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Prayers for Orlando

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June 14, 2016

 

Dear Friends:

 

God is weeping.  The tragic and senseless loss of life in Orlando, FL was an inexcusable, violent and evil attack on innocent human life. God doesn’t want his people to act this way.

As people of faith, we are called to do what we can to support and assist the victims and their families.  We have seen heroic actions by first responders and private citizens who risked their own lives to save others and to put an end to this vicious attack.  Medical professionals have worked tirelessly to respond to the dozens of gravely injured persons. People lined up for blocks to donate blood; untrained but well-intentioned citizens intervened to attend to the wounded and rescue those at risk.

Most of us remain geographically isolated from this tragedy, but we can do something, too.  Prayers are powerful, and we need to pray earnestly for God’s intervention, healing grace and comforting spirit to fall generously over the victims, their families, friends and the entire Orlando community. Our solidarity with people hurt by this terroristic act is extremely important.  Whether it be through private prayer, fasting, group vigils, Masses, or any other way, we need to be united and supportive with those who grieve.  As a society, their loss is our loss.  We need to denounce hatred and bigotry. As God weeps, we ask that he show us how to bring his mercy, his healing, and his love into our world.

In Sacred Scripture, Jesus tells us:”…love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” (Matthew 5:44).  That is so difficult, but it reminds us that love and mercy is the key to changing a world of hate, prejudice and injustice.  The Malvern Retreat House community is united in prayer for the victims of this tragedy, for the survivors and for a conversion of heart for any times we, as well as others, are inclined to react with violence and hatred.  Together, let us pray this prayer taken from Psalm 51:

 

  1. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
    Have mercy on me, O God, in your goodness;
    in the greatness of your compassion wipe out my offense.
    Thoroughly wash me from my guilt
    and of my sin cleanse me.
    R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
    For I acknowledge my offense,
    and my sin is before me always:
    “Against you only have I sinned,
    and done what is evil in your sight.”
    R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
    Turn away your face from my sins,
    and blot out all my guilt.
    Free me from blood guilt, O God, my saving God;
    then my tongue shall revel in your justice.
    R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.

 

May God’s weeping cease.

 

Sincerely,

Mark signatures

Mark J. Poletunow

President

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