Here’s a prayer for Australians that I was asked to offer as part of a Service of Commemoration for those lost at sea, held at St Barnabas’ Anglican Church, Broadway, Sydney, on Sunday 23 June 2013. Feel free to use the prayer in your own context. —Rod Benson]
Almighty God, in whose prophets through the ages we have seen and heard your love and justice clearly proclaimed,
And in whose Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, you have definitively declared the worth of human persons,
We pray today for all Australians:
Forgive us when we fail to recognise the right of the other person to be different, and fail to defend the vulnerable and voiceless, and fail to offer hospitality to those fleeing real danger and persecution.
Give us eyes to see the plight of our fellow human beings on the high seas and in detention.
Give us ears to hear their cries and their stories, to learn their names.
Give us lips to encourage them, and speak for them, and change hard hearts.
Give us hands and feet to love them, welcome them, care for them, and restore their honour as Jesus would.
Lord, give us a new imagination for what our nation and our world should be, and instil in all of us the courage and hope and wisdom we need to get from here to there.
We pray this in the strong name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.