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God of Justice, we remember this week the nonviolent resistance of Jesus to empire and his execution by the Roman authorities. Even at the very end, Jesus commanded Peter to put away his sword and healed the soldier who had come to arrest him.

Too often, we see the powerful using violence to maintain the status quo, resulting in the death of those with whom Jesus would have shared a meal. We grieve as we remember those who have been killed by powerful authorities – the police, armies, or armed vigilantes with hate in their heart.

We acknowledge the power of white supremacy in our midst and its terrible toll on our BIPOC siblings both in the past and in our communities today. We ask you to fill us with the courage we need to walk boldly with our siblings and follow the example of Jesus in our nonviolent resistance to systems and structures from which we benefit. Deliver us from our own bias that clouds our eyes so that we may see the way to resurrection. Amen.

-Keith Swartzendruber, NCC Senior Administrative Assistant to the Convening Tables