Prayers

Dehonian Spirituality

"We contemplate the love of Christ in the mysteries of His life and in the life of people. Nourished by our attachment to Him, we unite ourselves with His oblation for the salvation of the world."
 
Priests of the Sacred Heart, Rule of Life Number 77

Prayer

Oblation BW

Hands lifted in prayer; hands prepared to serve

 

March 14, 2014 thru January 16, 2015

by on Jan.26, 2015, under Uncategorized

January 16, 2015

January 18, 2015, is the 101st World Day of Migrants and Refugees. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all people whose circumstances force them to move from their homeland and all those who welcome them to a new land. Becoming Neighbours created a Prayer Service for World Day of Migrants and Refugees; click here to download a PDF of the service.

The following prayer is based on the Rule of Life [#11, 12, 35, 38, 51, and 51] of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Jesus,
you prayed for the coming of God’s reign
and your continuing presence among us
challenges us to collaborate in making your prayer a reality.
You enable us to believe
that despite sin, failures, and injustice,
redemption is possible, has been offered, and is already present.

We want to be one with your loving oblation,
totally giving ourselves to the Father
and totally giving ourselves to people.

We pledge our special love
to those who have the greatest need
of being accepted and loved.
We shall do our utmost to avoid every form of social injustice
and to awaken consciences
to the tragedies of misery and the demands of justice.

Following Fr. Dehon’s legacy,
we want to participate in constructing the earthly city
and to be an effective sign
that it is the reign of God and God’s justice
which we should seek above all in all.

Amen.

 

January 9, 2015

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer those who are in need of a kind word, a warm remembrance, or an expression of love, and those who take the time to communicate it.

Heart of Jesus,
delight of all saints,
make my heart like your Heart.
Inspire me
to lighten the burden of someone who suffers,
to congratulate someone who celebrates a significant moment,
to affirm someone in need of recognition,
and to thank someone who is a gift to me.
May I take the time to express myself
as personably as possible
in a card, a call, or a visit.
Help me to show my delight
in all your saints.
Amen.

 

December 19, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who are called to minister as priests. The following prayer was composed by Fr. Dehon and recorded in his Daily Notes approximately one year after his ordination to the priesthood.

Lord,
the desire I have for my own holiness
and that of my loved ones,
even the desire that the saints have
for the holiness of the world:
all these are nothing in comparison
to the ardent longing of your heart
to make us holy.

Lord,
through your almighty power
give my heart the right dispositions
so that it may be able
to welcome the grace your bestow on it.

Amen

December 12, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the parishioners, students, teachers, and staff at Our Lady of Guadalupe, an SCJ sponsored parish and school in Houston, Texas. Please join the Priests of the Sacred Heart in using this prayer from their Prayer Book.

Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe,
a few short years after the gospel was preached on our shores
you came to us, bearing your Son, Jesus.
Others had come with greed in their hearts,
guns in their hands,
and disease in their bodies,
but you came with our Savior in your womb.

You came dressed in our colors,
speaking our language and using our symbols.
Your message was one of love and protection.
You gathered us into your arms
and assured us that you are our mother too.
As we place our trust in you,
you promise to protect us from the powerful of our world.

Dear Lady of Guadalupe,
we still need your love and protection
in the midst of a pagan world.
We still need your Son, our God,
who is our brother and savior.
Just as your motherly image remains among us to this day,
so too may we learn from you
how to heal all in our land
as brothers and sisters in the family of God.

Amen.

December 5, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who follow the Rule and spirit of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. You may find helpful the following prayer, composed by Fr. Leo John Dehon, SCJ, after making the month-long Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius.

O my God, bless my resolutions.
I dedicate myself to your love for the rest of my life:
repentant love, stirred up by meditation on your Passion;
grateful love, sustained by consideration
of the divine blessings and all the special graces
—so numerous and often so extraordinary—
that I have received;
confident love in Jesus and Mary,
shown by a complete abandonment to divine Providence;
devoted loved, to be expressed in fidelity to my Rule,
to the duties of my state in life,
and to the inspirations of grace.

