A Prayer for Pittsburgh

Senior Pastor Scott Black Johnston offered this special prayer at the start of worship on Sunday, Oct. 28, 2018.

Holy God, in sadness and confusion, we come before you. In grief and despair, we bow our heads. In the midst of hate, in the face of violence, we lean on you.
We pray.
For the families of those killed in Pittsburgh, we ask your unfathomable comfort.
For the congregation at the Tree of Life Synagogue, we ask your healing.
For the shooter and all who are filled with hate, we ask for a radical change of heart.
For all those (especially in the Jewish community) who look on the world today with a fresh sense of fear, we ask your courage.
In this divisive moment, for everyone who strives to be your light in the darkness, we ask a blessing.
Our tattered hearts yearn for your blessing.
We do not want false comfort, God. This problem is too real—too big. We are surrounded by the shards of violence. 

We want another way… We need another way…
Another way of talking… Another way of seeing… 
To get there, we need your blessing. Have mercy on us. Turn us, God. Take your hand and gently turn us. Face us toward the light. Fill us with your vast, life-changing love.
Help us (all of us) to work together to stop this madness. 

This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ, our Rock and our Redeemer. Amen.

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Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church