Our Parish Prayer Day takes place next Wednesday 20th May. Our theme for this month is our Children and Young people. This is so appropriate just now. May, going into June, is normally a very special time for children preparing to make their first holy communion and for young people, it is exam time. It can be a time of anxiety and worry for many. It can be a time of relief for others. For those who are moving on to work or to Third Level Education it is the end of a long phase of their lives. So much depends on these few weeks that will have a huge effect on the rest of their lives. This year, however, the worry and anxiety are different because the question now is: what will happen to the exams and to all that will follow for these young people? This is also normally a very special time for our schools. The work of the past year is being tested, not just for the pupils, but for the teachers also. This can be a time of tension for parents and other members of the families of the children and young people too. This certainly has not been helped by the present crisis of the Covid-19 pandemic. And it is also the month of Mary, the Mother of Christ and our Mother too. For us as Catholics this is a very significant reality for all that we are and all that we can be.
Thank you to the many people in our parish who have committed themselves to a specific hour of prayer on the 20th in such a way that the whole day and night are covered. Everyone is invited to join in this prayer, either by taking on an hour, or by including this intention in your own prayer during that day.
A prayer for children and young people
God of love, we praise and thank you for the wonderful gift of life. Help us to cherish this gift in ourselves and in all whom we meet.
Bless all children that they may know the joy of being alive and that we may help them towards a great future.
Bless all young women and men. Be with them through these years of change in their bodies, their priorities, and their relationships so that nothing may damage their joy and their hope.
Bless especially all those in our parish who are doing exams this year. May they have every success, not just in their exams but in their lives. May all of them and all of us be kept safe from the corona virus and from all other forms of harm. We ask this through Christ, our Lord. Amen.
The joy of love – Pope Francis
The questions I would put to parents are these: “Do you understand ‘where’ your children really are in their journey?” “Where is their soul, do we really know?” And, above all, “do we want to know?” (261)
The strengthening of the will and the repetition of specific actions are the building blocks of moral conduct; without the conscious, free, and valued repetition of certain patterns of good behaviour, moral education cannot take place. Mere desire, or an attraction to a certain value, is not enough to instil a virtue in the absence of those properly motivated acts. (266)
Raising children calls for an orderly process of handing on the faith. This is made difficult by current lifestyles, work schedules, and the complexity of today’s world, where many people keep up a frenetic pace just to survive. Even so, the home must continue to be the place where we learn to appreciate the meaning and beauty of the faith, to pray, and to serve our neighbour. (287)