Help me, O my Savior,
to love you and to make you loved,
that you may find your rest and your joy in our houses.

Amen.

November 28, 2014

In your kindness throughout the week, please remember in your prayer all your infirm and aging relatives and friends, and the infirm and aging members of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. You may find helpful the following prayer, inspired by the sentiments of #68 in the Rule of Life of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Jesus,
united with your compassionate Heart,
we surround with special love
our sisters and brothers
who bear the cross of aging or infirmity.
As they do their best
to accept the fragile nature of our human condition,
they model for us the spirit of oblation.
We ask you to grant them the healing
of which they are most in need,
and we pledge to attend
to their immediate needs.

 

November 21, 2014

The Priests of the Sacred Heart celebrate SCJ Memorial Day every November 26, “with a deep sense of gratitude toward God,” notes Fr. José Ornelas Carvalho, General Superior, “for all its SCJ missionaries and religious who were and are faithful to our charism.” In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all the deceased among the Priests of the Sacred Heart. Your may find helpful this prayer for the deceased, based on #69 of the Rule of Life of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Jesus,
as you completed your oblation to the Father
on the wood of the cross, you confidently prayed,
“Into your hands I commend my spirit.”
Our deceased brothers, who have gone before us in faith,
have also completed their life of oblation.
We entrust them to your mercy, and with steadfast hope
we pray they are with you in paradise.
We pledge to stay united to them through prayer,
trusting that our community, drawn together
and held together by your love,
will find its full realization in eternity.

 

November 14, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who experience nature as a communication with the divine and those vacationing on or near the water. The following prayer, based on Psalm 65, was composed by Charles Flood, SCJ, and comes from his publication, Water and Enrich My Heart, Prayers Based on the Psalms.

Your choice has fallen on me, Lord.
You have lifted me out of the humdrum
and set me aside for your special service.
I look to you with complete confidence
that you will pardon
all my sins and negligences.
Fill my heart with love and wonder
at the marvelous things
you have done for all whom you love.
Bring relief;
water and enrich my heart;
by your bounty
expand my emotional horizons
to take in the length and breadth
of all your beauty.

 

November 7, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the benefactors of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. You may find the following prayer helpful.

 

Bountiful God,
from your goodness you lovingly provide
for what you know we need.
Help us to be attentive to your gifts
and show our gratitude
by willingly and generously sharing
even the little we have.
May the benefactors,
who support the work of your ministers,
be doubly blessed—
knowing that they reflect your goodness
and sensing that they collaborate with you
in gathering the human family
into the unity of your love.

Amen.

October 31, 2014

November 2-9 of this year is National Vocation Awareness Week. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who are discerning a vocation to be at the service of God and God’s people. You may find the following prayer, composed by SCJs from the French-Canadian Region, to be helpful.

Lord Jesus,
you call me by name
to tell me how much
I am worth in your eyes.
May this whisper of your love
also reach all my brothers and sisters.

Select from our midst
priests, who will guide your people;
religious, who will be faithful witnesses of your love;
and lay ministers to lead the Church.

Open the hearts of all young adults
to the challenge of living their love
in the faithfulness of their lives.
Grant unity to all these disciples of your love.

Amen.

 

October 31, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayers all laborers, those who employ them, and those who advocate for them. You may find helpful this act of oblation, adapted from the Prayer Book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

 

God, our Father,
in the early days of the covenant
you spoke to Moses in the burning bush.
You told him that you would be with your people
as a liberator and a savior.
You raised up prophets who denounced injustice
and who called people to cease doing evil
and learn to do good.


At the appointed time,
Jesus, your Son, came to bring good news to the poor.
He called people to follow him,
to set their hearts on heavenly treasure
and to live for others here on earth.


Now, in this moment of the Church,
we offer you our lives.
With the help of your grace,
may we be available
to live in solidarity with your people,
to promote justice,
and to be a sign in the heart of the world
that your love abides in Christ.


Amen.

 

October 17, 2014

The Church honors the memory of St. Margaret Mary on October 16. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the Sisters of the Visitation, the Priests of the Sacred Heart, and all who dedicate themselves to the Heart of Jesus.

