May 2019: Prayers and reflections

Pope Francis’ Intention for May
That the Church in Africa, through the commitment of its members, may be the seed of unity among her peoples and a sign of hope for this continent.

Collect for the optional Memorial of blessed John Sullivan
God, Father of mercies,
who taught your Priest, blessed John Sullivan,
to contemplate Christ crucified
and imitate his compassion,
grant that we may follow his
and grow every day in loving you
above all things.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ,
your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in
the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

For the Day of Prayer for the Church in China, 24 May
Our Lady of Sheshan, sustain all those in China who, amid their daily trials, continue to believe, to hope, to love.
May they never be afraid to speak of Jesus to the world, and of the world to Jesus.
In the statue overlooking the Shrine you lift your Son on high, offering him to the world with open arms in a gesture of love.
Help Catholics always to be credible witnesses to this love, ever clinging to the rock of Peter on which the Church is built. Mother of China and all Asia, pray for us, now and for ever. Amen!

Prayer of Pope benedict XVI to our Lady of Sheshan

Prayer for Life, to mark the first anniversary of the Abortion Referendum
God our Father
With sadness we recall the referendum
which opened the door to abortion in Ireland.
We pray for courage and perseverance
as we continue to advocate on behalf of the unborn.
Have mercy on our country, Lord.
Call us back to an esteem for all human life.
Enlighten our politicians,
guide our nurses and doctors,
give wisdom to those who make and apply our laws,
give honesty to those who shape public opinion,
give courage to ordinary men and women,
so that the vulnerable unborn
may once again be cherished and protected,
along with frail human life in all its seasons.
May we be consoled by the knowledge
that whatever we do for the least of your people
we do for you.
May we be challenged by the knowledge
that if we forget or turn away,
we turn away from you.
our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the unborn,
Pray for us.

Justin Martyr, First Apology 12
‘More than all others, we are [society’s] helpers and allies in the cause of peace, since we hold that it is impossible for the wicked, the covetous, the conspirator, and the virtuous alike, to escape the notice of God, and that each one goes to everlasting punishment or salvation according to the value of his actions. If everyone knew this, no one would choose wickedness at all, knowing that it would lead him to everlasting punishment; but would by every possible means restrain himself, and seek to become virtuous, so that he might obtain the good gifts of God, and escape punishment.’

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