Bearer of Hope may each of us who feel bound and hemmed in -- by what we have done and left undone, by our circumstances and by our temptations, by our injuries and by our weariness - a little opening for transforming love to enter. As we reflect on our mistakes, our failures, our limitations, our temptations, our injuries and our weaknesses, may we have the courage to realize what we can do, what we can learn, what amends we can make, what healing we can undertake and then the strength of heart to begin to do what we can. Bearer of Hope, those realizations can be painful and hard, but you bring them anyway, for only once we awaken to what we might do, can we actually begin to change, with steadfastness of heart and humility, with mercy and with love. As we know our own imperfections, may we be merciful with those we meet, those we love, and those against whom we have hardened our hearts. Imperfect ourselves, may we not expect perfection from others, but extend them the healing hope and generosity of spirit we ourselves have needed in our lowest days. Let us trust that imperfection is neither the end of us, nor a punishment, nor a discounting of our inherent worth or calling to love and be loved. Instead, let us remember imperfection as a beginning place, an opening to changes that create so much more of what we have been longing for in care, community, and connection. Bearer of Hope, may we join you in the responsible life worth living, and the sweetness and surprising joy that grows from it. Amen.