0 God, whose ways all show mercy and truth, carry out Thy kindly work, and by Thy goodness give what human frailty cannot achieve, that they who minister at the heavenly Mysteries may in their faith be perfect, and may they be, in the purity of their souls, a light that will shine forth to all. LEONINE SACRAMENTARY
FOR HOLY PRIESTS
0 Jesus, eternal priest, keep Thy priests within the shelter of Thy sacred heart, where none may touch them. Keep unstained their anointed hands, which daily touch Thy sacred body. Keep unsullied their lips, daily purpled with Thy precious blood. Keep pure and unearthly their hearts, sealed with the sublime mark of the priesthood. Let Thy holy love keep them from the world's contagion. Bless their labors with abundant fruit, and may the souls to whom they minister be their joy and consolation here and their everlasting crown hereafter.
O Jesus, Eternal Priest;keep all Your priests within the shelter of Your
Sacred Heart, where none may harm them.
Keep unstained their anointed hands
which daily touch Your Sacred Body.
Keep unsullied their lips purpled with Your Precious Blood.
Keep pure and unearthly their hearts sealed with the
sublime marks of Your glorious priesthood.
Let Your holy love surround them and shield them
from the world's contagion.
Bless their labors with abundant fruit,
and may the souls to whom they have ministered to
be their joy and consolation
and in Heaven their beautiful and everlasting crown.
O Mary, Queen of the clergy, pray for us;
obtain for us many holy priests.
|TO BE SAID ON EMBER DAYS
Most merciful God, Thou Thyself hast assured us: "The Son of Man came to seek and save what was lost," and for that reason Thou didst establish the priesthood in Thy Church, which is to reach every age and nation. 0 Jesus, we thank Thee for Thy representatives, who incorporate us into Thy kingdom through baptism, who teach us Truth Itself, who cleanse our sin-stained souls, who strengthen us with the Bread of Life, who offer up Thy Holy Sacrifice for us, who dispense all the sacraments to us. Thou hast vested them with the power of reconciliation and dost Thyself exhort us by the words of their mouth.
0 Jesus, strengthen Thy priests for their difficult vocation and bless their efforts. give them the right words to touch cold and faltering hearts, to teach the ignorant and erring, to console the sorrowing, to arouse the sinner, and to fortify the just against temptations. May they live up to Thy desire that they be "the light of the world." Let them rouse souls to life, encourage watchfulness, and dispel the darkness of heathenism. Give them the strength and courage which is to be found in the consciousness of their holy mission, in the greatness and beauty of their calling.
"The harvest indeed is abundant, but the laborers are few. Pray, therefore, the Lord of the harvest to send forth laborers into His harvest." O Lord, instill the longing for the priesthood into many young hearts. send them good priests who will edify them and raise up souls who will pray for them.
O Jesus, grant that none of us may ever forget Thy words, "You, however, are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a purchased people"" (1 Peter. 2:9). We promise, O Jesus, to support Thy priests by prayer with all our strength. Forgetful of our own comfort we shall spend ourselves to save the souls for whom Thou didst shed Thy blood. Bless our efforts, divine High Priest, which are focused upon making all men one in spirit, just as Thou didst pray, "That all may be one, even as Thou, Father, in Me and I in Thee" (John 17:21).
Sanctify to thyself, O my Lord, the hearts of thy priests, that, by the merits of Thy sacred humanity, they may become living images of Thee, children of Mary, and full of the fire of the Holy Ghost, that they may guard Thy house, and defend Thy glory, and that through their ministry the face of the earth may be renewed, and they may save those souls which have cost Thee all thy blood. Amen.
Queen of Apostles, pray thy son, the Lord of the Harvest, to send laborers into His harvest, and to spare His people.