PHILADELPHIA, July 27, 2016 Recent weeks have brought violence and senseless killings to this nation; I am thinking in particular of Baton Rouge and Dallas. It intrigues me that the Dallas assassin bore the names Micah and Xavier. So I borrow from the words of the prophet Micah and the great St. Francis Xavier in making this invocation.
Let's be mindful that we are in God's presence as we pray:
Lord God, creator and ruler of the universe: We invoke your blessing on this assembly tonight, mindful that you hold our destiny in your hands. Life itself is your gift to us. What we do with our lives is our gift to you.
Bless us, we pray, as we look to the future of our nation. Keep us free of hatred and violence. Protect us from confusion. We make the words of Francis Xavier our own: "In You, O Lord, have I put my hope. Let me never be confounded."
And we turn to Your prophet Micah to listen to You speak the words that he passed on to us: "You have been told, O man, what is good, and what the Lord requires of you: Only to do justice, to love goodness, and to walk humbly with your God." (Micah 6:8).
Help us, Lord, to work unceasingly for justice , to know what is good and seek it without fail, and to be truly humble as we walk with you into an unknown but hope-filled future.