Saint Thérèse: How my ‘adopting a priest with prayer’ came about…

Saint Thérèse, sister and friend of priests, pray for us…

For the past few weeks I’ve been offering my work day in reparation for my sins, those of the whole world, and for priests as well. I wish I could say that I’ve been consistent in these prayers during this time, but I haven’t. In fact, following my confession this past Sunday I spoke with the priest about my current lackadaisical attitude towards prayer…

Without knowledge of my recent prayer intentions, the priest gave me my penance: I am to pray during work in reparation for my sins, and after a brief pause, he added, “and for the sins of we priest’s too…”

I left confession a bit amazed (at the action of the Holy Spirit) remarking to my wife back in the car, saying, “Huh! My penance is exactly what I’ve been doing of late.

I suppose this penance could fall under a couple of categories: 1. God inspiring me to fortitude; or, 2. God convicting me of sloth (Note: Sloth begets in the soul a spirit of indifference in our spiritual duties and a disgust for prayer). I’m leaning hopefully toward the 3rd option, a combination of both…

A couple days later I received an e-mail with the latest parish bulletin information to place on our mission blog, and this immediately caught my attention:     

ADOPT A PRIEST WITH PRAYER

In 1996 the Oakland, CA Diocese started this program and we just learned about it and would like to start it in the Archdiocese of Portland. Priests have a Divine Mission but they are also very human and daily face the problems and struggles common to all of us. They have a great need of our support in prayer, love and concern. If you would be willing to pray each day for a year for an individual priest in the Archdiocese of Portland, please email Adoptapriestwithprayer@yahoo.com or mail your name and address to Mary Ann Schlumpberger, 2736 Fish Hatchery Rd., Grants Pass, OR 97527. Mary Ann will e-mail or mail you the name of a priest for you. Since the program is just getting started here, it will take a bit to get organized. No meetings, no dues, just prayer!

Last night I contacted Mary Ann via e-mail, and today she replied. (You can view the priest I’ll be praying for this year on the right sidebar– Fr. Elwin Schwab.

A side story: I’ve also been lamenting lately the fact that when our family came into the church 12 years ago we placed our spiritual trust in Our Lady of Mt. Carmel by enrolling in the Brown Scapular Devotion. A sacramental which requires:

 1.The scapular must be worn and the wearer must be enrolled in the scapular. 2. Chastity to one’s state in life must be observed. 3. One must fast from meat on Wednesdays and Saturdays. 4. Recitation of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin or the rosary everyday.

Slouching back to sloth, I am…

So, tonight when considering what daily prayer(s) I could recite on behalf Fr. Schwab, I found myself drawn to Saint Thérèse, a friend of both hardened sinners and of priests.  Here is the daily prayer I’ve decided upon that will be found within my heart at work for both Fr. Schwabb and myself:

Saint Thérèse, sister and friend of priests, pray for us…

I’m finding that we must do more than simply pray for more vocations, we must pray to sustain them also. And I’m also learning that when we ourselves forget to pray, heaven doesn’t. Perhaps someone is doing a good work from heaven upon the earth… The next year will tell.

Please pray for us. 

END OF POST

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