Prayer for places of worship, including Bethlehem Lutheran

Group 236

Bishop Graham wrote this prayer shared in many synod congregations, joining hearts with our brothers and sisters of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Fairfax, Virg.

Multiple news outlets reported on recent incidents there, including sanctuary damage and graffiti that included racial and religious slurs after a break-in on June 26, 2018. On June 26, the congregation posted to Facebook a photo from a candlelight vigil and this excerpted text: “We have been encircled by the faith community, our neighbors, and friends both near and far with amazing love and support proving that love does bear all.”

Good and gracious God,
in the midst of so much we cannot understand, we turn to you and ask for your mercy.
Comfort your people at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Fairfax, who grieve over damage done to the place in which they worship you.
Protect all places of worship threatened by violence and bigotry and hatred.
Turn the hearts of all who do evil.
In the name of the Prince of Peace, we ask for you send peace in our communities and around our world, so that all may praise you, the God of all hope and consolation.
To you be glory for ever and ever.