Prayer for July Fourth

I know we don’t celebrate it nationally in Britain, but it’s as good a day as any to stop and be thankful for freedom.  Here pagans are not legally persecuted for their beliefs, and can practice them openly and freely (within the bounds of personal discretion of course).  The state openly accepts that there are other faiths within the country and actively encourages them through legal protections of diversity for those who do not follow the official state religion.  Here we have only a few legal restrictions on marriage (as in not your closest relatives), and on the places we can live (as in not based on religious segregation), there is no nationally enforced nightly curfew, and no dictatorship.  There’s a wonderful prayer within the Book of Pagan Prayer which fits just nicely for the occasion.  Even if you don’t pray, take a moment to read it as a poem instead:

Goddess Liberty
we pray to you today
grant freedom to all your children
no matter what their country
We take time today to remember
the examples of freedom we have seen in our time
We remember the citizens of Berlin
who knew that the best use for  a wall is to dance upon it
We remember the hole in the Romanian flag
put there by those who overthrew their oppressors
We remember the people who stood in Russian Parliament Square
and waited for the tanks to come
and we remember those who struggled and failed
such as the martyrs of Tiananmen Square
who after raising a statue to you
faced the tanks and lost
we will not forget
we will not forget
give us the courage
to earn our freedom
and to regain it if it is stolen
we ask this if you
who are the source of all freedom


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