The Priests of the Sacred Heart now use a four-week cycle of daily reparation prayers. The following prayer draws its inspiration from the Act of Reparation that the Priests of the Sacred Heart once prayed every day.

Jesus,
your love embraces all people,
but we often respond with indifference, neglect, and ingratitude
towards you and towards one another.

We thank you that, despite this response,
you have become one with us.
By dying and rising with us,
you have taught us your way of love.
By opening your heart to the world,
you have invited us to share in your life
with the Father and the Spirit.

Jesus,
with the Father and the Spirit, live in us
so that through our compassion and understanding,
our giving and receiving,
and our efforts at reconciliation,
we might truly live in you.

By our active faith,
grant us a place in your prayer:
“Father,
I have given them the glory you gave me,
so that they may be one, as we are one,
that the world may know that you sent me
and that you loved them even as you loved me.”

Amen.

 

October 10, 2014

South Dakota celebrates Native Americans’ Day on October 13, 2014. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the well-being of all native and aboriginal peoples, but especially the Lakota people among whom the Priests of the Sacred Heart minister in South Dakota. You may find the following prayer helpful. The refrain of this prayer comes from the Rule of Life of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, #28

God of all nations,
we share a culture that has dominated and robbed
the Native Americans of their heritage.
Enable them to be strong and proud once more.
Help us to empower them with freedom, love, and self-determination.
We rely on you,
knowing that you rely on us, and so we promise:
We will search for the signs of your presence in the lives of people
where your saving love is active.


Father of Jesus,
we remember the Priests of the Sacred Heart
presently serving the Lakota people:
at St. Joseph’s Indian School, in parish ministry, and with social outreach.
We ask your blessing on their personal lives and ministries.
Help us to support them.
We rely on you,
knowing that you rely on us, and so we promise:
We will search for the signs of your presence in the lives of people
where your saving love is active.


Giver of all good gifts,
many people help this ministry among the Lakota
through their prayer, work, and financial assistance.
Bless them and help us to recognize their contributions
and to be sensitive to their needs.
We rely on you,
knowing that you rely on us, and so we promise:
We will search for the signs of your presence in the lives of people
where your saving love is active.


Giver of Wisdom,
we seek to know and understand the Lakota culture,
for knowing our Lakota brothers and sisters
we will come to know and love you better.
Enrich us with their heritage.
We rely on you,
knowing that you rely on us, and so we promise:
We will search for the signs of your presence in the lives of people
where your saving love is active.

 

October 3, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer pastoral ministers, especially the Priests of the Sacred Heart and those who collaborate with them.

Support their work by using this Prayer of Reparation taken from their prayer book.

Lord Jesus,
through your incarnation
you united yourself with us.
Send us your Spirit
that we may live for others as you did.
May we go wherever people
long to hear your word of love:
in the marketplace,
on the streets of the world,
and wherever they no longer hope for justice.
In this way, may we follow Fr. Dehon’s lead:
proclaiming the boundless riches of your love,
building a world fit for human dwelling,
and bringing your hope to all we meet.

Amen.

 

September 26, 2014

The Church celebrates the feast of St. Vincent de Paul on September 27. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the members and work of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, and the people whom they serve. Please join with the Priests of the Sacred Heart in using this Prayer of Reparation from their prayer book.

Jesus,
often, we hear your words,
“Whatsoever you do the least of my brothers and sisters,
you to do me,”
but we seldom act on them.

The poor are all around us.
the homeless and the hungry
struggle in our neighborhoods,
and so often we pass them by.

Lord Jesus,
you not only spoke those words, you lived them.
You did not ignore the poor or pass them by.
You saw in them a reflection of yourself,
created in your own image and likeness.

Help us to see with your eyes.
Give us a heart of compassion,
not only to help the poor,
but to respect them.
Give us a heart of courage,
not only to feed the hungry
and give a home to the homeless,
but to work toward eliminating
hunger and homelessness.

Challenge us to hear your words
and to live them.

Amen.

 

September 19, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the youth of our world, especially those who have no one to mentor them. Please remember also the adults who dedicate their efforts to affirm, challenge, and inspire youth.

