A Prayer in Response to the Mass Shootings in Monterey Park & Half Moon Bay

God of mercy, 
We tear our hearts
Over how we keep tearing holes into each other
Lord, save us from ourselves

We are possessed
by the demon of violence
Stealing bodies from the slain
and souls from those who slay
Abel from Cain. Cain from Abel.
Lord, save us from ourselves

We shake our heads
You said our young men would see visions
our old men would dream dreams
You didn’t say anything 
about them killing each other too.
Lord, save us from ourselves

To hell with our stubborn hearts
To hell with our stubborn laws
To hell with our stubborn love of power, security, and money more than life
Lord, save us from ourselves

Oh, Great Pierced One
Oh, One who became weak
‘To our wounds
only God’s wounds can speak’*
And so we pray…
For those who lost loved ones
in Monterey Park and Half Moon Bay
hold them in your tender hands
For the communities and small businesses
who feel these gaping wounds
hold them to your tender side
For the families who are at a loss
because those shooters weren’t just shooters
but people they loved,
and still love
as you do too
hold them up on your tender back

And give us hope
To sustain our prayers
To sustain our protest
To sustain our push for change

But above all, give us hope
To believe you are turning our guns into plowshares
   hearts of lead into hearts of flesh
And that in the end
Life wins

*’Jesus of the Scars’ by Edward Shillito

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