God of grace, today we pray for peace for the city of Bethlehem.
It has had more than its share of conflict,
as it changed from a little town
to a bustling city visited by millions each year.
You know the walls that separate people in Bethlehem;
walls of concrete, walls of prejudice, walls of hatred,
walls between Israeli and Palestinian,
walls between Jew and Christian and Muslim,
walls between cultures and languages.
We can hardly think of another place on earth
with such high walls and such deep hostility.
Yet this is where you were born: