A Good Friday Prayer

A prayer for Good Friday, by Karl Barth:

Lord our God, merciful and almighty Father, you loved this poor world so much that you allowed your own dear Son to take such a wonderful path for its liberation and for the liberation of us all! For you, this was the right path, and there was no other; and so it should be for us as well. And if this is indeed the case — that we find freedom only through him and in communion with him, that we reach the heights only by going through depths, that we find joy only through suffering, and that we come to life only through death — then we wish to accept this as your good and proper order.

Help us, that there may always be some who recognize your path with Jesus and with us, and that they may find peace in the way you have ordered things, here in this house and everywhere else all over the world where the death of our Lord is considered, even where it is either not though of at all, or where it is not thought of rightly. You have access to those people whom we do not see or know, who nevertheless have full access to you.

In this certainty, we now think of the physically and mentally ill, the poor and the sad, those who are in error or confusion of any kind. In this certainty, we ask for the spirit of wisdom for all those who hold positions of responsibility within the church and the state, that they may properly discuss, advise, decide, judge, and command; for the workers and their bosses; for the teachers and their students; for the people who write books and newspapers; and for those who read them. All of them, all of us find it necessary that in the face of our Lord’s cross, we should all be prayed for, and that, in the face of his cross, we should pray for each other! And how holy and friendly you are, that we can hold on to the fact that every righteous prayer is heard by you.

We thank you that Jesus lives and that we can live with him. And finally, we thank you that, as a sign of this, we all can now receive Holy Communion with one another. Amen.

Read more prayers like this in Fifty Prayers.

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