January 29, 2021: The Rule of the Notre Dame Sisters is based on that of St. Augustine of Hippo

Prayers submitted from Sr. Margaret Proskovec, ND

The Rule of the Notre Dame Sisters is based on that of St. Augustine of Hippo. For quite some time, I have collected short prayers by Augustine. These are some of my favorites that fit well with our Notre Dame spirit and charism:

Come Holy Spirit,
Replace the tension within with holy relaxation;
Replace the turbulence within with a sacred calm;
Replace the anxiety within with quiet confidence;
Replace the fear within with a strong faith;
Replace the coldness within with loving warmth;
Replace the night within with your day.

Straighten our crookedness, fill our emptiness,
Dull the edge of our pride, hone the edge of our humility,
Light the fire of our love.

Let us see ourselves as you see us,
That we may see you as you have promised. Amen.

Here is my heart, O God; here it is with all its secrets. Look into my thoughts, O my hope, and heal all my wrong ideas and feelings. Let my eyes look ever to you, and release my feet from the snare that holds me from walking in your ways. I ask you to live in me, to guide me, to make this heart of mine a holy dwelling for you. Amen. Breathe in me, O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may all be holy. Act in me, O Holy Spirit, that my work, too, may be holy. Draw my heart, O Holy Spirit, so that I love only what is holy. Strengthen me, O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy. Guard me, then, O Holy Spirit, that I always may be holy. Amen.

God of life, there are days when the burdens we carry chafe our shoulders and wear us down; when the road seems dreary and endless, the skies gray and threatening; when our lives have no music in them and our hearts are lonely, and our souls have lost their courage. Flood the path with light, we ask you; turn our eyes to where the skies are full of promise. Amen. Watch, O God, with those who wake, or watch, or weep tonight, and give your angels and saints charge over those who sleep. Tend your sick ones, O Jesus. Rest your weary ones. Bless your dying ones. Soothe your suffering ones. Pity your afflicted ones. Shield your joyous ones, and all for your love’s sake. Amen.

Holy Mary, mother of Christ our Savior, help those who are miserable, strengthen those who are discouraged, and comfort those who are sorrowful. May all who turn to you experience your assistance and protection. Be ready to aid us when we pray, and bring to us the answers we seek for our prayers. You make it your continual concern to pray for the people of God, for you were blessed by God and were made worthy to bear the Redeemer of the world. Amen. You were rich, Jesus, yet for our sakes, you became poor. You promised that whatever is done for the least of your brothers and sisters is done for you. Give us grace always to be willing and ready to provide for the needs of those whose parents have died, or whose homes are broken, or who live in need of kindness, that your kingdom of service and love may extend throughout the world for which you gave the fullness of your love. Amen.

Gracious God, we pray for your grace, lest we grieve or complain that we were born in a time when we can no longer see You in the flesh. You did not, in fact, take this privilege from us.

As Jesus said, “Whatever you have done to the least of my little ones, you did to me.” Grant that we may live more fully by these words. Amen. What does love look like? It has hands to help others. It has feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of humankind.

That is what love looks like.

God is love and those who live love, live in God and God in them.

Beloved God, we are safe in the shadow of your wings. Protect us and bear us up. You will care for us as if we were little children, even to our old age. When you are our strength, we are strong; but when we are our own strength, we are weak. Our good always lives in your presence, and we suffer when we turn our faces away from you. We now return to you, O God, that we may never turn away again. Amen.