The staff members of the UCC’s Council for Health and Human Service Ministries today (Jan. 7) released this statement regarding yesterday’s events at the U.S. Capitol building:

Yesterday was the feast day of the Epiphany, when we celebrate how folks were wise not just because of their ability to read the stars and the times, but because they knew the decision before them was to stand up to tyrants, and they had the courage to do so. We honor both their prayerful discernment of God’s stillspeaking voice and their action in fidelity to that voice. Yesterday we also witnessed an attempted insurrection at the US Capitol by pro-Trump domestic terrorists. We strongly denounce this act and all who condone it with action or silence. 
 
As people of faith, we share with you our pain and our hope. In this overwhelming moment and with deep awareness of all of the work that needs to be done, today we would like to share in the practice of prayer as an act of resistance.

Last night, the United Church of Christ held a powerful vigil. We offer this resource as an expression of our togetherness, to honor the range of emotions you feel and how your body is carrying them; and to bear witness to the co-existing realities of those working for a just, caring and compassionate world and those who incite, make way for, and enact violence. Prayer and liturgy, “the work of the people,” holds space for such complexity, while reminding us that the light outshines the darkness.
 
To close, we offer this grounding message from last night’s vigil by the Rev. Traci Blackmon, the Associate General Minister of Justice & Local Church Ministries for the United Church of Christ: “In moments like this, when I need to calm my spirit, I hear the songs of my great-grandmother in my heart and in my soul. And so, I want to begin by inviting you into one of those songs—maybe you’ve never heard before and maybe you’ll never hear again—to ready us for what is to come:
 
In thee, O God, we place our trust.
In thee, O God, we place our trust.
In thee, O God, we place our trust.
 
In thee, O God, we seek your peace. 
In thee, O God, we seek your peace. 
In thee, O God, we seek your peace. 
 
We pray, O God, to heal your land. 
We pray, O God, to heal your land. 
We pray, O God, to heal your land. 
 
Be with us, O God, we need your love. 
Be with us, O God, we need your love. 
Be with us, O God, we need your love. 
 
In thee, O God, we place our trust.”

Amen.