WPCU Day 3: Reflection by Rev. Gail Avery (TEC)

During the Week of Prayer for for Christian Unity (WPCU), the NH Council of Churches will post daily reflections from leaders its the ten member denominations. This year’s theme is “Justice and only justice shall you pursue” (Deuteronomy 16:20).

Day 3: Let your word be ‘Yes, Yes’ or ‘No, No’

Matthew 5:33-37


Today, I continue seeing the Indonesian community but this time it’s outside the ICE building. They come and faithfully obey our officials. They report to ICE in hopes of extending their stays; some have doing this ritual for 20 years. Children have been born who are US citizens, many of whom have not stepped foot on Indonesian soil. Yet now, our nation believes they and other immigrants are a problem. We scapegoat them, blaming them for all our social ills.

I wish our current administration would not falsely accuse our immigrants. Rather than spreading deceit, I wish their lips would speak the truth of who they are. Instead Indonesian communities hear, ‘You are to report again next month but this time bring a one-way ticket to Indonesia.’ I wish their words would be yes, not maybe. And I pray that our nation learns once again from Jesus how to be agents of unity and peace.


O God of righteousness,
grant us wisdom to distinguish right from wrong.
Let our hearts be guided by honesty and our lips speak the truth.
Give us courage to be truthful even when others go against us.
Keep us from spreading deceit;
Make us, rather, agents of unity and peace,
spreading good news for all people.
We pray in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen

About the Author

Rev. Gail Avery is Canon for Transition and Community Engagement in the Episcopal Church of New Hampshire, comprising 45 congregations in the Granite State.