Gathering in Silence
Call to Prayer
Lighting of Candle
In the name of Jesus Christ, welcome to this service of peace. “Listen to the Voice that echoes across the eons of time and yet speaks anew in this moment. Listen to the Voice, for it cannot be stilled, and it calls you once again to the great and marvelous work of building the peaceable kingdom.”
—Doctrine and Covenants 162:1b
Today in our prayers we remember the people of Benin (be+NEEN), a nation in Western Africa. Benin’s history is steeped in the slave trade and voodoo. It is a small country filled with natural and diverse beauty, and is home to one of the best wildlife parks in West Africa.
Scripture Reading—1 Samuel 2:1a, 2, 7-8
Hannah prayed and said,
“My heart exults in the Lord;
my strength is exalted in my God.
“There is no Holy One like the Lord,
no one besides you;
there is no Rock like our God.
The Lord makes poor and makes rich;
he brings low, he also exalts.
He raises up the poor from the dust;
he lifts the needy from the ash heap,
to make them sit with princes
and inherit a seat of honor.
For the pillars of the earth are the Lord’s,
and on them he has set the world.
Prayer for Peace
O God, we come again to pray for peace. Help us to be sensitive to your spirit as it calls us to be instruments of peace making. May we be touched by an understanding of what you are calling us to do.
We feel so inadequate as we try to bring peace to persons or communities in conflict. We even sense the lack of peace within ourselves. We pray, but feel we make no impact in situations of distress. We pray for peace, bit it is not there.
However, we know you continue to ask us to be instruments of peace in places where we find ourselves. You want us to cause peace to grow in places where we are. We need your insight as we try to do your will, as we try to let peace grow and as we give you the honor and the glory.
Help us to see how we can be peace makers we pray in Jesus' name. Amen.
Today’s hymn is “Draw the Circle Wide,” number 273 in Community of Christ Sings. Sing or silently reflect on the meaning of the text.
Prayers of the People
As we enter a time of guided prayer, meditation, and musical reflection, you are invited to offer silent prayers or meditate during the moments of quiet. The Prayers of the People this day begin with ourselves and then, enlarging life’s circle, move outward to include those we know and love, to strangers and enemies, to the entire world, and to all of creation.
Please join with me in today’s prayer and meditation; quiet your breathing and embrace God’s eternal grace as you become aware of your own responses to the guided prayers of the people.
God, you are the still point of the circle within which all creation is found. I yearn to connect with your spirit of peace and experience the companionship of your presence in this moment. May I abide in the center of creation’s circle with you?
Creator of horizons, help us draw the circle wider to include those I know and love, and even those I struggle to understand and accept. Fill this circle with the gifts of forgiveness, mercy, compassion, and peace. Give us the desire to include all whose paths cross ours into a place where acceptance is offered freely. Draw our circle wider.
Giver of dreams, let the peace we’ve dreamed of expand to embrace all your children. We remember all nations, including Benin, the country we pray for today. Within this circle may we see the other as brother and sister, and act as mutual stewards of one another. You call us to live without borders that exclude. Help us to draw the circle wider still.
God of all living things, your world longs to be whole and in harmony. The dream of shalom includes caregiving for the water, earth, air and all that has life in one great family. You created us with interdependencies. Give us mutual respect and tender care for all. Let this be our song: Nothing on your created Earth stands alone, but lives in shalom with all other living things. Draw the circle wide open.
Architect of life and peace, may we be blessed by your vision of shalom this day. May our minds, hearts, and spirits be wide enough for all to find a home. We pray in the name of Jesus Christ, God’s shalom. Amen.
May blessings of peace
Be realized today
Through the Source, Savior, and Spirit.
Go in peace.