by Mary McEntee McGill
These are extremely difficult financial times for many people. Many of us and our friends, spouses, and other family members are being called to shift our lives—and in the call to do that, we pray for assistance.
As Catholics, we are blessed with the presence of saints. We soon will celebrate the solemnity of All Saints, when we formally recall these men and women who faced hard times, as we do, and remained constant and steady in their love for God. Prayerfully and patiently, they continued to serve the Lord.
As we gather to pray this month, let us focus on those who are now facing life changes and struggles. Let us ask our saints to intercede and guide all of us with hope through these difficult times.
Leader: Jesus called his followers away from their daily and routine tasks to a new mission. He closed doors on one side and opened new doors on another.
These days, many of those we know and care for now face the fear of having a familiar door closed. What was present and comfortable is gone. Today we pray for them, and we seek the aid of all the holy saints to assist and guide them to a new door.
Reading: John 15:1-6 (the Lord is the vine; we are the branches, pruned to bear fruit)
Leader: Pruning is a part of life. We were pruned and guided as children to become adults; as students to become those who understand; as beginners to become leaders.
Pruning is never easy. It can sometimes be painful. But pruning is necessary if we are to take on the responsibilities given to us.
Saint Joseph is the patron saint of all workers—and we are all workers. New in his marriage, he was called to leave his home and his area of work to journey to a new land. He took his wife, Mary, and the child Jesus to Egypt for their safety and protection. Let us ask St. Joseph to assist those we know who have been called to leave one thing and move to another.
Saint Rita is the patron saint of servants—and we are all servants. We are called to be servants in many ways. We and others seek new areas by which we can give our service for the good of others. Let us ask St. Rita to assist those seeking new servitude.
Saint Isidore is the patron saint of agricultural workers—and we all work to bring life from the soil of our lives. Isidore worked on a farm, plowing and planting the fields of a wealthy land owner. He often got in trouble and was threatened when he left his work to take a moment to pray. Stories tell that his door of labor was kept open as angels plowed the ground while Isidore prayed. Let us ask St. Isidore to help those facing work-related problems.
Saint Anthony is the patron saint of lost things—and we all lose things. You know those who have lost their jobs and financial security and identity associated with that loss. As a child I learned a “Finding Prayer” to St Anthony: “Tony, Tony, please come ‘round. Something’s lost and can’t be found.” Let us seek the help of St. Anthony to open new doors of opportunity for all those needing assistance.
Invite members of your group to think of those in need of help. Ask them to share the situations of these people (not their names). As a group, consider saints who may be able to assist these individuals in finding what they need. Pray for these persons and for all who are facing the pain of a closed door.
Leader: The Lord has told us not to worry. He is with us, loving us, leading us. Seek to remember this Good News and to share it.
Reading: Matthew 6:25-26 (Jesus tells us not to worry)
Seek the guidance, strength, and faith of the saints—those officially recognized by the Church and those you hold in your heart. Ask for their virtues and intercession.
Mary has professional served parishes and dioceses for more than 40 years and continues to enjoy catechetics in Dallas, TX. She is the author of Stories to Invite Faith Sharing (Resource Publications).
Copyright 2011, Bayard, Inc. All rights reserved. This article is protected by United States copyright and other intellectual property laws and may not be reproduced, rewritten, distributed, redisseminated, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast, directly or indirectly, in any medium without the prior written permission of Bayard, Inc.
This article was written by the Catechist Staff and appeared in Catechist magazine, September 2011.
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