Prayer for Immigrants

Sometimes it helps to step outside our little moment in American life to seek wisdom from an earlier time.

Among the few books on my desk top is a collection of prayers first published in 1910. This morning we share part of one of those prayers.

For Immigrants

O thou great Champion of the outcast and the weak, we remember before thee the people of other nations who are coming to our land, seeking  bread, a home, and a future. …

We, too, are the children of immigrants, who came with anxious hearts and halting feet on the westward path of hope.

We beseech thee that our republic may no longer fail their trust. We mourn for the dark sins of past and present, wherein men who are in honor among us made spoil of the ignorant and helplessness of the strangers and sent them to an early death. In a nation dedicated to liberty may they not find the old oppression and the fiercer greed. May they never find that the arm of the law is but the arm of the strong. …

Make our great commonwealth once more a sure beacon-light of hope and a guide on the path which leads to the perfect union of law and liberty.

  • Walter Rauschenbusch, Prayers of the Social Awakening, The Pilgrim Press, New York and Chicago, 1925 (originally published by The Phillips Publishing Company in 1910.
  • Gordon C. Stewart, Chaska, MN, February 2, 2017.

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