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Ten Golden Rules for Prayer
There are different ways of praying. The best way for you to pray is the way that you find easiest. Here are a few suggestions which different people have found to be helpful.

1 Plan to pray; do not leave it to chance. Select a time and a place (a room at home, on the bus, taking a walk).

2 Decide on how long you will spend in trying to pray (five minutes, ten, fifteen, thirty or more).

3 Decide what you are going to do when you pray - e.g. which prayer to select to say slowly and lovingly.

4 Always start by asking the Holy Spirit for help in your prayers. Pray: “Come Holy Spirit, teach me to pray; help me to do it”.

5 Remember you are trying to get in touch with a Person, and that Person is God - Father or Son or Holy Spirit.

6 Don’t be a slave to one way of praying. Choose the one that you find easiest, and try some other method.

7 Don’t look for results.

8 If you have distractions, then turn your distractions into your prayer.

9 If you always feel dry and uninterested at prayer, then read a spiritual book or pamphlet.

10 Trying to pray is praying. Never give up trying.



Prayer for the Feast of the Holy Family

Sunday, 27th December

Loving God,
guardian of our homes,
when you entrusted your Son
to the care of Mary and Joseph,
you did not spare them the pains
that touch the life of every family.

Teach us to rely on your word,
that in our trials as in our joys
we may be clothed in gentleness
and patience
and united in love.

Make us ever thankful
for the blessing you give us
through Jesus Christ, your Word made flesh,
who lives and reigns with you
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
in the splendour of eternal light,
God for ever and ever.


The Assumption

Who is she that ascends so high,
Next to the Heavenly King,
Round about whom Angels fly
And her praises sing?

Who is she that, adorned with light,
Makes the sun her robe,
At whose feet the queen of night
Lays her changing globe?

This is she in whose pure womb
Heaven’s Prince remained;
Therefore in no earthly tomb
Can she be contained.

She that did so clearly shine
When our day begun,
She how bright her beams decline
Not sits with the Sun
Sir John Beaumont


Lord Jesus, you were born of the Virgin Mary,
the daughter of Saints Joachim and Anne.
Look with love on grandparents the world over.
Protect them! They are a source of enrichment
for families, for the Church and for all of society.
Support them! As they grow older,
may they continue to be for their families
strong pillars of Gospel faith,
guardian of noble domestic ideals,
living treasuries of sound religious traditions.
Make them teachers of wisdom and courage,
that they may pass on to future generations the fruits
of their mature human and spiritual experience.

Lord Jesus, help families and society
to value the presence and roles of grandparents.
May they never be ignored or excluded,
but always encounter respect and love.
Help them to live serenely and to feel welcomed
in all the years of life which you give them.
Mary, Mother of all the living,
keep grandparents constantly in your care,
accompany them on their earthly pilgrimage,
and by your prayers, grant that all families
may one day be reunited in our heavenly homeland,
where you await all humanity
for the great embrace of life without end. Amen!

This Universal Prayer For Grandparents was composed by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI in 2008

Prayer to Our Lady of Knock

Our Lady of Knock, Queen of Ireland, you gave hope to our people in a time of distress and comforted them in sorrow. You have inspired countless pilgrims to pray with confidence to your divine Son, remembering His promise: “Ask and you shall receive, Seek and you shall find”. Help me to remember that we are all pilgrims on the road to heaven. Fill me with love and concern for my brothers and sisters in Christ, especially those who live with me. Comfort me when I am sick or lonely or depressed. Teach me how to take part ever more reverently in the holy Mass. Pray for me now, and at the hour of my death. Amen.


In the Palm of Your Hand

You helped me when I was down,
When I lifted my hands to you
In earnest pleading.

Lord, give me the grace
To be gracious
And generous
To the pleading hands
Of our suffering world.
Help me to be like you,
You who stretched out your hands
On the Cross
And gave your all.

Help me to be like you,
For you hold me
In the palm of your hand.

St Therese

“For me, prayer is an aspiration of the heart, it is a simple glance directed to heaven, it is a cry of gratitude and love in the midst of trial as well as joy. Finally, it is something great and supernatural, which expands my soul and unites me to Jesus.”

17th March ~ Feast of St Patrick

Christ be with me,
Christ within me,
Christ beside me,
Christ before me, Christ to win me
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in hearts of all that love me
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger

from St Patrick’s Breastplate


Prayer for Christian Unity

God of compassion, you have loved and forgiven us in Christ, and sought to reconcile the entire human race in that redeeming love. Look with favour upon us, who work and pray for the unity of divided Christian communities. Grant us the experience of being brothers and sisters in your love. May we be one, one in your hand. Amen.


Prayer for the Feast of the Holy Family
Sunday, 28th December

Loving God,
guardian of our homes,
when you entrusted your Son
to the care of Mary and Joseph,
you did not spare them the pains
that touch the life of every family.

Teach us to rely on your word,
that in our trials as in our joys
we may be clothed in gentleness
and patience
and united in love.

Make us ever thankful
for the blessing you give us
through Jesus Christ, your Word made flesh,
who lives and reigns with you
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
in the splendour of eternal light,
God for ever and ever.



Prayer for November.

May the divine assistance remain always with us and may the souls of the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace.

Prayer For Missionaries

Father of all, you sent your Son to carry out your mission
of redeeming the world.
Today, many still have not heard his message of truth and love.
Our world is torn by war and conflict, by poverty and injustice.
Let the light of your Gospel of love so shine in the world
that it may be transformed into a worthy home
for all your children of every race and country.
Bless all missionaries throughout the world that their work may bear fruit.
Together with them, may we too share in the missionary work
of the whole Church that your Kingdom of justice, love and peace
may come in all hearts and in all nations.
We make our prayer through Christ Our Lord.

Prayer for Emigrants

O Jesus, who in the very first days of Thine earthly life was compelled, together with Mary, Thy loving Mother, and Saint Joseph, to leave Thy native land and to endure in Egypt the misery and discomforts of poor emigrants, turn Thine eyes upon our brethren, who, far away from their dear country and from all that is dear to them, are not infrequently constrained to struggle with the difficulties of a new life, and who are likewise often exposed to grave dangers and snares for their immortal souls.

Be Thou their guide in their uncertain journey, their help in trouble, their comfort in sorrow; keep them safe in their faith, holy in their lives, and faithful to their children, their wives, and their parents; grant, O Lord, that we may be able to embrace them affectionately once more in their native land, and hereafter to live inseparably united to them at the foot of Thy throne in our heavenly country. Amen.

Prayer for Vocations

Lord Jesus,
You said to your disciples:
‘The harvest indeed is great
but the labourers are few.’
We ask that we may know
and follow the vocation
to which you have called us.
We pray for those called to serve:
those whom you have called,
those you are calling now,
and those you will call in the future.
May they be open and responsive
to the call of serving your people.

Do not judge,

and you will not be judged;

do not condemn,

and you will not be condemned.

Forgive, and you will be forgiven.

- Luke 6:37, NIV


My king blessed but two fish and five loaves
so that they satisfied five thousand.
Happy are they who have Christ for their cook!
The giver was generous and bountiful,
so that there remained twelve baskets over.

(Blathmac, an 8th century Irish Poet)

A Summer Blessing

May the Lord bless all the parishioners of St Eugene’s
and keep you safe this summer.
May His face shine upon you.
May He be gracious to you.
May He look upon you with kindness.
May you know His peace. Amen.

Prayer for Vocations

Lord Jesus Christ, shepherd of souls,
who called the apostles to be fishers of men,
raise up new apostles in your holy Church.
Teach them that to serve you is to reign:
to possess you is to possess all things.
Kindle in the hearts of your children the fire of zeal for souls.
Make them eager to spread your Kingdom upon earth.
Grant them courage to follow you,
who are the Way, the Truth and the life.

When asked about Jesus' injunction to
his disciples to hate their parents,
the Master said, ''You will rarely
find a greater enemy than a parent.''
And he told how he once met a woman
at the supermarket pushing a pram
with two little boys in it.
"What cute little kids you have,"
said the Master. ''How old are they?
''The doctor ,'' said the lady, ''is three
and the lawyer is two.''

Now you endeavour
To gather yourself
And withdraw in slow
From love turned sour and ungentle.

When we love, the depth in us
Thrusts itself forward until
The empty space between
Becomes gradually woven
Into an embrace where longing
Can close its weary eyes.

Love can seldom end clean;
For all the tissue is torn
And each lover turned stranger
Is dropped into a ruin of distance
Where emptiness is young and fierce.

Time becomes strange and slipshod;
It mixes memories that felt
The kiss of the eternal
With the blistering hurt of now.

Unknown to themselves,
Certain small things
Touch nerve-lines to the heart
And bring back with colour and force
All that is utterly lost.

This is the time to be slow,
Lie low to the wall
Until the bitter weather passes.

Try, as best you can, not to let,
The wire brush of doubt
Scrape from your heart
All sense of yourself
And your hesitant light.

If you remain generous,
Time will come good;
And you will find your feet
Again on fresh pastures of promise,
Where the air will be kind
And blushed with beginning.

Risen Lord Jesus,

As Mary Magdalene met you in the garden
on the morning of your resurrection, so may
we meet you today and every day.

Speak to us as you spoke to her,
reveal yourself as the living Lord,
renew our hope and kindle our joy.

Send us to share the Good news with others.


" Christ is risen, Alleluia!"
cries out the chorus of creation
"Christ is risen, Alleluia!"
sing the supple winds of spring.
"Christ is risen, Alleluia!"
ring out lilies in silent splendour

The feast of feasts,
the festival of hope,
the mother of all Sundays,
luminous in the full moon of spring,
radiant in the rising of the sun,
Easter dances upon my rooftop
and plays like a newborn child
in the cradle of my heart

I rejoice like all of creation,
sailing on springtime's seed-bearing breezes,
and like the lily's trumpet,
I open wide my throat and my heart
to join with all of heaven and earth
in singing out the symphony of joy
at Easter's annual return

I take hope in Christ's victory over death,
hope that, one with him,
I will also have my easter morning
when I will be freed from the prison,
the decaying dusty tomb, of my marrow and stony spirit.
I trust that I too will spring-like arise
to a fullness of living and loving,
to a life beyond all time and space,
to a life one with you, my God

"Christ is risen, Alleluia!"
Alleluia, Alleluia!

Morning Prayer to Jesus Crucified

I kiss the wounds in your Sacred Feet with sorrow deep and true
May every step I take today be a million acts of love for you.

I kiss the wounds of your Sacred Hands with sorrow deep and true
May every touch of my hands today be a million acts of love for you.

I kiss the wounds in your Sacred Head with sorrow deep and true
May every thought in my mind today be a million acts of love for you.

I kiss the wounds in your Sacred Heart with sorrow deep and true
May every beat of my heart today be a million acts of love for you.

I kiss the wounds in your Sacred Shoulder with sorrow deep and true
May every cross I bear today be a million acts of love for you.


Ever Faithful God in this new year I pray:

to live deeply with purpose,
to live freely, with detachment,
to live wisely, with humility,
to live justly with compassion,
to live lovingly with fidelity,
to live mindfully with awareness,
to live gratefully with generosity,
to live fully, with enthusiasm.

Help me to hold this vision
and to daily renew it in my heart,
becoming ever more one with you,
my truest Self.


I arise with amazement at the presence of the Holy One.
I arise with gratitude for life.
I arise with hope that all shall be well.
I arise with courage to meet what will be difficult.
I arise with conviction to do what is life-giving.
I arise with eyes ever alert for beauty.
I arise with openness to greater truth.
I arise with desire for continued transformation.
I arise with compassion for the hurting ones in the cosmos.
I arise with grief still settled in my spirit.
I arise with a sense of kinship with all whom I love.
I arise with determination to make good choices in using my time.
I arise with willingness to help those who will need my care.
I arise with hesitation as I think about the pain that may come.
I arise with longing for ever greater inner freedom.
I arise with happiness, knowing that I am invited to live life more fully.
I arise with love for the Holy One, my Intimate Companion.

Compassionate God and faithful Friend, thank you for the opportunity to walk into another year of life. Help me to be faithful, to be generous, to be yours.


In You, O my Beloved, do I take refuge;
Let me never feel separated from You!
In your compassion come and refresh me;
listen to my cry,
answer my plea!
Be to me a rock, a tower of strength,
a strong arm to uphold me,
as I abandon myself into your hands.

Be a very Presence to me as fear grips me.
For You, O Friend, are my hope,
my strength, since I was but a child.
Upon you have I trusted from my birth,
You, whom I knew before my mother's womb.
I continually sing praises to you.

I have been a burden to many;
In you alone will I trust.
I am filled with gratitude and
sing your praises all the day.
Do not abandon me in my old age;
desert me not when my strength is
spent, or
when my mind plays tricks with me.
For fears rise up to confuse me,
doubts and forgetfulness
band together,
And say,"the Beloved no longer dwells with you;
there is no one to stand by you."

O Friend be not far from me;
O Beloved come and enfold me
in your Presence!
Help me to release my fears.
Hear my prayer that they may be transformed,
O You, who are my Counsellor.
As I surrender myself into your hands,
I praise you more and more.
I tell others of your goodness
of your compassion and grace
all the day;
for your glory is beyond my understanding.
As I grow in inner peace and serenity,
I sing songs of praise,
to You my Friend!

You who have done wondrous things.
O Beloved, who is like You?
You who have seen me through many fears,
strengthen me again:
From the depth of despair
You renew my spirit,
You increase my trust, and You comfort me.

Blessed be the Beloved, who dwells in all hearts!


O Blessed One,
it is said that Christmas is for children.
Indeed, I agree:
it's only a feast for the young of heart,
a feast for finding beneath tree
gifts to surprise and delight the eternal child.

Peel back the scabs of cynicism from my eyes
so that this calloused and aging child,
may see holiness blazing at the tip of every branch,
may see every tree as a Christmas tree.

Let me not be ashamed to dance with delight
at hidden gifts wrapped in shimmering paper
with bows of rainbow coloured ribbon.

But also grant me the youthful and wide-eyed wonder
to recognise, and even to expect,
life-giving miracles on every street corner,
miracles of kindness and generosity and

Gift my all-too-calculating heart
with the excitement of anticipation
to truly receive the gifts of life,
the capacity to feast and rejoice.

Give birth within me to a to a spaciousness of heart
that can celebrate this feast
of the birth of Christ, the Child,
as a child.


Healing God,
come to my hidden corners
open the doors of my soul rooms
that are tightly locked.

Awaken in me.
Bring to life all my deadness.
Enthuse the depressed emotions.
Reenergise my inner weariness.
Bathe the grime of my ego-centredness.
Clarify my confusions.
Fire my neglected loves.
Brush off my dusty dreams.
Nurture my spiritual hungers.
Ease my sore relationships.
Deepen my sense of self-esteem.
Stir up my connection with the world.

Tenderly gather in your arms
all that still needs healing,
all that remains wounded and wanting.
May I grow each day into greater wholeness
with a stronger, purer inner freedom.


