By MARIAN WRIGHT EDELMAN
Children’s Defense Fund
As the global coronavirus officially becomes a pandemic and the effects in our nation become more widespread each passing hour, children and all of us are suffering from anxiety and the virus’s many threats and disruptions. Many unknowns loom large, but one thing is certain: children need adults to help them process and cope with any uncertainty and dangers in their daily lives. Most are anxious about changes to their daily routines or afraid something will happen to them, their parents or grandparents, or other people they know and love. They will need clear, age-appropriate, accurate information and loving support during every step of this massive crisis.
Here are a few prayers for the parents, teachers, and other caregivers who must be the oaks of strength children need right now even in the midst of adults’ own uncertainty.
God, straighten our backs
clear our heads
strengthen our voices and judgment
infuse our hearts
with Your mighty and comforting spirit.
God, help us to be like bamboo, which bends and bows and sways in the winds but never breaks.
God, think Your thoughts in us
do Your work through us
build Your peace in us
share Your love through us.
O God, we pray for our children and family members and for our neighbors and their children. Help us God to remember that all Your people are our neighbors and all children are our own. We pray especially for every caregiver, doctors and nurses, health and hospital personnel, and those who serve people with special needs and other vulnerable populations.
God, please help us to show our children
By our actions as well as our words
That they are loved.
O God for whom nothing is too hard
Who makes the impossible possible
Every minute of every day
Kindle within us an unshakable faith
In Your presence, power, and goodness.
O God help us to remember that You have the whole world in Your hands – every baby, child, woman, and man in every circumstance everywhere.
Marian Wright Edelman is founder and president emerita of the Children’s Defense Fund. For more information, visit http://www.childrensdefense.org.