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This Week in Prayer


This weekly column – a prompt and a resource for your prayer and awareness – is specially intended to be helpful in preparing prayer for a community or group. You are welcome to alert us to upcoming special occasions within the Edmund Rice Network.

Monday 15 September 2014



Our Lady of Sorrows is a title highlighting the sufferings that Mary experienced in relation to her son Jesus – something with which mothers in particular might readily identify. This is one of a thread of monthly Marian feastdays that keep before our eyes the first Christian, who features so strongly in the spirituality of Edmund Rice.

Democracy is described by the UN as “a universal value based on the freely-expressed will of people to determine their own political, economic, social and cultural systems, and their full participation in all aspects of life”. This international day is a reminder of this ideal, so varied in its expressions and so difficult to move beyond oversimplification to maturity. A day to pray for the attainment of life-giving human systems and for the lifting of all oppressive systems.

“There are souls in this world which have the gift of finding joy everywhere and of leaving it behind them when they go.”  (Frederick Faber)

Tuesday 16 September



Surrounding the earth at a distance of about 25 km, the ozone layer offers protection from some harmful radiation. Its depletion by man-made chemicals became a popular concern in the mid-80s, and 2010 was set as the target date for eliminating all ozone-depleting substances. Efforts at raising awareness of other forms of environmental damage have continued to broaden, inviting the support of our hearts and hands.

Papua New Guinea appeared on the radar of the Edmund Rice community in 1950, and today there are a number of Christian Brothers communities and associates around the country. Let us pray for them as they celebrate 39 years of PNG’s independence.

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”  (Annie Dillard)

Wednesday 17 September


A visionary mystic and artist, Hildegard, a German Benedictine Abbess, was a creative interpreter of theology. Among other forms, she wrote poetry and letters, composed music and songs, and devised the first surviving morality play. She is commonly, though not formally, regarded as a saint.

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”  (Annie Dillard)

Thursday 18 September


Water Monitoring Day aims at involving and empowering citizens all over the world in the vital responsibility of monitoring the quality of our water. This is done by means of a simple test-kit that checks on a number of water-quality parameters. A recent aim was to extend participation to a million people in 100 countries.

“Adulthood is defined by the willingness to accept full responsibility for where you are at in life; no longer blaming others or circumstances.”  (Joe Westbrook)

Friday 19 September


This (frivolous) international observance, born of a pirate-like gutterance in reaction to a sports injury, might serve to focus our gratitude on the lighthearted side of life – on the gift of fun, on the leaven of parody and playfulness.

“A professional is a person who can do his best at a time when he doesn't particularly feel like it.”  (Alistair Cooke)

Saturday 20 September


Over 8000 Koreans died in 19th century persecutions, and over 100 were canonized together in the 1980s. We might pray today for all who are restricted in any of the freedoms we take for granted.

“The truly liberated human being is not always fighting against something, but more frequently is fighting for something or someone.”  (Denis Waitley)

Sunday 21 September




Here are six places where you can find commentaries on this Sunday’s readings:

  • On the right of our home page: find PRAYER GUIDE and click SUNDAY REFLECTION.
  • - click Mass Readings > click on 21 Sept (for the texts themselves).
  • – click Sunday Gospel Commentary (by Michael Chalmers cfc).
  • – click Gospel Commentary > click on 21 Sept.
  • – scroll to 21 Sept > Get to Know the Readings. (Also in Spanish.)
  • – click Sun. Bible Reflections under Daily Bread. (Also in Spanish.)

Matthew, to whom one of the written gospel traditions is attributed, was a tax collector. In calling him to be a disciple, Jesus broke through a strong social taboo and simply waived aside religious prejudices about who was acceptable to God. One meaningful way to mark Matthew’s feastday might be to identify who is burdened by similar prejudices within us today.

The International Day of Peace invites us to creative acts of peace, and to strengthening the ideal of peace across the globe. See the websites  www.internationaldayofpeace.org and  www.peacebeginswithme.eu

“Evaluation of the past is the first step toward vision for the future.”  (Chris Widener)

For further websites and blogs that can support your prayer and reflection, click the PRIVATE REFLECTIONS button under PRAYER GUIDE on the right of our home page.

brother Michael Burke


  • A Founding Charism +

    The “experience” of Edmund Rice (lives on in our HEARTS). Read More
  • Edmund Rice Prayers +

    We dedicate ourselveds to work together Read More
  • Two Poems +

    Edmund Rice poems by Hugh Sharpe cfc and Ralhael Consedine PBVM  Read More
  • Magnificat +

    Like Mary, help me to proclaim a new way Read More
  • Feast of Edmund Rice - community prayer +

    - from the African Province Renewal Team Read More
  • Feast Day Mass - Edmund Rice +

    Mass for the feast 5th May Read More
  • Feast Day Blessing +

    Blessings to all our Brothers and members of the Edmund Rice Network Read More
  • Litany of Blessed Edmund Rice +

    Plant peace firmly in our hearts and in our world Read More
  • Blessed Edmund's Our Father +

    - forgive us our blindness toward each other Read More
  • Blessed Edmund Rice Paraliturgy +

    Grant us the courage and care of Blessed Edmund Read More
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