(100) Prayers For Priests

NOTES

1. This collection of Prayers for Priests was gleaned over a 12-month period, from mid-February 2003 to mid-February 2004. It was planned as a short one. But it grew and grew and is still expanding. Most of these prayers were posted to Franciscan_Spirit@yahoogroups.com by Nadine Mansour <nadine.mansour@mbnet.fi>.

2. Your best prayer is your own. However, if you wish to consult an example, do not read these 100 all at once; be selective. Reading several prayers may become boring. Choose only one -- at random if you wish -- and stay with it. Meditate on it, deepen it out. Choose another prayer at another time and do the same. Summarize each one in your mind. Compare them, decide which one you prefer.

3. Most of these prayers are general, for ALL priests in the world. As a member of a daisy, you may change this for your PARTICULAR priest and mention his name. Replace the plural by the singular (they, them, their become he, him, his).

LIST

Return to Main Index

1. A Prayer for Priests by John Cardinal O'Connor, March 1995.
2. A Prayer for Priests by John Joseph Cardinal Carberry, Archbishop of St. Louis, USA
3. A Prayer for Priests
4. A Parish Priest's Prayer to Mary Most Holy
5. Prayer For Our Priests (Southwark Laity Commission, 1993)
6. Prayer to the Virgin Mary for Priests (John Paul II)
7. Prayer for Priests (Francis de Ruijte, April 3, 2003)
8. Prayer for Our Priests (Francis de Ruijte, April 4, 2003)
9. A Priest's Prayer (Franis de Ruijte, April 8-14, 2003)
10. Prayer for Priests (Peter John Cameron, O.P.)
11. Prayer for Priests
12. A Poem For Priests (Nadine Mansour, August 9, 2002)
13. For Our Priests (poem) (Nadine Mansour, October 5, 2002)
14. God Bless You (poem) (Nadine Mansour) (January 1, 2003)
15. A Prayer for Priests
16. St. Thérèse's Prayer for Priests
17. Prayer for Priests (John F. Kinney, bishop of the Diocese of St. Cloud, 2002)
18. Daily Prayer For Priests (St. Therese of Lisieux)
19. Prayer for Priests (Cardinal Cushing)
20. Prayers for Priests
21. The Beautiful Hands of Priests (poem by an unknown author)
22. Prayer for Priests
23. Prayer for Priests (to Mary)
24. Prayer for Priests
25. Prayer for Priests
 

To continue, click on: (More) Prayers for Priests

Daisy Index

See also: Help Priests and Testimonies.


1. A Prayer for Priests by John Cardinal O'Connor, March 1995.

Lord Jesus, we your people pray to You for our priests. You have given them to us for OUR needs. We pray for them in THEIR needs.

We know that You have made them priests in the likeness of your own priesthood. You have consecrated them, set them aside, annointed them, filled them with the Holy Spirit, appointed them to teach, to preach, to minister, to console, to forgive, and to feed us with Your Body and Blood.

Yet we know, too, that they are one with us and share our human weaknesses. We know too that they are tempted to sin and discouragement, as are we, needing to be ministered to, as do we, to be consoled and forgiven, as do we. Indeed, we thank You for choosing them from among us, so that they understand us as we understand them, suffer with us and rejoice with us, worry with us and trust with us, share our beings, our lives, our faith.

We ask that You give them this day the gift You gave Your chosen ones on the way to Emmaus:
Your presence in their hearts,
Your holiness in their souls,
Your joy in their spirits.
And let them see You face to face in the breaking of the Eucharistic Bread.
 

We pray to You, O Lord, with Mary, the mother of priests, for Your priests and for ours. Amen.

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 2. A Prayer for Priests by John Joseph Cardinal Carberry, Archbishop of St. Louis, USA

O Jesus, our great High Priest, hear my humble prayers on behalf of your priests.
Give them a deep faith, a bright and firm hope, and a burning love which will ever increase in the course of their  priestly life.
In their loneliness, comfort them.
In their sorrows, strengthen them.
In their frustrations, point out to them that it is through suffering that the soul is purified and show them that they are needed by the Church;
they are needed by souls;
they are needed for the work of redemption.