Take a moment to notice how you are or how you can be an exemplary model for the youth in your life. Then use this prayer of Fr. Dehon, taken from his meditation book, The Retreat with the Sacred Heart.

Good Master,
I too am coming before you
like the young man in the Gospel,
drawn by the kindness of your Heart.
You are the truth, the way, and the life,
teach me what I should do to attain my salvation
and to respond to your plans for me.

Amen.


September 12, 2014

September 14 is the Feast of the Exultation of the Holy Cross. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those individuals whose life circumstances create a cross that they must bear. Pray that they might be able to embrace the cross with love and discover within this experience hidden graces for themselves and others.

Please join with the Priests of the Sacred Heart in using this Prayer of Oblation adapted from their prayer book.

Gracious God,
in Gethsemane
Jesus prayed to be spared the cup of suffering
but added,
“Not my will, but your will.”
On the cross he cried out,
“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
but received no answer.
Yet, he trusted in your love
and accomplished your will,
even when it meant death
and the apparent destruction of his work.


God of mercy,
with Leo John Dehon
we remember the mysterious ways of your love.
We recall the way of the cross
and in union with Jesus,
we offer you our hearts.
We want to do your will in all things
in the way that Jesus did.
In all the circumstances of our lives,
may our confidence in you never falter.

Amen.

 

September 5, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all teachers and students, and the parents and academic institutions that support them.

Under the shadow of God wings, we are all students. Let us pray that we might be open to the process of life-long learning.

Heart of Jesus,
we pray that you might embrace us
and nurture our goodness.
In your shadow,
may we find a safe place
to make mistakes.
In your shadow,
may we also sense your challenge,
not as constraint, but as inspiration
while learning to make good choices.

With boundless love
you believe in us
to bring about a just and humane world.
With child-like faith,
may we accomplish your will
through the gentleness of our heart
and the strength of our actions.

Amen.

 

August 29, 2014

This year, Labor Day falls on September 1. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all laborers and those who promote the rights of workers.

Jesus calls all his followers to help build an earthly city where his justice reigns. Use the following Prayer of Reparation, adapted from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, to recommit yourself to this task.

Gracious God,
in the face of the human struggle for liberation,
you give us your love
through the Heart of Christ.

By breathing the Spirit into us,
Christ gives us the power to see
that all things are possible.
Your Spirit moves our hearts to love,
to seek your reign and its justice,
and to build an earthly city
where all may live in harmony.

Loving God,
today we want to welcome your Holy Spirit.
Help us bear witness to your passionate love
through the generosity of our life.
May we never tire of building a new humanity in Christ.

Amen.

 

August 22, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all mentors and educators, and the benefactors that support their work.

Whatever our role in life, we consciously or unconsciously influence younger generations. Please join with the Priests of the Sacred Heart in using this prayer, from their Eighth General Conference [2012], which focused on educating youth from a Dehonian spirit.

We bless you, Father,
in union with Jesus, your Son,
who with the Word
educates us and shapes our heart to love.

Teach us to share
the values that you gave us
through Fr. Dehon—
to continue in the world
your work of salvation.

 

August 15, 2014

August 15, Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is one of the dates on which members of the Priests of the Sacred Heart in the United States profess their vows. Other dates include March 19, Feast of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary; August 22, Feast of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary; and September 8, Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all women and men religious who profess vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, especially the young members of these communities.

No matter the specific vocation, Jesus calls every Christian to follow him. Take a moment to consider how you follow Jesus and then use this prayer of Fr. Dehon, taken from his meditation book, The Retreat with the Sacred Heart.

Good Master,
this is truly what I want:
I want to live and die loving you.
It is in your Sacred Heart
and according to its designs and its inspirations
that I want to live, to suffer, and to act.


I do not want to seek my own satisfaction, but your will.
In all things I want to fulfill it,
because there is nothing better or more perfect.
I belong to you, O my Savior;
do with me what you will.
Accept this offering of my entire life that I am making to you
and kindly accept it as a sacrifice of adoration
and a sacrifice of love and reparation.


