Photo by Terri C. Pilarski
On a hot September night you found your way into the church, and knelt at the foot of the altar, below the cross. I came to you, laid my hand on your shoulder and asked what I could do to help.
“I just want to pray”, you said. Later you looked up at the cross and asked me, “Will God Come?” “Yes,” I said, “God always comes.” And then, as you left, you asked me if I owned this place (the church). “No,” I said, “God owns this place.”
And now you stand as an icon for me, a ceaseless prayer for women, for those subjected to violence, abuse, an image of who we are being called to be, a reminder that difficult as it is, we were made for times like this. I found this image on Etsy, created by an artist whose proceeds go to help homeless youth, and created this icon so that I can remember.
For the speechless tongues of those oppressed
For weak hands, feeble knees, widowed, spirits
Made lame, we pray
For those orphaned from war, violence, fear
Parentless children, silent, stifled cries. For the
hungry, we pray
For wives, beaten, abused, trampled, shot
Spirits abandoned, imprisoned by fear. For
Women, we pray
In the dry land of desert wilderness, parched
Stranded spirit, a deer that cannot leap. For the
Broken, we pray
Blessed are those whose help is God
Happy are those whose hope is God, for the
Good News, we pray
For the Good News of God, born human, who
Comes to live and love us, as us, be glad, rejoice,
Singing, we pray
For hope, like blooming flowers in a dusty desert
For hope, compassion bursting forth, be strong!
God is with us.
- Prayer previously published for Prayers and Meditations from the Women of Anglican Women’s Empowerment, Episcopal Church Women, and the Episcopal Women’s Caucus Sixteen Days of Prayer
- According to multiple studies examining the causes of homelessness, among mothers with children experiencing homelessness, more than 80% had previously experienced domestic violence.
- Source: Aratani, Y. (2009). Homeless Children and Youth, Causes and Consequences. New York, NY: National Center for Children in Poverty.
- Between 22 and 57% of all homeless women report that domestic violence was the immediate cause of their homelessness. Homeless women and domestic violence
The Rev. Terri C. Pilarski is an Episcopal priest serving a parish in Dearborn, Michigan. She’s been a member of RevGalBlogPals since 2006 and blogs at Seeking Authentic Voice
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