Holy One, Scripture teaches that Jesus prayed, before his death on the cross, that we may be one in you. We lament our sins of commission and omission in which we have attempted to define “one” through human-made doctrine and poor translation and interpretation of your living Word. As you gaze upon all of creation and all of humanity with infinite love, so help us to see the divine in one another.
As we continue to gather together in Syracuse as the Upper New York Annual Conference, may our words and actions reflect your love and grace. Give us courage to speak your truth, and give us discernment to know when to speak. Grant us the ability to hear, as Martin Luther King Jr. said, “in order to listen instead of hearing to be heard.”*
Embolden us, through your Spirit, when we want to remain in a place of comfort and complicity. Enliven us with your Spirit when we seek to live as an institution and not a beautiful, diverse, messy, and wonderful body united by your love. Enfold us in your Spirit when we feel weary and want to walk away.
We pray these things in the name of God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Mother of us all.
Carmen Perry, delegate to General Conference 2020