Mindful of our Jewish neighbors who are keeping the Sabbath today who can’t be with us body but are with us in spirit let us enter into that spirit of prayer that includes us all. Let us pray
God, Giver of Life and Love, your servant Meister Eckhart once said, “If the only prayer we ever utter is thank you it will be sufficient.” And so we say thank you.
We thank you for this little city on the Tennessee River that we love more than words can say.
We thank you for our newly elected leaders and for their opponents who gave us a contest of ideas that strengthened our democracy.
We thank you for the suffragists memorialized on Market Square who worked hard for this moment.
We thank you for the Knoxville College students who led the civil rights sit-ins that allow us to sit together today and for the storyteller in Morningside Park and his ancestors who remind us to “Find the Good and Praise It.”
We thank you for activists filled with Pride who labored for the day when the Henley Street Bridge would be illuminated by all the colors of the rainbow flag.
Thank you for the organizers of the World’s Fair, the Hola Festival , the Greek fest, the Asian festval, the KUUMBA fest, the Arab fest, India fest, the Rossini festival, the Knoshville Jewish food festival, the Blue Plate Special and so many other events that remind us that ours is a city where people of all kinds can find common ground and work for together for the common good and we can raise our children together to be ready for the world.
We thank you for the civic leaders of the past who looked at boarded up buildings and saw business opportunities, abandoned hotels and saw housing, utility service lines and saw greenways, industrial quarries and saw swimming holes, neglected land and saw urban wilderness and urban farms
We thank you for this new generation of leaders about to take their oath of office who dream new dreams and see new visions. We ask that you guide their feet, their hands, their hearts and their minds while they run our city.
Guide them as they work with us so that together house by house, neighborhood by neighborhood, business by business, we can make our entire city the nicest place in America, a city on a hill with the eyes of the world upon us, a special place that will always be home sweet home. For these and many other blessings we say, thank you and Amen.
(This invocation was given on December 21, 2019 for the Inauguration of Indya Kincannon as Mayor along with new members of City Council)