(The following is the text of  the Archdiocese of Washington's Family Prayer for Justice and Human Dignity recited by Washington Archbishop Wilton Gregory at a Sept. 9, 2020 Mass at St. Peter Claver Church in St. Inigoes, Maryland marking a day of prayer and fasting for racial justice and healing promoted by the nation's Catholic bishops on the Feast of St. Peter Claver. The prayer was written by Archbishop Gregory, the archbishop of Washington and by the three auxiliary bishops of Washington, Bishop Mario Dorsonville, Bishop Roy Campbell Jr. and Bishop Michael Fisher.)

Loving and faithful God, we come to you, Father, to ask that through your Son, Jesus and in communion with the Holy Spirit, you help us in the battle against America’s “original sin” of racism that divides us from being the Body of Christ that we are called to be as your children.

 We implore you to give us your wisdom, so that we may build a community founded on the Gospel message of the life and dignity of all people from conception to natural death, and to live in communion like the divine communion of the Holy Trinity.  

Bless parents that they may form their children in faith, to love one another regardless of skin color, ethnicity and national origin, just as Jesus loves us. Bless and protect all of us as we live out our faith in being “instruments of your peace” as St. Francis said. Fill us with a thirst for justice and righteousness.

 Hear our prayer and give us the courage, compassion, and perseverance to root out any form of injustice within our communities and to bring the healing love of Christ to all in need.

Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of our Church, hasten to help us and intercede on our behalf, so that our Archdiocese can continue to witness to the Gospel message of life and dignity of all people. 

Amen.