O Prince of Peace,
whose advent we seek in our lives,
come this day and show us
how to beat our swords into ploughshares,
tools of life instead of instruments of fear.
May your love strip us
of all weapons and strategies of conquest
which are not the tools of lovers,
wise ones and God's children.
Let us not lust for power
but rather strive for the insight
to be guided on the Way of Peace.
Let us not yearn for a victory
that requires a sister's sorrow
or a brother's shameful defeat.
Let us be Advent adventurers and peacemakers,
hammering swords into shovels,
filling holes and levelling peaks.
Let us be disarmed and vulnerable,
for only through such open hands and hearts
can Emmanuel come.


Spirit of God, I feel too tired to go on, too empty even to want to be filled, too broken to put the pieces together again. Still, I feel a quiet stirring in me. It is the call to come back to life, to be energised and renewed. It is my heart crying out for newness, for a lighter spirit, for a keener sense of hope in the future.

Spirit of God, who draws together bones of the desert and dryness of the heart, come and take of my spirit all that has died in me. Dream in me again. Create of my brokenness a new and free heart. Draw together life in me. Let the dancing that is meant to be start its moment anew. The grace of freedom, the gesture of rebirth, all of this awaits me. I want to believe it in my depths.

The pain of my hurts keeps me in a foreign land where I do not feel at home with myself or others. Help me to believe that you will lead me into a future rich with growth and peace. Show me where to rest, how to lay down my burdens and what to do in order to be healed.

Loving shepherd, I need to find a source of new life. Come, bandage my wounds and grant to this weak one a profound and deep strength to go on.


Through the open door of your divine heart may blessings pour forth in great abundance to those I love :__________. I pray for those who are prisoners of fear or hate and for the intentions of all peoples of this planet, in particular this night for:___________. May those who find it impossible to pray, who are burdened with cares or lost in the desert of loneliness, be touched by your gentle healing and find peace today and always.


With prayerful pleas
and Advent songs of longing,
I await the birth of God's anointed One.
Come, O Gift of heaven's harmony,
and attune my third ear,
the ear of my heart,
so that I may hear,
just as Mary, faithful woman of Israel, heard.

O God, the time is short,
these days are too few
as I prepare for the feast
of the birth of Mary's son.
Busy days, crowded to the brim,
with long lists of gifts to buy
and things that must be done.

Show to me, also your highly favoured child,
how to guard my heart
from noise and hurry's whirl, so that I may hear your voice
calling my heart to create an empty space
that might be pregnant with heaven's fire.

Quiet me within,
clothe my body in peacefulness,
that your Word
once again may take flesh -
this time, within me -
as once it did in holy Mary,
long Advent days ago


O, Beloved, Heart of my heart,
I call to You for my help by day;
I cry out in the night.
Let my prayer come before You,
bend your ear to my cry!
For my soul is full of troubles, and my life sees like dust,
I have fallen into a pit of despair;
I have no strength and I feel powerless,
Like one from whom You have turned, like the soil people walk upon.
You alone can comfort me in the deep pit,
in the darkness of fear.
Separation from You is an agony,
hopelessness threatens to overwhelm me.
Through You alone can I pray for my enemies, for those who ignore my plight.
I am in a prison chained by fear;
I am weary of tears.
Every day I call upon You, O Beloved;
I lift up my hands in supplication.
Will You raise me from this living death?
Will You mend a broken heart?
Let not your steadfast love pass me by;
have mercy on me, O Comforter!
Reach Your hand into the darkness of my fears,
by your saving grace forgive my unholy ways.
O Merciful Redeemer, I cry to You;
each day my prayer comes before You.
Let not separation keep me from your Heart;
be my strength as I face the darkness inside.
Too long have I let fear control me,
projecting onto others the demons dwelling within.
Let Your Love circle and envelop me;
in Your mercy raise me up.
Let peace become my companion all day long;
By night free me from the bonds of fear.
Let me be reconciled with family and friends;
and may I know You
as Loving Companion Presence
as in days of old.


There is a difference between silence and emptiness. Silence is a very busy thing. It opens us to the exploration of the self. Emptiness is the vacuum we find when something is missing from our lives and needs to be replaced.


Everyone is struck down by something in life. It is the detour that determines the definition of the journey. We can lose our way then and there, stay stuck in unfamiliar territory, stall and give up. Or we can take the new direction confident that in the end we will end up exactly where we were meant to be whether we can see how that is possible right now or not.


"All sins," Simone Weil wrote, "are attempts to fill voids." When something important - love, dignity, respect - is missing in life, we find something to replace it. Young people find the gangs that will include them. Adults find the drugs that will numb them. When I find myself grappling with any kind of excess, the question must be, For what emptiness in me am I trying to compensate.


There is a revealing story of a monk living in the Egyptian desert who was so tormented by temptation that he could bear it no longer. So he decided to abandon his cell and go somewhere else. As he was putting on his sandals to carry out his resolve he saw another monk not far from where he stood who was also putting his sandals on.
"Who are you?" he asked the stranger.
"I am your self," was the reply. "If it is on my account that you are leaving this place. I would have you know that no matter where you go I shall go with you."

Said a despairing client to the psychiatrist, "No matter where I go I have to take myself along - and that spoils everything."
Both what you run away from - and what you yearn for - is within you.


