|Melchiz’edek: A Priest forever||Make me a Instrument of Your Peace (St. Francis of Assisi)|
Melchiz’edek: A Priest forever
Melchiz’edek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was priest of God Most High. And he blessed him and said, “Blessed be Abram by God Most High, maker of heaven and earth; and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand!” (Genesis 14:18-20).
Psalm of David
The LORD says to my lord: “Sit at my right hand, till I make your enemies your footstool.” The LORD sends forth from Zion your mighty scepter. Rule in the midst of your foes! Your people will offer themselves freely on the day you lead your host upon the holy mountains. From the womb of the morning like dew your youth will come to you. The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind, “You are a priest for ever after the order of Melchiz’edek.” (Psalm 109: 1-4).
We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest for ever after the order of Melchiz’edek.For this Melchiz’edek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him; and to him Abraham apportioned a tenth part of everything. He is first, by translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then he is also king of Salem, that is, king of peace. He is without father or mother or genealogy, and has neither beginning of days nor end of life, but resembling the Son of God he continues a priest for ever. See how great he is! Abraham the patriarch gave him a tithe of the spoils. And those descendants of Levi who receive the priestly office have a commandment in the law to take tithes from the people, that is, from their brethren, though these also are descended from Abraham. But this man who has not their genealogy received tithes from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises. It is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior. Here tithes are received by mortal men; there, by one of whom it is testified that he lives. One might even say that Levi himself, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, for he was still in the loins of his ancestor when Melchiz’edek met him. Now if perfection had been attainable through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the law), what further need would there have been for another priest to arise after the order of Melchiz’edek, rather than one named after the order of Aaron? For when there is a change in the priesthood, there is necessarily a change in the law as well. For the one of whom these things are spoken belonged to another tribe, from which no one has ever served at the altar. For it is evident that our Lord was descended from Judah, and in connection with that tribe Moses said nothing about priests. This becomes even more evident when another priest arises in the likeness of Melchiz’edek, who has become a priest, not according to a legal requirement concerning bodily descent but by the power of an indestructible life. For it is witnessed of him, “Thou art a priest for ever, after the order of Melchiz’edek.” (Hebrews 6:20-7:17).
Sacrifice of the Priest Needed to Remove Guilt
“If any one sins in that he hears a public adjuration to testify and though he is a witness, whether he has seen or come to know the matter, yet does not speak, he shall bear his iniquity. Or if any one touches an unclean thing, whether the carcass of an unclean beast or a carcass of unclean cattle or a carcass of unclean swarming things, and it is hidden from him, and he has become unclean, he shall be guilty. Or if he touches human uncleanness, of whatever sort the uncleanness may be with which one becomes unclean, and it is hidden from him, when he comes to know it he shall be guilty. Or if any one utters with his lips a rash oath to do evil or to do good, any sort of rash oath that men swear, and it is hidden from him, when he comes to know it he shall in any of these be guilty. When a man is guilty in any of these, he shall confess the sin he has committed, and he shall bring his guilt offering to the LORD for the sin which he has committed, a female from the flock, a lamb or a goat, for a sin offering; and the priest shall make atonement for him for his sin. (Leviticus 5:1-6)
Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” (John 20: 21-23)
Samuel was lying down within the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was. Then the LORD called, “Samuel! Samuel!” and he said, “Here I am!” and ran to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” So he went and lay down. And the LORD called again, “Samuel!” And Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him. And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” Then Eli perceived that the LORD was calling the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and if he calls you, you shall say, `Speak, LORD, for thy servant hears.'” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. And the LORD came and stood forth, calling as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel said, “Speak, for thy servant hears.” (1 Samuel: 3: 3-10)
And [Elijah] lay down and slept under a broom tree; and behold, an angel touched him, and said to him, “Arise and eat.” And he looked, and behold, there was at his head a cake baked on hot stones and a jar of water. And he ate and drank, and lay down again. And the angel of the LORD came again a second time, and touched him, and said, “Arise and eat, else the journey will be too great for you.” And he arose, and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb the mount of God. And there he came to a cave, and lodged there; and behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said to him, “What are you doing here, Eli’jah?” He said, “I have been very jealous for the LORD, the God of hosts; for the people of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thy altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.” And he said, “Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and broke in pieces the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice. And when Eli’jah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him, and said, “What are you doing here, Eli’jah?” (1 Kings 19: 5-13)
A Song of Ascents.
I lift up my eyes to the hills. From whence does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved, he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade on your right hand. The sun shall not smite you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and for evermore. (Psalm 121: 1-8)
In the year that King Uzzi’ah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and his train filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim; each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory.” And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!” Then flew one of the seraphim to me, having in his hand a burning coal which he had taken with tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth, and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin forgiven.” And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.” (Isaiah 6:1-8)
Now the word of the LORD came to me saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” Then I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.” But the LORD said to me, “Do not say, `I am only a youth’; for to all to whom I send you you shall go, and whatever I command you you shall speak. Be not afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the LORD.” Then the LORD put forth his hand and touched my mouth; and the LORD said to me, “Behold, I have put my words in your mouth. See, I have set you this day over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.” (Jeremiah 1:4-10).
