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Prayer for the World May 15, 2024

Mission and Making a Positive Difference


Introduction

Our Constitutions state the following:  We work with others to promote justice among all people and to eliminate whatever oppresses the human spirit.  (#11).  How are you and I, how are we together to do this in our own unique circumstances, with our unique gifts and limitations?  Each day is a new beginning, a new opportunity to dream, to love ourselves, others and God…to make a difference with the people we meet every day, in our prayers for  individuals and situations near and far, in our hope rooted in faith that a better world is possible. 


Song:  SOMEWHERE TO BEGIN by Sara Thomsen


People say to me: You must be crazy,

How can you sing (dream, love) in times like these?

Don’t you read the news?

Don’t you know the score?

How can you sing (dream, love) when so many people grieve?

And people say to me: What kind of fool believes

That songs (dream, love) will make a difference in the end?

By way of a reply I say: A fool such as I,

Who sees a song (dream, love) as somewhere to begin.

CHORUS

A song (dream, love) is somewhere to begin

To search for something worth believing in.

If changes are to come

There are things that must be done.

And a song (dream, love) is somewhere to begin.

 

Reading

One of our gifts as a congregation is the financial resource we have to contribute to groups who are making a positive difference in our name.   Catholic Mobilizing Network is most grateful for the grant they received from us this year which furthers our corporate stance to eliminate the death penalty.  It is a national organization that mobilizes Catholics and all people of goodwill to value life over death, to end the use of the death penalty, to transform the U.S. criminal justice system from punitive to restorative, and to build capacity in U.S. society to engage in restorative practices.

At Catholic Mobilizing Network (CMN), we believe that knowledge is key to transforming broken systems. That's why we offer innovative educational opportunities that foster a deep understanding of the Church's anti-death penalty teachings. We champion the Catholic call to healing practices like restorative justice and shed light on the flaws of our current criminal legal system.  Our advocacy empowers people of faith to stand against upcoming executions and promote life-affirming approaches to justice. Our work is inseparable from our faith. Guided by Gospel wisdom and Catholic social teaching, CMN proclaims the transformative power of prayer in our mission to end the death penalty and promote restorative justice.   (Excerpts from CMN’s website)


 Silent Reflection


PRAY for Jamie Mills


Alabama intends to execute Jamie Mills on May 30 for the murders of Floyd and Vera Hill.  At this time, Jamie's legal team has requested that no action be taken on behalf of Jamie. New evidence has recently emerged demonstrating that the state's key witness who implicated Jamie Mills in the murders of Floyd and Vera Hill was given a plea deal to ensure her testimony. At the time of the trial, the state insisted that no deal had been struck.


We ask that you join us in praying for Jamie, his victims Floyd and Vera, and all people impacted by his acts of violence. We also invite you to pray for Jamie's legal team, and all those who love him.       (CMN’s website)


A Prayer for Justice by Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ


God of Compassion, You let your rain fall on the just and the unjust.Expand and deepen our hearts so that we may love as You love,even those among us who have caused the greatest pain by taking life.For there is in our land a great cry for vengeance as we fill up death row, and kill the killers in the name of justice, in the name of peace.

Jesus, our brother, you suffered execution at the hands of the state,but you did not let hatred overcome you. Help us to reach out to victims of violence so that our enduring love may help them heal.

Holy Spirit of God, You strengthen us in the struggle for justice,Help us to work tirelessly for the abolition of state-sanctioned death, and to renew our society in its very heart so that violence will be no more.  Amen.

 

Silent Reflection


Song

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