The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Opening Prayer

Pastor Chris Bell

Our Lord and Father, I come to You today in this place of government of the Nation that I love to ask for Your hand of blessing and guiding wisdom upon the leadership of these United States of America.

We know that all good gifts come from Your hand, and this beautiful and free Nation in which we live is one of those gifts.

We thank You today for the many ways that You have blessed us, from our bountiful natural resources to our freedom to work and to speak and to worship.

And it is because of these blessings that You have also given us a great responsibility to our world to live and to lead by example.

So, by Your grace today, I humbly ask that You would help these leaders of our Nation and our citizens to be a continued light in the darkness.

We confess now our need for Your help and Your guidance. Please place Your mighty hand on us today, for You have told us in Your Word to trust not in our own understanding, but to trust You and acknowledge You in all of our ways and You would make our path straight. May we do this today and in the future.

It is in the name of our Lord, Jesus, I pray. Amen.

Thought of the Week

“Bob Michel Memorial Service
Thursday, March 9, 2017
Statuary Hall, U.S. Capitol

Rev. Patrick J. Conroy, S.J.

God of Heaven and Earth, the work of Your hands is made known in Your bountiful creation and in the lives of those who faithfully live in Your grace.

Today we especially remember the life and work of Bob Michel, son of the very proud city of Peoria.

As the long–time minority leader, he was a modest man whose
impact on the public weal beyond his district far exceeded any projection of ego strength. A man of an age past, he was a better practitioner of governance than politics. It was this characteristic of his that ushered through a Democratic House much of President Ronald Reagan's agenda, evidence of an extraordinary ability to legislate within our constitutional structures.

Be present with us this day, O God, as we mark his life and remember his legacy. Bless this gathering and comfort us as we comfort one another in remembering a great American and a genuinely good man.


Rev. Patrick J. Conroy, S.J.

Dear Lord, as we close our time together, send Your spirit of peace and consolation upon us who mourn the loss of the Honorable, former minority leader of the House, Bob Michel.

He was a glowing example, an icon of what it means to be a man for others. His decades of service to his home State of Illinois and to our great Nation will be long appreciated by those whose lives are forever blessed by his life's work and dedication.

His belief in the durability and transcendence of Congress as an institution, the first branch of government, is a challenge in this day of severe partisan divide and persistent and seeming inability to consider compromise in order to reach consensus.
May some from both sides of the aisle be inspired to emulate such a great statesman.

May Your angels, O God, come to greet our beloved Bob Michel, and may those who mourn him here be consoled with the knowledge that, for those whom love You, everything is turned to good. Amen.”

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