"SABBATH OF SUPPORT" IN
OPPOSITION TO RACISM
In 1996, some religious leaders in South Carolina asked faith groups to observe a "Sabbath of
Support" in recognition of the numerous church burnings in the US. Over 400 South Carolina
churches, mosques, synagogues and temples observed this special Sabbath; they were joined by
groups in at least 8 other states.
In 1997, the Sabbath of Support was again observed during the service which preceding JUL-4,
the American Independence Day. The Sabbath of Support Project of the South Carolina
Christian Action Council wrote the following responsive reading. It was distributed to
the Baha'i, Christian (Episcopal, Lutheran, Quaker, Roman Catholic, United Methodist,) Hindu,
Muslim, and Unitarian Universalist faith communities.
The Council writes: "Every section and neighborhood of our country suffers the evils of
violence and division. The communities of faith can lead the way to healing. We encourage
the lifting of love over hate, unity over division, and faith over evil."
PRAYER FOR JUSTICE AND RECONCILIATION
|Leader: Gracious God, we thank you for making one human family of all the peoples of
the Earth and for creating all the wonderful diversity of races and cultures.
|People: Enrich our lives by ever-widening circles of fellowship and show us your
presence in those who differ most from us. |
|Leader: Forgive those of us who have been silent and apathetic in the
face of racial intolerance and bigotry, both overt and subtle, public and private.
|People: And take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts.
|Leader: Break down the walls that separate us. |
|People: And help us to find that unity which is the fruit of
righteousness and which will enable us to become your beloved community. |
|Leader: Empower us to speak boldly for justice and truth and help us to
deal with one another without hatred or bitterness, working together with mutual
forbearance and respect. |
|People: And work through our struggles and confusion to accomplish your
purposes in our land so that we may be one nation, under God, indivisible, with
liberty and justice for all.|
WORLD PEACE PRAYER
Lead me from Death to Life, from Falsehood to Truth,
Lead me from Despair to Hope, from Fear to Trust,
Lead me from Hate to Love, from War to Peace,
Let Peace fill our Heart, our World, our Universe.