National Sorry Day

For the Victims of Genocide

The Massacre of the Innocents

The Massacre of the Innocents
by Pieter Brueghel the Elder (1525?–1569)

Almighty God, gracious Father: we remember before thee this day all those who have perished in genocides, especially those members of Australia’s Aboriginal People. Vouchsafe, we beseech thee, to sear into our memories the story of their peril, lest we forget their anguish and tribulations. Embolden us with thy Holy Ghost to confront those who would repeat such acts, whether brazenly or cunningly; open our mouths to speak for those in peril, lest they perish unheralded as did their predecessors; grant us to stand with the persecuted, and to protect them from their oppressors, that all thy people may dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places. Grant this for thine only Son Jesus Christ’s sake, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Holy Ghost, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

National Sorry Day commemorates the Stolen Generation of Australia’s Aboriginal People, and in particular the “children separated, often forcibly, from their families in the interest of turning them into white Australians” [1]. The day commemorates the delivery of the Bringing Them Home Report to the Australian Federal Parliament in 1997.

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