Saturday, July 29, 2023

Homily for the 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 2023 - "Let Us Pray!"


“Let us pray!”


I am convinced that the best thing we can be doing with our time is praying for ourselves and other people.  Being laid up with cancer for about 2 years, I realized that the most important thing each of us can do is pray.  Pray for ourselves, and pray for each other, pray for the world, pray for those who have died...

Several years ago, I started the practice of praying for a particular person or a particular family and then

Writing them a HAND WRITTEN NOTE

Letting them know the DATE I prayed for them

And the TYPE of prayer that it was

It could be a rosary

It could be a holy hour in Church

It could be during a 10-minute walk outside

Also, and this is something Fr. Meyer and I have talked about making more well known, we are supposed to have a person, either living or deceased, who we bring with us in prayer to each Mass.  The cantor announces the priest's intentions right before Mass, but each person, at every Mass, should also have a person or two who are THEIR intention at each Mass.

Both Fr. Meyer and I typically pray the first Eucharistic Prayer.  Early on in that Eucharistic prayer, there is a time where the priest stops.  That is a time where you can mention, in prayer, a person or two who is LIVING who are your intention at this particular Mass.

Toward the end of the Eucharistic Prayer 1, there is a moment where the priest pauses, and that is an opportunity for each lay person to mention, in prayer, a person or two who has died who are your specific intention at this particular Mass.

And so feel to write a note to the person who is still living who was your intention at the Mass.  Maybe just say: “Hey, you were my intention at Mass on (date), hope you are doing well!”

If the person is deceased, you could write a note to the family “Just wanted to let you know that the repose of the soul of ____ was my intention at Mass on (date)”

I have started making my way through the 2,000 registered families and people of Dearborn County, so it will probably take me several years, but know as well that I pray every morning for all of my parishioners in general, and not just my parishioners, but all of those who live in our parish boundaries.


A lot of people in our culture today say that prayer is worthless but there are many psychological studies all saying, just from a scientific perspective, about the value or prayer/meditation on lowering blood pressure, heart health, etc. 

And on the spiritual level, prayer is a VERY powerful tool, always having effects in both our life and in the lives of those we pray for, even though those effect are not able to be seen by most observers.

Prayer is something that changes ourselves, those we pray for, and the whole world.  Let us pray for one another, and other people as well, trusting that what is unseen is more powerful than what is seen.           

I encourage you to write one hand written note each day to a person or family who you have prayed for, letting them know that you prayed for them.

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