A prayer for the victims of the Washington Navy Yard shootings

*by Jay Voorhees

Master of the Universe,
it has happened again.
We don’t know the details,
even as the news crews report breathlessly
every scrap of information that floats by in the wind.
We don’t know the perpetrator of this violence,
nor their motive for their crimes.
What we know
is that once again people are glued to their TV’s
and are filled with fear,
for in spite our our illusions of order and control
we are faced with the truth that we live in a world of brokenness.
We pray for all this day who are directly affected by this tragedy,
the families of those who have been killed,
those who have been wounded,
the first responders and caregivers who rushed in to help
and will be tormented by nightmares of horror,
all those this day whose lives are changed by this act of violence.
We also pray for the perpetrator of this crime
and his/her family that must deal with this in their lives.
As we watch, listen and read the latest,
help us to remember that they only weapon against fear is love,
the only ammunition against terror
is the knowledge that you are with us
providing light in the midst of the darkness,
and hope in the midst of our hopelessness.
Move those of us who are United Methodist
to seek after peace,
to offer love,
and to proclaim the truth that you are with us
in good times and bad,
and that nothing can ever separate us from your love.
In the name of the one who experienced death
and triumphed over it
so that we might be freed from its power,
AMEN

*The Rev. Jay Voorhees is the pastor of the Old Hickory United Methodist Church in Old Hickory, TN and the Executive Editor of The United Methodist Reporter. 

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The United Methodist Reporter wants to encourage lively conversation about The United Methodist Church and our articles in the belief that Christian conversation (what Wesley would call conferencing) is a means of grace. While we support passionate debate, we cannot allow language that demeans or demonizes others, and we reserve the right to delete any comment we believe to be harmful or inappropriate. We encourage all to remember that we are all broken and in need of Christ's grace, and that we all see through the glass darkly until that time we when reach full perfection in love. May your speech here be tempered with love, and reflection of the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. After all, "There is no law against things like this." (Galatians 5:22-23)
 
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