Prayer

Each of the Strategy's 6 elements involves both a goal and specific means for reaching the goal. What follows is an explanation of the means.

The various means that are discussed certainly do not exhaust the ways of reaching the goals and should not limit the taking of other worthwhile initiatives.

Goal

Catholics praying continually for respect for life

Means for Reaching the Goal

1.1 Special prayers offered at every Sunday Mass 
1.2 Holy hour once a month in each parish 
1.3
 
Each parish is asked to
(a) promote daily prayer in the home;
(b) make a special effort to involve seniors and those who are homebound in praying
 

1.1 Special prayers offered at every Sunday Mass

Holy Mass is the highest form of prayer we have, since it is the paschal mystery of Christ himself made present. Our intercessions are never more efficacious than when we unite our intentions to the perfect sacrifice of the perfect Mediator between God and humanity.

Special prayers have been composed to promote reverence for life and vocations within the Archdiocese. At each Sunday Mass, during the Prayer of the Faithful, both prayers will be offered, or each may be used alternately from week to week.

Prayer for Reverence for Life

Almighty God, giver of all that is good, we thank You for the precious gift of human life:

  • For life in the womb, coming from your creative power, 1 
  • For the life of children, making us glad with their freshness and promise,
  • For the life of young people, hoping for a better world, 2 
  • For the life of people who are disabled, teaching us that every life has value,
  • For the life of the elderly, witnessing to the ageless values of patience and wisdom. 3  

Like Blessed Mary, may we always say “YES” to Your gift. 4 May we defend it and promote it from conception to its natural end. 5 And bring us at last, O father, to the fullness of eternal life in Jesus Christ, our Lord. 6 Amen.

  1. Pope John Paul II, October 12, 1985
  2. Pope John Paul II, To the Youth of the World, March 31, 1985
  3. Pope John Paul II, B.C. Place, September 18, 1984
  4. Pope John Paul II, September 19, 1987
  5. Pope John Paul II, January 26, 1980
  6. Pope John Paul II, March 5, 1980

For the convenience of the faithful, the prayers are available on gummed labels which may be inserted inside parish missals.

Size: 4¼” x 5½”
Cost: $14.00 per 100
Order from Respect Life Office, Archdiocese of Vancouver: 604 683 0281

1.2 Holy hour once a month in each parish

The practice of spending an hour before the Blessed Sacrament is highly commended. Its value derives, first of all, from Christ's real presence and the fact that the Eucharistic sacrament is “the summit and source of the Christian life” (Vatican II, Lumen Gentium, n. 11). It also honors Christ's own words, “Could you not watch with me one hour?” (Mt. 26:40).

The monthly holy hour is to focus on two intentions: respect for life and vocations. First Fridays and First Saturdays are especially appropriate times for this devotion. Organizing the holy hour may be a project of the parish's liturgical committee or pro-life committee (see 3.1).

It is suggested that copies of the special archdiocesan prayers (1.1) be made available to parishioners-whether through the missal inserts or separate prayer cards (see 1.3). Recitation of the rosary and invocations to our Lady as our diocesan patroness are also strongly encouraged (see Primary Emphasis of Strategy: Prayer).

The Archdiocesan Liturgical Committee is responsible for providing instructions and suggestions regarding the format of the holy hour.

1.3 Each parish is asked to (a) promote daily prayer in the home; (b) make a special effort to involve seniors and those who are homebound in praying

Individuals and families are strongly encouraged to use the prayers for reverence for life and for vocations (1.1) in their homes.

Senior citizens and persons who are sick, disabled or shut-in can make an especially important contribution to any prayer campaign. Such people usually have more time than others to devote to prayer. In addition, whatever suffering is theirs can become a means of God's grace.

As Pope John Paul has written in his encyclical on human suffering, “We ask precisely you who are weak to become a source of strength for the Church and humanity. In the terrible battle between the forces of good and evil, revealed to our eyes by the modern world, may your suffering in union with the cross of Christ be victorious!” (Salvifici Doloris, n. 31).

The task of involving such individuals in a pro-life prayer apostolate can be carried out in the parish by a seniors club, a Parish Outreach program for seniors, those who regularly visit the sick and shut-in, or the parish pro-life committee (see 3.1)
 

Archdiocesan Pro-Life Strategy
1. Introduction: Some Shaping Principles 
  1.1 The Grace of Conversion 
  1.2 Impetus for a New Pro-Life Strategy 
  1.3 Primary Emphasis of Strategy: Prayer 
  1.4 The Strategy: More Than Prayer 
  1.5 Long-Range View 
  1.6 “Toward a Culture of Life
2. Elements of Strategy 
  2.1 Prayer 
  2.2 Crisis Response 
  2.3 Education 
  2.4 Civic Action 
  2.5 Ecumenical Relations 
  2.6 Liaison with Pro-Life Groups 

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