Let your light so shine before men that, seeing your good works, they may glorify your Father in Heaven.
-- Matthew 5:16
Please join me in praying for Fr. Gabino Zavala, former auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles, today. [WARNING: There are some awful comments following this very professional article. If you wish to read them, proceed with caution, fortitude and charity.]
Please pray also for vocations to the priesthood, for all the wonderful men who have lived—and are living—their vows with honor, and especially, for your own parish priest or priests, whoever they may be.
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.
Prayer for Priests
O Jesus, our great High Priest,
Hear my humble prayers on behalf of your priest, Father [N].
Give him a deep faith
a bright and firm hope
and a burning love
which will ever increase
in the course of his priestly life.
In his loneliness, comfort him
In his sorrows, strengthen him
In his frustrations, point out to him
that it is through suffering that the soul is purified,
and show him that he is needed by the Church,
he is needed by souls,
he is needed for the work of redemption.
O loving Mother Mary, Mother of Priests,
take to your heart your son who is close to you
because of his priestly ordination,
and because of the power which he has received
to carry on the work of Christ
in a world which needs him so much.
Be his comfort, be his joy, be his strength,
and especially help him
to live and to defend the ideals of consecrated celibacy. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations to the Priestly and Religious Life
Lord Jesus Christ, Savior of the world, show forth, we beseech Thee, in Thy Church the Holy Spirit with whose power the apostles were so abundantly filled. We thank Thee for the blessings bestowed upon the work of priests and religious; and we pray that Thou wilt add to the number of those who now pray, labor, and sacrifice themselves for Thy glory and the salvation of souls. Give them unselfish zeal for Thy glory. O good Jesus, give us more priests and religious after Thine own Heart! Amen.
Photo credit: Brian Hudson, “St. John Vianney at the Miraculous Medal Shrine, Paris” and “St. Paul’s Cathedral from below, London”