Pastoral Prayer for December 19, 2021
Please allow the words of this prayer to become your own.
You are my true home, the source of my identity and value,
my only unassailable place of safety, comfort, and rest.
Help me to always return home.
Whenever I stray or forget, help me to hear you calling me back.
In returning to you, I ask you to deliver me from evil:
political evil, economic evil, and spiritual evil.
Concerning spiritual evil, help me to resist the temptation
of making my own experience of you into the standard
by which I judge the quality and the depth of the relationship
that others have with you, but in a way different from my own.
Also concerning spiritual evil, help me to resist the temptation
of making my own understanding of you into an absolute
which I then use to judge the quality and the depth
of others’ understanding of you which is different from mine.
Help me to always remember that when Jesus talks about the meaning of truth
he always makes it personal.
For him, truth is no dry, abstract, intellectual reality,
but living out of an honest and open relationship with him
which is defined by compassion, forgiveness, and most importantly, love.
Help me to always remember St. Paul’s inspired words:
“There are only three realities which last, faith, hope, and love.
But the greatest of these is love.”