Amen.


August 8, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all people who are near death or who will die today.

Pray also for your own peaceful death, using the following prayer.

God of Life,
at the time of my dying,
whether sudden or prolonged,
grant me the grace
of professing a final act of oblation.
In that moment,
I want to commend my being into your hands
and trust the mysterious weaving
of your truth, compassion, justice, and love
into a judgment that will allow me
to unite myself entirely to you.


May those who have gone before me in faith
gather round to welcome me home
and bring me to the banquet
where every hunger is satisfied,
every thirst quenched,
and the sense of well-being reigns.

Amen.

 

August 1, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer gardeners, landscapers, farmers, and all who nurture growth and beauty on the land and in people.

The following prayer is a paraphrase of Psalm 92, from Water and Enrich My Heart, Prayers Based on the Psalms, by Charles Flood, SCJ.

All that you do, Lord,
and all that you are,
are delightsome to me.


My heart thrills at the sight
of all that you have made.
How magnificent, how unfathomable
are your purposes in all that you have made.
Yet how dull to learn,
how slow I am to grasp
the lesson of your beauty.


Renew in me the sense of wonder
and keep me alive intellectually
all the days of my life.
Give me constant vigor
and freshness of outlook
even to extreme old age.

 

JULY 25, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the benefactors who support the mission of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. In using the following prayer, please remember that the Christian call to witness to God’s love is a communal effort. Each Christian is a minister, whether in the family or in a foreign land, and each Christian is a benefactor supporting the good deeds of another.

Gracious and Generous Giver of Gifts,
Thank you.
Thank you for the gift of life,
the touch of your love,
the support of family and friends,
and the call to be your witnesses
to the ends of the earth.


As your ministers,
we are faced with many human needs
and humbly acknowledge
that we alone cannot address them.


We thank you for the gift of benefactors,
whose generosity enables us
to undertake many good works.
May we show our gratitude
by the wise use of all your gifts
and remember in heartfelt prayer
the hopes and dreams,
and the joys and sorrows
of our benefactors.


Together, as a community of love,
may we model your reign on earth.

JULY 11, 2014

On July 22, the Church celebrates the memory of Mary Magdalene, whom Eastern Christian Churches name, “the apostle to the apostles.” In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all who seek God and who, at some deep level, understand that God is seeking them.

The following prayer was written by Fr. Edwin Rombach, SCJ, a member of the German Province of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Lord,
you have called us.
The uneasiness we feel in our hearts
when we listen to your Word
is proof enough.

You know our weakness.
You know how easily we are discouraged.
You know how anxiously we take our steps.
Yet you have called us.
We rely on that.

Mold us if it is your will.
Use us and make us useful.

And let others be touched by your Word
and be called into your service.

Amen

JULY 11, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who are crushed by social sin— victims, perpetrators, and activists.

Take a moment to contemplate how you can be an apostle of the reign of the Sacred Heart in souls and society. Then use this prayer of Fr. Dehon, taken from his meditation book, The Retreat with the Sacred Heart.

Lord,
may your kingdom come!
May your Divine Heart reign among us!
I passionately desire this and I want to work for this.
And first of all I want to give you my heart!
Come, live and reign in me.
Give me your spirit;
make me know your will,
direct and govern my entire life.
Also make me an ardent and zealous apostle
of the reign of your Divine Heart in society.

Amen.

 

JULY 4, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayers the citizens of the United States of America, its elected leadership, whistleblowers, protesters, and those who seek citizenship in this country.

Please join with the Priests of the Sacred Heart in using this Prayer of Reparation, taken from their prayer book.

Lord our God,
you have made the world
and all it holds.
You preserve it and you bless it.
You rise above every human boundary:
of nation and culture,
age and status,
sex and race.

Shatter in us every barrier of prejudice and fear
that prevents us from acting as disciple of Jesus.
Today we want to unite ourselves
with you compassion for those who suffer.
Help us stand with them
in their struggle for liberation.

Amen.

 

JUNE 27, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the Priests of the Sacred Heart and the laity who collaborate with them in various ways.

