Monday, June 29, 2009

A Prayer for Health Care Reform

Last week, I was very proud to participate in an interfaith prayer time for health care reform. My thanks to Sally Schwab, head of Spiritual Health Services at Heartland Hospital, for putting it together for our community. (If you missed the article in the News-Press about it, take a look-another good article by Erin Wisdom.) It was held in conjunction with a national interfaith effort including a time of prayer in Washington, D.C. held on the same day and time.

Here's the prayer I offered:

Loving God, we know that you hear the cries of people in need of medical care but who often do not get it due to lack of education, unsympathetic bureaucracy, corporate greed or financial distress. We know that if your eye is on the sparrow then it is also on those who suffer from treatable illnesses and maladies because they do not have access to quality health care. We also know that solutions to these problems facing our country defy easy fixes, partisanship and empty slogans.
We confess the part each of us plays in a system that gives advantages to the wealthy and well-connected and disadvantages the less wealthy and those lacking in clout. We confess our unwillingness to sacrifice our own convenience for the sake of the greater good. We long for medical care for all.

We long for leaders with the courage to make difficult decisions based on the needs of their people rather than the demands of their ideology. We long for a system that allows doctors, hospitals, service providers, insurance companies and others to be paid justly for their work, while at the same time values people above financial bottom lines. We ask you to hear our longings and to raise up people who will work for solutions that bring the greatest good rather than ones that enrich the few or serve the political interests of one party or another.

We recognize that your call to justice as spoken of by the prophets and the command to love our neighbor as ourselves finds their origins in the assertion that each human being is created in your image, has inherent worth and possesses a body deserving of care. Help each of us in our own community, in our own way to work from these foundational understandings of our common humanity.


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