Wednesday, January 20, 2016

A Pastoral Concern -- Prayer for the gift of life and protection of the unborn


          For 43 years (as of January 22), abortion has been legal in America.  Many consider it a right.  Some even boast of it, as if the death of an unborn child is something to be celebrated and championed.  It is a disgusting evil, and it is equally disgusting that it is defended and supported by so many.  If you happen to have stumbled across this little blog and are one of them, repent.  Please.
          For those who are seeking comfort or support from the bitterness and scars (particularly the mental and spiritual anguish of post-abortion distress) caused by abortion, you can contact any number of Pregnancy Counseling centers.  You can check out the Redford Pregnancy Counseling Center in Redford, MI  (west suburban Detroit, 24-hour hotline is posted on the web page).  You can also find information about pro-life issues at Christian Life Resources.  But if you are truly grieved by your guilt, please go to a pastor for confession and absolution.  Jesus has paid for all sins, and there is no need to have to bear the burden of guilt and shame--even for abortion.
          In recognition of the dark day on which Roe v. Wade decision was made (Jan. 22, 1973), this litany is offered for your use, whether personal or congregational.  If memory serves, I drafted this, so there are no copyright issues.  If I actually did borrow it from another source, I will update this post and state where I got it from if/when I found out.
          Kyrie, eleison.  Lord, have mercy!

A Litany for the Gift of Life 
and for the Protection of the Unborn

P: Almighty and eternal God, you have created this world and all of us in it.  We praise you, for we are fearfully and wonderfully made.  Lead all people everywhere to see that you are our Maker and that we are the work of your hands so that all would consider human life to be sacred.  Protect and defend all to whom you give life, whether born or unborn, until that day when you take our life from us again.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

P: Heavenly Father, you do not delight in the death of the wicked, but that all would turn from their evil ways and live.  Keep us from evil, and forgive us our sins.  Strengthen us to proclaim your Law and to warn those who would continue in their sins.  At this time, we especially pray that you would help us to warn those who continue in the sin of abortion.  Work mightily through your word to bring to repentance all who seek, provide, or support these willful acts of murder.  Change the hearts of people who see this wrong and dare to call it a right, and who are so blind to call good what is evil.  We ask not only that our nation may be cleansed of this heinous sin, but also that you turn all people from their evil ways so that they would live.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

P: Lord of the nations, you have given authority to the governments of this world to bring order and protection and to punish the wrongdoer.  We pray for our rulers that they would act responsibly in their positions over us.  Cause the leaders of our nation to restore justice for the unborn, who are being oppressed and killed.  Grant our President wisdom and courage to speak out against abortion.  Guide our legislators to propose, support, and pass laws that would protect the life of all people, whether unborn, elderly, frail, defenseless, or handicapped.  Move our judges to do your will in all cases which decide life and death.  Teach all rulers to despise what is evil and to cling to what is good.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

P: Heavenly Father, you have commanded us to live chaste and decent lives.  Bring all people to recognize the virtue of chastity, to exercise self-control over their sexual impulses, to honor marriage, and to keep the marriage bed pure so that every pregnancy is a cause for joy rather than regret.  Teach husbands and wives to regard children as a reward to be cherished and not a burden to be avoided.  Grant to all pregnant women, according to your mercy, a happy result in their childbearing.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

P:   Merciful Father, we thank you for the mercies you have bestowed upon us through your Son, Jesus Christ.  Many still bear the guilt, the shame, and the scars from sins they have committed against you.  Reveal to fearful sinners your mercies through the sufferings and death of your Son, Jesus Christ – whose body was cut, abused, and pierced to pay for sin, whose life was given up for the benefit of all, and whose blood was shed to cover over our guilt and shame.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

P: Gracious Redeemer, you have called us to be the salt of the earth that this world might be preserved from greater wickedness.  Grant that more people will take your word to heart so that they will not sin by killing their children.  Bless those who work in our Pregnancy Counseling Centers so that they may faithfully speak your word to those who come to them.  Let the fear of your wrath crush those who plot wickedness, and let your forgiveness deliver the penitent from damnation and despair.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

P: Gracious Redeemer, you have called us to be lights to the world.  Embolden us to bring your word to those around us.  Strengthen each of us so that, by our words, deeds, and prayers, we may truly be little christs to this world – doing your will, defending the helpless, aiding the needy, standing by the lonely, comforting the fearful, holding on to your truth, upholding your glory, and demonstrating your love.  Lord, in your mercy,
C: Hear our prayer.

Other intercessions may be offered.

P: Heavenly Father, we bring all of our petitions and intercessions to you, trusting that you will hear and act for our good, according to the promises of your Son, Jesus Christ, in whose name we join to pray….


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