On this Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, make your own the prayer of Fr. Leo John Dehon, who composed these words for his meditation book, The Life of Love towards the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

I love you, good Master,
but my love is still weak.
I desire it to be stronger and more constant.
Strengthen my love
and make it enduring and unshakable.

You have given me the grace
to begin loving you;
give me also the grace
to continue to love you,
cost what it may.
I want to offer you constantly
my daily actions, works, and sufferings
in a spirit of love.

Amen.

 

JUNE 20, 2014

On Sunday, June 22, 2014, the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer those who hunger for food, shelter, safety, affirmation, and inner peace. Then, expect your prayer to encourage you to satisfy someone’s hunger.

Please join with the Priests of the Sacred Heart in this prayer of oblation taken from their community prayer book.

 

Lord Jesus,
you are the living bread come down from heaven.
You gather us at your table,
in union with the whole Church,
and unite us with your own offering to the Father.


With joy we receive from your hands
the gift of your body and blood.
In return, we offer you ourselves today
as bread that is broken for the life of the world.


Amen.

JUNE 13, 2014

Sunday, June 13, 2014, is the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer theologians, pastors, and catechists, who strive to make God known and loved.

Use the following prayer to nurture your relationship with the Trinity:

 

Author and preserver of life,
I owe all to you.
Help me to love you with all my heart
and to trust completely in your providence,
however my life unfolds.

First-born of creation and my big brother,
you have always protected me.
Help me to love you with all my heart
and to remain close to you
by listening to your words and imitating your actions.

My divine director,
stirring within everyone who makes room for you,
help me to love you with all my heart.
May I seek your wisdom in all that I do
and faithfully follow your guidance.

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
grant me a share in your loving relationship.

Amen!

 

JUNE 6, 2014

Sunday, June 8, 2014, is the Solemnity of Pentecost. In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer immigrants and refugees, who struggle to learn another language and embrace another culture. Remember also, those who welcome or struggle to welcome immigrants and refugees into their midst.

Consider the challenge of God’s unifying Spirit stirring within you and use this prayer of oblation, adapted from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

 

God of all nations,
on the day of Pentecost
your Spirit enabled the disciples
to speak in foreign tongues
of the mighty acts of God.
From Jerusalem to the ends of the earth
they bore witness to the risen Christ,
who lovingly gave himself without reserve.

Filled with this same Holy Spirit,
may we join our lives
to the offering of Jesus
so that our words and deeds
clearly speak the language of love
and contribute to the dawn of your reign
among all peoples.

Amen.

 

MAY 30, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayers the ministry of the Priests of the Sacred Heart in the Philippines and all the people whom they serve.

Please join with the Priests of the Sacred Heart in a prayer of reparation, adapted from their prayer book.

 

God of love,
when we turned from you and sinned,
you sent us your Son.

Jesus entered the world to bring us peace,
but experienced crucifixion and death.
In rising on the third day,
he conquered death
and restored the life we had lost.

God of peace,
on this new day you have made,
we lovingly offer you our hearts.
Through your Son,
we want to join in your uprising against death:
by working to end violence,
by acting to stop oppression,
and by bringing together what sin has scattered.
May your Son rise in human hearts everywhere
and may death give way
to your final word of abundant life.

Amen.

 

MAY 23, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in prayer those women and men who serve as spiritual directors and those whom they guide.

Spirit of God,
counselor and guide,
help me attend to your voice
speaking through daily circumstances,
through a trusted mentor,
and through the wisdom you have given me.

Direct my thoughts
to align with the mind of Christ.
Direct my actions
to collaborate with the work of Christ.
Direct my heart
to be one with the love of Christ.

In humility,
I come before you just as I am;
with complete confidence,
I trust you will lead me
to become the person whom you know I can be.

Amen.

 

MAY 16, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer not only all military personnel who presently serve our country, but also veterans, particularly those who struggle to reintegrate into society.

 

God of Peace,
we pray for all nations and all peoples
caught in the clutches
of unjust aggression and the horrors of war.

We pray for a discerning heart
so that the cries of justice
and not the clamor of political advantage
inform the rhetoric and actions of our country.

