A Voice Is Heard in Orlando

A Community Lament for Orlando

The children of Orlando sit on the ground in silence;
    Their hands bury their faces; grief has become their sackcloth.

For these things we weep.
    Our eyes flow with tears.

Our children are desolate.
    For the enemy has prevailed.

Our souls are bereft of peace:
    We have forgotten what happiness is.

The thought of such horror and death is wormwood and gall!
    We think of it continually and our souls are bowed down within us.

But this we call to mind,
    And therefore we have hope.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
    His mercies never come to an end.

They are new every morning.
    Great is your faithfulness, O Lord.

The Lord is my portion, says my soul.
    Therefore I will hope in him.

A Prayer of Confession

Lord God, who gives and sustains all life, comfort all your children, but especially those of Orlando whose minds now relive the horror and wanton destruction of life that came when your shalom was vandalized,
    Be the passionate friend whose heart breaks with all who are brokenhearted.

We turn to you for your life-giving breath; we turn to you for hope,
    We turn to you for forgiveness as we confess our sins.

Where we have failed you and others in your mission,
    Lord, forgive us.

Where we have failed to love you above all and others as ourselves,
    Lord, forgive us.

Where we have taken secret pleasure in others’ misery, believing that their suffering is deserved,
    Lord, forgive us.

Where we have not stood by those unlike us in color, language, origin, gender, gender orientation or belief,
    Lord, forgive us.

Where we have not raised our voices against oppression and injustice because ‘they’ are different,
    Lord, forgive us.

A Prayer for Restoration

Renew our lives and our faith so that we may be the Church of Jesus Christ wherever we are placed.
    Move us to dedicate our lives to your service.

As you raised your own Son from death and the grave, raise us up to new life in you.
    Move us to dedicate our lives to your service.

Empower us by the Holy Spirit to dream dreams and see visions of a cosmos in which all things are made new.
    Move us to dedicate our lives to your service.

Make us a living Church in Christ’s name, holy unto you and precious in your sight.
    Move us to dedicate our lives to your service.

Make us to be Christ in the world, finding new ways to declare your love to those around us.
    Move us to dedicate our lives to your service.

Raise up Orlando and all our communities to be better, stronger, united and devoted to our common good to the praise of your holy Name!
    All honor, glory and praise to you, God our Father, and to Jesus Christ your  Son, and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forevermore, world without end. 

Amen!

Orlando, Orlando -- I stand read to gather your children together.

Based on the work of ELCA pastor, Rev. Pastor Thomas L. Weitzel, ret.