My Favorite Catholic Prayers
The rules are these:
"Name your three most favorite Catholic devotional prayers, and explain why they're your favorites. Then tag five bloggers - give them a link, and then go and tell them they have been tagged. Finally, tell the person who tagged you that you've completed the meme. The Liturgy and the Sacraments are off limits here. I'm more interested in people's favorite devotional prayers."
I'm nothing, if not a rule-follower, so here we go!
1. The Prayer of St. Francis:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive;
and in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
Not that I pray it every day, or even that I know it all from memory, but I like it! It rather neatly sums up what we are about and how we should live.
2. Rosary of the Seven Sorrows
This is a new discovery for me - new this summer. I have been trying to say it on Tuesdays and Fridays, as our Blessed Mother asked when she appeared in Kibeho, Rwanda. Basically, it is 7 sets of 7 Hail Mary's with meditations on Our Lady's Seven Sorrows: the Prophecy of Simeon, the Flight into Egypt, the Loss of Jesus in the Temple, Mary Meets Jesus on the Way to Calvary, Mary Stands at the Foot of the Cross, Mary Receives the Body of Jesus, Jesus is Placed in the Tomb. More information is available here. I have found it to be very powerful - and I have never been a big "Rosary Person" or "Mary Person."
3. The Stations of the Cross
I rediscovered the Stations of the Cross several years ago during Lent. I only remember attending the Way of the Cross on Good Friday when I was growing up, but my current parish offers them on Friday afternoons during Lent at 5:30 p.m. One Lent, I made the effort to go (and it WAS an effort on some Friday afternoons), and I realized that I
enjoyed appreciated them. It made Lent that much richer.
When our current pastor arrived, I didn't see the Stations in the "line-up" for Lent. So I asked him (via email). At first I got a reply, that said, "Sorry, but it just won't be possible." I was OK with that, because our parish is not his only assignment and there are other near-by parishes where I could have gone for this devotion. But a little while later, there was another email that said, "On second thought, I will lead it until someone else is found who can lead them." I think that was 3 Lents ago. He's still leading. We've gotten new booklets with new stations.
Bonus: Shorter Christian Prayer
Technically, this is Liturgy, but it is also prayer (or so the title says ;-)). This little book is a condensed form of the Liturgy of the Hours that the religious pray. It has Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer and Night Prayer. It has some selections for Lent and Advent, but not as much as Christian Prayer or the Liturgy of the Hours. It has all of the Psalms that are in the 4 week "rotation".
I prayed Morning and Evening Prayer fairly faithfully for the past couple of years, but I've slacked off this summer. Each takes about 15 minutes, and I often felt lately as if I was just flying through the words without actually praying. (When I first started, I had to ask someone, "If this is "shorter", how long is the "regular"? But they explained that the prayers are not shorter, but the selections are fewer for feast days, etc.) I have tried to add in more opportunities in my prayer time for the Rosary, and there just isn't time to do everything. Perhaps with school starting it will fit back into the rhythm of my days.
I am including this, because if you think you might ever like to try the Liturgy of the Hours, this is a great, fairly non-confusing place to start. I really did enjoy getting to be more familiar with the Psalms, and a Bible Study last year gave me a wonderful frame of reference that helped it all make more sense.
So....now I have to tag 5 other people.
Kimberly at Sts. Faith, Hope, and Charity
Rachel at Our Domestic Church
Suzette at The Frat Pack + Me
Colleen at Thoughts on Grace
Margaret at Minnesota Mom (but she's on retreat right now)
Would love to see what you good folks come up with.