O lovely Mother Mary, Mother of Priests, take to your heart your sons who are close to you because of their priestly ordination and because of the power which they have recieved to carry on the work of Christ in a world which needs them so much.

Be their comfort;
be their joy;
be their strength;
and especially help them to live  and defend the ideals of consecrated celibacy.

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 3. Prayer for Priests

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* be here below* their joy and consolation and in Heaven* their beautiful and* everlasting crown.  Amen.

 Source: Posted on the Franciscan_Spirit mailing list on February 16, August 10, 2003 by Nadine Manour; also as prayer # 5 in: Chalice of Strength, Crusade for Priests, page 16. Detroit, Michican, 1996 (www.opusangelorum.org), where the author is named as St. Thérèse of the Chuld Jesus, and which has the following variants (probably due to a different translator):

purpled: daily tinged
unearthly: unworldly
your glorious: the
shield: protect
have ministered: minister
here below: here (after consolation)
in Heaven: in the hereafter (at the end of the phrase)
beautiful and: (omitted)

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4. A Parish Priest's Prayer to Mary Most Holy
O Mary, Mother of Jesus Christ, crucified and risen,
Mother of the Church, a priestly people (I Peter 2:9),
Mother of priests, ministers of your Son:
accept the humble offering of myself,
so that in my pastoral mission
the infinite mercy of the Eternal High Priest
may be proclaimed:
O "Mother of Mercy".

You who share the "priestly obedience" (Hebrews 10:5-7; Luke 1:38) of your Son,
and who prepared for him a worthy receptacle
by the anointing of the Holy Spirit,
keep my priestly life in the ineffable mystery
of your divine maternity,
"Holy Mother of God".

Grant me strength in the dark hours of this life,
support me in the exertions of my ministry,
entrust me to Jesus,
so that, in communion with you,
I may fulfill the ministry with fidelity and love,
O Mother of the Eternal Priest.

"Queen of Apostles and Help of Priests".

Make me faithful to the flock
entrusted to me by the Good Shepherd.
You silently accompanied Jesus
on his mission to proclaim
the Gospel to the poor.

May I always guide it with patience, sweetness,
firmness and love, caring for the sick, the weak,
the poor, and sinners,
O "Mother, Help of the Christian People".

I consecrate and entrust myself to you, Mary,
who shared in the work of redemption
at the Cross of your Son,
you who "are inseparably linked to the work of salvation".

Grant that in the exercise of my ministry
I may always be aware of the "stupendous and penetrating dimension
of your maternal presence",
in every moment of my life, in prayer, and action,
in joy and sorrow, in weariness and in rest,
O "Mother of Trust".

Grant, Holy Mother, that in the celebration of the Eucharist,
source and center of the priestly ministry,
I may live my closeness to him,
so that as "we celebrate Holy Eucharist
you will be present with us"
and introduce us to the redemptive mystery of your divine Son's offering.
"O Mediatrix of all grace flowing from this sacrifice to the Church
and to all the faithful"

O "Mother of Our Savior".

O Mary, I earnestly desire to place my person
and my desire for holiness
under your maternal protection and inspiration
so that you may bring me to that "conformity with Christ, Head and Shepherd"
which is necessary for the ministry of every parish priest.
 

Make me aware
that "you are always close to priests"
in your mission of servant
of the One Mediator, Jesus Christ,
O "Mother of Priests",
"Benefactress and Mediatrix" of all graces. Amen

Source: Congregation for the Clergy, Instruction "Priest, Pastor and Leader of the Parish Community", August 4, 2002.

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cclergy/documents/rc_con_cclergy_doc_20020804_istruzione-presbitero_en.html
 
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5. A Prayer For Our Priests (Southwark Laity Commission, 1993)

Heavenly Father,
grant that our priests
be strengthened and healed by the
power of the Eucharist they celebrate.
May the Word they proclaim give them
courage and wisdom.

