Interfaith Prayer for Justice Makers

a cluster of wooden matches, tips in the same direction, are alit. A large orange tongue of flame trails into a blue plume of smoke.

Holy One, known by many names and beyond all names, known in many ways and beyond our knowing:

We gather together this evening in the cold of winter as people of many faiths, as Christians, Jews, Muslims, and Unitarian Universalists, as believers and non believers, young and old, gay and straight, black and white, Hispanic and Asian, Republicans and Democrats, documented and undocumented, siblings and neighbors: a human rainbow united by our shared faith in the ideals of justice, democracy, community, the common good, and love of our neighbors.

Shelter us, we pray, when the cold winds of indifference, divisiveness, and narrow self interest howl in the night, chilling our hearts and rattling the windows of our souls.

Help us to find new hope, we ask, when hope is hard to find, when we forget that this struggle is a movement not a moment, when we wonder whether we’ll ever reach the promised land of beloved community and cry out in despair and frustration: "How long? How long?"

Remind us this evening and with the dawning of each new day that the moral arc of the universe is long, but that it bends toward justice.

Grant us, we pray, the strength and courage to stand up and speak out against injustice, discrimination, and oppression, to reclaim in this day and time the mantle of prophets who throughout the ages have spoken truth to power and called those with power and privilege to honor, respect, protect, and care for the least of those among us—the poor, the homeless, the hungry, the sick, the broken, the forgotten, the strangers in our land.

Grant us, too, wisdom and humility that we might speak our truth in love, remembering that “hatred and bitterness can never cure the disease of fear.”

Accompany us as you did those brave souls who, in the face of police and horses and billy clubs, crossed the Edmund Pettus bridge and walked from Selma to Montgomery to demand that the most fundamental right in a democratic society—the right to vote—not be denied to any citizen of this nation.

This we pray in the name of all that we hold sacred, holy, right, good, and true.

Let the people say “Amen.” May it be so.