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A Prayer in the Face of Violence

Tragedy often lifts our face to seek comfort and understanding from the Divine. I share with you some thoughts and prayers from various faith traditions as you try to hold the victims of today’s tragedy in your hearts.

Throughout history God has manifested his love and care for those who have suffered from violence, hatred, and oppression. We commend the victims to the healing mercy of God who binds up all our wounds and enfolds us in his gentle care.

The Christian scriptures share the words of Jesus to his disciples: “Are not two sparrows sold for a small coin? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s knowledge. Even all the hairs of your head are counted. So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Matt 10:29-31)

The Jewish scriptures share God’s word through the Prophet Isaiah ““Comfort, O comfort My people,” says your God. Speak kindly to Jerusalem [those who have suffered exile]; and call out to her, that her warfare has ended. (Isaiah 40:1)

Mahatma Gandhi would turn to the Bhagavad Gita for words of comfort; “O Lord of lords, O refuge of the worlds, please be gracious to me. I cannot keep my balance seeing thus Your blazing deathlike faces and awful teeth. In all directions I am bewildered.” (Gita 11:25)

The Qu’ran carries the promise of Allah, “For indeed, with hardship will be ease.” (Qu’ran 94:5)

May the One that surpasses all suffering and overcomes all hatred protect us from the violence of others and restore to us tranquility and peace.

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