Throughout the Mass we hear many prayers, petitions and blessings prayed by the community and the presider. These might be the Collect which introduces the theme for what we are about to hear or the Prayer after Communion or the final Prayer Over the People. Each one of these offers much as we look to God and ask for his guidance. I invite you to pick up a misselette on occasion and read these beautiful prayers. Today let us examine The Prayer Over the People for this First Sunday of Lent:
May bountiful blessing, O Lord, we pray, come down upon your people, that hope may grow in tribulation, virtue be strengthened in temptation, and eternal redemption be assured. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
This prayer is prayed at the very end of Mass and may be used as part of the Final Blessing. As we prepare to leave the church and our faith community to go out into the world we ask that God bless us. Today we ask for hope in difficult times. We can all identify with our need, especially when we are struggling with difficult issues in our lives, to look to the future in hope that things will improve. It is our faith in Jesus Christ and the promise he made to always be with us, that affords us this luxury of hope. Further, we pray that our virtue be strengthened when we are tempted. Remember the virtues? Theological Virtues: Faith, Hope and Love Cardinal Virtues: Prudence, Justice, Fortitude and Temperance. Here we are asking God that we be strengthened by
virtues in time of temptation. In todays’ Gospel we are reminded that Jesus was tempted while he spent 40 days in the dessert. If Jesus experienced temptation, how much
more do we? And when tempted in our lives we must depend upon the virtues of which we are capable to guide us in making right decisions. We need to ask God’s help to strengthen us so that we can be strong, that we can stand up for what is right and just, that we be convinced of our ability to control both our words and our actions. And throughout our lives we pray that we grow in faith, hope and love. Lastly this beautiful prayer petitions God that we might truly know of our gift of eternal life with him through his Son, Jesus Christ. As we continue our Lenten journey, let us depend on God to strengthen us so that we can make good decisions in life that we might turn away from sin and live by the Gospel.
Have a blessed week,
He Would Love First!
October 24, 2020
A July Faith Formation Series – Part IV – APOSTOLIC