Dearly beloved we gather today for the 15025th meeting of Barchester Council. Before we move on the substantive agenda items on closing down council services due to funding cuts; responding to Uncle Eric’s unique flavour of localism and doing the stuff we have been elected to do, please bow your heads and join me in prayer
Lord Eric, in your mercy, hear our prayers.
We pray that with your infinite wisdom you see your cuts are not fair and are focussed on the poor and needy. We pray that you are able to be gracious and help those that need help.
We pray that you review the inequity within the local government settlement and the arbitrary metric of the revenue spending power.
We pray that you do not turn a blind eye to the beggar (even if it is in the guise of a once proud city proffering a begging bowl). We pray that you do not mock their affliction but stretch out a charitable hand to offer succour.
We pray that you treat all with respect. We pray that you teach humility and humanity to your special boyz in the hope that they can turn away from the dark side.
We pray that you drop your unhealthy obsession with bins and all that is unclean. We pray that you allow councils to do the job they there to do without your constant interference.
We pray for localism.
We pray that you find it within yourself to praise councils not matter what their colour – be they blue, orange or red.
We pray that you learn to love your enemy as your friend.
And we pray your days at DCLG are numbered and you have the chance to move to DEFRA.
Lord Eric, in your mercy, hear our prayers