You take delight , O Radiant One,
in gracing me with new life!
O Beloved, come and renew me!
Let me face my weaknesses and all
that confuses me, that keeps me from joy!
I seek forgiveness for my wrongdoings,
I desire only You!
Let me begin anew, a as child
at its mother's breast, who basks in love.
May all who seek You rejoice and be glad!
May all who surrender to You say evermore,
"My joy is in the Beloved!"
Yet I am lowly and fear-filled;
hasten to me, Beloved!"
You are my strength and my joy;
O Beloved, come and renew me!


To learn to love
is to be stripped of all love
until you are wholly without love
because until you have gone
naked and afraid
into this cold dark place
where all love is taken from you
you will not know
that you are wholly within love.


Beloved, we are always in the wrong,
Handling so clumsily our stupid lives,
Suffering too little or too long.
Too careful in our selfish loves:
The decorative manias we obey
Die in grimaces round us every day.
Yet through their tohu-bohu comes a voice
Which utters an absurd command - Rejoice.


The Master was asked, 'What is Spirituality?'
He said, Spirituality is that which succeeds in bringing man to Inner Transformation.
'But if I apply the traditional methods handed down by the Masters, is that not Spirituality?'
'It is not Spirituality if it does not perform its function for you. A blanket is no longer a blanket if it does not keep you warm.'
'So Spirituality does change?'
'People change and needs change. So what was Spirituality once is Spirituality no more. What generally goes under the name of Spirituality is merely the record of past methods.
Cut the coat to fit the person. Don't cut the person to fit the coat.


Breathe on me, O Breath of Inspiration,
in the silence of my tranquil heart,
infill me with your wisdom.
O, that I might radiate the compassion and peace,
the truth and beauty of the Beloved!
Direct my steps, O Holy One, that
I may humbly walk with You.
The witness of your Life is my model;
therefore my soul yearns for You.
The unfolding of your Word gives light;
it imparts understanding to the simple.
My mouth pours forth praise continually,
for I am ever grateful for your Promises.

You come to me and you are gracious to me,
as You are to all who open their heart's door.
Guide my steps according to your Word,
and show me how to lovingly co-create with You.
Let me not be lured by the world's values,
that I may walk in the path of wholeness.
May your face shine upon your friend,
as You teach me of Love.
I weep over our wounded world,
our earth ravaged by greedy insensitive hands.


Sometimes there would be a rush
of noisy visitors and the silence
of the monastery would be shattered.

This would upset the disciples; not
the Master who seemed just as content
with the noise as with the silence.

To his protesting disciples he said
one day, "Silence is not the absence
of sound, but the absence of self."


The Master was known to favour
action over withdrawal. But he
always insisted on "enlightened" action.

The disciples wanted to know
what "enlightened" meant.
Did it mean 'right-intentioned'?

"Oh no," said the Master.
"Think how right-intentioned the monkey is
when he lifts a fish from the river
to save it from a watery grave."

People who talk a lot about themselves seldom want to hear what others have to say.


The Sufi Bayazid says this about himself:
'I was a revolutionary when I was young and all my prayer to God was, "Lord, give me the energy to change the world."

As I approached middle age and realised that half my life was gone without my changing a single soul, I changed my prayer to: "Lord, give me the grace to change all those who come in contact with me. Just my family and friends, and I shall be content."

Now that I am an old man and my days are numbered, my prayer now is: "Lord, give me the grace to change myself." If I had prayed for this right from the start I should not have wasted my life.


How did Christ begin his great work, the salvation of the world?
He began simply, quietly. No fanfare. No fireworks. No public launching.
He began by calling a few people - two in fact.
It was as simple as that.
He began with personal contact and that is how his work developed.
It was passed on from person to person by word of mouth.

We shouldn't be surprised at this.
Things which begin with a splash often peter out.
Whereas those which begin quietly put down deep roots, grow steadily, and survive to produce fruits that last.

So, if there is something which we want to do,
let us not hesitate and think too much.
Let us make a start, however small.
Let us take one step. Let us plant one seed.
Let us trust that if our cause is good,
God will support us, and it will grow and prosper.


Lord Jesus, you know me perfectly. You know my good qualities and my bad ones. You know my past; you see it clearly. You know my future, you see it happening. You love me just as I am, without any conditions, without any qualifications.

You do not condemn me. You do not judge me. You do forgive me. You have given your life for me on the cross as though I were the only person beside you who ever walked on earth, and you would do it again if you had to. You call me by name, and you love me.

Jesus, free me from my pride, my complacency, my search for the glory of this world and for attention and prestige and appreciation. Teach me humility.

Heal me of any spiritual blindness, Lord, that I may see your face with the eyes of faith, with the eyes of my heart. Teach me to know you through love, especially for the powerful and personal love that you have in your heart for me.
Thank you for your love for me. Amen.

Calm me, O Lord, as you stilled the storm,
Still me, O Lord, keep me from harm.
Let all the tumult within me cease,
Enfold me, Lord, in your peace.


