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We Cry Out
A Prayer for Iraq

University of Baghdad, 2003.

University of Baghdad, 2003. Photo by Linda Panetta for CRS

"And he answered, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.'"

— Luke 10:27

Gracious God,

We join our cries today with the people of Iraq:
    Who have seen too much violence,
    Who have seen too much war,
    Who have seen too much displacement,
    Who have seen too much mourning
        And borne far too great a burden.

We cry out for peace.
We cry out for stability.
We cry out for healing.
We cry out for neighbors living as neighbors,
    as we were meant to live.

For whether we call ourselves Christian or Muslim,
    Sunni or Shiite,
    Jew or Arab,
    Kurd or Mandaean,
Whatever the name,
When we take up arms against our neighbor,
When we curse our neighbor,
Even when we so much as turn from our neighbor,
We shame ourselves before you.

So, we turn in prayer toward our neighbors in Iraq
    in their time of great need.
In solidarity with these sisters and brothers,
    we cry out to you:
Let there be joy where there is mourning.
Let there be hope where there is fear.
Let there be stillness where there is violence.
And let there be peace.
A just and lasting peace.

Lord, your grace abounds.
May it rest upon the peoples of Iraq
    today and always.


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