After hearing about the plane crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 that took the lives of all aboard yesterday, my heart sank. When I heard this morning that it was a deliberate act of the co-pilot who knowingly flew the plane into a mountainside in the French alps my heart broke.
When confronted with such devastation there are a million questions and practically no answers.
I offer these prayers from the Anglican New Zealand Prayer Book for my brothers and sisters, those aboard the plane and the grieving families left behind, who have been affected by this incomprehensible tragedy.
God, the Father of mercies and giver of all comfort,
look down in pity and compassion
upon your sorrowing servants;
lighten the burdens
which weigh them down in soul and body;
shelter them from the forces of evil;
let the light of your presence shine upon them
and give them perfect peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Lord Jesus Christ,
by your holy apostle you have taught us
that our sorrow should not be without hope
for the dead that rest with you;
visit with your compassion
those who mourn the loss of their loved ones,
and wipe away all tears from their eyes;
for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Holy Spirit, be with us as we face the mystery of life and death.
Strengthen the bonds of these families as they bear their loss.