Father in heaven,
We stand in powerless awe at the reports given to us of a shooting in a mosque in Quebec City, struck by the perhaps arrogant surprise it has happened to us, in one of our cities, but to them, in their own place of worship.
We are grieved at these acts of violence against your Muslim children, our neighbors, people made in your image, worthy of dignity and protection. We lament the particular depravity of a mass shooting happening in a place of worship.
Comfort their families; heal those in hospital; have mercy on the victims. Protect all Muslims as we work together to build a nation of empathy, co-operation, understanding, and peace.
We are shocked that a new intolerance has infected our nation. May your mercy be on the shooter to lead him to repentance. Let not our anger drive us to towards vengeance, but the true justice of restoration and reconciliation.
Lead us also to repentance for any hatred or lies about our Muslim neighbors that we in moral laxity or fear have held. Forgive us for building cultural walls of “us versus them,” which have contributed in thought and attitude to this heinous crime. We are a people of unclean lips. Our fears of the violent intolerance of terrorism so often have made our souls into ugly mirrors of what we detest.
Forgive us for we have been disloyal to our true nation, our true citizenship. As we cling to other loyalties before the lordship of Christ, we realize now that we privileged white Canadians are not a religion of peace! Build in us true religion that “acts justly, loves mercy, and walks humbly” with you. Tear down our false gods of nationalism, class comfort, and religious arrogance so that you may build the kingdom of heaven, which knows no borders, refuses all violence, permits no ignorance, and encompasses the full diversity of your family and the full reach of your mercy.
May all come to know the mercy of your Cross.
May all come to know the Cross by its mercy.
May we take up our crosses to be that mercy in our broken world.
Until the day when your mercy is revealed in full, we pray in Christ’s name,