As with all liturgies, this confession and litany has a life of its own. The words printed here will shift and change voicing the needs of each context. If you use this confession and litany in any form I ask that you attribute the work to me even if you add or modify the work. The attribution may look like: “Our Confession and Litany today is based on a litany and confession written by Jennifer Ohman-Rodriguez.”
Please also let me know you are using it. Thank you.
The assembly prays using these or similar words.
We, white bodied, white raised, and whiteness perpetuating women confess to God, ourselves, and to all others.
We confess we have social privileges and advantages other women do not have.
We confess we ignore other women do not have what we have.
We confess we take for granted the gifts of these advantages.
We confess we unconsciously and consciously think we deserve what we have over what other women do not have.
We confess we buy into the view that what we have is scarce and cannot feed all women.
We confess we hoard life’s bounty and in doing so allow others to suffer.
We confess there is so much we do not know and do not see.
We confess all that we leave undone each day for the unity of all human beings.
We confess we partake in communal sins of omission.
We confess to you, God ,and to all women and in doing so ask to be released from these evils imploding within us and out into the world so that we take only what we need. Making sure all are fed. Joining in the work of bringing your love-in-action into reality for all women.
We, white bodied, white raised, and whiteness perpetuating women lament to God.
We cry out and in doing so our tears follow the tears of women kept down, aside, and under in an ongoing parade of lament before God.
We wail and in doing so tell the world we create ourselves and all others in God’s image. Not in man’s. Not others’ gender norms. Not from others’ perceptions of beauty. Not in human-made values of class structure. Not in empire’s power. Not in colonialism’s tyranny. Not in racism, genderism, or faith-ism. We lament, cry, and wail and in doing so imagine who we can be and are not yet.
We lament and in doing so ask for courage and tenacity in bringing your kingdom to earth. We feel weak in the face of this work. We lament this untruth of our weakness allowing this lie to dissipate and disappear into the atmosphere. We seek then through you O, God, to manifest your goodness and love which can only be fully revealed when all of creation and all of creation’s people are seen, heard, valued, and healed.
We, white bodied, white raised, and whiteness perpetuating women feel.
We feel the pings, pinches, and punches of our battered bodies.
We feel the words we have not been allowed to say screaming from our souls out into the world.
We feel compassion for ourselves and for what we have not been allowed to reveal.
We feel and embrace the heroic and lifesaving ways of our bodies.
We feel what we know, do not know, do not want to know.
We feel, holding hope for all women to heal.
We feel understanding all bodies are one. One in God.
We, white bodied, white raised, and whiteness perpetuating women begin and continue healing.
We heal, transforming our pain, the pain perpetuating damage onto other women, into goodness.
We heal as a continuation of life itself.
We heal, health giving new birth to new life.
We heal, tending all new life as if raising our own beloved children.
We heal, each one of us healing so that healing becomes greater than hurting.
We heal, healing becoming a way of life, one eradicating the wounding of hiding, avoiding, and blinding the hurt of hurting.
We, white bodied, white raised, and whiteness perpetuating women act.
We act by refusing to accept the story told to us from birth that we are somehow different and better than other women.
We act in ways of public compassion first feeling the sorrows and joys of all women everywhere while no longer remaining silent or still.
We act, learning day by day how to bring God’s kingdom to earth.
We act, each of us becoming justice in words, deeds, marches, votes, public service, and answering yes to where we are called to serve.
We act in prayer. Never stopping. Never ceasing. Always praying. Until all women are whole. All girls are never torn apart.
We act as love. Building love out of healing, compassion, respect, and willingness.
Together, we white bodied, white raised, and whiteness perpetuating women lift up these prayers to you O, God. Trusting in your infinite mercy, grace, and spirit-filled direction. Breathing in your transformative power. Allowing its infusion to build our courage for the work to be done in us, among us, and around us. Amen.
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