fbpx

Here are a collection of prayers for racial harmony. You might draw from these prayers for use in corporate worship, your personal prayer life, or in a prayer group.

For Racial Harmony

God and Father of all,
in your love
you made all the nations of the world
to be a family,
and your Son taught us to love one another.
Yet our world is riven apart
with prejudice, arrogance, and pride.
Help the different races
to love and understand one another better.
Increase among us sympathy,
tolerance, and goodwill,
that we may learn to appreciate the gifts
that other races bring to us,
and to see in all people
our brothers and sisters for whom Christ died.
Save us from jealousy, hatred, and fear,
and help us to live together
as members of one family at home in the world,
sons and daughters of one Father
who live in the liberty of the children of God;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Book of Common Order of the Church of Scotland
(Edinburgh: St. Andrew Press, 1994)

Prayer for Peace and Reconciliation

Loving God,

We come to you first to give you thanks for all you do and all that you have brought us through. In light of the world that we are living in, we call upon you in a spirit of peace and protection.

Lord, you remind us through Scripture that we have been fearfully and wonderfully made. We know that you have created us in love and to be loved. But we live in a time where some people believe that the lives of your people have no value. We call upon you to help us, to protect us, and to remind us that the life of each person is important to you.

We pray for all of the people of African descent whose lives have been taken away without a good reason and for their families, friends, and loved ones who are left to bear the hurt and the pain of that loss.

We pray for the police officers whose lives have been taken away unjustly for simply trying to do the job they were being paid to do. Bring comfort to their families as well.

Lord, we acknowledge the hurt and the pain felt by people on all sides of this issue. We pray that you will intervene and allow the love of Jesus Christ to enter into our hearts and into our society so that we can see that life is a gift from God that we have no right to take away.

We know that hatred and vengeance are never an acceptable option to resolve a situation, so we call upon you to give us the guidance we need to make things right between us and those who have been called to protect us.

Lord, this is our prayer for peace and reconciliation, the peace that we know can come if we put our trust and our faith and our hope in you.

All of this we pray in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Amen.

This prayer was written by Rev. Dwayne Jackson and used in a service involving police and members of the community of Queens, New York.

For the Diversity of Races and Cultures

O God,
you created all people in your image.
We thank you for the astonishing variety
of races and cultures in this world.
Enrich our lives by ever-widening circles of friendship,
and show us your presence
in those who differ most from us,
until our knowledge of your love is made perfect
in our love for all your children;
through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Lutheran Book of Worship: Minister’s Desk Edition,
(Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1978)

For Leaders in the Community

God of all life,
you call us to live in community
and teach us to care for one another
after the pattern
of Jesus Christ your Son our Lord.
We pray for those whose position and authority
affect the lives of others.
Inspire them with a vision
of the community as it might be,
where love of neighbor
and concern for one another
drive out discontent and strife, anxiety and fear.
Help us all to work together
with one heart and will,
with sympathy and understanding,
to serve the common good,
to minister to people in trouble and despair,
and to multiply true happiness among us;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Book of Common Order of the Church of Scotland
(Edinburgh: St. Andrew Press, 1994)

For Prophets

You give us prophets, holy God,
to cry out for justice and mercy.
Open our ears to hear them,
and to follow the truth they speak,
lest we support injustice to secure our own well-being.
Give prophets the fire of your Word,
but love as well.
Though they speak for you,
may they know that they stand with us before you,
and have no Messiah other than your Son.
Jesus Christ, the Lord of all. Amen.

The Worship Book: Services
(The Westminster Press, 1970)

A Prayer by Martin Luther King Jr.

Yes, Jesus,
I want to be on your right side
or your left side,
not for any selfish reason.
I want to be on your right or your best side,
not in terms of some political kingdom or ambition,
but I just want to be there
in love and in justice and in truth
and in commitment to others,
so we can make of this old world a new world. Amen.

Martin Luther King Jr.: A Documentary…Montgomery to Memphis,
ed. by Flip Schulke (New York and London: W.W. Norton & Co., 1976)