Doing Justice & Creating Hope
Call to Prayer:
Today, we focus on the opportunity we each have to be a person who cares about justice for all of God's creation. We think about how we treat one another. Do we give each person we meet or talk to something to be hopeful for? Do each of us start our day filled with hope for the things that will come? Let us begin with the sign of our faith … In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
God, help us deepen our understanding of what it means to act with justice and hopeful hearts. Guide our feet to walk in the ways of Jesus, that we may have the courage to challenge injustice so that the dignity of all is honored. We ask this in the name of Your Son, Jesus who is with us to create hope for all. Amen.
Scripture: The Judgement of the Nations (Matthew 25:34-46)
A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew. Glory to you, O Lord.
Jesus said to his disciples: "When I was hungry, you gave me something to eat, and when I was thirsty, you gave me something to drink. When I was a stranger, you welcomed me, and when I was naked, you gave me clothes to wear. When I was sick, you took care of me, and when I was in jail, you visited me."
Then the ones who pleased the Lord will ask, 'When did we give you something to eat or drink? When did we welcome you as a stranger or give you clothes to wear or visit you while you were sick or in jail?'
Jesus answered, 'Whenever you did it for any of my people, no matter how unimportant they seemed, you did it for me.'
The Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ.
In the gospel, Jesus says that we should feed hungry people, give water to those who need clean water to drink, give people clothes, care for sick people, etc. And we do that! But it's not just so that we can feel good about ourselves or make sure that God loves us right? No, God loves us no matter what. We never know, one day we help someone else and the next day someone is helping us. That's what we call "partnership" or working together. Jesus says that he loves us all very much, is with us always and we know that each one of us reflects Jesus to the world with every word, smile and action. Jesus says that you are a part of Jesus and Jesus is a part of you! Jesus says that we are connected to God and so we are also connected to each other - EVERYONE matters! We want everyone to know God's love and to know that Jesus is with them and a part of their lives.
Prayers of the Faithful:
Response: Lord Jesus, let your sense of justice and hope shine through us.
For unity among all Christians, we pray to the Lord ...
For peace in every heart and in every home, we pray to the Lord ...
For children who live in fear, are cold or hungry, we pray to the Lord ...
For those who are sick or passed away, we pray to the Lord ...
For the prayers we hold in our hearts (pause), we pray to the Lord ...
Act Justly and give Hope to someone today:
How might you stand up against bullying?
How might you be generous with your time or your friendship?
How could you demonstrate that you care for our environment?
How could you show others that your are honest and can be trusted?
Today ask yourself, What would Jesus do?
Teach us to act bravely with justice and hope, that we may see the face of Christ in everyone we meet. Unite us, to serve you as we build a world filled with justice and hope for all. May Your example inspire us to serve one another with joy in the promise and hope of eternal life. We ask this as disciples and followers of Christ, our Lord. Amen. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
DOING JUSTICE & CREATING HOPE
"Speak out for those who cannot speak, for the rights of all the destitute. Speak out, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy." Proverbs 31:8-9
CALL TO PRAYER Good morning and welcome to day three of Catholic Education Week. As we look around our world today – and locally as well – we see situations of inequality and repression, of suffering, poverty, war and injustice. As disciples of Jesus, we believe that we have a responsibility for trying to shape a more just and peaceful world. So let us take a moment to reflect on how we might do this. How can we contribute to a world where all of our sisters and brothers have access to the things they need to lead a dignified, joyful life? How can we change our own ways of living, to be people of solidarity, peace-making and justice? How can our actions promote a better world, and foster hope?
Let us begin with the Sign of the Cross: In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. +
OPENING PRAYER Merciful Lord, you invite us to see the world around us through your eyes and with your heart, to feel compassion for all those who are suffering and struggling, and to use our talents, time and treasure to lift up those who are in need. Give us courage as we try to transform our world according to your teachings, hope as we seek a world of justice and peace, and love for all people, especially those who are most abandoned or forgotten. May we see the face of Jesus in them, serve them with tenderness, and work to promote a society where no one is alone, where no one is in need, where all of us can live out the vocation you have given us, in freedom and joy. We pray in the name of Jesus and the unity of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
SCRIPTURE: Luke 4:16-21 A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Luke. Glory to you, O Lord.
When Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath Day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written... "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favour." And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Then he began to say to them, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."
The Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.
Prayers of the Faithful Reflecting the Needs of Your School
CLOSING PRAYER Jesus, you have taught us that whatever we do to the least of our sisters and brothers, we do to you. Pour out your Holy Spirit upon us and inspire us in the work of doing justice and making peace and of building up a world of inclusion and equity. Give us the vision to know how and where we can make a difference, in small and big ways, and lead us into a love that is broad and courageous. May our efforts, done in your name, contribute to the transformation of our world, and truly bring good news to those who need it most. We ask this in your name, Jesus, our companion and our Lord. Amen.