What Ferguson Taught Us: Two Ways You Can Pray for Your Community

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
What Ferguson Taught Us: Two Ways You Can Pray for Your Community

At The High Calling we talk a lot about vocation and calling and the integration of faith and work. Sometimes, as we do our work, we make mistakes. Sometimes, mistakes are made by others. Sometimes, our credibility at work and in our community comes into question. Sometimes, our credibility deserves to be questioned.

Even as we seek to serve God and serve others in our daily work, at such times we must stop and confess our personal and collective failures.

If you are hearing about Ferguson and wondering what you can do, The High Calling invites you to join us in confessing our failings before God. A special thank you to Annie Barnett for two beautiful printable PDFs of these confessions and to Lutheran World Relief for bringing them to our attention.

A Prayer of Confession 1

Download a Printable PDF

For our incapacity to feel the suffering of others and our tendency to live comfortably with injustice,
God forgive us.

For the self-righteousness which denies guilt and the self-interest that strangles compassion,
God forgive us.

For those who live their lives in careless unconcern, who cry out “Peace, peace” when there is no peace,
we ask for your mercy.

For our failings in community, our lack of understanding,
we ask your mercy.

For our lack of forgiveness, openness, sensitivity,
God forgive us.

For the times when we are too eager to be better than others, when we are too rushed to care, when we are too tired to bother, when we don’t really listen, and when we are too quick to act on motives other than love,
God forgive us.

Jeremiah 6:13-15, 8-11
Pietermaritzburg Agency for Christian Social Awareness, South Africa
Source: Traidcraft

A Prayer of Confession 2

Download a Printable PDF

God, you placed me in the world to be its salt. I have been afraid of committing myself, afraid of being stained by the world. I did not want to hear what “they” might have to say. And my salt dissovled as if in water.
Forgive me, Jesus.

God, you placed me in the world to be its light. I was afraid of the shadows, afraid of poverty. I did not want to know other people’s struggles. And my light slowly faded away.
Forgive me, Jesus.

God, you placed me in the world to live in the community. Thus you taught me to love, to share in life, to struggle for bread and justice, your truth incarnate in my life.
So be it, Jesus. Amen.

Peggy M. De Cuehlo, Uruguay
Source: TEN DAYS for Global Justice

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Marcus Goodyear is Editor of The High Calling. He fully supported Deidra Riggs' desire to travel to Ferguson last weekend to listen to the stories of people who live and work in the community. Read more about that trip on the blog of our editor, Deidra Riggs, or at Jennifer’s blog. Other writers on the trip were Preston YanceyLisha Epperson and Nish Weiseth.

What Ferguson Taught Us About Hope

Last weekend, The High Calling and several others visited Ferguson, Missouri, to listen. We heard stories from pastors, police, and members of the community. All week, we are sharing what we learned from this experience in a bonus theme What Ferguson Taught Us, chronicling everything from our time with Capt. Ronald Johnson of the Missouri Highway Patrol to our time with people on the street.

" … hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us." Romans 5:5

Photo by Deidra Riggs. Printable confessions by Annie Barnett.