My Son, if you come forward to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for temptation. Set your heart right and be steadfast, and do not be hasty in time of calamity. Cleave to him and do not depart, that you may be honored at the end of your life. Accept whatever is brought upon you, and in changes that humble you be patient. For gold is tested in the fire, and acceptable men in the furnace of humiliation. Trust in him and he will help you, make your ways straight and hope in Him. (Sirach 2:1-6)
And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So they went both of them together. And Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father!” And he said, “Here am I, my son.” He said, “Behold, the fire and the wood; but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham said, “God will provide himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together. When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. Then Abraham put forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. But the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven, and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here am I.” He said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.” (Genesis 22:6-12)
[The priests and Levites] asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?” John answered them, “I baptize with water; but among you stands one whom you do not know, even he who comes after me, the thong of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” This took place in Bethany beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing. The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, `After me comes a man who ranks before me, for he was before me.’ I myself did not know him; but for this I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.” And John bore witness, “I saw the Spirit descend as a dove from heaven, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him; but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, `He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.” The next day again John was standing with two of his disciples; and he looked at Jesus as he walked, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. Jesus turned, and saw them following, and said to them, “What do you seek?” And they said to him, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come and see.” (John 1: 25-39)
Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel.” And passing along by the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew the brother of Simon casting a net in the sea; for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you become fishers of men.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. And going on a little farther, he saw James the son of Zeb’edee and John his brother, who were in their boat mending the nets. And immediately he called them; and they left their father Zeb’edee in the boat with the hired servants, and followed him. And they went into Caper’na-um; and immediately on the sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught. And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes. (Mark 1:14-22).
And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every infirmity. The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zeb’edee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him. These twelve Jesus sent out, charging them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And preach as you go, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying, give without pay. Take no gold, nor silver, nor copper in your belts, no bag for your journey, nor two tunics, nor sandals, nor a staff; for the laborer deserves his food. And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it, and stay with him until you depart. As you enter the house, salute it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And if any one will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town. Truly, I say to you, it shall be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomor’rah than for that town.”
“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. Beware of men; for they will deliver you up to councils, and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear testimony before them and the Gentiles. When they deliver you up, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death; and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly, I say to you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel, before the Son of man comes. A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master; it is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Be-el’zebul, how much more will they malign those of his household. So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, utter in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim upon the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father’s will. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (Matthew 10: 1-34)
Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal.” Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” So they said to him, “Then what sign do you do, that we may see, and believe you? What work do you perform? Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, `He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'” Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven, and gives life to the world.” They said to him, “Lord, give us this bread always.” Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me; and him who comes to me I will not cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him who sent me; and this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up at the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that every one who sees the Son and believes in him should have eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, “I am the bread which came down from heaven.” They said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, `I have come down from heaven’?” Jesus answered them, “Do not murmur among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, `And they shall all be taught by God.’ Every one who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me. Not that any one has seen the Father except him who is from God; he has seen the Father. Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh.” The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats me will live because of me. This is the bread which came down from heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live for ever.” This he said in the synagogue, as he taught at Caper’na-um. Many of his disciples, when they heard it, said, “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?” But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples murmured at it, said to them, “Do you take offense at this? Then what if you were to see the Son of man ascending where he was before? It is the spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no avail; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But there are some of you that do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the first who those were that did not believe, and who it was that would betray him. And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.” After this many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him. Jesus said to the twelve, “Do you also wish to go away?” Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.” (John 6: 26-69)
After this the Lord appointed seventy others, and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to come. And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. Go your way; behold, I send you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.” (Luke 10: 1-3)
A ruler asked him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “…You know the commandments: `Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother.’” And he said, “All these I have observed from my youth.” And when Jesus heard it, he said to him, “One thing you still lack. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” But when he heard this he became sad, for he was very rich. Jesus looking at him said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Those who heard it said, “Then who can be saved?” But he said, “What is impossible with men is possible with God.” And Peter said, “Lo, we have left our homes and followed you.” And he said to them, “Truly, I say to you, there is no man who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who will not receive manifold more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life.” (Luke 18:18-30).
Jesus said to them, “Not all men can receive this saying, but only those to whom it is given. For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. He who is able to receive this, let him receive it.” (Matthew 19:11-12)
I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to please the Lord; but the married man is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried woman or girl is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit; but the married woman is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please her husband. I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord. (1 Corinthians 7:32-35)
Then I looked, and lo, on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and his Father’s name written on their foreheads. And I heard a voice from heaven like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder; the voice I heard was like the sound of harpers playing on their harps, and they sing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and before the elders. No one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth. It is these who have not defiled themselves with women for they are chaste; it is these who follow the Lamb wherever he goes; these have been redeemed from mankind as first fruits for God and the Lamb, and in their mouth no lie was found, for they are spotless (Revelation 14: 1-5).
And the Pharisees and Sad’ducees came, and to test him they asked him to show them a sign from heaven. He answered them, “When it is evening, you say, `It will be fair weather; for the sky is red.’ And in the morning, `It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” So he left them and departed. …Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesare’a Philip’pi, he asked his disciples, “Who do men say that the Son of man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Eli’jah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ. From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid, Lord! This shall never happen to you.” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men.” Then Jesus told his disciples, “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life? For the Son of man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay every man for what he has done.” (Matthew 16: 1-4, 13-27)
So Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and prepare the passover for us, that we may eat it.” They said to him, “Where will you have us prepare it?” He said to them, “Behold, when you have entered the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him into the house which he enters, and tell the householder, `The Teacher says to you, Where is the guest room, where I am to eat the passover with my disciples?’ And he will show you a large upper room furnished; there make ready.” And they went, and found it as he had told them; and they prepared the passover. And when the hour came, he sat at table, and the apostles with him. And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer; for I tell you I shall not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves; for I tell you that from now on I shall not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And he took bread, and when he had given thanks he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after supper, saying, “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.” (Luke 22: 8-20)
I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself. (1 Corinthians 11:23-29)
Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also; henceforth you know him and have seen him.” Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we shall be satisfied.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know me, Philip? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how can you say, `Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father in me; or else believe me for the sake of the works themselves. Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, I will do it, that the Father may be glorified in the Son; if you ask anything in my name, I will do it. If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Counselor, to be with you for ever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him; you know him, for he dwells with you, and will be in you. I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world will see me no more, but you will see me; because I live, you will live also. In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me; and he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” (John 14: 6-21)
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” (Matthew 28: 16-20)
You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide; so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. This I command you, to love one another.
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, `A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you; if they kept my word, they will keep yours also. But all this they will do to you on my account, because they do not know him who sent me.”
“…In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 15: 14-21, 16:33)
That very day two of them were going to a village named Emma’us, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them, “What is this conversation which you are holding with each other as you walk?” And they stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, named Cle’opas, answered him, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since this happened. Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning and did not find his body; and they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb, and found it just as the women had said; but him they did not see.” And he said to them, “O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He appeared to be going further, but they constrained him, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened and they recognized him; and he vanished out of their sight. They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the scriptures?” And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven gathered together and those who were with them, who said, “The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!” Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread. (Luke 25: 13-35)
On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in his side, I will not believe.” Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing.” Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.” Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name. (John 20:19-31)
When they got out on land, they saw a charcoal fire there, with fish lying on it, and bread. Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, a hundred and fifty-three of them; and although there were so many, the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” Now none of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and so with the fish. This was now the third time that Jesus was revealed to the disciples after he was raised from the dead. When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.” A second time he said to him, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” And he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you girded yourself and walked where you would; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish to go.” This he said to show by what death he was to glorify God. (John 21: 9-19)
For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset with weakness. Because of this he is bound to offer sacrifice for his own sins as well as for those of the people. And one does not take the honor upon himself, but he is called by God, just as Aaron was. So also Christ did not exalt Himself to be made a high priest, but was appointed by Him who said to Him, “Thou art my Son, today I have begotten thee”; as He says also in another place, “Thou art a priest forever, after the order of Melchiz’edek.”In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to Him who was able to save Him from death, and he was heard for His Godly fear. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience through what he suffered; and being made perfect He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, being designated by God a high priest, after the order of Melchiz’edek. (Hebrews 5: 1-9)
I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lo’is and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you. Hence I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; for God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control.
Do not be ashamed then of testifying to our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel in the power of God, who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not in virtue of our works but in virtue of his own purpose and the grace which he gave us in Christ Jesus ages ago, and now has manifested through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. For this gospel I was appointed a preacher and apostle and teacher, and therefore I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am sure that he is able to guard until that Day what has been entrusted to me. Follow the pattern of the sound words which you have heard from me, in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus; guard the truth that has been entrusted to you by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us. (2 Timothy 1: 5-14)
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy;
O Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console,;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty,
my memory, my understanding, and my entire will.
All I have and call my own.
Whatever I have or hold, you have given to me.
I restore it all to you and surrender it wholly
to be governed by your will.
Give me only your love and grace
and I am rich enough and ask for nothing more.
A sacrifice to be real, must cost, must hurt, must empty ourselves.
The fruit of silence is prayer,
The fruit of prayer is faith,
The fruit of faith is love,
The fruit of love is service,
The fruit of service is peace.
Holy Spirit, eternal Spring of Joy and peace, it is You who open the heart and the mind to the divine call; it is You who make effective every impetus towards good, towards truth, towards charity.
Your ‘inexpressible groans’ rise up to the Father from the heart of the Church, which suffers and struggles for the Gospel.
Open the hearts and minds of young men so that a new flowering of holy vocations to the priesthood may show forth the fidelity of your love, and all may know Christ, the true light of the world to offer to every human being the sure hope of eternal life. Amen.
O Father, raise up among Christians abundant and holy vocations to the priesthood, who keep the faith aliveand guard the blessed memory of your Son Jesus through the preaching of his word and the administration of the Sacraments, with which you continually renew your faithful.
Grant us holy ministers of your altar, who are careful and fervent guardians of the Eucharist, the sacrament of the supreme gift of Christ for the redemption of the world.
Call ministers of your mercy, who, through the sacrament of Reconciliation, spread the joy of your forgiveness.
Grant, O Father, that the Church may welcome with joy the numerous inspirations of the Spirit of your Sonand, docile to His teachings, may she care for vocations to the ministerial priesthood and to the consecrated life.
Sustain the Bishops, priests and deacons, consecrated men and women, and all the baptized in Christ, so that they may faithfully fulfill their mission at the service of the Gospel.
This we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Mary, Queen of Apostles, pray for us.
From St. John Vianney Society prayerbook:
“Heavenly Father, Your divine Son taught us to pray to the Lord of the harvest to send laborers into His vineyard. We earnestly beg You to bless our Archdiocese and our world with many priests and religious men and women who will love You fervently, and gladly and courageously spend their lives in service to Your Son’s Church under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We pray that their lives may always be centered on our Eucharistic Lord; that they be always faithful to the Holy Father; and that they may be devoted sons and daughters of Mary, our Mother, in making You known and loved; and that all may attain Heaven. Bless our families and our children and choose from our homes those whom you desire for this holy work. Amen.”
“O Almighty Eternal God, look upon the face of Your Son, and for the love of Him Who is the eternal High Priest, have pity on Your priests. Remember, O most compassionate God, they are but weak and frail human beings. Stir up in them the grace of their vocation, which is in them by the imposition of the bishop’s hands. Keep them close to You, lest the enemy prevail against them, so that they may never do anything in the slightest degree unworthy of their sublime vocation. May they wholeheartedly devote themselves to prayer and penance; be examples of humility and poverty; shining models of holiness; tireless and powerful preachers of the Word of God; zealous dispensers of God’s grace in the sacraments. May their loving devotion to Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament and to Mary His Mother be the twin fountains of fruitfulness for their ministry. Amen.
“God Our Father, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I ask You to bless and strengthen the spiritual renewal and vitality of all religious so that Your Church may shine more resplendently and bear witness to You in our world today. Keep then strong in their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Make them heroic in living the religious life according to the mind of the Church. May they find their joy in the total offering of their lives to Christ and for the mission of His Church. Amen.”
“To you O glorious St. John Vianney, who as a young man greatly
desired to become a priest so as to “gain many souls to God,”
do we have recourse in prayer. Through your intercession pour
forth the blessings of Heaven upon this Archdiocese in order
that many men and women may be called forth to labor for the
salvation of souls as priests and religious.
“St. John Vianney, we beg you to intercede in a special way
for our diocesan clergy. You labored for many years as a diocesan
priest and know the unique role they serve in the Church’s
mission of salvation. Beseech our High Priest, Jesus Christ,
on behalf of our diocesan priests, that they may have the
grace necessary to live their sacred calling in holiness and
fidelity. Implore God’s grace upon our seminarians so that
they may persevere through all difficulties and, through your
intercession, may many more men give their lives in service
to the Church by becoming diocesan priests for our Archdiocese.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.”
“O my God, I choose this day to offer You all my works, prayers,
joys and sufferings — all that I have, all that I am — for
the intention of many more vocations to the priesthood and
religious life. Graciously bless our Archdiocese with an abundance
of vocations, especially in these difficult times. Whatever
may happen to me this day, whether good or ill, expected or
unexpected, I offer to You, in union with the Sacrifice of
the Mass throughout the world, so that we might be graced
with more vocations! Through the intercession of the Blessed
Virgin Mary, grant to those You have called the willingness
and generosity in spirit to give of themselves in devoting
their lives and their talents to the service of You and Your
Church. Increase the faith of all within our Archdiocese,
and particularly the faith of those You have called and will
continue to call. Amen.”
“Oh my Jesus, poor and week as I am, I have come to spend
this hour alone with YOU, in humble petition for an abundant
increase in vocations to the priesthood and religious life.
You have said: ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers
are few; pray, therefore, the Lord of the harvest to send
out laborers into His harvest.” Encouraged by Your words I
come into Your Presence and confidently present my prayers
in Your sight. Graciously bestow upon Your Church, especially
this Archdiocese, an abundance of vocations to the priesthood
and religious life. Enlighten the minds and hearts of many
to respond to Your invitation to heroically labor for the
salvation of souls. Gather under the standard of the Cross
a multitude of men and women who are willing to give their
very lives for the sake of the Gospel. May all those who feel
Your call stirring in their hearts join the ranks of those
already working for the new evangelization of the world. You
Who live and reign forever and ever. Amen.”
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God pray for us.
Holy Virgin of Virgins pray for us.
St. Michael, leader of the heavenly host, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, messenger of God’s divine plan pray for us.
St. Raphael, companion of the journey pray for us.
All you holy Angels and Archangels pray for us.
St. Joseph, protector of the Holy Church pray for us.
St. John Vianney, patron of parish priests pray for us.
St. Aloysius Gonzaga, patron of youth pray for us.
St. Alphonsus Liguori, patron of vocations pray for us.
St. Charles Borromeo, patron of seminarians pray for us.
St. John Berchmans, patron of altar servers pray for us.
St. Maria Goretti, patron of teenagers pray for us.
St. Francis De Sales, primary patron of the Archdiocese pray for us.
All you holy men and women pray for us.
Be merciful, spare us, O Lord.
Be merciful, graciously hear us, O Lord.
Through your mercy, send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through Your kindness, send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through the fervent prayers and sacrifices of Your people, send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through the power of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through the intercession of all the Saints and Angels send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through the sanctification of the family, send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through parents being generously open to life, send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through the example of priests and religious striving for holiness send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
Through a renewed sense of fidelity to our Catholic Faith send workers into Your harvest, O Lord.
That young people might seek to live the truth of Christ, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
That young people might seek God’s will for them in their lives, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
That young people might hear the call to give their lives forthe mission of the Church, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
That all priests and religious might be renewed in the spirit of the new evangelization, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
That Bishops might be strengthened to be courageous shepherds, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
That we may always zealously pray for and promote vocations, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
That those who are being called to be priests and religious might respond generously, O Lord of the harvest, graciously hear us.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world have mercy on us.
The harvest is great but the laborers are few. Beg the harvest Master to send out laborers for His harvest.