We pray that all those whom they
seek to serve may see in them
the love and care of Jesus,
our Eternal High Priest, who is Lord
for ever and ever. Amen

Mary, Mother of the Church,
Look tenderly upon your sons, our priests.

Joseph, patron of the
Universal Church,
pray for us all. 

(Southwark Laity Commission, 1993)
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6. Prayer to the Virgin Mary for Priests  John Paul II)

O Mary,
Mother of Jesus Christ and Mother of priests,
accept this title which we bestow on you
to celebrate your motherhood
and to contemplate with you the priesthood
of, your Son and of your sons,
O holy Mother of God.

O Mother of Christ,
to the Messiah-priest you gave a body of flesh
through the anointing of the Holy Spirit
for the salvation of the poor and the contrite of heart;
guard priests in your heart and in the Church,
O Mother of the Savior.

O Mother of Faith,
you accompanied to the Temple the Son of Man,
the fulfillment of the promises given to the fathers;
give to the Father for his glory
the priests of your Son,
O Ark of the Covenant.

O Mother of the Church,
in the midst of the disciples in the upper room
you prayed to the Spirit
for the new people and their shepherds;
obtain for the Order of Presbyters
a full measure of gifts,
O Queen of the Apostles.

O Mother of Jesus Christ,
you were with him at the beginning
of his life and mission,
you sought the Master among the crowd,
you stood beside him when he was lifted up from the earth
consumed as the one eternal sacrifice,
and you had John, your son, near at hand;
accept from the beginning those who have been called,
protect their growth,
in their life ministry accompany your sons,
O Mother of Priests.
Amen.

 
Source:  [John Paul II, conclusion of the Post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation "Pastores dabo vobis" on the formation of priests in the circumstances of the present day, March 25, 1992:
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_exhortations/documents/hf_jp-ii_exh_25031992_pastores-dabo-vobis_en.html]
Congregation for the Clergy, Directory for the Ministry and Life of Priests
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cclergy/documents/rc_con_cclergy_doc_31011994_direct_en.html

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7. Prayer for Priests
1. Father, show your tender love to your priests, these "religious leaders" who risk to make the sacred commonplace.
2. Inspire them with a deep sense of your Mystery which they touch, and about which they speak.
3. May they always remember that you have created all things in your image and likeness; that everything has in itself a divine spark; that all things come from you as their source and will return to you as their definitive and eternal destination.
4. When preaching or praying they say words which they do not entirely understand; when blessing, forgiving, consecrating they do things of which they have no power in themselves. May your priests always be mindful that they act in your name, that the power they exercise comes from you alone and not from themselves.
5. Grant them the gift of humility in their service; may they be strong in faith, firm in hope, perfect in love, holy in you and sanctifying for your People.
6. You have given to your priests a sacred vocation; purify them, sanctify them, strengthen them.
7. You have made them representatives of your only Son Jesus and given them responsibilities towards your People, the Church; support them with your strength.
8. May they always be aware that you are with them and act in them. May they be your instruments of love, reconciliation, spiritual renewal, sanctification.
9. Your priests are human, weak, and sinners like all other people. You knew it even before you called them to your service. Nevertheless, you destined them in their place in your plan of love; be always with your chosen ones and help them.
10. May the gift of your grace renew them day after day. May your holy angel guard and protect them.
11. Bestow on them the joy of the Holy Spirit, to be a prophetic voice in the world, to guide your People, to speak the words of the Good News of your kingdom, to dispense the grace of the  New Covenant, to provide spiritual freedom, to be canals of your divine mercy, pathways of your love and tenderness, collaborators of the eternal High Priest.
12. Make them men of prayer, commitment, adoration, intimacy with you, men who act under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, stimulators on the way to salvation.
13. I pray to you, Father, through Jesus the Messiah and in the Holy Spirit. Amen. Amen.
(Francis de Ruijte, April 3, 2003, at the eve of my 39th anniversary of ordination; translated by the author, April 14, 2003)

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8. Prayer for Our Priests
Heavenly Father,
I come to pray to you for our priests:
our priests working in parishes or residence of retired people,
our priests teaching at the seminary or at the university,
our priests working in the diocesan offices,
our priests in foreign missions,
our religious priests.

