Good job, Gene.

Gene Robinsons opening prayer at the inauguration festivities (go to Abels place to hear about the drama):

O God of our many understandings, we pray that you will…

Bless us with tears – for a world in which over a billion people exist on less than a dollar a day, where young women from many lands are beaten and raped for wanting an education, and thousands die daily from malnutrition, malaria, and AIDS.

Bless us with anger – at discrimination, at home and abroad, against refugees and immigrants, women, people of color, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Bless us with discomfort – at the easy, simplistic “answers” we’ve preferred to hear from our politicians, instead of the truth, about ourselves and the world, which we need to face if we are going to rise to the challenges of the future.

Bless us with patience – and the knowledge that none of what ails us will be “fixed” anytime soon, and the understanding that our new president is a human being, not a messiah.

Bless us with humility – open to understanding that our own needs must always be balanced with those of the world.

Bless us with freedom from mere tolerance – replacing it with a genuine respect and warm embrace of our differences, and an understanding that in our diversity, we are stronger.

Bless us with compassion and generosity – remembering that every religion’s God judges us by the way we care for the most vulnerable in the human community, whether across town or across the world.

And God, we give you thanks for your child Barack, as he assumes the office of President of the United States.

Give him wisdom beyond his years, and inspire him with Lincoln’s reconciling leadership style, President Kennedy’s ability to enlist our best efforts, and Dr. King’s dream of a nation for ALL the people.

Give him a quiet heart, for our Ship of State needs a steady, calm captain in these times.

Give him stirring words, for we will need to be inspired and motivated to make the personal and common sacrifices necessary to facing the challenges ahead.

Make him color-blind, reminding him of his own words that under his leadership, there will be neither red nor blue states, but the United States.

Help him remember his own oppression as a minority, drawing on that experience of discrimination, that he might seek to change the lives of those who are still its victims.

Give him the strength to find family time and privacy, and help him remember that even though he is president, a father only gets one shot at his daughters’ childhoods.

And please, God, keep him safe. We know we ask too much of our presidents, and we’re asking FAR too much of this one. We know the risk he and his wife are taking for all of us, and we implore you, O good and great God, to keep him safe. Hold him in the palm of your hand – that he might do the work we have called him to do, that he might find joy in this impossible calling, and that in the end, he might lead us as a nation to a place of integrity, prosperity and peace.


I think prayers at these things (and prayers in general) are stupid. Youre talking to outer space– congratulations. And theyre always led by professional leeches/losers who need to get real jobs, but somehow have ‘authority’ in our society. Religiosity is a character flaw, not a virtue, and professional religiosity is pathetic.

But this wasnt a prayer.

It was a political speech by a ‘civilian’ addressing the American public, and it was lovely.

Good job, Gene.


  1. #2 ERV
    January 18, 2009

    *high-fives cuttlefish*

  2. #3 Cuttlefish
    January 18, 2009

    *high-tentacles ERV*

  3. #4 Sili
    January 19, 2009

    Now I see clearly why the ‘conservative’ bits of the Anglican church hates him so much.

  4. #5 JanieBelle
    January 19, 2009

    Pam privately shot video, since HBO nixed it.

    Who wants to take bets on whether the Ricky the Crazy Fundy gets airtime on Tuesday, though?

  5. #6 bunnycatch3r
    January 19, 2009

    Evolution has given us a (if not a propensity then) a capacity for religiousity. It feels good -it gets me high! Agreed, it’s delusional but so is a reality interpreted by a mere five simple senses. Until evolution deems our knack for spirituality obsolete I don’t see why it has to be disparaged.

  6. #7 Ty
    January 19, 2009

    Lots of things that are bad for us as organisms haven’t been bred out of the gene pool yet.

    That’s like saying, “Until evolution deems our propensity for cancer obsolete, I don’t see why we need to spend money on cancer cures.”

    It’s just nonsensical.

  7. #8 The Chimp's Raging Id
    January 19, 2009

    If only Robinson would delete the “god” bits… I’d agree with his sentiments entirely.

    Oh and Cuttlefish – as always – made my day (and I’ve had a very bad day).

  8. #9 eyesoars
    January 20, 2009

    Not a political speech, a speech addressing social justice. Once upon a time, this was a major tenet of Catholicism and Episcopalian/Anglican beliefs. Still is some places; naked greed still isn’t worshiped everywhere.

    I see yet again why the Episcopalians elected him to head the Episcopal church in the U.S., in spite of the troubles they knew this would bring. Too bad so many can’t look past his sexual orientation.


  9. #10 windy
    January 20, 2009

    “Until evolution deems our knack for spirituality obsolete I don’t see why it has to be disparaged.”

    Well compare with this: “Until evolution deems our knack for between-group aggression obsolete, I don’t see why it has to be disparaged.”

  10. #11 Steven
    January 23, 2009

    The problems facing America is the 21st century are complex and multitudinous. I highly doubt praying to the sky will solve anything.

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