Dear Parishioners of St. Joseph Parish,
In the last few weeks, the media has given a lot of attention to serious allegations involving priests, and have tried to involve Pope Benedict in alleged cover up of clerical misconducts. Let it be said that the abuse of minors is a particularly serious and heinous offense and needs to be dealt with in a decisive manner.
However the attempt to link the Holy Father to any form of cover up appears particularly callous and not founded in facts. If one was to look closely at the statements put out by the Holy See and the different Dioceses in Germany it establishes clearly that the Holy Father, when he was Archbishop in Munich and while Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, took appropriate actions.
I bring this difficult topic up partly with the intent of inviting us to be careful when we read or hear in the media accounts of what happens in the Church. Very often their reporting is not accurate. But mostly I wish to invite us to pray earnestly for the Holy Father at this tumultuous time. You will find below prayers for our Holy Father. I invite you to use them in your personal prayers as well as when you pray as a family or group.
Prayer for the Pope
V. Let us pray for Benedict our Pope.
R. May the Lord preserve him, give him long life, make him blessed upon the earth, and may the Lord not hand him over to the power of his enemies.
V. May your hand be upon your holy servant
R. and upon your son whom you have anointed.
Let us Pray: O God, the Pastor and Ruler of all the faithful, look down, in your mercy, upon your servant Benedict, whom you have appointed to preside over your Church; and grant, we beseech you, that both by word and example, he may edify all those under his charge; so that the flock entrusted to him, may arrive at length unto life everlasting. Through Christ our Lord. AMEN.
Lord, Source of eternal life and truth, give to your shepherd, Benedict, a spirit of courage and right judgment, a spirit of knowledge and love. By governing with Fidelity those entrusted to his care, may he, as successor of the Apostle Peter and Vicar of Christ, build your Church into a sacrament of unity, love and peace for all the world. We ask this through Christ our Lord. AMEN.
Hoc Facite in meam commemorationem
Those sacred words now adorn our sanctuary; they were pronounced by the Lord at the Last Supper and are repeated by the priest celebrant at every Mass. They mean:
“DO THIS IN MEMORY OF ME”
May they remind us of the Lord’s command to offer the Eucharistic Sacrifice until he returns in Glory. May it inspire us to make the Eucharist the centre of our lives!
Fr. Marc-André Campbell