Pastoral Prayer for Sexual Abuse Survivors

It has been a difficult week in the news, and as always, we have silent personal struggles in the midst of everything else. And so I invite you into a spirit of prayer.

Holy one we call by many names, and sometimes by no name at all, there is a space between our breaths where we find the still small voice within. Let us seek together that place of calm.

For anyone who has experienced sexual assault or harassment, you are loved beyond measure. You are good, right, and beautiful. Your lives are more than the sum of the moment or moments that changed you. Whether the violation occurred yesterday or decades ago, may you find ears to listen, hearts to believe your story, and may gentle hands reach out to clasp yours in solidarity and support.

For female-identified people and others with female bodies, your agency is paramount, your health should never be compromised, and your body is not disposable.

For leaders and holders of power across this country, may your eyes be clear, may your hearts remain open, and may your resistance to the status quo be fierce.

For anyone who is wrestling silently with personal demons or challenging situations that are out of your control, may you be held in the embrace of the most holy. May you find ways to be empowered, and may you find comfort in the fullness of time.

May this community hold us, a calm place in the storm.

May we each strive to be the hands that gently reach out, and the fists that rise in solidarity: fierce and strong.

May it ever be so.

About the Author

Lisa Bovee-Kemper

Rev. Lisa Bovee-Kemper is a graduate of Andover Newton Theological School (MDiv, Worship, Theology and the Arts) and Oberlin College (BA, History) and has served as both parish minister and hospital chaplain. She currently serves as minister of the Greenville UU Fellowship in Greenville, SC....

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In a dark room, a circle of blurred people holding hands while also holding candles.

The Compliment

By Misha Sanders

From Braver/Wiser

I trusted the woman at the pharmacy to be capable of hearing hard truth. Bless her wounded heart with its internalized misogyny. She just wants women to love and support each other. Thank you. Me too.

The Compliment