We commit ourselves to work for peace—
within ourselves, our families, and our world—
until such time
that enemies reconcile,
war ceases,
and weapons are useless.

 

MAY 9, 2014

Sunday, May 11, 2014, is World Day of Prayer for Vocations. In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who are discerning their vocation in life and those who guide them. The following prayer is adapted from the community prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

In praying these words, you join with them in asking the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers to gather his harvest.

Gracious God,
you have blessed people with many gifts and talents.
Grant them the wisdom
to know how best to use them
for the glory of your name.

Jesus,
your invitation, “Come, follow me,”
helps men and women
to see in themselves what you see
and gives them the courage to follow
wherever you may lead

Holy Spirit,
enflame the Church with generous hearts,
eager to serve your people
and to spread the Good News.

MAY 2, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all laborers, the families they support, their employers, and all who work for just salaries and safe working conditions.

The following prayer of reparation is adapted from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Jesus,
known as the son of a carpenter,
you give us your foster father as a mentor.

Being a laborer and a righteous man,
Joseph modeled how to work for your heavenly Father.
So, in an unjust world,
the work of your hands embodied God’s compassion
by touching the unclean,
welcoming the lowly,
and embracing the wood of the cross.

Therefore, we invoke Joseph
to guide the work of our hands.
In today’s global marketplace,
may we embody God’s compassion
by promoting just wages,
advocating the rights of workers,
and upholding the dignity of human labor.


Amen.

 

APRIL 25, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the members of the Priests of the Sacred Heart in the United States Province, those with whom they collaborate in ministry, and the people whom they serve.

As you try your best to be available to God’s will in the circumstances of your life, use this prayer of reparation taken from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Lord Jesus,
help us to recognize you in the poor,
in those who suffer persecution,
and in those who are denied basic human rights.
Open our minds, our hearts, and our lives
to the needs of our brothers and sisters.

ers.

Increase our faith in the power of your great love,
so that we may face our fears
and reject all false security.
Inspire us to take the risks necessary to change the worl
and to proclaim the equality of all people.

ers.

Savior and lover of humanity,
make your love known through us.
Help us to work unceasingly
to build the kingdom of God that you proclaimed.

ers.

Amen.

C

APRIL 18, 2014wh

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all those who have particularly difficult crosses to bear, especially for children who are abused, traumatized by war, or are dealing with physical, mental, or emotional challenges, and those who care for them.

As you hold gently the crosses that Divine Providence sends you, use this prayer of reparation, adapted from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Jesus,
your love knows no bounds—
freely giving your life for us,
calling us your friends,
and making known to us your life with the Father.

As we remember your great love,
we offer you our hearts
and pledge ourselves, our relationships, and our labors
to the service of your new commandment.

Following the example
of your mother and your beloved disciple,
we trust in your word
and bear witness to your pierced side,
so that all might come to you and live.
Amen.

 

APRIL 11, 2014

In your kindness, throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the faculty, staff, Board of Directors, and students at Sacred Heart School of Theology, in Hales Corners, WI.

Try to set aside some time each day for personal prayer. The amount of time is not as crucial as a regular habit of prayer. You might begin your time with the following prayer, which Fr. Leo Dehon composed to introduce his book of meditations, The Love of the Sacred Heart.

O my good Master,
as I come before you in reverent silence,
I will remain calm in your presence
like an expectant canvas.
I will peacefully and lovingly
contemplate the mysteries of your life.
I will be open to your grace and your love.
In this way
I will easily distance myself
from distracting thoughts
and I will purify my heart
in the fire of your love
that I may be attentive to your gentle voice,
which wants to offer me the gift of your heart.
Amen.

 

APRIL 4, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer all retired SCJs and all the residents of Sacred Heart at Monastery Lake Retirement Community in Franklin, WI.

Breath Prayer

At different times throughout life, prayer can be a struggle. The simplicity of breath prayer has the advantage of building upon an involuntary bodily function. Even if you’re tired, distracted, ill, or in a bad mood, you keep breathing.