  Heavenly Father,
I glorify your holy name,
I praise you,
I thank you
for these men whom you have given us as spiritual leaders,
these men responsible for our Christian communities, our parish activities.

  Heavenly Father,
I know that, just like us, they have their questions, their doubts, their hesitations.
They say before their ordination and again after it:
"Do I really have this vocation?"
"Am I truly at the right place?"
"Will I be able to preach, for I am shy?"
"Shall I be able to pray my divine office with the load of activities?"
"Am I not following a human ambition?"
Be with them, Father, support them, give them your strength, your Holy Spirit.

  Heavenly Father,
our priests say they are unworthy of your calling.
And they are right, for no one is worthy of it.
Yet you have chosen them for the common good.
Inspire them, calm their hesitations, encourage them.
Let them know that they can always count on you,
that your love surrounds them,
that you are never far from them.

  Heavenly Father,
our priests sometimes find their tasks heavy. They may get discouraged.
They wonder if they can respond to all the demands we ask from them.
Be yourself their strength, their inspiration, their assurance.
Give them a prayerful heart for they need this intimacy with you, for themselves and for others.

  Heavenly Father,
our priests are not angels.
Some of them have even their tough sides.
All of them have times of fatigue, of impatience, their dark hours.
Be yourself their light.
May your Holy Word lead them day by day.
Speak to them in their meditations and their moments of reflection.

  Heavenly Father,
our priests sometimes suffer of solitude. They feel alone in their ministry.
It may seem to them that they can hardly endure this heavy weight on their shoulders.
May the offering of our weekly day and our prayers --
to which we have committed ourselves as petals of Daisies --
relieve and help them somewhat.
But may your grace and strength especially be their consolation. Their source of strength, their support anda their joy.

  Thank you, heavenly Father, for these men who are our priests.
May our prayers accompany them also every day.
Hear our prayers, hear their prayers.
May we always give you thanks for these spiritual leaders whom you send us.
Amen.

  (Francis de Ruijte, April 4, 2003, 39th anniversary of my ordination; translated by the author, April 14, 2003)

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9. A Priest's Prayer
 (N.B. There are in this prayer some autobiographical elements, but not all details are.)  Father, God of all goodness,
I come to pray to you in all simplicity, trust and frankness,
like a son speaking to his father,
for you truly are my heavenly Father,
the best father of all fathers, in whom I can place all my confidence.

  Father, God of all goodness,
to you all glory, praise and power.
In your unfathomable wisdom and infinite liberality,
you wanted me to become a priest --
and so I did.

  Father, God of all goodness,
as a young man I was thinking about my future in your presence
and I asked myself two questions:
Who is more important, the shepherd who leads or the sheep that follows?
And I chose to be a leader.
Next, what is the most important area to work in?
And I opted for the the spiritual sector.
So I worked towards the priesthood.

  Father, God of all goodness,
I wanted to become a pilot to fly an airplane.
But it is as if you said:
"You'll 'fly' to a spiritual destination, to an airport of eternity."
I don't understand it, but it is better that I don't ask too many questions
and, instead, follow your plan.

  Father, God of all goodness,
I have come at ordination after many years of hard study and also serious reflection.
I saw many of my classmates leave the seminary.
Yet they were smarter and more capable.
And I, less competent, unworthy, remained…

  Father, God of all goodness,
in the beginning I was much afraid about what to do with all the confidences I would receive, especially in the sacrament of reconciliation.
But you have given me a special gift, for which I truly do thank you:
on leaving a session, I forgot everything, as if it did not even exist.

  Father, God of all goodness,
another great fear I had was to be able to pray my breviary, the daily office --
I mean to pray and not merely recite --
these psalms and other scripture texts which are your Word speaking to us.
Of course, my prayer and way of praying have evolved.
I thank you in particular that it has not become something done in a hurry,
but rather an occasion to meditate, to deepen out your Word, a communion between the two of us.
For this too, Father, my heartfelt thanks.