Let us pray: O God, Who chose the Apostles to make disciples of all nations and Who by Baptism and Confirmation has called us to build up Your Holy Church, we earnestly implore You to choose among us, Your children, many priests and religious who will love You with their whole heart and will gladly spend their entire lives making You known and loved by all. Through Christ our Lord.
Prayer for Priestly and Religious Vocations.
“O Jesus, Good Shepherd, Who has come to save what was lost, You have established the Priesthood of the Holy Church so that the work of Redemption might be perpetuated. We beg You to send laborers into Your vineyard! Give Your Holy Church worthy and holy priests. Give Your Holy Church religious brothers and sisters. Grant that all those whom You have chose from all eternity may follow Your call. Confirm all priests and religious in their difficult vocation and bless their efforts and labors. Grant that they may be salt of the earth, which preserves from corruption and that they may be the light of the world, which enlightens the faithful by their words and example. Grant them wisdom, patience and fortitude in order that they may promote Your honor, propagate Your Kingdom in the hearts of men, and guide the souls which have been entrusted to them to eternal life. Amen.”
Lord Jesus, as you once called the first disciples to make
them fishers of men, let Your sweet invitation continue to
resound: “Come, follow Me!”
Give young men and women the grace of responding quickly to
Your voice. Support our Bishops, Priests and consecrated people
in their apostolic labor.
Grant perseverance to our seminarians and to all those who
are carrying out the ideal of a life totally consecrated to
Awaken in our community a missionary eagerness. Lord, SEND
WORKERS TO YOUR HARVEST and do not allow humanity to be lost
for the lack of pastors, missionaries and people dedicated
to the cause of the Gospel.
O Mary, Mother of the Church, the model of every vocation,
help us to say “Yes” to the Lord Who calls us to cooperate
in the divine plan of salvation. Amen.
“Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the eternal Father and Mary Immaculate,
we bring to You in prayer the young people of our Church.
Give them hearts open to hear Your voice. Help them to be
generous in responding to Your call. Give them the grace to
persevere in overcoming all the pressures in our world that
may keep them from embracing and truly living their vocation.
Graciously grant to parents a living faith and an ardent love,
which will inspire them to encourage their children to live
holy lives. May parents genuinely encourage and foster the
God-given vocation of their children and help them to respond
generously. Let them rejoice when a child of theirs is called
by You to be a priest of religious. May the example of Your
life and that of Joseph and Mary help encourage parents and
children to form holy families and let Your grace sustain
A Rosary for Vocations
-1st Joyful Mystery: The Annuciation. Mary answers “Yes” to God’s call. Even though it was unexpected and the Archangel gives her only the details she needs to know at the present moment, she responds generously. Let us offer this decade for those who are being called to the priesthood or religious life that they, like Mary, may have the grace to respond whole-heartedly.
-2nd Joyful Mystery: The Visitation. Mary wastes no time in acting upon the grace of her vocation. Through her cooperation the plan of salvation is already unfolding. Let us offer this decade for those who have been called but are hesitating. May God’s grace hurry them forward to answer the call and thus begin to labor for the harvest.
-3rd Joyful Mystery: The Nativity. Our Savior comes to us in the midst of a family. How crucial is the role of the family! Let us offer this decade for all parents that they may provide an atmosphere of love and faith in the home. May parents thus help foster their children’s vocations.
-4th Joyful Mystery: The Presentation. Joseph and Mary presented Jesus in the Temple and dedicated Him Almighty God. They knew their Son was a gift from God to be given back to Him. Let us offer this decade for the grace parents need to recognize the gift of their children and thus offer them to the divine plan of God. May His will determine every moment of their lives.
-5th Joyful Mystery: The Finding of Jesus in the Temple. This mystery tells of a very unplanned event in the life of Joseph and Mary. For days their hearts ached with sorrow until they found their Son. Let us offer this decade for those parents who find it difficult to understand and thus support their child’s vocation as a priest or religious. May they be graced with the faith to support God’s will for their children and, like Joseph and Mary, to hold the mysterious ways of God in their hearts.
-1st Luminous Mystery: The Baptism of Jesus. The mystery of our Lord’s Baptism is the mystery of Jesus taking upon Himself the mission of the Messiah. Thus begins His public ministry. Let us offer this decade for those called to the priesthood and religious life but are afraid to answer because of what others may say or think. Grant them courage, O Lord, to accept the mission you are giving them.
-2nd Luminous Mystery: The Wedding Feast of Cana. Through the intercession of Mary, Jesus transforms ordinary water into extraordinary wine. What incredible things God’s grace can do in our lives! Let us offer this decade for those who are being called but doubt that they have much to offer. May they trust in the power of God to bring all things into completion and say “yes” to His call.
-3rd Luminous Mystery: The Proclamation of the Kingdom. Our Lord begins His public ministry by announcing the arrival of the Kingdom of God. What joyous news this is for all humanity to hear! Let us offer this decade for an increase in vocations that there might be many more priests and religious who will proclaim this truth and bear witness to it with their lives.
-4th Luminous Mystery: The Transfiguration. Jesus strengthened the faith of His Apostles by allowing His divinity to be momentarily perceived. He wished them to gain a supernatural perspective on His forthcoming Passion and Death. Let us offer this decade for all those who are being called as priests and religious that they may have the grace to recognize God’s call in the midst of life and courageously accept carrying the Cross.
