Inclusion and Diversity have become central issues for churches and communities, bringing joy to many and angst to some. These prayers reflect the needs and concerns of our own time and culture as we come to terms with these issues and embrace the fresh opportunities they open up to us. They also seek to draw on the timelessness of our Lord’s teaching and the resonances in the stories of the Bible for us today.
- The wide selection of prayers are enriched by the author’s own regular leading of prayer as a Reader in our diocese. Review by The Revd Canon Gill Calver
The wide selection of prayers are enriched by the author’s own regular leading of prayer as a Reader in our diocese, together with his wide pastoral experience over the years, working in many capacities with those who have often felt pushed to the margins.
Rupert does not baulk here at bringing before God, for healing, areas of our lives which seem at odds or where we cannot reconcile differences or break down barriers.
Prayers range from those for the natural world to those concerning our complex human relationships, from our need for each other as well as our inability to like everyone. In the “Inclusion” section you can find prayers about our response to atheists and agnostics; sport and leisure; youth culture and old age; and about competing as well as collaborating. Then in the second section focusing on Diversity, the focus is on a wide range of topics, not ignoring some testing ones we do not often hear prayed about in church; such as abuse, death, cancer, dementia, domestic violence and divorce.
Rupert made me think again about how I pray, as he creates prayers using his own fresh language, together with some phrases from our rich treasury of traditional prayers. And he expands our understanding of God’s nature by how he starts each prayer, using such titles as ; Teaching God, God of Great Expectations, Unifying Lord, God of Small things or Serene and Sensitive Lord.
I believe this book could assist all of us who pray, undoubtedly helping us express ourselves in new ways, but challenging us too, As Rupert puts it in one of his prayers:
May we be good disciples,
and good Samaritans,
wherever we go.
whoever we are.
Amen (Posted on 25/06/2012)