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A Prayer for Ft. Hood

All of us are dealing with the shock of the tragic shootings at Ft. Hood yesterday. As President Obama said yesterday, it is difficult enough when we lose those in the military when they serve abroad; when it happens on a base in our home country it makes everything so much more difficult. So far a dozen soldiers are confirmed dead. Our prayers are with the families in their time of grief.

I found this litany in a worship service for those being deployed or mobilized for service. The litany is prayed toward the end of the service:

God says, "When, they call to me, I will answer them; I will be with them in trouble." (Psalm 91:15) Let us pray to God saying, "Lord, be our companion." As in baptism we put on Christ, so in Christ may we endure danger and separation in hope and love. Let us pray to God.
Lord, be our companion.
As God so loved the world in Christ, so may the love of God guide our actions, even in combat and war's uncertainty. Let us pray to God.
Lord, be our companion.
As God cares for the poor and innocent, so may nations engaged in conflict deflect harm from children, the vulnerable, and the wounded. Let us pray to God.
Lord, be our companion.
As Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives," so may we extend peace to our enemies without hatred. Let us pray to God.
Lord, be our companion.
As Jesus calls his church to be peacemakers, so may we look beyond this time of war to a world where weapons are converted to tools for growing food and materials for the rebuilding of homes and cities. Let us pray to God.
Lord, be our companion.
As in the new Jerusalem every tear will be wiped away and death will be no more, so may we yearn for a time we no more participate in anyone's grief or dying. Let us pray to God.
Lord, be our companion.

Today we participate in others' grief and dying, whether we knew the victims or not. We pray for the Spirit's comfort for all who hurt, who question, whose faith is shaken by yesterday's events. We do this in sure and certain hope for all who die in the Lord. May God's grace surround and uplift all who mourn with us this day.


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