-5th Luminous Mystery: The Institution of the Holy Eucharist. The gift of the Most Holy Eucharist is a mystery going beyond our ability to fully comprehend. Our Lord’s abiding Presence in the Blessed Sacrament, the saving mystery of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass — the world would suffer a great loss without these miracles. Jesus gives Himself in the Holy Eucharist through the ministry of His priests. Let us offer this decade for more priests for our Archdiocese. May God call many more men to share in the Priesthood and may they respond generously.
-1st Sorrowful Mystery: The Agony in the Garden. Jesus asked His Apostles to pray so that they “might not enter into temptation.” Our Lord knew they needed to pray in order to endure what would soon happen. Let us offer this decade for those men and women whom God is calling to be priests and religious, that they might have a deep and abiding life of prayer. Through the strength given to them through their spiritual life may they respond courageously to God’s call.
-2nd Sorrowful Mystery: The Scourging at the Pillar. Our Lord’s suffering during the scourging was excruciating. For our sake Jesus offered Himself to obtain our salvation. Let us offer this decade for the grace so that many young people might feel the desire in their hearts to offer themselves to God as priests and religious.
-3rd Sorrowful Mystery: The Crowning with Thorns. Jesus endured the terrible ridicule and mockery of the soldiers even to the point of accepting the painful crown of thorns. Let us offer this decade for those who have a calling to the priesthood or religious life but find it difficult to say “yes” because of painful obstacles in their lives. May concern for human respect never stand in their way of following God’s will.
-4th Sorrowful Mystery: The Carrying of the Cross. On the way to Calvary, our Lord found comfort and assistance from a number of people: Simon of Cyrene, the women of Jerusalem, His Mother, and Veronica. How much those acts of love must have meant to Jesus! Let us offer this decade for the grace to always support, with out prayers and sacrifices, those whom God is calling to become priests and religious. May God find us seriously engaged in this very important apostolate!
-5th Sorrowful Mystery: The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus. At the foot of the Cross, there came into existence a new type of family. Before Jesus died He entrusted to the maternal care of Mary all of humanity, represented in the person of the “beloved disciple”. Through the New Covenant the notion of family is greatly enlarged, it takes on a different dimension. Let us offer this decade for those who are being called but are hesitant because of fears of not being able to have a family and living a lonely life. Help them, O Lord, to see that in serving You as a priest or religious, their desires for family will indeed be completely fulfilled.
-1st Glorious Mystery: The Resurrection. Our Lord’s Resurrection brought tremendous joy to His sorrowful followers. Never were their lives to be the same again. Let us offer this decade for an increase in grace in the hearts of those who are being called to be priests and religious. May they experience the immense joy of giving God their entire lives and saying “yes” to His call. Help them to realize that their unselfish response to God will change their lives forever.
-2nd Glorious Mystery: The Ascension. Jesus ascended into Heaven, not to abandon us but to be our hope. He continually intercedes for us before the throne of the Father and prepares a place for His faithful followers in the heavenly Kingdom. Let us offer this decade for an increase in the number of priests and religious to help us strive faithfully to attain heavenly homeland. May these men and women always recognize the irreplaceable mission they have in the plan of our salvation.
-3rd Glorious Mystery: The Descent of the Holy Spirit. The coming of the Holy Spirit transformed the timid Apostles into bold witnesses for the Gospel. The Church was sent forth with courage and zeal! Let us offer this decade for the power of the Holy Spirit to come upon all He has chosen to labor as priests and religious. May they respond boldly to the invitation to lay down their lives for Christ and His Church.
-4th Glorious Mystery: The Assumption of Mary. The Second Vatican Council reminded us that Mary’s role in salvation history did not end with her Assumption into Heaven. She continually intercedes for all of us, her children, as we journey through life. Let us offer this decade asking Mary’s intercession. Through her prayers may the Church be granted an abundance of vocations to the priesthood and religious life.
-5th Glorious Mystery: The Coronation of Mary. This mystery brings before us the beauty of the faithfulness of Mary, the first disciple of the Lord. She who referred to herself as the “handmaid of the Lord” is now exalted far above even the Angels. The one who said “yes” to God in all things is now the Queen of heaven and earth. Let us offer this decade for those who have been called that they may always have the grace to understand that to serve God is to reign with Him. Whatever sacrifices need to be made in order to live the mission God gives us will pale in comparison to the glory He has reserved for His faithful servants.
“O Mary, you who are the Queen of Heaven and our dear Mother,
graciously hear us as we come before you with our urgent request.
Our world is in great need of many more workers for the harvest
in order to bring about the new evangelization. Your “yes”
to God’s will enabled the work of salvation to be carried
out. Pray for the world and especially for our Archdiocese.
May many more men and women be called to go forth into the
harvest! Intercede for those who are being asked to follow
your Son as priests and religious to respond boldly and generously.
May they say “yes” to all that God is asking of them. Through
Christ our Lord. Amen.”
“Be mindful of us, O blessed Joseph, and intercede for us
with Jesus by the pleading of your prayers. You were the foster-father
of the one High Priest Who sanctified us by the outpouring
of His Precious Blood. Beg Him to send us many priests who
will be worthy laborers in the mission of the salvation of
souls. May this Archdiocese be blessed with an abundance of
such men who will zealously and courageously give their lives
for the spreading of the Kingdom. Through Christ our Lord.
“St. Francis de Sales, you who are the primary patron of
our Archdiocese, look kindly upon us as we implore your intercession.
