We pray for the queer community,
frightened by the massacre in Orlando,
wondering why living their lives
as the people you made them to be
put a target on their backs.
We pray for our queer children,
gay, lesbian, bi, trans,
already afraid, careful of danger,
some suspicious of religion,
doubtful of us and of you.
We pray for the Latino community,
reeling from the loss of so many of those killed,
coming to grips with the double bias
suffered by queer people of color,
haunted by the shooter’s choice of Latin Night for his attack.
We pray for the survivors of the shooting
for their healing,
and for a sense of your presence,
and for the friends and families
grieving a terrible loss.
We pray for your church,
that we might all come to grips
with the way we have treated others,
that we might not be silent but instead
speak against hate and proclaim your love
and enact your justice.
Forgive those who will not speak
because they are afraid.
Forgive us when we are afraid.
Bring us to a new understanding:
all your children are precious to you.
Prevent us from categorizing others
in ways that give us lenience
to look the other way.
Help us, Lord, to see the world through your eyes,
to recognize that your kingdom is right here and right now,
to live in your love in our relationships with all we meet.
Remind us that wherever we live,
however we pray and whoever we love,
we are yours. Amen.
(This prayer was composed for a Vigil Service
at Mechanicsburg Presbyterian Church.)