  Father, God of all goodness,
today, after a number of years of active ministry,
I acknowledge that your way was the right one, the best one,
although I must admit that I have not always been totally faithful to your will,
and I ask you for forgiveness for it.
I try to repair and to be more fervent.

  Father, God of all goodness,
one day, I have asked to take up further studies in Holy Scripture,
but the Provincial refused it saying: "You don't need it."
On the other hand, some time later, I was allowed to study Franciscan spirituality.
These two sources -- the Bible and Franciscan documents --
have been a great spiritual profit and joy to me.
After nearly 50 years of Bible reading
and about 25 years of reading Franciscan sources,
I thank you for this spiritual enrichment and in particular for the Protestant couple who initiated me to daily Bible reading.
Yes, Father, you are love and goodness, generosity and mercy,
and I want to express my gratitude all the days of my life.

  Father, God of all goodness,
may your grace preserve me from becoming a robot priest,
or an ecclesiastical functionary,
or merely to "do my job" because I know nothing else to do.
Keep me also from all compromise and subterfuge of the world.

  Father, God of all goodness,
please preserve me also from all routine, in particular during the celebration of Holy Eucharist,
where we so often repeat the same formulas.
Let these liturgies rather become true prayer and genuine spiritual nurrishment for all of us who partake in them.

  Father, God of all goodness,
as I am called upon to preach,
may I clearly proclaim your Gospel,
not as a museum piece, as something of the past,
but as Good News for today's lives.
May your Holy Spirit inspire us, guide us, direct us every day
in our actions, our thinking, and our decision-making.

  Father, God of all goodness,
teach me to carry my cross
before the cross carries me.
Like Simon of Cyrene, may I be able to help my brothers to carry their burdens.
Like Veronica, may I be able to dry the tears of those who weep.

  Father, God of all goodness,
you expect from us a life of holiness according to your heart and genuine charity towards every person.
I therefore ask you, Father, to assist me in all kinds of activities:
encouraging sick people in hospitals;
supporting the solitary aged in their residences;
hleping poor, hard-working, generous families that find it hard to meet both ends;
being a listening ear to those who need to talk and share;
counseling those who seek meaning of their lives;
teaching, training, animating;
educating your people in faith and in your fatherly love for all your children;
being a stimulating presence to the movements that are active in our area;
being your instrument of consolaltion and mercy, of liberation and openness wherever the need is felt;
being your messenger of love and hope, of solace, life, and joy;
making hearts discover your presence and action in them;
energizing the weak;
promoting adoration of your holy name;
doing good like your Son Jesus did and in union with him;
erasing, or at least diminishing, evil;
sowing the seed of your kingdom everywhere;
being like a key so that people can enter into it;
reminding myself always that I am not acting in my own name but in your name and that the glory and honor belong to you alone;
being a chant of alleluia to your glory wherever I pass.

  Father, God of all goodness,
be at my side
to avoid what is false, lying, and hypocrisy;
to fight selfishness, stubbornness, rivalry, fatigue, lazyness, fickleness,
for I am myself my worst ennemy.
Be also at my side, Father,
to persevere in virtue, prudence, patience,
to become really a man of prayer and adoration,
always under the guidance of your Holy Spirit.

  Father, God of all goodness,
people are inclined to put us on a pedestal.
Their signs of respect are acceptable; but we are no better, no smarter, no wiser than they.
Often I feel so weak, so little, and I commit errors.
May you alone always be my strenth, my inspiration.
May I always opt for your viewpoint rather than my own of that of the world.
After all, I am only a little poor priest.
May I always remain a priest living in poverty and humility, hidden, as you want me to be.

  Father, God of all goodness,
may I always follow the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, the Paraclete,
in my decisions, in my thinking and desiring, in projects and commitments.
For nothing is valid and lasting without him.
May my ears and heart always be wide open to his interior, discreet voice.
May I constantly be docile and obedient with all my heart, ready to respond according to your plan.

