By Bishop John Stowe, Bishop-President of Pax Christi USA
Loving Creator, fount of life and love, you have made humanity in your image and likeness and blessed us with the beauty of a world in which all life, which shares your breath, is interrelated. Your Son Jesus taught us to call you “Father” and he demonstrated your maternally nourishing love and care for all your children.
Help your sons and daughters to see that we form one family, help us to recognize each other as brothers and sisters, help us to overcome the desire for power over each other and to rediscover the fulfillment and joy of power expressed in loving service.
May we who continuously live on the brink of war become instruments of peace by celebrating the humanity of those who are portrayed as our enemies. May we celebrate the beauty and gifts of their cultures and discover the same expressions of longing for the fullness of life, happiness, health and peace which well up in their hearts and ours and that only you can satisfy.
May we have the grace and courage to confront leaders who act recklessly in our names and contribute to the tensions and divisions in our world and propose just alternatives. May we be willing to bind up wounds, to absorb rather than spread hostility, and to seek justice for the many who suffer the consequences of a violence which they did not choose. May all who profess belief in your incarnation grow in appreciation for the human dignity of all people and seek to live in peace.