May 24, 2013, Feast of Mary, Help of Christians
This post linked to Sunday Snippets.
Let us remember today to pray for the Catholics of China, many of whom have experienced government interference with their annual pilgrimages to the shrine of Our Lady of Sheshan near Shanghai this year, and who continue to be oppressed by the communist government.
Now for the actual subject of this post…
On Thursday evening Pope Francis joined the Bishops of Italy as they gathered in Saint Peter’s Basilica for their 65th General Assembly. He spoke to them about what being a bishop means in his usual direct and simple style. We laity can get an idea of what our bishops should be doing based on the Pope’s address. I was interested in the fact that part of the ceremony with the Pope centered around all the bishops reciting a profession of faith. Apparently prior to this part of the program, the Pope ended his remarks with a prayer to the Blessed Virgin which we would all do well to pray for our own bishops frequently.
Mother of the silence that preserves the mystery of God, deliver us from the idolatry of the present, to which those who forget are condemned.
Purify the eyes of pastors with the balm of memory: that we might return to the freshness of the beginning, for a praying and penitent Church.
Mother of the beauty that blossoms from fidelity to daily work, remove us from the torpor of laziness, of pettiness, and defeatism. Cloak Pastors with that compassion that unifies and integrates: that we might discover the joy of a humble and fraternal servant Church.
Mother of the tenderness which enfolds in patience and mercy, help us burn away the sadness, impatience, and rigidity of those who have not known what it means to belong.
Intercede with your Son that our hands, our feet and our hearts may be swift: that we may build the Church with the truth in charity.
Mother, we will be the People of God, on pilgrimage towards the Kingdom. Amen.
This prayer contains many points we could use for meditation for ourselves. In this Year of Faith I am struck once again with the necessity to keep discovering Jesus and His teachings. As I go about my daily duties this prayer challenges me to think about whether and how I am living my Faith in each moment.
Regarding our bishops, I’m sure that we all have concerns about things that go on in our dioceses, or things that don’t go on that ought to be happening. Do we think to pray often for our bishops and pastors that they may grow in faith and charity, acquitting themselves of their weighty tasks with courage and fidelity?
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R. Now and forever!
(Click on the link above to read why I end my posts this way.)
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