Introduction to the mass
No sooner have we set out on our journey with Jesus for the long haul through Ordinary Time than he proves an uncomfortable companion. Choose me, he says, over family ties. Don’t flee the cross, embrace it. Don’t hold on to your life, let go of it. These are hard sayings that still disturb after all this time. They find the chinks in our armour, they pierce our well-guarded defences. But for those prepared to take them to heart, they promise so much – the joy of a graced life, freedom from fear, the trust of a child. Now is not the time to walk away.
The week's prayer focus
We pray for a deeper insight into the gift of our baptism. May we come to see that “for anyone who is in Christ, there is a new creation” and “it is all God’s work” (2 Cor 5:17-18).
Dear friends, Jesus dares us to give him first place in our hearts and hand our lives over to him. Trusting him as shepherd and guide, let us pray for our needs and the needs of the world.
- For all who been baptised in Christ, that by dying to sin each day and living by the power of his resurrection they will radiate the joy of the gospel far and wide, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For the followers of other faiths and philosophies, that they will seek the truth in sincerity of heart and practise the golden rule of treating others as they would wish to be treated, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For the indigenous peoples of Australia and the Torres Strait, that the observance of NAIDOC Week this year will foster greater affirmation of their cultural heritage and of their proper place in the life of the nation, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For the famine-stricken peoples of East Africa, faced with the double disaster of drought and displacement, that our support for international relief efforts will save them from mass starvation, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For decision-makers in government and the education sector, that they will put past differences aside and work together to implement school funding policies that fairly serve the best interests of Australia’s children, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For all who have arrived in Australia in search of a new future, that their hopes for a fresh start in life will be matched by a fair hearing and a just process, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For the frail aged, the sick and the dying, especially those who do not have family or friends to look after them, that we as a community will ensure they receive the care that is their due, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For ourselves, that we will grow in our appreciation of the natural world and do all in our power to protect it from destructive exploitation and human harm, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
- For the recently deceased . . . and for those whose anniversary of death occurs around this time, that they will be raised from the dead by the Father’s glory, (pause) let us pray to the Lord.
God of all grace and mercy, you have called us out of darkness into your marvellous light, and made us a chosen race, a royal priesthood and a holy people. Keep us true to your call. We ask this through Christ our Lord.