My brothers and sisters,

I was sitting in morning Eucharist at the House of Bishops in quiet celebration Saturday morning. It was during the Prayers of the People, within the context of praying for our communities, that a text appeared on my phone telling of the shootings in Philadelphia, last Friday evening. It is once again tragic and disturbing. We must, through the name of Jesus Christ, bring a new light into the world. It must start with our voices joined in prayer. I asked for the following prayer to be read last Sunday in our congregations, and that as a Diocese we pray each day for our communities. I ask that we all use it this coming Sunday as well. I ask that we pray for the end of the violence and the transformation of the tragic hurt in our world in the name of Jesus. We will also ask for God's most holy blessings and protection on our community. I also ask for your prayers for the public safety officers and the families affected. When I return from the House of Bishops, we will begin our most important work.

The Rt. Revd. Daniel G. P. Gutierrez
XVI Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania

(For the Human Family, BCP, p. 815)
O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through
Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish
your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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