God of our life, whose presence sustains us in every circumstance, in the aftermath of storm and distress, we welcome the restoring power of your love and compassion.

We open our hearts in sorrow, gratitude, and hope:

that those who have been spared nature’s fury
as well as those whose lives are changed forever by ravages of wind and water
may find solace, sustenance, and strength in the days of recovery and reflection that come.

We are thankful for the generous grace of days of preparation;

for the wise counsel of experts and the generous collaboration of so many communities,
that in the face of the storm kept many out of harm’s way, and lessened the effects of wind and water on others. 

We are grateful that dire predictions did not result in the worst case scenario for all,

yet still served to support our best efforts at preparation and immediate relief.  

At the same time, we open ourselves to the stories of those for whom the Hurricane was not a near miss:

communities deeply affected, whose livelihood, homes and stability has been destroyed. 

We pray in grief, remembering the lives that have been lost.

We lift our voices in sorrow and compassion for families who have lost loved ones, homes, or livelihood.

We ask for sustaining courage for those who are suffering;

wisdom and diligence among agencies and individuals assessing damage and directing relief efforts;
and for generosity to flow as powerfully as rivers and streams,
as we, your people, respond to the deep human needs beginning to emerge in the wake of the storm.

In these days of relief, assessment and response,

open our eyes, our hearts, and our hands to the needs of your children and the movements of your Spirit,

who flows in us like the river whose streams makes glad the city of God,

and the hearts of all who dwell in it, and in You.

In the name of Christ the Healer we pray, Amen.


Prayer written by the Rev. Dr. Laurie Ann Kraus, Pastor, Riviera Presbyterian Church, Miami, Florida; Member, National Response Team of Presbyterian Disaster Assistance
This prayer was originally written in response to Hurricane Irene that struck August 30, 2011.  

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