  Father, God of all goodness,
people often ask us to prayer for their intentions and their needs.
How good it is to learn that some persons also pray for us, for we have needs too:
the Daisy Movement is a great comfort, these little groups of seven persons praying for priests.
I thank you for them and I thank them for being my petals praying for me, each one his day of the   week.
It is a marvelous gift of your goodness, a beautiful encouragement received from your grace.
Help me never to deceive them,
but rather, on account of them, to be more faithful and more committed.

  Father, God of all goodness,
one day I'll come to the end of my earthly trip.
Give me then the humility and flexibility to let go of all projects
and to come to you to throw myself in your arms, Father,
with my guardian angel at my side.

  Father, God of all goodness,
I pray you through Jesus, your beloved Son,
and in the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.
To you who are Three and One
belong all glory and honor for all eternity.
Amen.

  (Francis de Ruijte, written partly in English and partly in French, translated by the author, April 8-14, 2003)

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10. Prayer for Priests
(Peter John Cameron, O.P.)
  Divine Savior Jesus Christ, who has entrusted the whole work of your redemption, the welfare, and salvation of the world to priests as Your representatives, through the hands of your most holy Mother and for the sanctification of your priests and candidates for the priesthood, I offer you this present day wholly and entirely, with all its prayers, works, joys, sacrifices, and sorrows. Give us truly holy priests who, inflamed with the fire of Your divine love, seek nothing but Your greater glory and the salvation of our souls. And you, Mary, good Mother of priests, protect all priests in the dangers of their holy vocation and, with the loving hand of a Mother, also lead back to the Good Shepherd those poor priests who have become unfaithful to their exalted vocation and have gone astray. Amen.
  (Posted on Assisi-L@listserv.nd.edu on
April 16, 2003 by Linda M. O'Brien <lin-dan2@juno.com>

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11. Prayer for Priests


  Eternal God,
please bless our priests,
who represent you on this earth.
Make them more greatly aware of the grace
that you pour out through them
when they minister the sacraments,
and help them to fall more deeply in love with You
after each and every Mass that they celebrate.
Please strengthen our priests,
who shepherd your flock,
when they are in doubt of their faith,
that they may be examples of your Truth
and guide us always on the path to you.
We ask these things of You our Eternal Priest.
Amen.
 
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12. A Poem For Priests
(Nadine Mansour, August 9, 2002)


 
Today I am praying for every Priest
From North, South, West and East
May God grant them a special good health
And keep them pure and give them strength


  They pray, they suffer, but never complain
When we confess our sins they strain
We see Our Jesus in their eyes
They don't deserve except paradise


  They guide us and they always try
To support and comfort when we cry
Please, Lord, be their shelter and their cover
And Bless them always and forever.

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13. For Our Priests (poem)
(Nadine Mansour, October 5, 2002)


 
Dear God protect and take good care
Of our priests from everywhere
They sacrifice and  their time share
O please, help them their cross to bear.


  Be it morning or be it night
They are present when time is right
If they are called for help they run
To annoint and bless, that is not fun.


  They are human, yes, I can tell
Loving, caring and keeping us well
Trying to cheer us when we are sad
By being around they make us glad.


  Bless their heart and bless their health
Keep them happy and grant them strength
They are our support when we have none
They are our fathers when ours have gone.
 
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14. God Bless You
(Nadine Mansour, January 11, 2003)


  God bless you, holy priests,
A small prayer that is the least
To our lives you bring serenity
Dear Lord, look upon them closely
Keep them for us strong and healthy
Richer with Your Love and wealthy
Always present to help and care
For our souls and our welfare.

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15. A Prayer for Priests
  Most gracious Heavenly Father,
We thank you for our faithful priests and bishops, whose spiritual fatherhood and example of fidelity, self-sacrifice, and devotion is so vital to the faith of your people.

  May our spiritual fathers be guided by the examples of Saints Peter and Paul, all the Apostles and their saintly successors. Give them valiant faith in the face of confusion and conflict, hope in time of trouble and sorrow, and steadfast love for you, for their families, and for all your people throughout the world. May the light of your Truth shine through their lives and their good works.

