For the feast of Saint Thérèse
Today, in the calendar of Silverstream Priory, is the feast of Saint Thérèse, October 3rd being observed as the feast of Ireland’s own Blessed Columba Marmion. How can we not pray, in a special way, for the shepherds whom Christ has set over His flock in the Church? In the examination that preceded her profession as a Carmelite, Saint Thérèse said, “I have come to save souls and, above all, to pray for priests.””
Among the priests of the Church, there are stalwart shepherds, heroic in protecting the sheep, and ever-ready to go in search of the lost lamb. There are also weary shepherds, discouraged shepherds, and shepherds who have lost their way in the mist. Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament, in supplication for the sanctification of priests and in reparation for the sins that disfigure the Face of Christ the Priest in the eyes of the world, is at the heart of Silverstream Priory’s mission in the Church. We are close to those who join us in prayer here at Silverstream, to our Oblates, to our friends, and to the many others who are united with us in prayer for priests. Some of you spend time before the Most Blessed Sacrament; others pray in their homes at different hours of the day and night. Still others offer their work and family life in union with our adoration. You may find this prayer helpful:
Lord Jesus Christ,
I adore Thee who art truly present here before me,
[or, in the tabernacles of Thy churches]
with all the love of my heart,
and with an immense sorrow for having offended Thee,
again and again, by all my sins.
Mindful of Thy priests in need,
I lift them up into the light of Thy Eucharistic Face,
and offer them to the fire of Thy Eucharistic Heart,
there to be illumined, warmed, and purified.
Draw them all to Thyself,
that Thou mayest hold them in the embrace of Thy Divine Friendship,
and, so, sanctify them unto Thy Father’s glory
and for Thy Bride, the Church.
Save and preserve Thy priests under demonic attack.
Comfort those engaged in spiritual combat.
Raise those who have fallen.
Bring back those who have strayed.
Bind up the wounds of those who have been injured in their souls.
Be Thou a Good Shepherd, tender, merciful, and ever-loving
to Thy poor shepherds who have lost their way.
Let not one of them remain in darkness,
far from Thee, and forgetful of Thy Most Holy Mother.
Send Thy Holy Angels to Thy priests in danger,
in temptation, in darkness, and in despair,
and let not one of them fall prey to the wiles of the Evil One,
or remain in a state of impenitence.
Save all Thy priests, O Jesus,
for they are Thy chosen friends,
and each one is precious in Thy sight,
even when he has fallen into the worst sins against Thee,
harming souls, and bringing sorrow and shame upon Thy Church.
Save them all! Let not one of Thy beloved priests be lost,
that Thy Church may say in all truth, and with a holy joy:
“To me, O God, Thy friends are made exceedingly honourable.”