PANDEMIC PRAYERS 3RD APRIL 2020 ON THE BIER
A CORONAVIRUS PRAYER Ray Angle, Assistant Vice President,
Career and Professional Development, Gonzaga University
Loving God, Your desire is for our wholeness and well-being.
We hold in tenderness and prayer
the collective suffering of our world at this time.
We grieve precious lives lost and vulnerable lives threatened.
We ache for ourselves and our neighbours,
standing before an uncertain future.
may love, not fear, go viral.
Inspire our leaders to discern and choose wisely,
aligned with the common good.
Help us to practice social distancing
and reveal to us new and creative ways to come together
in spirit and in solidarity.
Call us to profound trust in your faithful presence,
You, our God, who does not abandon us.
Luke the Physician is the only one to record this incident,
telling us of this startling healing of the widow of Nain’s son.
LUKE 7:11-17 Jesus went to a town called Nain,
and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him.
As he approached the town gate,
a dead person was being carried out-the only son of his mother,
and she was a widow.
And a large crowd from the town was with her.
When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her
Then he went up and touched the bier they were carrying him on,
and the bearers stood still.
He said, "Young man, I say to you, get up!"
The dead man sat up and began to talk,
and Jesus gave him back to his mother.
They were all filled with awe and praised God.
"A great prophet has appeared among us," they said.
"God has come to help his people."
This news about Jesus spread
throughout Judea and the surrounding country.
This account borders on the fantastic.
Did Jesus defy the laws of nature?
Could Jesus truly reverse post-death brain damage?
Why doesn’t he deliver us and our loved ones in OUR hours of need?
I believe our touch and prayers can transform mind, body, and spirit.
Our experience is that intercessions and anointings
are effective in a spiritual rather than dramatic way,
a transformation of spirit that may ease the pain
and give confidence in God’s care,
even though the ultimate diagnosis remains unchanged.
It’s grounded in compassion,
a feeling of heart-felt solidarity with the pain of that grieving mother.
Jesus, touched by compassion, brings compassion
to what-had-been desolate
into the realm of life and hope.
Our own compassionate touch can elicit amazing responses too.
The dead may not rise,
but dying spirits can be brought back to life.
We can be God’s partners in the everyday healings
if we allow the touch of Christ to work through us.
Others can then experience
a life-changing abundance of God’s vibrant love
in a world presently dominated by hopelessness.
# Who do you know who feels that life is hopeless?
# Who do you know who needs to be brought back to life at present?
# To whom can your actions bring new life, renewed energy?
Those drained by the pressures that life,
too much responsibility,
fear of the future,
places upon them?
Lord of abundant life,
Friend of sinners,
Word that wakes the dead,
we come to you,
praying both for ourselves and for others.
Deliver us and all people
from those negative attitudes and actions
which lead to spiritual death,
and from the malignancy of the present time
as we and other nations are locked in fear of this virus;
through him who opened the way to life eternal,
Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
O Loving Father, may we become more like Your Son:
The Jesus who gave time to Nicodemus;
The Jesus moved to pity the cry of the mother from Nain;
The Jesus who saved the day at the Wedding in Cana;
The Jesus who would not condemn the accused adulterous woman;
The Jesus who spent nights in prayer;
The Jesus who served rather than waited to be served;
The Jesus who prayed for those who nailed Him to the cross;
The Jesus who stayed on the cross until His work was done.
O Loving Father, may we become more like Your Son,
who came to show You to us;
“We need to find God;
and He cannot be found
in noise and restlessness.
God is the friend of Silence.
See how nature grows in silence.
See the stars, the moon and the sun,
how they move in silence.
We need silence
to be able to touch souls.”
Mother Teresa, Saint of Calcutta