Revelers celebrating the New Year have been fired upon in a deadly attack in an Istanbul nightclub.
Details are only just emerging. Apparently the gunman entered the party dressed as Santa Claus.
As 2016 is ushered out, we have prayed for a less deadly 2017. Perhaps this evening (and morning) is an especially good time to pray for the protection and prayers of the great Archangels:
O Holy Archangels, first and eternal servants of God the Creator, we call upon you in recognition of your heavenly offices,
you, Micha-el, the Great Defender,
you, Gabri-el, the Holy Adviser,
you Rapha-el, the Bearer of Restoration,
Hear the prayers of a people in great need of your patronage as we struggle to live through a confused, violent, and divided age. Help us to discern our roles within this tumult, as People of God, People of Christ, People of the Cross, and of the Resurrection.
To Michael, we acknowledge that we are called to defend the victims of aggression and marginalization, to uphold the meek and protect the weak, and we want to heed this call, but our fallen natures hold us back, make us fearful and lacking in trust.
We have need to share in the surety of Michael’s powerful defense of what is right and just, that we too may uphold the light, and do battle against the darkness, without faltering.
To Gabriel, we recognize that our dialogues are often too loud, too passionate, too unwilling to allow the necessary portion of good-faith listening that converts noise into true communication.
We seek a share of Gabriel’s ability to hear what is being said, rather than what we would prefer to receive, and to relay a message, or tell our stories, or simply talk to another with the simplicity and clarity that allows our yes to be “yes,” our no to be “no,” and our purpose to be God’s before our own.
To Raphael, we admit that we too often are ready to inflict harm upon others, in our words, in our thoughtless asides, in our deeds; we know that we are making the world ill through the spittle of our vicious tongues, our spite and our malice.
We seek a portion of Raphael’s eagerness to remedy what has become infected, mend what has been broken, and walk as true companions (as Raphael traveled with Tobias) in order to establish the trust that can facilitate lasting healing.
Hear our pleas, O Archangels, for the sharing and bestowal of your be-graced and everlasting gifts upon our fallen natures, which are insufficient to the tasks before us and in need of angelic assistance. We ask for your help, and for your prayers as you stand before Holy, Mighty and Immortal Creator of all, and all of this in the name of Christ Jesus, the Lamb, seated at his right hand. Amen.