Birth is a beginning and death a destination.
And life is a journey from childhood to maturity,
from youth to age;
from innocence to awareness,
from ignorance to knowing;
from foolishness to discretion
and then, perhaps, to wisdom;
from weakness to strength
or strength to weakness - and back again;
from health to sickness
and back, we pray, to health again;
from offence to forgiveness, from loneliness to love
from joy to gratitude, from pain to compassion;
from grief to understanding, from fear to faith;
from defeat to defeat to defeat . . .
Until looking backward or ahead, we see that victory lies
not at some high place along the way
but in having made the journey, stage by stage.


It helps now and then to step back
and take the long view.
the kingdom is not only beyond our efforts;
it is even beyond our vision.

We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction
of the magnificent enterprise that is God's work
Nothing we do is complete,
which is another way of saying that
the kingdom always lies beyond us.
No statement says all that could be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith.
No confession brings wholeness.
No programme accomplishes the church's mission.
No set of goals and objectives includes everything.

This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted,
knowing that they hold future promise.

We lay foundations that will need further
We provide yeast that produces effects
far beyond our capabilities.

We cannot do everything,
and there is a sense of liberation in realising that.
This enables us to do something, and to do it very well.
It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning,
a step along the way, an opportunity for
the Lord's grace to enter and do the rest.

We may never see the end results
but that is the difference
between the master builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders,
ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future not our own. Amen.


Many if not all great undertakings
begin in small and often hidden ways.
Seeds need the darkness, isolation and cover of the earth in order to germinate.
Therefore, for something to begin small, hidden, anonymous, is an advantage.
It means it can develop away from publicity.
There are no pressures. No burden of expectations.
It can develop at its own pace. There is no hurry.
Hurry ruins so many thing.
Hence the importance of beginnings,
of taking care of things in the beginning,
of the small in the accomplishment of the great.

The Assumption

Who is she that ascends so high,
Next to the Heavenly King,
Round about whom Angels fly
And her praises sing?

Who is she that, adorned with light,
Makes the sun her robe,
At whose feet the queen of night
Lays her changing globe?

This is she in whose pure womb
Heaven’s Prince remained;
Therefore in no earthly tomb
Can she be contained.

She that did so clearly shine
When our day begun,
See how bright her beams decline
Now sits with the Sun.

Sir John Beaumont


Eucharist: a prayer inspired by the Mass

O Lord!
Look into our hearts this day and read us
Look in our souls this day and hear us
When we thrust out our hands for help - hold us
When we open our arms for love - embrace us
When we bow our heads to thee - bless us
When we give of ourselves - come to us.
Judith Ann Pounder


Prayer for Priests

Lord Jesus, bless all priests and give them grace to do your great work on earth. Keep them, Lord, close to your heart and under the shadow of your protection. Bless their labours for you and grant that their harvest of souls may be a source of joy and consolation to them during life and may merit an everlasting reward for them in death, that having led many souls to you they may see you to face to face. Amen.



I got up early one morning and rushed out into the day. I had so much to accomplish that I didn’t have time to pray. Problems just tumbled about me, and heavier came each task. ‘Why doesn’t God help me,’ I wondered. He answered. ‘You didn’t ask.’ I wanted to see joy and beauty, but the day toiled on grey and bleak. I wondered why God didn’t show me, he said, ‘But you didn‘t seek.’ I tried to come into God’s presence; I used all my keys in the lock. God gently and lovingly chided, ‘My child, you didn’t knock.’ I woke up early this morning, and paused before entering the day. I had so much to accomplish, that I had to take time to pray.


Father in heaven,
we pray for our sick
brothers and sisters
who are on pilgrimage in Lourdes.

Grant them comfort in their sufferings.
When they are afraid,
give them courage,
when afflicted, give them patience,
when dejected, afford them hope,
and when alone, assure them of the support of your people.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.

Prayer for the Suicidal
O Eternal Father, we pray for all those who are suicidal.
May Your loving hand guide and protect them
so they receive the help they need,
preventing them from dying from suicide.
Let them know that we need them and love them,
show them Your love Lord Jesus.
Remind them that they are very special people,
filling their minds with beautiful memories.
Give them everything they need so as to ease their pain,
grant that they may find hope, comfort, guidance
and healing in every way possible.
Let them feel our love, and Your love,
carry them when they are weary.
Embrace them and let Your love
shine down upon them always. Amen.

Dear God

We are all different
And live in very different places
But you love each one of us the same
Because we are all part of your family.
Help us to remember
How much you love us
And to remember our brothers and sisters
In Ireland and around the world.


Trocaire Prayer

Dear God
You know all our names,
know all about us,
and care for us every day.
Help us to remember children
throughout the world
Who don’t have enough to eat,
And help us to make a world
Where everybody has enough.

In Sickness

The Lord gives; the Lord takes away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord!
Lord, in sickness and in health,
I wish to serve you.
I ask for the gift of restored health
but if it is your will that my sickness continue
please give me the strength to bear my cross.

Canticle of Simeon

Now Master you can let your
servant go in peace
just as you promised

because my eyes have seen
the salvation which you
prepared for all the nations
to see

a light to enlighten the pagans
and the glory of your people Israel

The Nunc Dimittis, Luke 2:29-32

At the beginning of a New Year….

