On #NationalSorryDay, we join indigenous Christians in praying for reconciliation…

Holy Father, God of Love,
You are the Creator of this land and of all good things.
We acknowledge the pain and shame of our history
and the suffering of our peoples,
and we ask your forgiveness.
We thank you for the survival of indigenous cultures.

Our hope is in you because you gave your Son Jesus
to reconcile the world to you.
We pray for your strength and grace to forgive,
accept and love one another,
as you love us and forgive and accept us
in the sacrifice of your Son.

Give us the courage to accept the realities of our history
so that we may build a better future for our nation.
Teach us to respect all cultures.
Teach us to care for our land and waters.
Help us to share justly the resources of this land.
Help us to bring about spiritual and social change
to improve the quality of life for all groups in our communities,
especially the disadvantaged.

Help young people to find true dignity and self esteem by your Spirit.
May your power and love be the foundations
on which we build our families, our communities and our nation,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

This prayer prepared by Wontulp-Bi-Buya Indigenous Theology Working Group, 1997. (Wontulp-Bi-Buya is the Queensland partner of Nungalinya College, Darwin, and provides indigenous leadership training for church and community and originally shared by St Michael's Cathedral Wollongong. Mother and child photo by Heide Smith and originally shared by the Australian Human Rights Commission.)