A Prayer on the Occasion of Another Mass Shooting…

Note: Offered during the morning worship at Epiphany Episcopal Church, Laurens, SC, Sunday, August 4, 2019


In the light…in the shadow of the recent all-too sorrowfully literal round of mass shootings in the firing of raging rounds of gunfire – last Sunday in Gilroy, California, yesterday in El Paso, Texas, and this morning in Dayton, Ohio – let us pray:

O Lord God of Life by Your Spirit hold all Your children close to Your Divine breast that, come what may, our souls will dwell secure. Good Lord, spare us…

O Lord God of Love by Your Spirit comfort the dead in the eternal embrace of Your Divine security, console the wounded and the grieving with the goodness of Your grace of Your peace that surpasses our understanding, for Yours is a tranquility that prevails amid strife. Good Lord, sustain us…

O Lord God of Liberation by Your Spirit emancipate us from our warring madness that, in anger and hatred, wills to kill, that all Your children may live and love in the pursuit of happiness free from fear. Good Lord, save us.

Through Your Son, our Life, our Love, our Liberation, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



2 thoughts on “A Prayer on the Occasion of Another Mass Shooting…

  1. Paul,
    Thank you so much for this beautiful prayer!! It’s so needed! And it is comforting, though we sure do need these tragedies to end!! Very scary times we live in. I skipped church to drive to Harrisonburg, VA and recited the prayer several times already!!

    Much love!


  2. Thanks, Loretta, for reading and, even more, praying this prayer. I wrote it, in part, before getting on the highway to Laurens yesterday morning and finished it – in my head and heart – as I drove; immediately putting the proverbial pen to paper when I got to the Epiphany Church office…

    One of the issues/elements that I pondered had to do with what I consider the unabashed political angle of appealing, in prayer, for elected leaders to do something about gun violence, e.g., universal background checks, red-flag laws, etc. And I discerned that that was not a path I was compelled to take, largely for reasons that the more immediate concerns, in my mind and heart, involved offering a word of comfort and hope in the face – again – of inexplicable violence. There is and will be a time for politicizing (and I don’t use that term pejoratively), but, again, in my mind and heart, yesterday wasn’t it.

    As we carry on, a luta continua (the struggle continues) to find a better way to be a people in a national and diverse community.



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