Oh Grand and Gracious God, Thou who has been called Jehovah by my Grandmother, A Battle Axe in a Storm by my Grandfather, and Great Healer by my Mama, I simply start my beseeching by calling you Holy One!
I thank you today for your continuous call to consciousness. Yes, Oh Holy One, I praise you that over the last 25 years you have sent a call to men and women of faith to speak life into those beautiful bones that resided in the valley of HIV/AIDS. I thank you that your Holiness is greater than the shallowness of phobias and ignorance. I praise you that your Holiness provides healing! I offer praise that your Holiness provides peace instead of panic and power instead of passivity, especially in the midst of our vicissitudes!
Oh Holy One, we seek your Sweet Spirit to fall fresh on those who are in need of healing and compassion, on children who are without parents, on parents who are without children and on loves who have lost meaningful relationships. We ask that where there is brokenness, your grace act as the restorative glue that brings about a glorious healing. Oh Holy One, bind now HIV/AIDS in the name of Jesus! Bind now the destructive pathos of anger and resentment that has invaded communities, both sacred and secular around HIV/AIDS in the name of Jesus! Bind now the stultifying silence that has taken residence in spaces that should be saturated with justice.
Now Most Holy One, we pray that you loose healing for those living with the virus, in the name of Jesus. We loose resources, both financial and intellectual for education, research and prevention of HIV/AIDS in the name of Jesus! O Holy One, we plead the Blood of the Lamb that right now Christ-centered concern and care be loosed in every home of a believing saint, that discrimination and stigma of any kind will be transformed into creative encounters of concern and comfort!
Oh Most Holy One, as I prepare to close this prayer and not my praise, allow your sweet Spirit of forgiveness to fall fresh on all of us who call on your Name. Forgive us for our fears of those we consider other. Forgive us for our lack of prophetic unction. Forgive us for alienating each other in judgment and not having the “courage to be” in difficult and creative dialogue around the issue of HIV/AIDS. Grant us with a new sense of urgency and commitment to be the keeper of our brother and our sister. Like Paul, let our “Yes” be ever firm! Yes to healing! Yes to justice! Yes to inclusive community!
All this we pray in the name of the Most Holy One. ἀμήν!
Rev. Dr. Dante R. Quick, Senior Pastor
Friendship Missionary Baptist Church (Vallejo, CA)