street or on a screen, give us a moment to look again and discover how people can change. There are worlds within each person we love, and also within those we don’t, and steps to take from point a to point b that we can walk together. As we set out for the good ahead may we greet what’s new inside us.

Amen.

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18 June 2020

God of sisters and brothers, God of growth through conflict: we see raw heartbreak when our children realise how elusive fairness can be. We gasp with them as they learn that even childish pranks and playful teasing can draw real blood. Young tears can signal a realisation that words and actions born from fear can harm the ones we love. May our growth in this time out reassure each other. And as members of a family you maternally adore, may an unquestioned bond now hold us as when a sibling seeks forgiveness. 

Amen.

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17 June 2020

God of revelation, God of unveiling: the truths that many would pretend to discover are truths that others could never avoid. May this time be the time of conversation about matters that lie underneath fears and prejudices, and beneath a wilful blindness.

May your revealing of what has always been change us and what is to be, so that in acknowledging each other and the sins brought to light we might never find such cover again.

Amen.

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16 June 2020

God of constant assurance, God who is forever new: a life of faith is not without risk. There is no telling what lies ahead when we choose to let go of what has been. But as we set off on this next adventure of finding our newer and truer selves, remind us that it is in becoming that we remain the people you created us to be. 

Amen.

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15 June 2020

God of the community well, God of our individual needs: having gone through this together we will draw from these days a shared experience for years and years. Yet each of us balances this pandemic’s challenge with private struggles and dissimilar circumstances. May we take into account the additional weight that we and our neighbours will carry, so that as we lend (and accept from) each other support we can draw out more lessons from this well of community, and bring home all that we can.

Amen.

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13–14 June 2020

God of the plentiful harvest, God of the shaken–off dust: there is enough work to be done

and enough good to be found that no defeat can be final, no success a time to stop. As we set out to help heal this world, remind us that our own power will always be insufficient, but that your limitless spirit can speak through the words we proclaim of the good news of heaven come near.

Amen.

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12 June 2020

God of our healthy fears, God of our courage and faith: there is a strengthening pull wanting to carry us back to what they call normal. But there is also cautious resistance and a reluctance to embrace all that was. Help us in this in between. As we venture out and relax restrictions, may we not forget the dangers, nor lose sight of what we’ve gained in a time of self–imposed limitation. Strengthen our patience to let this play out; and may the lessons we carry help us pull through.

Amen.

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11 June 2020

God who weeps with us, God who rejoices with us: as we mark the seriousness of this pandemic, and lament the extent of our brokenness, give us the faith to see that the power that lies beneath us and that holds us fast to you is the power of justice. Remind us of the presence of joy in the hearts of those who know that love and beauty and kindness will last when all that is empty fades away. 

Amen.

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10 June 2020

God of each moment, God of all time: years from now 2020 will still be present in our collective memory; not just for ourselves or our families or this town, or this nation, but for all people, everywhere. May this shared experience, with its sorrow, its anxiety, its lessons and revelations be the beginning of a new ‘we,’ the us you’ve been with from the start.

Amen.

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9 June 2020

God of the scales held in her hands, God of the scales that fell from his eyes: we pray for those who have waited far too long for justice; and for those who have taken far too long to see that systems said to be balanced and blind work for some but not for all. May repentance come quick, not from a fear of being condemned, but in the hope of being set free from the seesaw of us–them, win–lose, and from the blindness of seeing only what we want to be true. 

Amen.

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8 June 2020

God of cathartic tears, God of embodied joy: how good it is has been to see a familiar face, to hear comfort in a dear friend’s voice, and to share our grief with someone who knows. As we move through this unbounded and exhausting time may we note the moments when we’ve been our most human: when our bodies instinctively responded to the truth of being alive and a part of something greater. 

Amen.

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6–7 June 2020

God of holy relationship, God of distinct inclusion: with you and in you togetherness matters. Remind us that ours is not a life of living for ourselves. In being with and for each other, may we discover that how we relate to how we are different shows the essence of who we each are. 

Amen.

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5 June 2020

God of grace and beauty, God of the crooked shore: we give you thanks for those who reveal your grace with a wisdom they wear so lightly, in a strength they only use to lift up other people. The generosity that some show in conversation, and in lessons they impart through open silence, provides a glimpse of divine light to be found in stories yet to be told, in questions we still want to ask.

Amen. 

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4 June 2020

God of spring and God of summer: the first cutting has occurred and the birds are picking through the heaps, looking out for harvesters who will come to scoop this up. The beauty of these long rows draws our eyes up and our minds back to what has happened these last few months. We ask that you would be with us as we consider what we’ve lost and also what we’ve found. May we mark these moments well. The birds see now the valueof what will feed many through the winter.

Amen.

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3 June 2020

God of one and God of all: from our many may a unity appear. Help us find a way to hold our differences together. Bring us to the recognition that to be most fully human is to champion the full humanity of others. Your earthly image cannot be found in the mirror, but in the eyes of varied faces that reflect the incarnated divinity in our own.

Amen.

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2 June 2020

God of law, God of order: sometimes there are no words for the vanity on display. Remind us that when we use your name for loveless purposes that divide, we speak a clanging noise and your voice cannot be heard.

Amen.

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1 June 2020

God of righteous anger, God of rippling peace: somewhere, far from sight, the tempestuous sea and this quiet bay connect in one great body of water, linked to rivers and streams that extend a backward reach to headwaters far beyond our shore. May we on this earth, separated by vastly different experiences, kept apart by distance and the barriers we make, be united by your spirit, that the pain of one might be borne by all through the channels of your peace.

Amen.

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Earlier prayers are available through our resource page.

For prayers from Easter through Pentecost 2020:

https://www.corrymeela.org/cmsfiles/Prayers-for-Community-in-a-Time-of-Pandemic---Easter-to-Pentecost-2020.pdf

For prayers from the date of lockdown to Easter 2020:

https://www.corrymeela.org/cmsfiles/Prayers-for-Community-in-a-Time-of-Pandemic---Lockdown-to-Easter-2020.pdf

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Prayers for Community in a Time of Pandemic

© The Corrymeela Community, 2020