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Prayer for a Nation in Crisis, by Rabbi Barry Block (2021)


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Gracious God,
we come before You as supplicants today,
seeking comfort and hope,
as terror reigns at our nation’s Capitol,
spreading fears of violence throughout our land.

We beseech You on this terrifying day:
spread your shelter of peace
over the United States of America,
upon all who dwell within its borders.

Embolden every American
to defend democracy,
to uphold our Constitution,
to protect the First Amendment right to assemble in protest,
and to eschew violence and mayhem.

Sustain us in faith
that the “better angels of our nature”[1] President Abraham Lincoln, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1861.  will be victorious,
that democracy will triumph,
that peace will prevail.

Bless the Capitol Police,
and all who are entrusted with restoring peace in Washington
and throughout this land.

Grant wisdom to
the President,
the Vice-President,
and to every Senator and Member of Congress.

Be with the President-Elect and Vice President-Elect,
charged with unifying
this divided country
in the days and weeks ahead.

We Jews have always been
“prisoners of hope.”[2] Zechariah 9:12. 
restore us to hope today.
Grant us trust,
even on a terrible day,
that we may look forward to a new day dawning,
speedily and soon.

Rabbi Block’s “Prayer for a Nation in Crisis” was first published on 6 January 2021 on RavBlog, the blog of the Central Conference of American Rabbis.


1President Abraham Lincoln, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1861.
2Zechariah 9:12.



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