The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Opening Prayer

Reverend John Appel

By your grace we are citizens of this nation. Forgive us when we fail to do our part to keep this democracy healthy. Guide us as we work for its well–being. Guard our lips from inflammatory rhetoric that produces much heat, but little light. Cleanse us from bigotry and self–centeredness in the pursuit of our own narrow interests in the public arena. Your Word teaches that the long–term security of all depends on the strength of each. Strengthen our resolve that we may exercise our precious votes for what is right, not just for what is personally advantageous.

Show us how to carry out your will in the public arena, that we may respectfully and intelligently develop opportunities of liberty and justice for all. Purify our hearts and minds, that we may learn to renounce exploitation and prejudice in all its forms, and so contribute to the well–being of the community in which we live. In Jesus' name. Amen.