God of justice and mercy,
We remember this weekend the March on Washington
and the demand for peace
50 years have passed and much has changed.
Yet 50 years have passed and too much remains the same.
Open our minds so that we can dream again your dreams
Open our hearts so that we can reflect your justice and mercy
And be changed.
Show us how to best love one another, as we lift up the prayers of this community.
[read aloud the prayers of the congregation]
And we acknowledge those prayers
-those sacred joys and passionate concerns-
which are too tender or feel to fragile to risk speaking aloud.
We lift those up as well.
[pause for silent prayer]
Teach us how to best love one another.
And remind us that even after 50 years
Love is a commitment that must be renewed daily.
It works for good in the world.
It stirs up in us a desire to serve
And to live peaceably.
Help us to devote our days to walking
in the living traditions of Jesus,
helping the poor
tending to those in need
welcoming the disenfranchised and excluded.
Give us the strength to break chains.