A prayer-leaflet has been prepared for families and parishioners around the diocese of Meath during these days of social distancing. It is available for download from this link: Meath-diocesan-resources-March-2020 and is accessible for parents, godparents, families, parish staff and all who wish to support a neighbour with some texts or resources for prayer.
Even though our churches are quieter at this time, Bishop Deenihan has highlighted the fact that “the voice of prayer is never silent”. Many people are connecting in personal prayer and online webcasts with the Celebration of Mass, Eucharistic Adoration and devotions online, on radio and on TV.
Resources in the A4 leaflet
•The cover of the leaflet depicts Our Lady of Perpetual Help and includes a description of the icon which can be found in many homes around the country.
•Many people who are able to connect with Eucharistic Adoration online or who visit their parish church will be glad of the Spiritual Communion (when unable to receive the Blessed Eucharist) which reminds us that a visit to the Blessed Sacrament prolongs the Mass. In his Apostolic Exhortation on the Eucharist, SACRAMENTUM CARITATIS, Pope Benedict XVI, recommended the practice of making spiritual communions.
“Even in cases where it is not possible to receive sacramental communion, participation at Mass remains necessary, important, meaningful and fruitful. In such circumstances it is beneficial to cultivate a desire for full union with Christ through the practice of spiritual communion, praised by Pope John Paul II and recommended by saints who were masters of the spiritual life” (no. 55).
•The Prayer from the World Meeting of Families is also included as it has taken on an extra significance during the comings days and weeks of “cocooning” as families, health professionals and volunteers work to contain and to limit the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
•Some words of advice from Pope Francis in August 2018 take on some extra significance too and are included for reflection.
•The Breastplate of St Patrick and the Memorare (attributed to St Bernard) are also included following the request last week from the Irish bishops.
•The Serenity Prayer and some seanfhocail, (words by which to live from our Irish heritage) are also included.
•Other prayers include a and the popular prayer “Take my hand, O Blessed Mother“.
•The popular prayer of the recently canonised Cardinal Newman is included along with a prayer by the composer Lucien Deiss.