Saturday, June 18, 2016

names of Orlando shooting victims for your prayer list

Then there is Isaiah, who saw his mother killed.

The others who were there and saw it.

Those who are grieving.

Those in the hospital or recovering at home.

The first responders. God bless them.

So many people who must have massive PTSD now.

And then there are those who are afraid they will be next.

Please pray for them, for those who love them, for those trying to help them, and for those few who are full of hatred and gladness at this action, especially given its targets. Pray for those resisting changes that would be beneficial to society but bad for business or reelection. This is not the way God created us to be.

Let's live as though we really understood what it means to be made in the image of God.


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Litany for Gun Violence Prevention offered for use

Candle from vigil for Orlando Victims
Duxbury, MA

Giver of Life and Love, you created all people as one family and called us to live together in harmony and peace. Surround us with your love as we face the challenges and tragedies of gun violence.
For our dear ones, for our neighbors, for strangers and aliens, and those known to you alone, Loving God,
Make us instruments of your peace.
God of Righteousness, you have given our leaders, especially Barack, our President, the members of Congress, the judges of our courts and members of our legislatures, power and responsibility to protect us and to uphold our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
For all who bear such responsibility, for all who struggle to discern what is right in the face of powerful political forces, Loving God,
Make us instruments of your peace.
God of Compassion, we give you thanks for first responders, for police officers, firefighters and EMTs, and all those whose duties bring them to the streets, the lobbies, the malls and the homes where the carnage of gun violence takes place day after day. Give them courage and sound judgment in the heat of the moment and grant them compassion for the victims.
For our brothers and sisters who risk their lives and their serenity as they rush to our aid, Loving God,
Make us instruments of your peace.
Merciful God, bind up the wounds of all who suffer from gun violence, those maimed and disfigured, those left alone and grieving, and those who struggle to get through one more day. Bless them with your presence and help them find hope.
For all whose lives are forever marked by the scourge of gun violence, Loving God,
Make us instruments of your peace.
God Who Remembers, may we not forget those who have died in the gun violence that we have allowed to become routine. Receive them into your heart and comfort us with your promise of eternal love and care.
For all who have died, those who die today, and those who will die tomorrow, Loving God,
Make us instruments of your peace.
God of Justice, help us, your church, find our voice. Empower us to change this broken world and to protest the needless deaths caused by gun violence. Give us power to rise above our fear that nothing can be done and grant us the conviction to advocate for change.
For your dream of love and harmony, Loving God,
Make us instruments of your peace.
All this we pray in the name of the One who offered his life so that we might live, Jesus the Christ.  Amen.
- by the Rt. Rev. Stephen T. Lane, Episcopal bishop of Maine - via the Episcopal News Service (you will also find a link to an entire liturgy on this page)

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Hingham Vigil for Orlando

Just wanted to share the announcement about another vigil tonight. I'll be at the one in Duxbury, but those of you who might be near Hingham should know of this opportunity to join the wider community in prayer.

This is the description via the Episcopal church in Hingham.

Here is the one from the UCC church's Facebook page.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Vigil for Orlando

God of Peace, now more than ever, we need to stand together against violence and hatred. Change our hearts. Prevent us from taking advantage of this horror to work against others who differ from us, whoever they may be. Show us the changes we must make in our society to help such events to cease, and give us the will to enact them. Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.

Prayer following Orlando Massacre

Gracious God, you, too, are weeping with those who weep. Comfort all who have lost loved ones, strengthen those who are afraid, and protect all those in danger from others' hatred. Prevent us from becoming numb to such violence, help us to work for change, and keep our horror from turning into blame or hatred. Heal those who have been injured in body or in spirit, and welcome those who have died into your eternal home. We ask all this in the name of your Son Jesus, who showed us your love both in life and in death and who promised to be with us always. Amen.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

shore birds and a stranded seal rescue

 This morning I took a sister to an appointment in Sandwich, down on Cape Cod just over the canal bridge. I had some time to wait, so I decided to take some prayer and walking time at the Sandwich Boardwalk to the beach, which I'd seen on the map. As soon as I arrived, I said, "Thank you, Jesus!" Very good place in the early morning. Free parking, too! Saw a Great Blue Heron fly in just as I was arriving.

After I'd left the car, I passed a truck parked by the boardwalk entrance and saw this poor thing on the asphalt behind it.  He was clearly alive, but barely twitching. Not obviously injured, however.

I went back to the truck (on the far side, away from the seal - I know that much! Do Not Disturb) and inquired about him. The man was keeping an eye on him while awaiting the rescue team. No idea how Mr. (Ms?) Seal had ended up in the parking lot. Granted, the tides have been pretty high at high tide this week, but even so! Asphalt and gravel are not good for seal tummies.

Headed off down the boardwalk towards the ocean.

Many song sparrows were singing away in the bushes alongside the marsh.

Cormorants always look so fascinating.

LOTS of common eiders out, all together in a group 

laughing gull

When I saw a few harbor seals out on the rocks, I wondered if they were missing their buddy.

look! you can even see his little antennae - if you call them that on a snail...

When the office called to say Sister was ready, I headed back across the boardwalk towards the car, wondering if the seal would still be there.

He was.

However, there were more people from the Sandwich Natural Resources Department and from IFAW, which I have since discovered means International Fund for Animal Welfare. Among other things, they do seal rescues and work to stop seal hunting. 

When they cautiously approached, I was glad to see him lift his head.

You want me to go where?

He did get a bit vocal!


Well, look, he has some energy after all! 

In you go. Very gently, but quickly and efficiently. 

All set!  I gather they will be taking him someplace to check him out medically and then, if/when all is well, release him back into the water where he belongs. I'm grateful there are people out here who do such work.