In your life you clearly recognized the crucial role played
by priests and religious in the mission of the Church on earth.
Through your intercession before the throne of God, graciously
help our Archdiocese to experience an increase in vocations.
May many more men and women give generously of themselves
to the mission of the new evangelization as priests and religious.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.”
“Lord Jesus Christ, we pray for all those men and women who
are in seminary and religious formation, especially for those
within our own Archdiocese. Grant to them perseverance in
their efforts to follow Your call. Help them to be generous
in all things and to constantly strive to live holy lives.
Let them always be faithful to the teachings and guidance
of the Church. May they become powerful witnesses of Your
truth in the world. Amen.”
Lord, have mercy. Christ have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, patron of parish priests, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, model of the priesthood, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, glory of the diocesan preisthood, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, heroic in the practice of all virtues, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, humble of heart, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, lover of poverty, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, devoted to the conversion of sinners, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, mirror of purity, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, ardent lover of Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, most devoted son of the Virgin Mary, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, courageous shepherd of his flock, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, martyr of the confessional, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, filled with the spirit of self-sacrifice, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, exemplary in obedience, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, terror of the demons, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who was willing to suffer all things in order to sanctify his parish, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who loved God without limits, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who dedicated himself to the teaching of the Faith, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who sanctified himself through heroic prayer and fasting, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who found his joy and strength in the daily celebration of the Holy Mass, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who was nourished by the Divine Office and the Rosary, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who persevered through all difficulties, pray for us.
St. John Vianney, who models for us true priestly zeal and holiness, pray for us.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world,graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Pray for us, St. John Vianney. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let us pray:
“All-powerful, merciful God, You made St. John Vianney admirable in his pastoral zeal and his constant ardor for prayer and penance. Grant that we, following his example and imploring his intercession, may win the souls of our brethren for Christ and with them attain to everlasting glory. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.”
MONDAY: That those who are being called to serve God as priests and religious may generously respond.
TUESDAY: That those who are being called and are facing obstacles in answering the call may persevere in their commitment.
WEDNESDAY: That the parents of those who are being called (or will be called) may be encouraging in their support of the vocation of their son or daughter.
THURSDAY: That our seminarians and those in religious formation may persevere through all difficulties and grow in holiness and fidelity to the Church.
FRIDAY: That Catholic families may seek holiness and fidelity to Christ above all else and thus foster good and holy vocations.
SATURDAY: That our Blessed Mother may intercede for all priests and religious so that the holiness of their lives may foster many more vocations.
The Four O’Clock Hour Prayer
In the first chapter of St. John’s Gospel we read about the
calling of the first two Apostles, John and Andrew. Our Lord
notices them following Him, and he invites them to “Come and
see.” This first encounter with out Lord, coupled with His
invitation, so moved St. John that when he later wrote his
Gospel, even the time of day is recorded when this event occurred.
St. John states that it was “about the tenth hour” or around
4 P.M. Let us pray one Hail Mary each dat at 4 P.M. for all
those men and women Jesus is calling to follow Him as priests
and religious, so that they, like the Blessed Virgin Mary,
may say “yes” to our Lord’s invitation.
Prayer for Vocations (by Serra International)
Lord Jesus, we pray as a community for the grace to encourage all who choose a religious vocation. For those who have already chosen a vocation, we pray that they may have the grace to keep and nourish that commitment. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Serra International)
Heavenly Father, if it is your divine will, inspire many of our youth to say “Yes” to your special calling to be priests, sisters and brothers. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations by (Serra International)
Loving Father, through the intercession of our Blessed Mother, Queen of Vocations, may our youth joyfully respond to your call to follow Jesus in the priestly or religious life. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Serra International)
Dear Lord, we invoke your help so more young men and women will be touched by your grace and become priests, sisters, brothers and lay ministers in service to you. We ask this in Jesus’ name and through the intercession of your Blessed Mother. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Serra International)
Loving Father, you call each of us by name and ask us to follow you. Bless your Church by raising up dedicated and generous leaders from our families who will serve your people as priests, sisters, brothers and permanent deacons. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Serra International)
O God, who wills not the death of a sinner, but rather that he be converted and live, grant we beseech you, through the intercession of the Blessed Mary ever Virgin, Saint Joseph her spouse, Blessed Junipero Serra and all the saints, an increase in laborers for your Church, fellow laborers to spend and consume themselves for souls, through the same Jesus Christ, your son, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever and ever. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (Serra International)
O God, you have constituted your only begotten son supreme and eternal priest for the glory of your majesty and the salvation of mankind; grant that those he has chosen ministers and dispensers of his mysteries may be found faithful in fulfilling the ministry they have received. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Serra International)
Father, we pray that more young people will be generous in responding to your invitation to be priests, brothers and sisters. Teach them to follow in Jesus’ footprints by bringing the light of the Holy Spirit to all people. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (Pope John Paul II)
