Church Leaders Group publishes new prayer calling for “reflection and hope”

The gifts of understanding, peace and hope should be the “legacy” we pass on to the next generation, according to a new Centennial Prayer released by the Church Leaders Group.

The statement released by the group said the lessons of the past 100 years could help shape a hopeful future while acknowledging our “different and often polarized interpretations of history.”

The prayer was posted by Church leaders ahead of the Reflection and Hope service, which will be held at Saint Patrick’s Church of Ireland, Armagh, on Thursday, October 21.

The service marks the centenary of the Partition of Ireland and the formation of Northern Ireland and the Church Leaders Group, made up of the Church of Ireland and Roman Catholic Primates from across Ireland , from the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Ireland, the President of the Methodist Church of Ireland and the President of the Irish Council of Churches, requested that the prayer be recited during this space of ” reflection and hope ”.

The prayer calls for forgiveness, restoration and healing and says that the sharing and training events, which took place 100 years ago, “have changed, shaped and determined the outlook for this place we call our own. House “.

He continues, “As we reflect on that time and remember what happened then and in the years that followed, we recognize before you our different and often polarized interpretations of history.

“As we progress on our journey, may we learn from the experiences of the past and from those who have traveled these roads before us, so that the legacy we pass on to the next generation is the gift of understanding. , peace and hope. “

Due to the ongoing pandemic, in-person participation will be limited, but the service will air on BBC One and RTÉ One from 10:30 am Thursday.

Describing the service as “but a time on a much longer road to reconciliation,” the Church leadership group said public support in prayer is needed.

The statement continued, “As we continue to deal with the impact of Covid-19, against a backdrop of significant political challenges for relations and cooperation on these islands, across Europe and beyond, our society needs a message of hope.

“In particular, our young people, and those who have been victims of violence and injustice, need to know that they are heard and supported.

Irish President Michael D Higgins was criticized last month for his decision not to attend the centenary church service.

Mr Higgins said he declined his invitation because he believed it was not politically neutral and because he had concerns about the title of the event.

He said the decision to decline the invitation to the service came after six months of reflection.

DUP chief Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said the decision had “delayed north-south relations” in Ireland.

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