Living as a Catholic Prayer What Is Prayer? For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy. (St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Manuscrits autobiographiques, C 25r.) The Pope Video September 2019 Prayers for September Prayers for the Season of Creation Prayer before a Crucifix Behold, O good and sweetest Jesus, I cast myself upon my knees in Thy sight, and with the most fervent desire of my soul I pray and beseech Thee to impress upon my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope and charity, with true repentance for my sins and a most firm desire of amendment: whilst with deep affection and grief of soul I consider within myself and mentally contemplate Thy five most precious Wounds, having before mine eyes that which David, the prophet, long ago spoke in Thine Own person concerning Thee, my Jesus: They have pierced My hands and My feet, they have numbered all My bones. A Prayer for Priests Lord Jesus, You have chosen Your priests from among us and sent them out to proclaim Your word and to act in Your name. For so great a gift to Your Church, we give You praise and thanksgiving. We ask You to fill them with the fire of Your love, that their ministry may reveal Your presence in the Church. Since they are earthen vessels, we pray that Your power shine out through their weakness. In their afflictions let them never be crushed; in their doubts never despair; in temptation never be destroyed; in persecution never abandoned. Inspire them through prayer to live each day the mystery of Your dying and rising. In time of weakness send them Your Spirit, and help them to praise Your heavenly Father and pray for poor sinners. By the same Holy Spirit, put Your word on their lips and Your love in their hearts, to bring good news to the poor and healing to the broken hearted. And may the gift of Mary, Your mother, to the disciple whom You loved, be Your gift to every priest. Grant that she who formed You in her human image, may form them in Your divine image, by the power of Your Spirit, to the glory of God the Father. Amen. O Mary conceived without sin pray for use who have recourse to you. O Mary conceived without sin pray for use who have recourse to you. O Mary conceived without sin pray for use who have recourse to you. A prayer to Jesus O my Divine Saviour, transform me into yourself. May my hands be the hands of Jesus. May my tongue be the tongue of Jesus, Grant that every faculty of my body may serve only to glorify you. Above all, transform my soul and all its powers, so that my memory, my will and my affections may be the memory, the will and the affections of Jesus. I pray you to destroy in me all that is not you. Grant that I may live but in you and for you, and that I may truly say with St. Paul: "I live, now not I, but Christ lives in me" (Gal 2:20) A Prayer for Vocations O God, Our Father, You have called us in Baptism, to follow Your Son through lives of living service to You and to one another. Grant us Your assistance as we seek to live out our vocation in life. We pray especially for those who have answered Your call as priests, brothers, sisters, and deacons. Keep them faithful in following Your Son, and dedicated in serving You, in their brothers and sisters. Grant that many more men and women will be open to the challenge of dedicating their lives in the ministry of building Your Kingdom. Jesus, High priest and Redeemer, we ask You to call men and women to Your service as priests and religious. May they be inspired by the lives of dedicated priests, brothers and sisters. Holy Spirit, give to parents the grace of generosity and trust toward You and their Child, so that their sons and daughters may be helped to choose their vocation in life with wisdom and freedom. Through Christ, Our Lord. Amen. The Memorare Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession, was left unaided. Inspired by this confidence I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother. To thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me. Amen. Praying with the Pope in September PRAYING WITH THE POPE Usually, as the Holy Father’s own prayer-group, we in the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network are entrusted with his monthly prayer intention. Our mission is to share it widely among the people of God, in our parishes and chaplaincies, communities and families. With the Pope, we want to change our hearts, to be more ready to carry out Christ’s mission in the world. SEPTEMBER – THE WORLD’S SEAS AND OCEANS The September Intention; it’s topical, urgent and presents a huge opportunity, a challenge, to every one of us. We consider the environment, our God-given “common home”, as the Pope called our world in his great letter, Laudato Si, published just over four years ago. His intention for September is about The Protection of the Oceans: “That politicians, scientists and economists work together to protect the world’s seas and oceans”. This urgent request for our prayers - and action – comes just when awareness is growing of just how pressing this question is. At last, we’re waking up, opening our eyes to the disaster that has already begun. More and more of us are taking seriously how little time is left to act, to avert the catastrophe. THE SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE Responsible scientific research constantly reveals ever more frightening facts about the seas’ and oceans’ degradation. The dangerous incidence of waste plastic in our oceans, highlighted by recent television programmes, is now better known. We have been hearing also about large quantities of minute plastic particles found in snow, an immediate threat to both animal and human life. We read, daily, of heatwave conditions in the Arctic causing accelerated loss of glaciers which, in turn, will quicken the rise of sea-levels and will further affect climate-patterns. Most of us know that scientists foresee a crucial global temperature rise of 1.5C to 2C, potentially catastrophic, that requires urgent, large-scale preventative action in only a few years … or else. Governments are not yet responding with urgency; individuals are not yet changing behaviour as we really need to. THE FAITH PERSPECTIVE In our booklet “Living Prayer 2019” naturalist and campaigner Mary Colwell writes in the September reflection, “The vastness of an ocean draws us to God. To stand at the edge of such an unknowable, deep and mysterious part of the earth pierces our soul with yearning. The surface of the sea can be implacable and soothing, or it can rage in a broiling turmoil that instils a fear that is unmatched”. God draws us in and through creation; who cannot be moved by the vast majesty of the ocean, the sheer wonder of our earth, be it sea, mountain or forest? Colwell reminds us that “Below the waves are landforms we can only imagine – mountain ranges, canyons, trenches and vast plains. They are inhabited by creatures that have no equivalent on land, alien life that glows and pulsates in utter blackness. Discovering this strange world reminds us that God has plans that range far beyond our human lives.” Our prayer this month, with the Pope, is to be open to that vastness; of the ocean, of God’s never-ending creative dream, and of our human responsibility for its tarnishing and even destruction. If we let our prayer change our hearts, we will discover what each of us is called to do. Click to Pray:Log on to https://clicktopray.org/ and download the app. (on App Store, iTunes and Google Play) to pray with the Pope, and hundreds of thousands of Christians around the world.