  Assist all spiritual fathers, that through your Grace they may steadily grow in holiness and in knowledge and understanding of your Truth. May they generously impart this knowledge to those who rely on them.
  Through Christ, our Lord. Amen.

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16 . St. Thérèse's Prayer for Priests

  0 Holy Father, may the torrents of love flowing from the sacred wounds of your divine Son bring forth priests like unto the beloved disciple John who stood at the foot of the cross; priests, who as a pledge of your own most tender love will lovingly give your divine Son to the souls of men.

  May your priests be faithful guardians of your Church, as John was of Mary, whom he received into his house. Taught by this loving Mother who suffered so much on Calvary, may they display a mother's care and thoughtfulness towards your children. May they teach souls to enter into close union with you through Mary who, as the Gate of Heaven, is specially the guardian of the treasures of your divine Heart.

  Give us priests who are on fire, and who are true children of Mary, priests who will give Jesus to souls with the same tenderness and care with which Mary carried the Little Child of Bethlehem.

  Mother of sorrows and of love, out of compassion for your beloved Son, open in our hearts deep wells of love, so that we may console Him and give Him a generation of priests formed in your school and having all the tender thoughtfulness of your own spotless love.'

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17. Prayer for Priests
(John F. Kinney, Bishop of the Diocese of
St. Cloud)

  Praise to you, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
for in your infinite love
you care for your people
by the ministry of priests.

  May their faithful service
bring lasting good to your Church
and great happiness to them.
Help them to do what is right,
that by their teaching and living
we may grow in the knowledge of your love.

  As our priests instruct your people,
enlighten them with the wisdom of Christ the Teacher.

  As they preach your Word and celebrate the sacraments,
sanctify them with the holiness of Christ the High Priest.

  As they face weakness, suffering and discouragement,
strengthen them with the grace of Christ the Life-Giver.

  As they work for peace, unity and healing in your Church,
uphold them with the courage of Christ the Reconciler.

  Giver of all good gifts,
make the ministry of our priests
a spiritual offering pleasing to you,
through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

  + Bishop John F. Kinney
Bishop of the Diocese of St. Cloud
Imprimatur given
March 19, 2002
© 2002 Diocese of St. Cloud. All rights reserved.

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18. Daily Prayer For Priests (St. Therese of Lisieux)

  O Jesus,
I pray for your faithful and fervent priests;
for your unfaithful and tepid priests;
for your priests laboring at home or abroad in distant mission fields.
for your tempted priests;
for your lonely and desolate priests;
For your young priests;
for your dying priests;
for the souls of your priests in Purgatory.
But above all, I recommend to you the priests dearest to me:
the priest who baptized me;
the priests who absolved me from my sins;
the priests at whose Masses I assisted and who gave me Your Body and Blood in Holy Communion;
the priests who taught and instructed me;
all the priests to whom I am indebted in any other way
(especially …).
O Jesus, keep them all close to your heart,
and bless them abundantly in time and in eternity.
Amen

  Source: http://www.rockvoc.org/main/Families/prayer_for_priests.htm (Rockford Diocese, Office of Vocations); also as second part of prayer # 3 in: Chalice of Strength, pages 14-15. Detroit, Michigan: Crusade for Priests, 1996, where Cardinal Cushing is named as author. (www.opusangelorum.ord).

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 19. Prayer for Priests (Richard James Cardinal Cushing, Archbishop of Boston, 1895-1970)

  O Almighty, Eternal God, look upon the Face of your Son and for love of him, who is the Eternal  High Priest, have pity on your priests. Remember, O most compassionate God, that 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 prevails against them, so that they may never do anything in the slightest  degree unworthy of their sublime vocation.

  Source: prayer # 3, first part in: Chalice of Strength. Crusade for Priests, Detroit, Michigan, 1996, page 14 (www.opusangelorum.org).