I am the light of the world.
Whoever follows me will never walk in
darkness but will have the light of life.
John 8:12

Dear Lord,
When I have doubts and hesitations
act as my guide.
When I am in darkness, shine
like a lamp to light my path.
When I am worried or troubled,
help me to put all my trust in you.
When I feel lonely, help me to
remember that you are always with me.

Prayer for Advent.
May the Lord bless you.
May he wipe away your tears.
May you weep no more.
May your ears be attuned to his Word
and your steps follow his ways.
Then the Lord will guide you in peace
and feed you from the abundance of his love,
so that you may rejoice always and never lose
from your heart the love he gives. Amen

We cherish the ‘Evening of Life’ as we pray:

May he support us all the day
long, till the shades lengthen
and the evening comes, and the
busy world is hushed, and the
fever of life is over and our work is done!
Then in His Mercy may He give us a safe
lodging and a holy rest and peace at last.

Cardinal Newman

Suscipe of Catherine McAuley
My God
I am yours for
time and eternity
Teach me to cast myself entirely
into the arms of
Your loving Providence
with the most lively, unlimited
confidence in Your
compassionate, tender pity.
Grant me,
O most merciful Redeemer,
that whatever
You ordain or permit
may be acceptable to me.
Take from my heart all painful anxiety;
suffer nothing to sadden me but sin,
nothing to delight me but the hope
of coming to the possession of You,
my God and my All,
in Your everlasting kingdom. Amen

Prayer of the Pilgrim
Lord make us prophets of our times,
Pilgrims not wayfarers.
May each day begin with
prayerful preparation, opening
our hearts to you.
Make us aware, that although
individuals, we travel with others
and help us to keep vigil with you
in that holy place within the heart.
Deepen our awareness of your
abiding presence in us and
around us, as we journey
together today.


Sts Peter & Paul - 29th June

Lord Jesus,
Peter denied you and
Paul persecuted you;
yet you made them witnesses
of your love and truth.
Open our hearts to the
good news they preached,
and grant that we may all love him
whom we do not yet see,
Jesus, your Son our Lord.

‘O my God, Trinity whom I adore, grant my soul peace;
make it your heaven, your beloved dwelling, and the place of your rest.
May I never abandon you there, but may I be there, whole and entire,
completely vigilant in my faith, entirely adoring, wholly given over to
your creative action.’
(Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity)

Reflection Litany to the Holy Spirit
Spirit of light, let the fire of your wisdom burn brightly within us.
Spirit of silence, in the still moment may we be open to God’s presence.
Spirit of courage, dispel the fear that lingers in our hearts.
Spirit of fire, engulf us with the passion of Christ’s love.
Spirit of peace, help us to be attentive to God’s word in the world.
Spirit of joy, enthuse us to proclaim aloud the Good News.
Spirit of love, compel us to open ourselves to the needs of others.
Spirit of power, bestow the gift of your strength upon us.
Spirit of truth, guide us to walk in the way of Christ.

Prayer for Vocations

Lord Jesus Christ,
While you walked the roads of Palestine,
you chose and called apostles
and confided to them the task of preaching the Gospel, of feeding your flock and ministering your Sacraments.
Grant that, in our day,
Your Church may not be deprived of holy priests who will share with everyone the fruits of your Passion and Resurrection.
Pope John Paul II

Prayer of the Pilgrim

Lord, make us the prophets of our times,
Pilgrims not wayfarers.
May each day begin
with prayerful preparation,
opening our hearts to you.
Make us aware,
that although individuals,
we travel with others
and help us to keep vigil with you
in that holy place within the heart.
Deepen our awareness of
your abiding presence in us and around us,
as we journey together today.

We wish you Easter eyes – Eyes that will allow you see
Beyond death into life
Beyond sin to forgiveness
Beyond division to unity
Beyond wounds to beauty
Through the human to
the divine
Through the divine to
the human
From the ‘I’ to the ‘You’.
And - enabling all of this –
The totality of Easter energy!

Bishop Klaus Hemmerle - Aachen 1993

Dear God,

Thank you for the promises you
made us and for always looking
after us.
Help us to remember that all
people are our neighbours, and
help us to care for them as You
care for us.

Glory be to him whose power,
working in us, can do infinitely
more than we can ask or imagine;
glory be to him from generation
to generation in the Church and in
Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3: 20-21


Talk with the year which is coming
as with a friend who is crossing your
threshold to bring you gifts.
Accept the Spring, the Summer, the
Autumn and the Winter of the year
and of life as perfect expressions
of the Creator and be thankful.
Then you will surely grow with it.

Ella W. Wilcox

Deep peace of the running wave to you.
Deep peace of the flowing air to you.
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.
Deep peace of the shining stars to you.
Deep peace of the watching shepherds to you.
Deep peace of the Son of Peace to you. A Gaelic Blessing

A Family Prayer around the Advent Wreath

O God,
as light comes from these candles,
may the blessing of Jesus Christ come to us,
warming our hearts and brightening our way.
May Christ our Saviour
bring life into the darkness of this world,
and to us, as we wait for his coming.

