On October 6, Christian and Muslim children of Aleppo, Syria will gather together to pray for an end to the violence and devastation upon their city and country. They are also planning on drawing pictures about their lives to send to Pope Francis, to the United Nations and to two of the most important players in determining the outcome of the war, the United States and Russia.
You can use any of the following prayers or click on the links below:
O GOD, HEAR THE PRAYER OF CHILDREN FOR PEACE
We thank you, loving God, for the beauty you gave:
The beauty of music, of silence, of a stream running,
Of a bird nesting, of children laughing.
And we ask why do adults take such beauty away?
Why replace such wonder with fear and bombs and bullets.
We so much need you, O God, to inspire Peace again.
We join with the children of Syria to pray for peace.
Across many faiths we pray for peace:
For the children of Syria and with the children of Syria.
We pray for Peace.
Hear the plea of children of Syria and of the world praying together,
For beauty and peace and laughter once more.
Help our adults to work for Peace.
O God, hear the prayer of children for peace.
(By Fr Gerry Hefferan, The Parish Community of St. Joseph & St. Anthony, Bracken Ridge QLD)
A PRAYER FOR THE CHILDREN OF ALEPPO
God of Compassion,
Hear the cries of the children of Syria
Comfort those who suffer violence
Console those who mourn the dead
Give strength to Syria’s neighbouring countries to welcome the refugees
Convert the hearts of those who have taken up arms and protect those who are committed to peace.
God of hope,
Inspire leaders to choose peace over violence and to seek reconciliation with their enemies
Inflame the us with compassion for the people of Syria and give us hope for a future built on justice for all. Amen
(Amended from a prayer by Aid to the Church in need, via Bread for Today app)
POPE FRANCIS' PRAYER FOR PEACE WITH THE ASSYRIAN-CHALDEAN COMMUNITY, GEORGIA (30 September 2016)
we adore your cross
which frees us from sin, the origin of every division and evil;
we proclaim your resurrection,
which ransoms man from the slavery of failure and death;
we await your coming in glory,
which will bring to fulfilment your kingdom of justice, joy and peace.
by your glorious passion,
conquer the hardness of our hearts, imprisoned by hatred and selfishness;
by the power of your resurrection,
save the victims of injustice and maltreatment from their suffering;
by the fidelity of your coming,
confound the culture of death and make the triumph of life shine forth.
unite to your cross the sufferings of the many innocent victims:
the children, the elderly, and the persecuted Christians;
envelop in paschal light those who are deeply wounded:
abused persons, deprived of freedom and dignity;
let those who live in uncertainty experience the enduring constancy of your kingdom:
the exiles, refugees, and those who have lost the joy of living.
cast forth the shadow of your cross over peoples at war;
may they learn the way of reconciliation, dialogue and forgiveness;
let the peoples so wearied by bombing experience the joy of your resurrection:
raise up Iraq and Syria from devastation;
reunite your dispersed children under your gentle kingship:
sustain Christians in the Diaspora and grant them the unity of faith and love.
O Virgin Mary, Queen of peace,
you who stood at the foot of the cross,
obtain from your Son pardon for our sins;
you who never doubted the victory of his resurrection,
sustain our faith and our hope;
you who are enthroned as Queen in glory,
teach us the royal road of service and the glory of love.
A PRAYER FOR THE PEOPLE OF SYRIA
Almighty eternal God, source of all compassion,
the promise of your mercy and saving help fills our hearts with hope.
Hear the cries of the people of Syria;
bring healing to those suffering from the violence,
and comfort to those mourning the dead.
Empower and encourage Syria’s neighbors
in their care and welcome for refugees.
Convert the hearts of those who have taken up arms,
and strengthen the resolve of those committed to peace.
O God of hope and Father of mercy,
your Holy Spirit inspires us to look beyond ourselves and our own needs.
Inspire leaders to choose peace over violence
and to seek reconciliation with enemies.
Inspire the Church around the world with compassion for the people of Syria,
and fill us with hope for a future of peace built on justice for all.
We ask this through Jesus Christ, Prince of Peace and Light of the World,
who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
For the people of Syria, that God may strengthen the resolve of leaders to end
the fighting and choose a future of peace.
We pray to the Lord…
(From the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops)
(Featured image from the Praying for Syrian Children guide from cryoutnow.org)