taking the words of Jesus seriously


On Tuesday evening, July 26th, at the Democratic National Convention, I was given the opportunity to deliver the benediction. It was at the end of the day’s program during which the convention delegates voted to make Hillary Clinton their candidate for the Presidency of the United States. I thought that the prayer should be as non-partisan as possible, while at the same time holding up Mrs. Clinton before the Lord. Also, I wanted to do my best to cite the social concerns that are of note in the discussions of Red Letter Christians.


Many of you listened to the prayer as C-SPAN broadcast me delivering it, and have responded by sending me emails and letters. Perhaps you would like to give me your thoughts on the contents of the prayer.


Dear God,

We are a nation that needs healing. Break down the barriers of race and ethnicity that separate us. Cure the sexism and homophobia that denies the dignity of so many of our fellow Americans. Help us to overcome our fears of refugees and show us how to love our enemies and overcome evil with good. Imbue our religious leaders with your love so that they will teach us how to transcend our differences and become one people.


Teach us how to beat our swords into plowshares and learn war no more.

We pray that the next president of our country will sense the obligation to reach out with our vast resources to minister to those who You called, “the least of these, ” not only here in America but to needy people around the world.

May all of our political leaders be committed to making America into a people that strive to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, provide care for all the sick, speak justice on behalf of the oppressed, and make room for refugees, remembering Your own Son who was once a refugee in the land of Egypt.


On this memorable night, we pray for Hillary Clinton. May her candidacy send a message to women everywhere that the glass ceiling that has held so many of them down is being broken, and that a new day is dawning not only for women but for all people everywhere.


We ask all these things in Your holy name.




Watch Tony below:


About The Author


Tony Campolo is Professor of Sociology at Eastern University, and was formerly on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. For 40 years, he founded and led the Evangelical Association for the Promotion of Education, an organization that created and supported programs serving needy communities in the Third World as well as in “at risk” neighborhoods across North America. More recently, Dr. Campolo has provided leadership for the Red Letter Christians movement. He blogs regularly at his own website. Tony and his wife Peggy live near Philadelphia, and have two children and four grandchildren.

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