Pastoral Prayer for October 2, 2022

Loving God,

We pray for all the people hurting from the devastation

of hurricane Ian.

(The following is adapted from Walter Brueggemann)

We are aware, acutely aware in your presence,

            of the grind of tanks,

            of the blast of mines hidden against human flesh,

            of the rat-tat-tat of sniper fire.

We are aware of the stench of death,

            bodies of countless Ukrainian soldiers and civilians,

            bodies of countless Russian soldiers,

                        and the smell makes us shiver.

Such smells and sounds are remote from us,

            but not remote from us are bewilderment,

                                    and anxiety, and


We are bewildered,

            whether they are liberators or invaders,

            whether they are terrorists or freedom fighters,

            whether we should yearn for peace or yearn for victory.

The world has become so strange,

            and our place in it so tenuous.

There is so little agreement among us,

            perhaps so little truth among us,

            so little, good Lord, that we scarcely know how to pray,

                        or for what to pray.

We do know, however, to whom to pray!

We pray to you, creator God, who wills the world good.

We pray to you, redeemer God, who makes all things new.

We pray to you, stirring Spirit, healer of the nations.

We pray for guidance.

We pray for your powerful mercy,

            to put the world – and us – in a new way,

            a way after Jesus who gave himself,

            a way after Jesus who confounded the authorities

                        and who lived more excellently.

Whelm us by your newness, by peace on your terms –

            the newness you have promised,

            of which we have seen glimpses in your Son

                        who is our Lord.


Independent and United Church of Christ