Like most people, you probably breathe shallowly, and when prompted to take a deep breath, you suck in and tighten your stomach muscles. To be able to fill your lungs, however, you need to relax and extend your stomach muscles to allow your diaphragm to lower and give your lungs room to expand and fill with air. You can easily monitor your breathing by placing one of your hands on your stomach so that you can feel your stomach muscles extending, not contracting, as you take a deep breath. Try to inhale slowly though your nose and exhale slowly through your mouth. Breathing in this gentle and rhythmic manner may seem at first uncomfortable. Yet very quickly, deep breathing becomes a calming, peaceful ritual. Since breath is God’s gift of life, the conscious act of breathing can, in itself, be a wordless prayer.

To begin this practice, however, a few, accompanying sentiments might be helpful. For example, following your breath you can pray, “I breathe in God’s love for me; I breathe out my love for God’s people.” In time, you can shorten this to, “God’s love for me; my love for people,” and then simply, “Love; love.” Eventually, even this word is no longer needed.

You can practice breath prayer for as little time as you have or for as long as feels comfortable. Gradually, you will grow more conscious of your breathing throughout the day and discover how easy it is to pray always. Here are some sentiments to help you begin.

I breathe in God’s love for me; I breathe out my love for God’s people [or for a spouse, child, friend, someone who is ill or in need].

I breathe in God’s gifts to me; I breathe out my intention to share these gifts.

I breathe in God’s forgiveness; I breathe out my resolve to forgive.

I breathe in God’s grace; I breathe out my desire to live gracefully.

I breathe in God’s presence; I breathe out my wish to embody God’s presence.

I breathe in God’s healing; I breathe out my healing words and deeds.

I breathe in God’s total gift of self in Jesus; I breathe out my total gift of self to God.

MARCH 28, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the members and work of the Justice, Peace, and Reconciliation Commission of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, and all who work for social justice.

Take a moment to consider a specific instance where you can offer healing to a broken situation. Then use this prayer of reparation, adapted from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart:

Loving Father,
you sent your Son among us
to make your love as visible to our eyes
as the faces of our own family.

Illumined by the Heart of Jesus,
Leo Dehon taught us to see
that the deepest cause
of injustice and cruelty in our world
is the rejection of your love.

Illumine our hearts, O God,
so that we might love as Jesus loves.
Help us identify with our brothers and sisters.
While valuing our differences,
may we collaborate in healing
the wounds that divide us.
In this way we hope to nurture your grace
throughout our human family.

Amen!

 

MARCH 21, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer those who are able to afford low-income housing in Walls, Tunica, and Hernando, MS, through the Housing Ministry of Sacred Heart Southern Missions, and the donors that support this ministry.

Take a moment to contemplate Mary’s wholehearted response to God’s will and then use this prayer of oblation, adapted from the prayer book of the Priests of the Sacred Heart:

In response to the angel Gabriel, Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” (Luke 1:38)

God Most High,
you looked with favor
on the lowliness of your servant, Mary.
By her faith
and the work of the Holy Spirit
she gave birth to Jesus Christ,
your love in the flesh.

Mary responded wholeheartedly to your word
and offered her heart to your will.
Although pierced with a sword of sorrow,
her soul always proclaimed your greatness.

God of love,
may your Spirit be at work in us.
With Mary, our sister in faith,
we offer our hearts to you this day.
May we show your never-ending care
through deeds of love and justice;
may we stand with all those who suffer,
and so bring all to Jesus, your beloved Son.
Amen.

MARCH 14, 2014

In your kindness throughout the coming week, please remember in your prayer the Priests of the Sacred Heart, the Dehonian Associates, and all who follow the spirit of Fr. Leo John Dehon.

To conclude the final meditation in his book, The Life of Love towards the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thirty-three Meditations for the Month of the Sacred Heart, Father Dehon wrote this prayer, which aptly serves as a daily self-offering:

 

Good Master,
you have given me the grace to begin loving you;
give me also the grace to persevere in your love,
cost what it may.
In the spirit of love
I wish to offer to you constantly
my daily actions, works, and sufferings.
Amen.

 

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