Spirit of Memory, God of Many Names,
We commemorate this hour the lives that have been torn by war,
The soldiers who have served,
the veterans long since at rest,
the families still waiting at home for good news,
amidst our nation’s longest period of war.
May we always honor the individual sacrifices,
A burden few of us share;
While ever seeking a path to a world without such need,
A world without war,
without the reflex of violence.
Help us to believe in an abundance,
May we cease to confuse our desire for more,
With the illusion of scant resources.
We ask for forgiveness,
Where we are too silent,
Wars that bare witness to widespread loss of civilian life.
May we learn to care for our veterans when they return home,
And come to find new ways,
To learn from their experiences,
Knowing that although they may be in great need,
They have a depth of experience, stories that must be shared.
Open our hearts to the pain, the service, and the hope.
Teach us to weave new stories,
That honor the peacemakers as well as the defenders,
That lift up dialogue as virtue, not as timidity.
This morning we pray,
grant us your Peace,
where it is so hard to find.
We continue to hold this hour the neighborhoods in our city, and our region, that are still ravaged by the aftermath of the Hurricane.
For JC who still needs help in repairing her home in the Rockaways,
For our Sister congregation in Staten Island, and their minister Rev. Susan Karlson, who are working diligently as a staging ground for their community,
For the Red Hook Initiative, that many of our members are directly involved with, helping to restore normalcy to a community still without infrastructure.
For the AliForneyCenter, whose intake shelter for LGBT youth was destroyed.
May we find immediate acts of kindness to alleviate the immediacy of the need,
And may we strive for acts of sacrifice that transform our communities for the generations to come.