Father of love,
you made a new creation
through Jesus Christ your Son.
May his coming free us from sin
and renew his life within us,
for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Daily Prayer
O Wisdom, Come to teach me the way of truth.
O Lord of Israel, Come to redeem me with an outstretched arm.
O Root of Jesse, Come to bring me new life; do not delay.
O Key of David, Come to open my prison doors and set me free.
O Radiant Dawn, Come to bring light to the darkness in my life.
O King of all Nations, Come to save me and give me peace.
O God-With-Us, Stay with me and send me forth in your name.
Amen. O Antiphons, adapted

Praise to the Holiest in the height,
and in the depths be praise.
In all his words most wonderful,
most sure in all his ways.

CARDINAL NEWMAN - 16th October 2005

We cherish the ‘Evening of Life’ as we pray:

May he support us all the day
long, till the shades lengthen and
the evening comes, and the busy
world is hushed, and the fever of
life is over and our work is done!
Then in His Mercy may He give
us a safe lodging and a holy rest
and peace at last.

Cardinal Newman - 9th October 2005

Give us, Lord,
a humble, quiet, peaceable,
patient, tender, charitable mind
and in all our thoughts, words and deeds
a taste of your Holy Spirit.
Give us Lord,
a lively faith,
a firm hope,
a warm charity,
a love of you.
Give us warmth and delight
in thinking of you
and your grace and tender compassion to us.
The things that we pray for, Lord,
give us grace to work for,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen. St Thomas More

I leave you now with this prayer:

that the Lord Jesus will reveal Himself to each
one of you,
that He will give you the strength to go out
and profess that you are Christian,
that He will show you that He alone can fill your hearts.
Accept His freedom and embrace His truth
and be messengers of the certainty
that you have been truly liberated
through the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus.
This will be the new experience,
The powerful experience,
that will generate, through you, a more just society
and a better world.
God bless you, and may the joy of Jesus
be always with you.
Amen - John Paul II


A prayer for those who live alone

I live alone dear Lord,
stay by my side.
In all my daily needs
be thou my guide.
Grant me good health, for that indeed I pray,
to carry on my work from day to day.
Keep pure my mind, my thoughts,
my every deed, let me be kind,
unselfish in my neighbours’ needs.
Spare me from fire, from flood,
malicious tongues,
from thieves, from fear and evil ones.
If sickness or an accident I befall,
then humbly Lord I pray, hear thou my call.
And when I’m feeling low or in despair,
Lift up my heart and help me in my prayer.
I live alone dear Lord, yet have no fear,
because I feel your presence ever near.

Dear Lord,
Let me know
the cool breeze of your Spirit over me.

Let me know
the gentle warmth of your love within me.

Let me know
that you are here, Lord Jesus.

Help me on dark days
when it seems you have gone away.

Help me on sunny days
when you are here to stay.

Let me know
that you are here, Lord Jesus. Amen.


All powerful and ever living God, we find
security in your forgiveness; give us the
fine weather we pray for so that we may
rejoice in your gifts of kindness and use
them always for your glory and our good.
We ask this through Christ, our Lord


I got up early one morning
and rushed right into the day;
I had so much to accomplish
that I didn’t have time to pray.

Problems just tumbled about me,
and heavier came each task.
Why doesn’t God help me? I wondered.
He answered, “you didn’t ask”.

I wanted to see joy and beauty,
but the day toiled on, grey and bleak.
I wondered why God didn’t show me,
He said, “but you didn’t seek”.

I tried to come into God’s presence;
I used all my keys at the lock,
God gently and lovingly chided,
“My child, you didn’t knock”.

I woke up early this morning,
And paused before entering the day;
I had so much to accomplish
That I HAD to take Time to Pray.


Bless, O God
our families.

Give to fathers and mothers
and those who care for us
the spirit of understanding
and the spirit of love,
that our homes may be
places of peace and laughter.

Come into our homes, O Lord,
and protect us with your love,
so that we may live in peace
and rejoice in the quiet beauty
of your blessing.

Christopher Herbert


Dear Lord,
Help me approach my exams
with a clear head and a calm mind.
Give me your strength
and your peace
and let me do justice to
all that I have learned.
Thank you Lord,
for all my talents and gifts.

Grant me, O Lord,
the courage to change the things that I can,
the serenity to accept the things that I cannot,
and the wisdom to know the difference.

God of infinite goodness,
from the very beginning of your Church
you have enabled us to renew our faith
through communion with the
Body and Blood of Christ.
May the sacrament of your love
sustain us as we journey towards the day
when this mystery will stand unveiled
for ever and ever.

Open Wide the Doors
If we let Christ into our lives, we
lose nothing, nothing, absolutely
nothing of what makes life free,
beautiful and great. Only in this
friendship are the doors of life
opened wide. Only in this
friendship is the great potential
of human existence truly revealed.
Only in this friendship do we
experience beauty and liberation.
And so, today, with great strength
and great conviction,on the basis
of long personal experience of life,
I say to you, dear young people:
Do not be afraid of Christ! He
takes nothing away, and he gives
you everything. When we give
ourselves to him, we receive a
hundredfold in return. Yes,open,
open wide the doors to Christ –
and you will find true life. Amen.
Pope Benedict XVI
End of homily at Mass of Inauguration, 24 April 2005