Prayer for the Day – Script 1

This is what I said this morning on Prayer for the Day on Radio 4:

Good morning.

There is an anniversary which falls today which isn’t well known or well celebrated but perhaps future generations will look back on it and mark it well. Today is the ninth anniversary of the first surviving edit made to Wikipedia, the online encyclopaedia that anyone can change at will. It had gone online the day before.

A great collaborative journey has unfolded since then. Shared expertise. Thousands upon thousands of opinions. Millions of people thinking their own version of a text was better than the last.

Its been controversial too – challenging what we know about truth and what we think about authority.

Once upon a time, the great texts that influenced people’s lives seemed to contain wisdom so deep that people thought they could only be divinely inspired. Only people deemed holy enough could copy them, and editing – amending the text – was a terrible thing, deserving punishment not praise.

Now we have the potential to find out for real whether we can build a better world out of shared experiences and by sharing what we know with others without always expecting payment or reward.

Today as I am speaking, knowledge and opinions are pulsating around the world faster that could ever once have been imagined. People can collaborate on projects without being in the same place at the same time. Many of the challenges brought about by geography and territory are overcome.

Holy God,
teach us to use these new tools to collaborate for the common good,
show us that knowledge and wisdom increase when they are shared freely
and teach us that prayer is a world-wide web of connectedness
that links us all together with you. Amen.

You should be able to hear it on the iPlayer for seven days.