Thus says the LORD: A voice is heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping. Rachel is weeping for her children; she refuses to be comforted for her children, because they are no more. (Jeremiah 31:15 NRS)
This day your people cry out in pain and sorrow,
As we did ten years ago.
The sound is less sharp, the anguish more muffled,
But the loss is just as vivid.
When so many were lost,
We cannot help but mourn even now.
Though we want to be made whole,
We feel this emptiness where there was once was wholeness.
We knew safety, security, and liberty.
Now we know pain, loss, and fear.
We look to you for strength.
We desperately need you to help us make sense of the senseless.
Yet there are no answers that would bring those lost back home.
There is no retribution that can truly make us whole.
Help us, O Lord, to turn from hate and violence.
Let the cycle that brought this tragedy to our door end with us.
Help us to live in such a way,
That the world will know that we will not forget.
We will honor the memory of those who are gone,
And we will stand united against the evil forces of hatred and violence.
So, while we lament and mourn, we lift our eyes to the hills.
We look to that day when justice will roll down like water,
And righteousness like an ever flowing stream.
Those precious lives lost will not be forgotten,
And one day they will live again.
It is days like this that make the Day of Resurrection,
All the more imperative and precious.
One day we will have no tears to cry and no loss to mourn.
Until that day, grant us the comforting presence of your Holy Spirit.
May we be consoled by the gathering of one another,
And our hearts united in prayer.
Thanks be to you for your abiding presence and love.