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Prayers of the people: 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C – 3 November

24 October 2019

Introductory reflection

Two thousand years after Paul advised the Thessalonians not to expect an imminent Day of the Lord, we are none the wiser about it.

Scientific speculation about the ultimate fate of the cosmos sheds no light on when or how creation will fulfil the purpose for which God brought it into being.

What is truly alarming is the possibility that the human race is sowing the seeds of its own destruction by making Planet Earth uninhabitable.

Faith in divine providence is no excuse for inaction but rather the driving force for global care. Zacchaeus confessed to cheating his clients. Must we confess to stealing the life of future generations on earth?

The week’s prayer focus

For all who call us to ecological conversion, that they will never abandon their prophetic mission.

Sample intercessions

These intercessions are offered for selected use at Sunday Mass in the parish along with those that express local needs and concerns.


Dear friends, as once for Zacchaeus so now for us, Jesus brings salvation to this house. With grateful hearts let us pray for God’s mercy upon the whole world.


  1. We pray for Pope Francis. May God’s Spirit enlighten him with wisdom and sustain him in his prophetic ministry of leadership. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  2. We pray for all engaged in dialogue between the Anglican and Roman Catholic traditions. May their shared dedication to the gospel bear fruit in closer unity. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  3. We pray for Catholic believers. May the church’s many paths to forgiveness and healing lead them to know the mercy of God. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  4. We pray for children and young people facing environmental emergency. May their future be a catalyst for immediate climate action. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  5. We pray for all who are confined in the world’s refugee camps and detention centres. May international leaders agree on united efforts to provide them with shelter and safety. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  6. We pray for the health and well-being of men. May they acknowledge their needs and take steps to seek appropriate help. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  7. We give thanks for the unsung saints who have enriched our lives and inspired us. May we happily follow in their footsteps. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  8. We pray for all who still grieve the loss of loved ones. May their sadness give way to peace and thankfulness for the gift of love. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  9. We pray for the recently deceased . . . , those whose anniversary of death occurs around this time, and all loved ones whom we remember especially in the month of November. May they join the throng of all the saints in the heavenly city. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.


All-loving God, you gave us your only Son to seek out and save what was lost. Forgive us our sins and give us the joy of salvation. We ask this through Christ our Lord.


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