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20. Prayers for Priests

  Lord our God, You guide Your people by the ministry of priests.
Keep them faithful in obedient service to You
that by their life and ministry they may bring You glory in Christ.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

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21. The Beautiful Hands of a Priest (poem by an unknown author)

  We need them in life's early morning,
We need them again at its close;
We feel their warm clasp of true friendship,
We seek them when tasting life's woes.

  At the altar each day we behold them,
And the hands of a king on his throne
Are not equal to them in their greatness;
Their dignity stands all alone;

  And when we are tempted and wander,
To pathways of shame and of sin,
It's the hand of a priest that will absolve us,
Not once, but again and again.

  And when we are taking life's partner,
Other hands may prepare us a feast,
But the hand that will bless and unite us
Is the beautiful hand of a priest.

  God bless them and keep them all holy,
For the Host which their fingers caress;
When can a poor sinner do better
Than to ask Him to guide thee and bless?

  When the hour of death comes upon us,
May our courage and strength be increased,
By seeing raised over us in blessing
The beautiful hands of a priest.

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22. Prayer for Priests

  Lord Jesus, Chief Shepherd of the flock, we pray that in the great love and mercy of your Sacred Heart you attend to all the needs of your priest-shepherds throughout the world. We ask that you draw back to your Heart all those priests who have seriously strayed from your path, that you rekindle the desire for holiness in the hearts of those priests who have become lukewarm, and that you continue to give your fervent priests the desire for the highest holiness. United with your Heart and Mary’s Heart, we ask that you take this petition to your heavenly Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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23. Prayer for Priests (to Mary)

  O Blessed Lady of the Tears, we entrust and consecrate the priesthood to your Immaculate Heart!  During this time of trial and suffering, we pray that you renew the priesthood by making priests holy in imitation of the Heart of the Good Shepherd.  We pray in reparation for the sins of the priesthood and we pray for all victims of their sins.  Grant, O Lady of the Tears, an outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the priests that they may be authentic witnesses of your Son Jesus Christ Our Lord.  May we wipe away your tears by comforting your Immaculate Heart by praying the rosary and adoring the Heart of Jesus your Son in the Most Holy Eucharist present in every Catholic Church in the world. Give all priests and seminarians a deep love and devotion to Jesus in the Eucharist and to you, their loving Mother.  Grant that every priest and seminarian will daily spend one hour with Jesus in the Eucharist and daily pray your most holy rosary! Grant all priests and seminarians the gift of purity, the gift of chastity and the gift of the divine love of your Son.  May they proclaim the truth without fear, with love and with courage!  We ask all of our prayers through the Tears which you shed at the foot of the cross of Jesus Christ your Son who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit! Amen!

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24. Prayer for Priests

  Eternal God, please bless our priests, who represent you on this earth. Make them more greatly aware of the grace that you pour out through them when they minister the sacraments, and help them to fall more deeply in love with you after each and every Mass that they celebrate. Please strengthen our priests, who shepherd your flock, when they are in doubt of their faith, that they may be examples of your Truth and guide us always on the path to you. We ask these things of you our Eternal Priest. Amen.

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25. Prayer for Priests

  Lord Jesus, you have chosen your priests from among us and sent them out to proclaim your word and to act in your name. For so great a gift to your Church, we give you praise and thanksgiving. We ask you to fill them with the fire of your love, that their ministry may reveal your presence in the Church. Since they are earthen vessels, we pray that your power shine out through their weakness. In their afflictions let them never be crushed; in their doubts never despair; in temptation never be destroyed; in persecution never abandoned.

  Inspire them through prayer to live each day the mystery of your dying and rising. In time of weakness send them your Spirit, and help them to praise your heavenly Father and pray for poor sinners. By the same Holy Spirit, put your word on their lips and your love in their hearts, to bring Good News to the poor and healing to the brokenhearted. And may the gift of Mary, your mother, to the disciple whom you loved, be your gift to every priest. Grant that she who formed you in her human image, may form them in your divine image, by the power of your Spirit, to the glory of God the Father. Amen.

  O Mary conceived without sin pray for us who have recourse to you.
O Mary conceived without sin pray for us who have recourse to you.
O Mary conceived without sin pray for us who have recourse to you.