By: Robert Scott
All writers in Op Ed are here to inform and acknowledge issues of importance to our communities, however these writings represent the views and opinions of the authors and not necessarily of The Advertiser.
The Episcopal Church, as is the case for Anglican churches worldwide, uses a version of The Book of Common Prayerthat has roots as deep as those of the King James version of the Bible. It contains many prayers that are worth considering during any season, and particularly so during an election season. This week, let us consider a few of them, starting off with one from the “Ministration to the Sick” that long predates, and yet seems to envision, the world of COVID-19:
This is another day, O Lord. I know not what it will bring forth, but make me ready, Lord, for whatever it may be. If I am to stand up, help me to stand bravely. If I am to sit still, help me to sit quietly. If I am to lie low, help me to do it patiently. And if I am to do nothing, let me do it gallantly. Make these words more than words, and give me the Spirit of Jesus. Amen.
There is a prayer “For Social Justice”:
Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may so move every human heart and especially the hearts of the people of this land, that barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease; that our divisions being healed, we may live in justice and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
And another “For an Election”:
Almighty God, to whom we must account for all our powers and privileges: Guide the people of the United States (or of this community) in the election of officials and representatives; that, by faithful administration and wise laws, the rights of all may be protected and our nation be enabled to fulfill your purposes; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
There is a similar one that is the last among a series “For Sound Government”:
And finally teach our people to rely on your strength and to accept their responsibilities to their fellow citizens, that they may elect trustworthy leaders and make wise decisions for the well-being of our society; that we may serve you faithfully in our generation and honor your holy Name.
And finally, there is one that seems aimed at television “talking heads” as well as at writers of OpEd pieces. My own prayers is that those of us who write for The Edgefield Advertiserconsider this one every week. Its title is “For those who Influence Public Opinion”:
Almighty God, you proclaim your truth in every age by many voices: Direct, in our time, we pray, those who speak where many listen and write what many read; that they may do their part in making the heart of this people wise, its mind sound, and its will righteous; to the honor of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.