SIGNS OF HOPE - 4 SNOW PATROL BAND MATES AND JESUS
BUILDING A CITY OF GRACE POETRY BOOK LAUNCH

BUILDING A CITY OF GRACE PRAYER

Philip Belfast hoola

photo: Philip McCrea

 

(This is the prayer I prayed at the 4 Corners Festival Broadcast Service on BBC Radio Ulster on Feb 2, 2020. It includes some of the poem Building A City Of Grace that appears in this years 4 Corners Festival poetry book of the same name)

 

Lord, we give thanks

Indeed we worship you, the Creator God

As we gaze and often take for granted

The wondrous beauty of our city

 

Cavehill in the north

Belfast Lough caressing the East

The Lagan Tow Path to the Giants Ring in the South

Davis Mountain to the west

 

Forgive us when we miss the beauty

Of the setting of the wonderful city

That you grace has gifted us

 

Forgive us when we use and abuse your gift

Forgive us when pump pollution into our air and our waters

When we damage the ecological circle of life

 

Forgive us when we use and abuse each other

In the houses and streets and work places and parks

Forgive us for the hurt, 

Mental, emotional, spiritual and physical 

That we cause to family, neighbours and the stranger.

 

God we thank you for the example of your grace

That you moved towards us

When we had caused enmity with you

 

Lord we thank you for that grace of unmerited favour

That in Jesus life, death, resurrection and ascension

You demonstrated your love for us in this

That while we were still sinners Christ died for us.

 

God, we thank you that when we confess our sins

You are faithful and just to forgive us of our sins

And purify us from all unrighteousness

 

So, Lord, with our sins forgiven

We ask that you would purify us now

Make us builders of a city of grace

 

 

Lord,

In every building

On all our streets

May Love be the language

As neighbours greet

 

In prison yards

And Church retreats

May Grace be the force

When politicians meet 

 

Lord as the prophets saw visions of a day

When the swords would be turned into ploughshares

 

So, we pray for the day in our city

When army Saracens would be turned into surgical beds

When sniper bullets would be turned into children’s colouring lead

When the guilty in our courts would be redeemed into contributors instead

When all our decadent feasts would be the food that made sure our hungry are fed

 

Lord build a city of grace

And begin by making me a builder.

In the name of the Cornerstone of your building

Jesus our Lord

Amen

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