Litanies offer a radical welcome to people in that they remove intimidation participants may feel in entering into communal prayer. Litanies say, We are here, and the grace is that we can connect without the pressure to conjure, perform, or be anything other than what we are. Litanies are a rhythmic dance laced with the lamentations and joy of old spirituals, a sacred inhale and exhale for when we find ourselves asking, What will we say when we gather?
—Shane Claiborne, in Rally: Communal Prayers for Lovers of Jesus and Justice, edited and compiled by Britney Winn Lee (Fresh Air Books, 2020)
When have you prayed with a group before participating in a political demonstration? Join the conversation.
Let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as [we] see the Day approaching.
—Hebrews 10:24-25 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
ONE: Come marchers, intercessors, artists, and prophets.
Come newcomers and those who have tried, tried again.
ALL: Get close, get close, get closer now.
Draw near, ask questions, sing songs, take steps.
We need you together.
Prayer by Britney Winn Lee
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
The final litany from Rally was written by Britney Winn Lee in the beginning days of the global pandemic. This prayer reminds us that hope endures; goodness prevails; people surprise us; and love cannot, has not, will not fail. Watch and listen.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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