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A Message from the Clergy of Congregation Sukkat Shalom and First Congregational Church of Wilmette

01/06/2021 09:20:25 PM


Rabbi Samuel N. Gordon and Rev. Dr. Stephanie Perdew

Rabbi Sam Gordon Headshot

Tonight, we write to members and friends of both of our congregations as people who have long prayed, studied, and witnessed together for peace and for the flourishing of pluralism in our nation. We write asking you to join us in prayer for our nation.
This afternoon we witnessed the storming of our US Capitol building by armed insurgents intent on disrupting the work of our House and Senate in certifying the results of the Electoral College. At this moment, the US Capitol building is apparently secure and the Congress intends to resume its work tonight. We pray for the safety of our Congress and for the fortitude of law enforcement officers in protecting them. We pray for the upholding of our democracy and for a peaceful transition of power.
We also pray for all of you tonight. The restrictions of pandemic keep us from opening our sanctuary doors, which we would otherwise be doing, as our congregations did together on 9/11 and at other moments of national struggle and grief. So we offer this virtual prayer, knowing that we are collectively shaken by today’s events, knowing it will be a restless night for many.
May God’s peace, more powerful than any human weakness, sustain us through the night and the days to come. Today Christians conclude their Nativity season on the 12th Night, the Epiphany, remembering God’s light shining in the darkness. Tonight we pray in the words of Jewish Tradition from the Reform prayerbook, Mishkan Tefilah:
O Guardian of Liberty, may our nation always merit your protection. May we never be lazy in the work of peace; may we honor those who have died in defense of our ideals. Grant that our leaders always be people of wisdom and forbearance. May they govern with justice and compassion. Help us all to appreciate one another, and to respect the many ways that we serve You. May our homes be safe from affliction and strife and our country be sound in body and spirit. Amen

Rev. Dr. Stephanie Perdew     Rabbi Samuel N. Gordon
Rev. Dr. Jason Okrzynski         Rabbi Carlie Daniels
                                                 Cantorial Soloist Kenneth Lyonswright

Wed, November 29 2023 16 Kislev 5784