Child Welfare

We Can and Must Win for Children!

As congregations of all faiths are observing the National Observance of Children’s Sabbaths® Celebration this weekend, “Moving Forward with Hope: Love and Justice for Every Child,” I offer prayers for all child advocates in this very challenging time for children and families and all of us when a half century of struggle for a more inclusive and just nation is at risk. The laboriously woven child and family safety net created over decades and not yet completed is on the brink of obliteration with the administration and its congressional allies seeking to destroy our government’s role and responsibility at all levels to protect those left behind. Racial, religious and gender intolerance are mushrooming out of control and all who care about children and the future must fight back with all our might. No matter the political climate we need to remain steadfast in our stewardship of future generations and our determination to shield children from harm.

Hang in there, all of you who love children. Never give up.

Praise of Diversity

Wouldn’t it be dull if all people were White or Black or any single color? Wouldn’t it be drab if the earth was all wrapped in brown? Wouldn’t it be boring if everything was blue? Wouldn’t it be blah if fields were all gray? Wouldn’t it be tiresome if red was all day and no seasons took turns?

Thank You, God, for Your incredible panorama of people and sights and sounds and changes and vistas afar and miracles up close. Who but You could imagine and create such a universe of connected yet beautiful complexity and diversity?


You Can’t Segregate God’s Creation

God’s family is big and inclusive and everybody belongs.

God is not a Catholic, Methodist, or Baptist – Southern, National, American, or Progressive.
God is not a Presbyterian, Lutheran, Episcopalian, Evangelical, Pentacostal, Mormon, Greek or Russian Orthodox.
God is not a Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, or Baha’i.

God is all these and far, far more.

God is not republican or democrat, socialist or communist, liberal or conservative, or radical or moderate.

God is all these and far, far more.

God is not Black, Brown, Red, White, or Yellow but all these and all the blends in between.

God is not rich, middle-class, or poor; straight or gay; young, old, or middle-aged.

God is all these and far, far more.

God is not pretty, ugly, skinny, fat, short, tall, able-bodied or disabled.

God is all these and so much more.

God is no respecter of certain persons but the Creator of all persons made in God’s image with their own DNA.

God is not only in the sunshine or in the moonlight or in the seas or in the mountains or in the deserts or in the rain.

God is in all these things and in so much more.

Thank You, God, for Your presence and gifts everywhere in everyone in everything in life.


Prayer for Courage to Do Justice (By Alan Paton)

O Lord, open my eyes that I may see the needs of others;
Open my ears that I may hear their cries;
Open my heart so that they need not be without succor;
Let me not be afraid to defend the weak because of the anger of the strong nor afraid to defend the poor because of the anger of the rich.
Show me where love and hope and faith are needed, and use me to bring them to those places.
And so open my eyes and my ears that I may, this coming day, be able to do some work of peace for thee. Amen.

Marian Wright Edelman is President of the Children’s Defense Fund whose Leave No Child Behind® mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities. For more information go to

Mrs. Edelman’s Child Watch Column also appears each week on The Huffington Post.