Now, in a moment of silence, we have opportunity to gather up our thoughts and reflections on discrimination, on the effects of the Holocaust and of genocide today, but also opportunity to share our own stories of our experiences of discrimination or being alongside someone who has been discriminated against.
[During our event, we lit candles a various points with the rest of the church in near darkness. You may wish to light a few candles now]
In the stillness of the night, among the flickering candle flames, we remember those who have experienced discrimination and hatred. We think of those who suffered the persecution of the Nazis, the Holocaust, genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Sudan. We remember those who lost their lives through the discrimination of genocide, and those whose families and homes were destroyed. We remember those who have had their experiences of hatred and discrimination overshadowing their entire lives, where the suffering they experienced and the things they saw torments them years later. We think of all those who have no one to speak up for them, because they seem insignificant or because they seem alone. We think of those who stand by while discrimination takes place, who cannot speak because they feel vulnerable or lack the confidence to speak up for justice, and we think of those who do speak up and make noise about being just.
In the stillness of the night, among the flickering candle flames, we remember all these people.
And in doing so, we share together in a prayer to God:
Our Father, which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done in earth,
As it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive them that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
The power, and the glory,
For ever and ever.