O Jesus, good shepherd, bless our parishes with numerous priests, deacons, men and women religious, consecrated laity and missionaries, according to the needs of the entire world that you love and wish to save. We especially entrust our community to you; grant us the spirit of the first Christians, so that we may be a cenacle of prayer, in loving acceptance of the Holy Spirit. Assist our pastors and all who live a consecrated life. Guide the steps of those who have responded generously to your call and are preparing to receive holy orders or to profess the evangelical counsels. Look with love on so many well-disposed young people and call them to follow you. Help them to understand that in you alone can they attain complete fulfillment. To this end we call on the powerful intercession of Mary, mother and model of all vocations. We beseech you to sustain our faith with the certainty that God will grant what you have commanded us to ask. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Pope John Paul II)
Most Holy Virgin, certain of your intercession, we pray that the mysteries of the Risen Christ and of the Holy Spirit may enlighten many to become willing and generous servants of the Church. We pray for our youth to whom the Lord addresses a special invitation of closer fellowship. May they refuse to be carried away by the things of this world, but open their hearts instead, to the friendly voice that calls them. May they feel capable of making a life-long commitment to Christ and to his Church for the salvation of mankind. May they trust that divine grace will endow them with the power to make a total offering of themselves as they feel the attraction of priestly, religious and missionary life. We pray for the Christian families, that they may provide a favorable atmosphere for their youngsters and help them make the right choices. We beseech you that all priests and religious be an example to our youth by their availability and humble readiness to accept the gifts of the Holy Spirit. May they be able to extend all the fruits of love and peace. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Pope John Paul II)
O Mother, awaken among the young generation a willingness to serve God alone. Implore for us numerous vocations for the priesthood and the religious life. O Mother, confirm the faith of all our lay brothers and sisters that in every area of social, professional, cultural and political life that they may work according to the truth and the law which your Son has proclaimed to humanity in order to lead all to eternal salvation and, at the same time, to make life on earth more human, and more worth of man. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Pope John Paul II)
O Virgin Mary, we commend to you those who seek to follow your son as priests, brothers and sisters. You know the difficulties, struggles and obstacles they face. Assist them to utter their “yes” to the divine call as you did at the invitation of the angel. Draw them near to your heart so they may understand with you the joy and beauty that awaits when the Lord calls them. Make them witnesses of the Lord’s love. Enable them to inspire the Church with their consecration. May your all powerful intercession touch the hearts of many that they may respond to the Lord’s call. Repeat to them in the depths of their hearts what you said to the waiters at Cana: “Do whatever Jesus asks.” Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Pope Paul VI)
O Jesus, divine shepherd of souls, you called the Apostles to be fishers of men. Move now the ardent and generous hearts of our youth and make them your followers and ministers. Let them share your thirst of universal redemption for which you renew your sacrifice on the altar every day. Lord Jesus, always interceding for us, extend our vision to the entire world where so many brothers and sisters silently pray for the light and warmth of love. By answering your call, may many generous souls continue your mission on earth, build your mystical body, the Church, and become the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Extend, O Lord, your loving call to many pure and generous young women, that they may grow in their desire for evangelical perfection and may dedicate themselves to the service of the Church and those who desperately need their assistance and love. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Brother Charles de Foucald)
Father, I abandon myself into your hands; do with me what you will. Whatever you may do I thank you; I am ready for all, I accept all. Let only your will be done in me, and in all your creatures, I wish no more than this, O Lord. Into your hands I commend my soul; I offer it to you with all the love in my heart, for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself, to surrender myself into your hands. Without reserve, and with boundless confidence, for you are my God.
Prayer for Vocations (by Blessed Hannibal Di Francia)
O Holy Mother, hasten to raise good laborers to the Church. Hasten with the same concern that prompted you to go to Elizabeth’s house bringing Jesus and God’s graces. Hasten to visit our community and enrich it with good and evangelical laborers that they may bring Jesus in the hearts of people and his kingdom on earth for ever and ever. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Blessed Hannibal Di Francia)
O Most Holy Virgin, we come to you to implore a great grace on behalf of the people of earth. We ask you for many and holy laborers of the gospel. You, O Mother, are the queen of the apostles, you obtained the grace of the ministries. Every vocation comes through your intercession. Obtain for your Church and whole world numerous and chosen priests, apostolic and holy men, fervent, zealous and loving souls. Remember the command of your son Jesus when he said: “Pray the harvest master that he send workers to his harvest.” Hear us, O Mother, for the greater glory of the heart of Jesus. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Bishop Elden Curtiss)
Almighty God, your son Jesus told us to pray for vocations since the harvest is great and the laborers are few. Help all of us who center our Catholic lives in word and sacrament to be active promoters of vocations to the priesthood and religious life. The ministry of identifying and nurturing vocations belongs to each member of each family in our parish families. May we all accept this mission from Jesus with the determination that comes from faith. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations (by Archbishop Thomas Murphy)
God of life and love, you share these gifts with me in powerful ways through my family and friends. Help me to find ways to share the gifts of your life and love in service to others as a minister of the Church. Help me to discern how I can best respond to this challenge and give me courage to do your will. I ask this in union with the whole Church and in the name of your son, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations
O God, send your Spirit that we may hear and recognize your voice in the deepest part of our beings. Give us the courage and strength to respond with the gift of our whole lives in witness to the person of Jesus Christ and the good news of the gospel. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations
Creator God, life is your gift. Through baptism you invite us to share in service to others. Give us the courage and generosity to respond to your call. Bless those who serve you as priests, religious, deacons and lay ministers. Open the minds and hearts of men and women to accept your challenge to build the kingdom. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations
Lord, guide all who are seeking you. May your Spirit direct all who are called to a religious vocation and strengthen those who have committed themselves to priesthood or religious life. Inspire men and women to serve your Church, and keep us all in your grace. Amen.