Prayer for A New Year (150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation)

Spirit of Hope, God of Many Names, and One Transforming and Abundant Love,

We turn toward a new year,

A week into our resolutions – made or unmade,

Reflective of a year of commitments past,

And a year to come,

With its dreams,

Its demands,

And its promises of change.

May we come to know a lifetime of possibility.

Open our eyes to every opportunity,

To make amends,

To grow out of our ruts,

To remember to appreciate what is before us,

To grieve where we must,

And to let go when it is time to let go.

In building the Beloved Community on earth,

May we be moved in spirit, and in heart,

To do the work at hand.

Ever knowing that we are the ones we’ve been waiting for,

That justice and peace are possible in our communities,

In our lifetime,

Only through the strivings of each and every one of us.

We pause now in honor of the 150th anniversary of the emancipation proclamation – where slaves were freed in our nation’s history.

When we find ourselves at our most cynical,

Giving up hope that the world can bend toward justice,

May we remember how far we’ve come.

Knowing what we’ve accomplished so far,

As impossible as it once seemed to the people of another era,

So too may we be so inspired to act with conviction,

That our deeds will be remembered by a generation to come.

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