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Praying for the Families of Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman

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Mar 26, 2012

The following prayer was offered by Rev. Fred Small of First Parish Cambridge UU this weekend:

Spirit of life,
God of many names and one abundant love:
we pray for all beings who suffer,
and especially this day for the families of Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman.

Our hearts are broken by the loss of a young life
and the violence and fear that took it from us.

May no parent ever have to worry that their child
might not return from a trip to the candy store.

May we never accept a society
where parents must advise their children
that the color of their skin calls them to special caution.

And as we demand accountability,
may we also cultivate compassion.

In our constant struggle against racism
in all its forms and disguises,
may we seek healing and reconciliation,
remembering that in the Beloved Community,
justice and love are inseparable.

Comfort all who mourn and all who fear,
and inspire in us the love that casts out fear.

One Response to “Praying for the Families of Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman”

  1. Dee Halzack says:

    I am glad to see prayers include George Zimmerman and his family. I do not believe he is a monster. I believe he honestly thinks he was keeping his community safe, rather than behaving as a racist.

    But I also know that one of the things cited as causing Mr. Zimmerman to think Trayvon Martin was suspicious was that he was looking at the buildings in the neighborhood. Well, I am fascinated by architecture. And I also am one of those types that needs to look at things when I walk. And no one has ever stopped me or accused me of being a suspicious character. But then, I’m a middle-aged white female. I don’t have to worry about “walking while white.” And I know that that is just one of many things that whites can be oblivious of, unless we have friends of color and/or we make an effort to understand, because we don’t have to deal with those things constantly being thrust in our face.

    Regardless of the results of the investigation, and the difficulty of proving what happened in the last moments of the confrontation when one of the participants is dead, I pray that Mr. Zimmerman at least acknowledges publicly the profiling and unconscious racism that led him to consider Trayvon Martin “suspicious.” With profiling there is a very thin, too easily crossed line between recognizing that someone fits a profile and assuming things about people that may not be true and then treating them as if the assumptions are true. In the dark, in the rain, did Trayvon Martin REALLY look like he was on drugs as was claimed, or was that an assumption based on the fact that he was black and wearing a hoodie (and therefore probably a gang member)? Our perceptions are colored by our assumptions. And whatever happened in the final deadly confrontation, that confrontation would never have happened had the initial assumptions not been made.

    I hope that Trayvon Martin’s death will lead to some serious soul-searching by all of us and an end to profiling and division among us.

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