Our nation and world have been forever shaped by the lives of countless African American sisters and brothers. During the month of February our country remembers the legacy of these women and men by highlighting their stories. This year Oak Life will be praying especially for unity and healing in our divided communities by echoing the prayer of an amazing woman named Mary McLoud Bethune.
Born into a family of seventeen children whose parents had once been slaves, Mary McLeod Bethune became one of the most important and tireless voices for global equality and understanding in the immediate years before and after World War II. She was a self-assured educator, activist, and columnist and found in prayer one of life’s great comforts. Through it all Dr. Bethune relied on faith and prayer for guidance and inspiration, saying, "without faith, nothing is possible. With it, nothing is impossible." Here she expresses her firm belief in the beauty of diversity throughout the world. Let's learn from her faith and join in her prayer:
"Father, we call Thee Father because we love Thee. We are glad to
be called Thy children, and to dedicate our lives to the service
that extends through willing hearts and hands to the betterment
of all mankind. We send a cry of Thanksgiving for people of all
races, creeds, classes, and colors the world over, and pray that
through the instrumentality of our lives the spirit of peace, joy,
fellowship, and brotherhood shall circle the world. We know that
this world is filled with discordant notes, but help us, Father, to
so unite our efforts that we may all join in one harmonious
symphony for peace and brotherhood, justice, and equality of
opportunity for all men. The tasks performed today with
forgiveness for all our errors, we dedicate, dear Lord, to Thee.
Grant us strength and courage and faith and humility sufficient
for the tasks assigned to us."
You can read more about Mary McCloud Bethune here.