My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
and my spirit rejoices in God, my saviour.
Because he has looked upon his lowly handmaid.
From this day forward all generations will call me blessed,
for the Almighty has done great things for me.
Holy is his name,
and his mercy reaches from age to age for those who fear him.
He has shown the power of his arm:
he has routed the proud of heart,
He has pulled down princes from their thrones and exalted the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things;
the rich he has sent empty away.
He has come to the help of Israel his servant, mindful of his mercy
according to the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children for ever.
Prayer of hope to use each night (from Psalm 4)
In peace shall I sleep, Lord, in peace shall I rest,
firm in the hope you have given me.
Psalm for this week Psalm 83 (84)
How lovely is your dwelling-place, Lord, God of hosts.
My soul is longing and yearning,
is yearning for the courts of the Lord.
My heart and my soul ring out their joy
to God, the living God.
The sparrow herself finds a home
and the swallow a nest for her brood;
she lays her young by your altars,
Lord of hosts, my king and my God.
They are happy, who dwell in your house,
for ever singing your praise.
They are happy, whose strength is in you,
in whose hearts are the roads to Zion.
For the Lord God is a rampart, a shield;
he will give us his favour and glory.
The Lord will not refuse any good
to those who walk without blame.
How lovely is your dwelling-place, Lord, God of hosts.
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that
I think I am following Your will does not mean that I am
actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please You
does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that, if I do this, You will lead me by the right road,
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore I will trust You always though I may seem to be lost
and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for You are ever with me,
and You will never leave me to face my perils alone.
Prayer of St Augustine
Eternal God, who are the light of the minds that know you,
the joy of the hearts that love you,
and the strength of the wills that serve you;
grant us so to know you, that we may truly love you,
and so to love you that we may fully serve you,
whom to serve is perfect freedom, in Jesus Christ our Lord
Prayer of Simeon
Now, Master, you let your servant go in peace.
You have fulfilled your promise.
My own eyes have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared in the sight of all peoples.
A light to bring the pagans from darkness;
the glory of your people Israel.
Prayer of St Francis
Most High, Glorious God,
enlighten the darkness of our minds.
Give us a true faith, a firm hope and a perfect charity,
so that we may always and in all things act according to Your Holy Will.
Prayer for the Unemployed
Father, our world is the work of your creation. In these troubled times look lovingly and compassionately on the growing number of those unemployed and without work. Many are unable to provide for themselves and their families. May they not lose their confidence and self-respect. Help those who run firms and businesses which have folded due to the Coronavirus. Lead all those with feelings of inadequacy to find the dignity of work in new and lasting opportunities. Help especially those living on the margins of society, the homeless, those who have lost their homes, families and increasingly rely on handouts, credits and food banks. Guide us to act selflessly and responsibly to avoid further lockdowns. May all men and women, through their employment, become part of your creative work. We ask this through Christ, your Son. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, you travelled through towns and villages curing every disease and illness. At your command, the sick were made well. Come to our aid now, in the midst of the global spread of the Coronavirus, that we may experience your healing love.
Heal those who are sick with the virus. May they regain their strength and health through medical care. Heal us from our fear.
Be with the doctors, nurses, researchers and all medical professionals who seek to heal and put themselves at risk in the process. May they know your protection and peace.
Be with the leaders of all nations. Give them the foresight to act with charity and true concern for the well-being of the people they serve. May they know your peace, as they work together to achieve it on earth.
Whether we are home or abroad, surrounded by many people suffering from this illness or only a few, Lord Jesus Christ, stay with us as we endure and mourn, persist and prepare. In place of our anxiety, give us your peace. Lord Jesus, heal us. Amen
Prayer from Citeaux (Cistercian Abbey)
Father of mercy,
your love embraces all
and, through the resurrection of your Son,
You call them into your beautiful light.
Dispel our darkness
and make of us a single people
who sing praise without end
to our Lord Jesus Christ.
The Jesus Prayer
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner (Repeat at least three times thinking of each word in the prayer and about your relationship to God)
Daily Prayer: St Thomas Aquinas
Grant me, O Lord my God,
a mind to know you,
a heart to seek you,
wisdom to find you,
conduct pleasing to you,
faithful perseverance in waiting for you,
and a hope of finally embracing you. Amen
Prayer of St Anselm for all people
O Lord, we bring before you the distress and dangers of peoples and nations, the pleas of the imprisoned and the captive, the sorrows of the grief-stricken, the needs of the refugee, the impotence of the weak, the weariness of the despondent, and the frailty of the ageing. O Lord, stay close to all of them. Amen.
Words of St Augustine and a related prayer
God does not command impossibilities, but by commanding admonishes you do what you can and to pray for what you cannot, and aids you that you may be able.
God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
As it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
If I surrender to His Will;
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
And supremely happy with Him
Forever and ever in the next. Amen
St Therese of Lisieux on prayer
In order to secure a hearing there is no need to recite set prayers composed for the occasion... I have not the courage to look through books for beautiful prayers. I only get a headache because of their number, and besides, one is more lovely than another. Unable therefore to say them all, and lost in choice, I do as children who have not learned to read--I simply tell Our Lord all that I want, and He always understands. With me prayer is an uplifting of the heart; a glance towards heaven; a cry of gratitude and love, uttered equally in sorrow and in joy. In a word, it is something noble, supernatural, which expands my soul and unites it to God. Sometimes when I am in such a state of spiritual dryness that not a single good thought occurs to me, I say very slowly the "Our Father" or the "Hail Mary," and these prayers suffice to take me out of myself, and wonderfully refresh me.