A Prayer for Syrian Refugees

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Tonight, Community of the Way joined Eucharist Church in San Francisco for a benefit dinner for Syrian refugees.  We heard from a World Relief representative, ate delicious falafel, and prayed for refugees throughout the world.

If you are looking to pray for refugees, you may want to use this Litany that we prayed at the end of the evening.  The basic structure of the litany came from World Relief, and it was modified and developed by Rev. Kristen Yates.

Litany for Refugees

Leader: Lord, in this season of Advent when we wait for your second coming, when we wait for that time when you will wipe away all tears and make all things new, we make special petition this night for the refugees in this world. Creating, Redeeming, and Sustaining God, would you come soon and relieve the suffering of the displaced peoples in this world. Maranatha, Come, Lord, Come.

Leader: Almighty Lord, as you guided the Israelites through the wilderness,

People: would you be a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day for refugees in search of new hope and new life.

Leader: Almighty Lord, as you brought the Israelites out of bondage to freedom,

People: would you deliver refugees out of their persecution and bring them into places of safety.

Leader: Almighty Lord, as you protected the Israelites through 40 years in the desert and 70 years in exile,

People: would you protect those who languish for years in refugee camps far from their homelands.

Leader: Almighty Lord, as you sent your angels at various times to care for your people Israel and for your Son Jesus,

People: would you surround the refugees of this world with your heavenly host, that they might know your loving care and protecting power.

Leader: God of Peace who promises that one day all swords will be turned into ploughshares,

People: would you put an end to the warfare and tyranny that has displaced so many people, that some may yet return to their homes, without fear of violence.

Leader: Jesus Christ, Prince of Peace, as you yourself opened up your heart to the marginalized and the hurting, sick, forgotten, and broken ones in your midst,

People: would you open up the hearts of the leaders of this world, that some nations may open up their doors and provide refugees with safe homes in new lands.

Leader: Creator God who intends for all men, women, and children to have abundant life,

People: would you rebuild the refugee’s lives that have been torn down by injustice, that they might enjoy the fruit of labors and the joys of their families in peace.

Leader: Creator God, who created all families of the earth and who says “it is not good for man to be alone”,

People: would you strengthen the refugees bonds of friendship and family, that they might bring delight to one another even in challenging times and so they might serve one another with encouraging love.

Leader: Provider God, who cares for the birds of the air and the lilies of the field,

People: would you restore the refugees’ material goods and provide for all their needs, that they might sustain their families and experience shalom.

Leader: God of Comfort and hope, who sent his prophets to give words of encouragement and hope to your people Israel in their time of exile,

People: would you encourage the refugees now, giving them great hope for a future filled with promise.

Leader: God of Comfort and Hope, who will wipe away all tears at the end of time,

People: would you wipe away the refugees’ tears of sorrow and despair, that their mourning many turn into dancing.

Leader: God of Comfort of Hope, who is overflowing with love for your whole world,

People: would you sustain the refugees with your love, that they might feel the warm embrace of your care and your delight in them.

All: Welcoming God, as you yourself were welcomed into this world as a vulnerable baby boy and a stranger born in Bethlehem so many years ago; may we welcome you once again as we welcome strangers into our homes, our churches, and our nations. May you inspire your churches to welcome refugees, so that together we might build communities of hope where aliens become neighbors, and where strangers become friends. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.