The Common Good

A Prayer at the White House

A meeting today of faith leaders with the president on immigration reform opened and closed with prayer.

This was my prayer at the end:

Thank you Lord, for this circle of leaders around the table and how you have brought us together to help welcome the stranger in our midst — to fix this broken immigration system that breaks families and lives.

Thank you for the leadership of Barack Obama in making comprehensive immigration reform such a high priority in these critical months ahead. Guide and direct him to find a genuine bipartisan political path to accomplish something so important that has been needed for so long. We thank you for both the Republicans and Democrats who are coming together to make that possible.

Thank especially for the leadership of our Hispanic and Caribbean brothers and sisters here who have led on these questions for so long; and thank you for the opportunity we all now have to join with them. We now stand beside them in calling for compassion and justice. As church leaders, make this critical mission of immigration reform our top priority in these critical months and help our people to see that priority in us.

Thank you Lord, for this moment — this kairos moment as the Scriptures say — which gives us the chance to help lift 11 million people out of fear, insecurity, and poverty.

Thank you that the moral issues are now being raised alongside the political ones. Help the nation to see those moral issues, these biblical issues, these matters of faith which are now before us.

Hover around these halls of power, circle the Congress with your Spirit, lift up the people who lives and voices need to be seen and heard, and hear the prayers of your people.

Give us all courage to speak and lead in a prophetic way, guard our unity, and strengthen our courage. 

Give the president courage to lead the nation and call our best selves to do the right thing. Thank you for his willingness to lead. Be with him we pray and with all those political leaders willing to lead on this moral agenda which we believe comes from you. Bless us around this table as you send us out. In your name we pray, Amen. 

 

Jim Wallis is CEO of Sojourners. His forthcoming book, On God's Side: What Religion Forgets and Politics Hasn’t Learned about Serving the Common Good, is set to release in April. Follow Jim on Twitter @JimWallis.

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