Aug 18, 2012

9/11 Litany of Penitence & Thanksgiving

Here’s a litany of penitence and thanksgiving for the anniversary of September 11.  It was written by Tobias Stanislas Haller.  He writes “This Litany may be used as a single long prayer or divided into two sections for use in different parts of an interfaith service.”

The bold lines are to be read by the congregation.

Litany of Penitence & Thanksgiving for 9/11

Most Holy and Almighty God,
who created the earth and all that is in it,
and gave dominion over it to our first parents in the days of their innocence:

Look with compassion upon the whole human family,
When we fail to treat each other with the dignity your children merit.

Free us from all arrogance and hatred,
That our hearts and hands may be made clean in your sight.

Break down the walls we build to separate and divide us,
For without your help we perish in our isolation and division.

Forgive us our faults and sins,
our hasty judgments and our rash presumption,
For you alone are judge, and know the secret faults of every person.

Unite us in the bonds of love,
That we may truly be your children.

Comfort us in the loss of those we love and cherish,
For you seek and find the lost,
and preserve them in your care.

Enlighten us in our confusion and distress,
That we may do your will in peace and harmony.

Even in the midst of our anguish and our pain,
in our memory of loss and destruction,
we turn to you, O Lord our God, and give you thanks,
for your continued mercies and the gift of hope.

We thank you for inspired hearts and helping hands,
For all who work to recover and rebuild.

We thank you for the skill and care of those who heal the wounded,
and comfort those who mourn,
Give them strength and courage in their task.

We thank you for the leaders of [our city], of our nation, and our world,
Give them the wisdom and patience to chose your path.

We thank you for all who seek the truth, who love justice and mercy,
and who walk in your ways,
Give them the humbleness of spirit to love and serve you always.

We thank you for the knowledge of your continued presence with us.
For you will not leave us comfortless.

You are the God who works wonders,
In you only is our trust.

O God, you are the source of wisdom, justice, love and peace:
Give us in our present need the light of your wisdom,
the courage of your justice,
the patience of your love
and the assurance of your peace. Amen.

~ written by Tobias Stanislas Haller, BSG, in Liturgical Resources for the first anniversary of 9/11/2001.  Posted on the website of the Episcopal Diocese of New York.