Messages of Hope

Prayers for Beirut

Published / by Sandy

On Tuesday 4th of August 2020 an explosion shook Beirut and all of Lebanon. The tremor of the explosion was felt in Cyprus, some 240Km away. Everything within a 10 Km radius was damaged, houses, buildings, shops, cars, etc. The explosion was a chemical one and what followed was a toxic pollution of the air. Churches, mosques, schools, hospitals in addition to homes and shops in the area were all destroyed. The affected area is home to almost 1 million people, in one of the denser population areas in Lebanon. Over 135 people have been killed and over 5,000 people injured. This is not counting the people who have not yet been found.
Up to one in four people living in Lebanon are refugees; people from Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Sudan and many other places. In the hours after the massive explosion, Palestinian and Syrian refugees living in and on the outskirts of Beirut leapt into action, offering their homes and their blood to those in need.

Beirut tragedy August 2020
Holy One of mercy and peace,
as you walked across the stormy sea
so long ago, walk in the rubble
of your great city Beirut.
Hold tenderly all who mourn today
loved ones who have died
and those who are waiting
for identifications,
and for those who are missing
to be found.
Be among those who care
for the wounded,
and those who try to cope
with this catastrophe
in the midst of the struggle
ongoing with covid-19.
In the chaos of broken buildings
and the aftermath
of the terrible rain of glass,
give moments of hope,
the welcome kindness of neighbors
and the generosity of the world.
To the re-construction
of the city itself, bring courage
and to the equally long
reconstruction
of the confidence of people
so de-stabilized, bring peace,
for we pray,
in all your holy names. Amen.
(Source: Maren Tirabassi, Gifts in Open Hands)

Prayer for Beirut

God of darkness and light,
Beirut waits in darkness longing for your light.
In the centre of darkness, rekindle hope.
As we pray for families to be reunited,
Let your Spirit be with us.
As we pray for the injured to be healed,
Let your Spirit be with us.
As we pray for those who have lost loved ones,
Let your Spirit be with us.
As we pray for homes to be rebuilt,
Let your Spirit be with us.
God of creation,
You create the Cedars of Lebanon and give them their majesty to withstand all tribulations for your own pleasure. You exalt them to represent eternity, strength, and endurance. Yet we have cut them down and destroyed them for our own personal pleasures. As we remember the Cedars of Lebanon, we also remember the people of Lebanon in their diversity of cultures and faith.
We pray for your healing where there is injury,
We pray for your comfort where there is death,
We pray for your hope where there is despair,
We pray for your light where there is darkness,
We pray for your joy where there is sadness and
We pray for your love where this hatred.
God of Love,
Welcome into your arms the victims of the explosion in Beirut:
Those who have lost their homes, those who have been injured and those who have lost loved ones.
Comfort their families and all who grieve for them.
God of explosions and pollution,
Out of the depths we call to you; in the face of incomprehensible anguish and sorrow, we lift the cries of our distress and implore you to show mercy upon those who are suffering from the destruction of the explosion in Beirut and the ensuing chemical pollution. Give protection and wisdom to emergency service personnel, doctors, nurses, hospitals, and all those who assist in elevating the pain and suffering of those affected. Encourage our generosity to those who suffer loss. In your mercy restore your creation and heal our land.
We pray for those who have been injured in body, mind or spirit and ask you to heal them;
We pray
for those who are left homeless and wandering,
for those who breath the toxic air,
for those who are devastated,
and for families torn asunder and ask you to shelter them,
Strengthen the hands and hearts of those who assist in relief efforts
Grant us all firm resolve to stand with our neighbours who are in need, to love them and to offer our generous support of them in this their time of trouble.
So, guide and bless your people,
that we may enjoy the fruits of the earth
and give you thanks with grateful hearts,
Father, we pray that you will bless us
with the gift of strength when endurance is needed,
for imagination and initiative when action is called for,
for wisdom in times of confusion,
for compassion for those who suffer,
for faith in Christ’s saving action,
for hope when the situation seems desperate
and for charity in all things. Amen.
(Source: Levon Kardashian, Theoblogy)

Lord, you are always with us,
Our shelter in the midst of every tragedy.
In the quiet and the storm you surround us,
Your love stays closer than a friend.
In this time of devastations and disaster be with all who are vulnerable.
Hold them close as they grieve for loved ones lost and fear for those still buried.
Place your arms around each family in their shock and grief.
Guide those that respond and keep them safe.
Be with rescuers and firemen and emergency crews,
Be with medical workers,
Be with all who reach out to neighbours with your love and compassion.
Comfort and protect them in the midst of danger and of strife.
Provide food, and shelter and care for all who have been displaced.
God of all life, you are always close to the brokenhearted,
May all find comfort in the embrace of your wings.
(Source: Christine Sine, GodspaceLight)

A prayer for Beirut 
Merciful and compassionate God,
our hearts break and our prayers rise up
for the people of Beirut and all of Lebanon.
Give comfort, peace, strength, and hope
to all who mourn the dead
and draw near to all those suffering injuries
with healing and hope, skilled care and comforting presence.
Give guidance to public officials,
perseverance to first responders and healthcare personnel,
and compassionate community support among neighbors.
Raise up help and support from global partners
to meet the needs now and in the months to come.
Keep safe all who work in the ruins and destruction.
Uphold reporters and all who tell the stories
in the days and weeks to come
with the patience and care they need for listening,
the curiosity and empathy for perceiving,
and the knowledge and wisdom to ask questions
that reveal the truth that needs to be told.
Hold this place and all its people
in your great and abundant compassion and mercy.
Open our eyes and the eyes of the world
to see your hidden presence revealed
in the rubble of buildings and lives shattered by destruction and death. Hear the cries of the suffering and the laments of the distraught.
Hear us as we pray, Lord in your mercy.
(Source: Robert Franek)

Prayer for the people of Beirut
Light of new hope, God of refuge,
hear our prayer
as we hold the people of Beirut
in our hearts at this time.
Fill us with compassion
and move us to reach out in love.
In your mercy,
bring comfort to those who mourn,
healing to those who are injured,
shelter to those who are homeless
sustenance to those who hunger.
Give strength to those who are working
to rebuild shattered lives,
and protect those who are vulnerable
especially in a time of coronavirus.
Lead us in your ways
so that together we may bring
the light of new hope
wherever there is destruction and despair.
We ask this through Christ our Lord, Amen.
(Source: Regional Council of Churches, Atlanta)