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Prayers of the People: Palm Sunday Year C, 14 April

04 April 2019

Introductory reflection

One of the distinctive features of Luke’s passion narrative is Jesus’ dialogue with the ‘good thief’. Unlike the disciples who jockeyed ambitiously for high places in the messianic kingdom, this criminal confesses his wrongdoing and humbly asks for no more than remembrance. His plea prompts Jesus’ immediate assurance of salvation. Is it stretching imagination too far to see in him a timely figure for the church, presently ‘crucified’ for the play of power that allowed and covered up sexual abuse, and thus called to a new humility? The gospel assures us that the gates of paradise lie open for those who own their failures and cast themselves on the mercy of God.

The week’s prayer focus

For Christian believers around the world, that they will follow Christ freely, even on the way of the cross.

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, faced with rejection and death, Jesus held fast to the end on his mission of mercy. Let us pray for the world he loved with all his heart.

Reader

  1. We pray for whole human family, especially those trapped in violence, hunger and homelessness. May the self-sacrifice of Christ inspire a global revolution of love and compassion. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  2. We pray for all who have been baptised in Christ. May their lively faith make the world-wide church a leaven of hope and peace. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  3. We pray for the Jewish people as they prepare to celebrate Passover. May they bear faithful witness to God’s eternal covenant of love. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  4. We pray for the citizens of Australia. May we as a nation be united by a spirit of gratitude and a thirst for justice. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  5. We pray for children living with disabilities in Vietnam. May our support for Project Compassion enable Catholic Relief Services to create new life opportunities for them. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  6. We pray for all taking part in today’s Palm Sunday marches for refugees and for peace. May their public action bring about a change of heart across the land. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  7. We pray for young people. May Pope Francis’ exhortation ‘Christ is alive!’ confirm them in their hope for a new heaven and a new earth. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  8. We pray for one another. May we celebrate the paschal mysteries this week with fresh faith in the liberating love of Jesus Christ. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.
  9. We pray for the recently deceased . . . and for those whose anniversary of death occurs around this time. May they be raised up with Christ to glorify God forever. (Pause for silent prayer) Lord, hear us.

Presider

Holy God and Father of Jesus, you made the cross an instrument of peace and a sign of mercy. Give us the courage to follow your Son until we are lifted up with him to everlasting life. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

 

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