"Share Prayer" is a way to encourage Catholics to pray on the spot with someone in need. This simple format will help you get started.
Prayer for the New Evangelization from the USCCB
The New Evangelization calls us to have confidence in the Gospel, deepen our love for our Catholic faith and to have the confidence to joyfully share our faith with others. It is often not easy to share our love for Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church with others. But this prayer, written by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, will help you to evangelize your family, friends, and those around you. Call to mind those you love and whom you wish to be in an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church. As you pray, hold them close in your heart and offer them to Jesus Christ. Be filled with the Spirit of God.
Litany of the Saints
This "Litany of the Saints" is drawn from Bishop Ricken's Pastoral Letter: "Parishes, Called to be Holy, Fully Engaged, Fully Alive." Some of the saints will be familiar to you, while others may not be. Take the time to learn about some of those who are new to you.
In the Catholic tradition the Saints are holy men and women who have lived lives of extraordinary virtue and made many sacrifices for their faith. Some people ask Catholics: "Why do you say prayers to saints? Shouldn't all our prayers be to God?" It is important for us to remember that praying to the saints is praying to God, in a fundamental way. We are praying to those who can ask God to help us in our various needs in accordance with His will.
When you ask someone to pray for you are you worshiping that person? Of course not! It's the same when we ask the saints to pray for us! They are not the focus of our worship, God is. The saints in Heaven are alive and are perpetually in prayer. They are absolutely living in Heaven, just as you and I live, but to an even fuller extent, because they are home with God. We are still united with our saintly brothers and sisters (1 Corinthians 12:21-27, Romans 12:5, Ephesians 4:4, Colossians 3:15), as "death cannot separate us from Christ" (Romans 8:35-39).
Discipleship Meeting Prayer
It is in prayer that our relationship with God is strengthened, nourished, and sustained. By reflecting on the words of Jesus before and after our parish meetings we are reminded that we are here to do God's will in the parish and not our own. It is recommended that you use this prayer before meetings of parish staff, committees, boards, and other groups. This prayer service incorporates lectio divina -- the ancient art of reading, reflecting, and meditating on the Scriptures.
"Lectio Divina" is a Latin term meaning "divine reading." It describes a way of reading the Scriptures whereby we gradually let go of our own agenda and open ourselves to what God wants to say to us.
The first stage in the process is lectio (reading) the Word of God slowly and reflectively so that it can take root in us.
The second stage is meditatio (reflection) where we think about the text we have chosen and ponder it in our hearts so that we take from it what God wants to give us.
The third stage is oratio (response) where we leave our thinking aside and let our hearts speak to God. This response is inspired by our reflection on the Word of God.
The final stage of Lectio Divina is contemplatio (rest) where we let go not only of our own ideas, plans and meditations but also of our holy words and thoughts. We simply rest in the Word of God, a holy rest that renews and sustains us.
A Prayer for Those Who Answer the Phone
Often the first person those who need help or someone to talk to is the parish administrative assistant or receptionist. Because of the importance of this role, it is essential that we pause during our day to recognize that we are Christ to the stranger, the poor, the lonely, the outcast, and the difficult. Taking a few moments to pray before we answer the phone helps us to ground ourselves in the words of Christ: "I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in" (Matthew 25:35). It is recommended that this prayer be placed by the phone as a reminder to welcome Christ into our work day.