Courage in word and deed

Daily Reading for January 19 • The Confession of St. Peter the Apostle and a national holiday in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Gracious, loving, and compassionate God of our fathers and mothers, we give you thanks for your faithful servants in every age who have struggled against injustice and oppression and who have fought to root out the evil and sin of racism and discrimination. Through witnesses such as Harriet Tubman, Absalom Jones, and Martin Luther King, Jr., we have learned the merits of self-sacrifice, courageous action, and redemptive suffering. Grant that we in this day, following their example, may continue to resist oppression in all its forms and guises. May we resolve to remain committed to do the work to which you have called each of us and which you require of us all—to “do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly” with you, our God. Trusting in your grace and mercy, and in the power of your holy enabling and sustaining Spirit, we ask this in the name of our Liberator, your Son Jesus Christ. Amen.

A prayer by Bishop Barbara C. Harris, quoted in Race and Prayer: Collected Voices, Many Dreams, edited by Malcolm Boyd and Chester Talton. Copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Morehouse Publishing, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

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