O great comforter, we are a nation in mourning. On Valentine’s Day when we celebrate the gift of love we were devastated by yet another senseless violent act at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Words are simply inadequate to express the pain and grief we feel and we can only imagine how much all of those directly impacted are suffering.
It was also Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Lenten season of repentance. With the funerals for two police officers in our own community and the tragedy in Florida our Lenten theme of being in the wilderness seems all too real just now. This is one of those times when we are so grateful for the Scripture’s assurance that you “help us in our weakness so when we don’t know how to pray the Holy Spirit intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.”
We humbly ask O God that you will grant healing mercies to those physically and emotionally wounded by these tragedies. And we pray also that our time in the wilderness will help us draw closer to you that we might be agents of healing and comfort to any we meet who are hurting. And please O Holy One show our leaders and all of us how to live according to your will that our broken nation might come together in peace and cooperation that benefits all.
We pray for those named in our own prayer concerns this day with the assurance that you know our needs even before we ask. Our needs are many but today we especially pray that those who mourn will be comforted as we name those who died on Wednesday in Parkland:
Carmen Schentrup, Meadow Pollack, Peter Wang, Nicholas Dworet, Christopher Hixon, Aaron Feis, Luke Hoyer, Alaina Petty, Jaime Guttenberg, Martin Duque, Alyssa Alhadeff, Helena Ramsey, Scott Beigel, Joaquin Oliver, Cara Loughran, Gina Montalto, and Alexander Schachter.
Lord, in your mercy hear our prayers in the name of Christ who taught us to pray…..