PRAYER AND REFLECTION IN THE PANDEMIC
It’s no wonder that some give in to the temptation to “put on a mask” as they worry about what others think of them. Yet it’s often not the present person they’re seeking to satisfy, but one from the long-distant past: a parent, or perhaps a teacher - until they find themselves going down that slippery slope towards living a false life where they appear one thing, but, in the darkness, are driven by another. Be brave, seek to be authentic, don’t pretend to be something you’re not, especially if this involves wanting to please people.
In the end, it’s what God thinks, not what we perceive others think of us, nor indeed what opinion we might have of ourselves, informed by those critical voices from the past. Hand it over to God, and realise you are loved and lovable. In the Heart of the Good Shepherd I know I am welcomed and understood as I am, there with all my
limitations, chosen and loved.
"Enfolded in Christ " John-Francis Friendship
PUTTING MYSELF IN LOVE'S HAND
Father, I abandon myself into your hands; do with me what you will. Whatever you may do, I thank you: I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only your will be done in me, and in all your creatures - I wish no more than this, O Lord.
Into your hands I commend my soul: I offer it to you with all the love of my heart, for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself, to surrender myself into your hands without reserve, and with boundless confidence, for you are my Father.
Charles de Foucauld
Let us pray for all affected by the virus and their families; for healthcare professionals working tirelessly to protect our communities.
O God, our loving Shepherd,
you come to us with the strength and love of a father, and the tender mercies, patience and protection of a loving mother.
We see you in the very living of our days, and yet we so often fail to praise you or to offer our burdens to you.
Hear us, Lord, as we lift to you our prayers for others and for ourselves.
Lord, we ask you to hold in your loving embrace: the terminally ill; all those in intensive care and in other wards in hospitals all over the world; and all those who are suffering from COVID-19 outside the hospital system.
We also ask your continued blessings
on all the doctors, nurses and support staff, and on all those in the caring professions and the volunteers supporting them.
We ask Mary to pray with us in this pandemic for those who fall victim to the virus.
Joy to thee, O Queen of Heaven, alleluia! He whom thou wast meet to bear, alleluia! As he promised, hath arisen,
alleluia! Pour for us to him thy prayer,
Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia!
For the Lord has risen indeed,
O God, by the Resurrection of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, you have brought joy to the whole world:
grant that, by the help of his mother, the Virgin Mary, we may obtain the joys of everlasting life; through Christ the Lord.