Prayers of the people: Come to our aid

23 September 2021

In this week’s intercessionary prayers for parishes, we pray the Holy Spirit will guide all those taking part in the Plenary Council. Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B, 3 October 2021.

INTRODUCTORY REFLECTION

As the Fifth Plenary Council of the Australian Church gets under way, it’s worth dwelling again on the hopes expressed by us, the people of God, in the consultation process.

Each one deserves to be taken to heart, for they can’t be legitimate aspirations for the church at large unless they are personal desires of our own. They are ambitious. We want to be (not have) a church that is missionary and evangelising; inclusive, participatory and synodal; prayerful and eucharistic; humble, healing and merciful; joyful, hope-filled and serving; open to conversion, renewal and reform. It’s a formidable list.

Heaven help us, we might say, and heaven does. Spirit of God, Mary Help of Christians, Mary MacKillop, come to our aid.

THE WEEK’S PRAYER FOCUS

For the Plenary Council, that the Paraclete, the Holy Spirit, will enlighten the minds, inflame the hearts and guide the desires of all who are taking part.

SAMPLE INTERCESSIONS

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

PRESIDER

Dear friends, by his saving death Jesus has laid open the gates of glory. Following him in faith, let us pray for all our sisters and brothers.

READER

We pray for new era of mutual respect and collaboration between nations, that all peoples may enjoy peace and a just share of the world’s resources. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for all creatures of the earth, that World Habitat Day and the feast of St Francis of Assisi will bring to light the interconnection of all life on the planet. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for Pope Francis, that his vision of a thoroughly synodal church will come to fulfilment in every land. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for the Catholic community in Australia, that the Plenary Council will sow seeds of renewal, reform and revitalisation in every parish and diocese. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for all the members of the Plenary Council, that they will speak out boldly in faith and listen to the Spirit in freedom of heart. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for married couples, that the covenant of love they have made with each other will be life-long and life-giving. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for teachers, that they find joy in their vocation as educators and are valued for their service to families and society. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for one another, that we will have the grace to welcome the kingdom of God as little children. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

We pray for the recently deceased . . . and for those whose anniversary of death occurs around this time, that they will share to the full in the glory of Christ. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

PRESIDER

God of wisdom, you made all things in love. Help us to cherish creation and to love each other with all our strength. We ask this through Christ our Lord.