Shall we pray.
Lord, we've come this morning to the citadel of hope. While some have given up on politics and America, this august body of political leaders still has hope.
As we remember those who started African American History Month, we realize that it was hope that gave birth to this nation. Yes, it was hope that inspired Crispus Attucks to fight in the American Revolutionary War and become its first martyr. It was hope that led Harriet Tubman to return again and again to free slaves in the south. Yes, it was hope that gave Frederick Douglass his courage. It was hope that stirred Thurgood Marshall's legal mind. It was hope that gave Mahalia Jackson her song. And, yes, it was hope that made Rosa Parks sit down so that Martin Luther King, Jr. could stand up.
So this morning we've come again to this citadel of hope, for we share Sterling Brown's In a Time Like This demand strong minds, great hearts, true faith, and ready hands.
God, we pray today that you will continue to give us leaders, leaders who will represent the rich and the poor, leaders who will ensure that every Philadelphian is ensured to have all the rights that he or she deserves, and leaders like Horace Mann who understand that we cannot be content to wait and see what will happen, but rather give us the determination to make the right things happen.
God, we give you thanks for our Council President, Darrell Clarke, and for all of those who work ably with him in this great Philadelphia City Council. We pray now for your blessings upon this meeting and upon this business today.
In your name we pray. Amen.