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World News

Biden team hosts prayer call in response to US Capitol siege

by Will Maule

As pro-Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol, President-elect Joe Biden's campaign team hosted a prayer event, calling on God to heal the nation and usher forth a new era of peace. A number of prominent faith leaders were featured on the Zoom call, including author and activist Shane Claiborne, Rev Dr William Barber II and Hispanic evangelical leader, Rev Luis Cortés.

In a notice announcing the call, the Biden team quoted civil rights leader Martin Luther Jr: "I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear." 

"Friends, in light of today's ongoing events, we invite you to join us for a time of prayer for peace and the welfare of our nation," the invite read. 

During the call, Claiborne prayed for the fruits of the spirit to be upon the country at this tumultuous time, and asked God to forgive the rise of idolatry, nationalism and racism that has grown during the Trump years. He prayed that God would bring forward a new season of hope across the US.

"Purify our anger so that we will transform our country," Claiborne prayed. 

Pastors Gabriel & Jeanette Salguero prayed that God would shine "light in the midst of chaos" and "hope into our dark night". 

Minister Michael Blake said that he was "at a loss for words" after seeing the images coming out of DC, and urged "prayer for healing".

"This is not about party or candidate, none of that...chaos has emerged today," he said. "We should all be praying for our nation together regardless of your background." 

Rev Dr William Barber II prayed:

"O Lord, we ask that you order this nation's steps towards good. Enable us to restore order, but also empower us to order our policies, our decisions...towards justice for all.

"As we see all of the imagery towards hate and injustice, grant us the strength of your might towards love, truth and justice. Let everything that has happened today move us, embolden us even the more in the steps of love, mercy and truth. Somehow, in the mystery of your might, use this moment to even bring repentance and a reordering of those who helped stir events that they might give themselves to your way of love and truth and justice. 

"Let the disorder today push us towards a new order in the days to come. Help us to see the order of a new day must be good news to the poor, healing to the brokenhearted, and justice. Bring healing, O God.

"The order of the day must be the unity of a movement for love and determine justice and truth...and not the unity of mobs for the lust of power, death, injustice and lies." 

Other Christian leaders have spoken out against the mob violence seen in the nation's capital, with preacher and author Beth Moore condemning those who speak the name of Jesus while propagating hate. 

"I don't know the Jesus some have paraded and waved around in the middle of this treachery today," she tweeted. "They may be acting in the name of some other Jesus but that's not Jesus of the Gospels." 

Pastor Rick Warren called the action "domestic terrorism" and asked the President to openly condemn it. 

One of the protesters was shot dead inside the capitol building - Ashli Babbitt, a 35-year-old airforce veteran, was gunned down by a police officer as she attempted to enter the House chamber. Three other people - a woman and two men - died from "medical emergencies" over the course of the protests, according to police. 

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