Eleven teenagers and seven adults from Columbus area churches will go on pilgrimage together June 25 through July 1, visiting important sites from the Civil Rights Movement in Atlanta, Selma, and Montgomery. This Civil Rights Pilgrimage will be a chance for our youth to encounter the history of heroic struggle and to reflect on the continuing movement for Civil Rights in our nation today. We expect it to be challenging, inspiring, and deeply hopeful.

We ask that the Beloved Community of the Diocese of Southern Ohio follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@columbusyouth on both platforms) and pray for us as we travel together during the seven days of our pilgrimage. If you’d like to use the prayer below, adapted from a prayer by Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie of the AME Church, please do so.

Merciful God, who has been our dwelling place for many generations; we ask you to quicken our hearts that we may be swift to hear the cries of others from the pit of need. Enlarge our hearts to embrace with love the world larger than our own. Remind us once again of the brave dreams of freedom and justice that were born in the hearts of our ancestors; the dreams they were willing to live and die for; the battles they valiantly fought in the courthouse, the school yard, the classroom, and the streets. Grant us courage to continue to flesh out their dreams. O God, let us not be weary in well-doing as we confront the ancient enemies again: injustice, poverty, apathy, racism, and sexism. Shine your light in us in such a way that we see all of humankind as brothers and sisters; shine your light through us to bring a new vision of equality. Use us as channels of your grace to bring mercy, joy, and peace into the lives of our fellow pilgrims on this earthly journey. Amen.