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Justice Prayers - October 6, 2021

"God sees the broken as the best and he sees the best in the broken and he calls the wounded to be world changers." - Ann Voscamp 

COVID-19 Deaths Reach 700K in U.S., Surpasses 5 Million Worldwide

Last week, the Covid-19 death toll in the United States surpassed 700,000, despite the Covid-19 vaccines’ wide availability. “Reaching 700,000 deaths is a tragic and completely avoidable milestone. We had the knowledge and the tools to prevent this from happening, and unfortunately politics, lack of urgency and mistrust in science got us here,” John Brownstein, an epidemiologist at Boston children’s hospital, told ABC News. Days later, the number of people who have died across the globe as a result of coronavirus surpassed more than 5 million, as the virulent Delta strain continues to ravage unvaccinated countries. In the U.S., experts are hoping that hospitalizations and deaths will decrease as the surge in cases due to the Delta variant seems to be decreasing and vaccine mandates are starting to roll out, though vaccine distribution will have to increase significantly around the globe for the aforementioned decreases in cases and deaths to apply to largely unvaccinated countries. 

Lord, God, have mercy on us. Grant us peace. Grant us health, sound science, and truth. We’ve lost an unspeakable number of people, so many of us having lost family members, coworkers, neighbors. We plead for the resurrection. 

Libyan Government Crackdowns on Migrants; Thousands Arrested

On Friday, raids in in the western town of Gargaresh, Libya as part of what authorities described as a security campaign against undocumented migration and drug trafficking has resulted in the detention of 4,000 migrants, including hundreds of women and children, according to officials. The interior ministry, which led the crackdown, made no mention of any traffickers or smugglers being arrested. The United Nations (UN) said one migrant was killed and at least 15 others injured when Libyan security authorities carried out the raids. “Unarmed migrants were harassed in their homes, beaten and shot,” the UN humanitarian coordinator for Libya Georgette Gagnon said.

For migrants in Libya, we pray. For their protection, their wellbeing, and their ability to stay together as families and friends. For the sin of violence and nativism that permeates our world, we pray for remission and for your deep comfort. 

Canada Marks Its First National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

The new statutory holiday commemorates the victims and survivors of Indigenous residential schools. The holiday was codified in June 2021 — around the time when hundreds of Indigenous children's remains were found in unmarked graves at several such sites. between 1831 and 1998. The government separated some 150,000 Indigenous children from their families and forced them to attend the Christian boarding schools in an effort to assimilate them into Canadian society. The new holiday also falls on Orange Shirt Day, an Indigenous-led grassroots movement that asks Canadians to reflect on the treatment of First Nations people. It was founded by residential school survivor Phyllis Webstad, whose favourite orange shirt was taken away on her first day of school. 

God of justice, God of peace, God of truth, God of resurrection, we pray that this first day for truth and reconciliation be the starting point for a revival of values that permeate the entire nation; values of truth telling, non-violence, radical love, and companionship across difference. 

Global Religious Leaders Make Appeal to COP26, Member States to Save the Planet

On Monday, Pope Francis and other religious leaders made a joint appeal on Monday for next month's U.N. Climate Change Conference (COP26) to offer concrete solutions to save the planet from "an unprecedented ecological crisis". The "Faith and Science: Towards COP26" meeting brought together Christian leaders including Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, as well as representatives of Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Zoroastrianism and Jainism. "Each of us has his or her religious beliefs and spiritual traditions, but no cultural, political or social borders or barriers prevent us from standing together," Francis said.

We give you thanks for the words of our leaders, and even more boldly we pray that words of leaders don’t fall flat. May they divest their retirement funds from fossil fuels, adopt clean energy solutions for their buildings and operations, promote right living with the creation, and guide our spiritual and ecological selves into the future.

Becoming (part of) the Answer to our Own Prayers

Biblical Advocacy 101

You can download or order copies of our introduction to advocacy books!  

The Inconvenient Indian: Book Club

This self-guided book club is perfect for your existing small group or gathering. Based on Thomas King's The Inconvenient Indian we provide discussion questions and speakers via video to guide your group.

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