Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wednesday: Papal Audience And Tomb of St Paul

In the morning we attend the Papal Audience, and in the afternoon go on pilgrimage to the Basilica of St Paul Outside-the-Walls to venerate the remains of St Paul the Apostle.

Our union with Peter is important.  On him is build the Church, and so we look to his successor, Benedict, as the one who unites us.  He is the Vicar of Christ on earth - the one chosen to lead the Church in these times.  As our Holy Father, he deserves our prayer and our obedience.  St Catherine of Siena gives us a profound insight into who the Pope is when she calls him "our Christ on earth".

Lord God, bless Benedict our Pope, and give him every grace so he may fulfil the office you have entrusted to him.  May he always have the guidance of your Holy Spirit and the maternal care of the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother.  And when you call him from this life, grant to him a place among your Saints.  Amen.

St Paul is also important for our Fraternity - he is our theologian.  As we form this family of prayer, we draw on his teaching on the Mystical Body of Christ.  Where is the Fraternity to be found in this Body?  In the heart, of course!  We are in the Heart of the Church, praying, offering our sacrifices, loving.  This is where Our Lady is, and as we dedicated to her mission for her Son, we stand beside her, obedient to her.  St Paul encourages us, then, is fulfilling our duties here.  He reassures us that the cross we carry and offer to Christ for our brothers and sisters brings the grace and power of God upon those we pray for.

St Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles, hear our prayer.  Preach to us, the children of God, the Gospel of Christ, so we may be immersed in the Word and follow him each day of our lives.  Guide us into the heart of the Church where we may offer ourselves in service to God for the sake of our brothers and sisters.  As you were happy to shed your blood for love of Christ, our Redeemer, obtain from the Lord that grace which will make us as generous in our sacrifices.

Heavenly Father, bless our family of prayer.  Give to each of us the zeal with which you endowed your Apostle Paul.  As he was compelled to proclaim the love and sacrifice of Christ, may we be filled with that same zeal to make Christ known to the people of our time.  Amen.

1 comment:

  1. Please pray for Ireland tomorrow as a vile, unconstitutional bill to legalise the killing of the unborn child up to birth is read on the floor of the Lower House. Please pray that our political leaders, our moral leaders, Christians and all people of goodwill stand up together against the worst injustice ever proposed to Parliament in Ireland. Pray that all protests will be successful, especially the one outside the Dail, at 1.30 p.m. tomorrow.