Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Heavenly Resolutions

As the old year is about to end and we ready ourselves for the new year, many of us make New Year's resolutions. Well, I don't know about you, but when I make mine, they seem to be the same old tired ones that I break a few days into the new year. So this year I am making a resolution not to make any resolutions. On the advice heard in one of our parish priests homily's this week, I am letting God do the planning for the coming year. After all, the plan He had for me has been in His mind before I was born. Yes, it is true that I have done my very best to sabotage His plans in the past. However my one resolution this year is to pray for the grace to follow His plan for my life because it is true that Father Knows Best.

While our Heavenly Father certainly does know what is best for us, our Holy Father Benedict XVI also has some special intentions for each month of the new year. They are listed below. A common practice for praying for the Holy Father's intentions is to say an Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be at the end of your Rosary each day. Speaking of the Rosary, if you don't already do so, praying the Rosary on a daily basis is a great resolution to make for the new year.

Whatever your resolutions may or not be for 2009, pray for the grace to stick to God's will for you. Have Happy, healthy and Blessed 2009!


POPE BENEDICT XVI'S MONTHLY PRAYER INTENTIONS
2009

JANUARY
Family.
That the family may increasingly be a place of formation in charity, personal growth, and the transmission of the faith.
Christian Unity. That Christian denominations may strive for full unity so as to be more credible witnesses of the Gospel to a world in need of a "new evangelization."

FEBRUARY
Church Pastors.
That the Church's pastors may be ever more docile to the action of the Holy Spirit as they teach and serve the people of God.
Peace in Africa. Guided by the 2nd Special Assembly of the African Synod of Bishops, may the local Church find effective ways to promote reconciliation, justice, and peace.

MARCH
Dignity of Women. That all nations of our world may grow in appreciation of the dignity and value of women and their roles in society.
Church Unity in China. That all the bishops, priests, consecrated persons, and laity of the Catholic Church in China may strive to be instruments of unity, communion, and peace, as enjoined by the letter sent to them by Pope Benedict XVI.

APRIL
Farmers and World Hunger. That our Lord may bless farmers with abundant harvests and sensitize the richer nations to respond to the ravages of hunger throughout the world.
Christians as Signs of Hope. That Christians working in desperate conditions among women, children, the poor, and the weak, may be signs of hope in their courageous witness to the Gospel of solidarity and love.

MAY
Lay Vocation Promoters. That the laity and Christian communities may embrace their responsibility for promoting vocations to the priesthood and religious life.
A Missionary Church. In response to the Lord for the gift of faith, may the younger Catholic communities generously participate in the universal mission of the Church to proclaim the Gospel to the ends of the earth.

JUNE
Foreign Debt Relief.
That international efforts to help poorer nations bring prompt, concrete results to relieve the crushing burden of foreign debt.
The Church in Areas of Violence. That local Church communities serving areas torn by violence may be supported through the love and help offered by Catholics around the world.

JULY
Christians in the Middle East.
That Christians in the Middle East may live their faith in complete freedom and become instruments of reconciliation and peace.
Humanity Reconciled. Through the witness of the faithful, may the Church be the seed and soil of a humanity reconciled to be God's one true family on earth.

AUGUST
Refugees.
That the world may become aware of the plight of the millions of displaced persons and find solutions to their tragic conditions.
Persecuted Christians. That Christians who suffer persecution and discrimination may be granted human rights, equality, and freedom to live their faith.

SEPTEMBER
Knowledge of God's Word.
That the Word of God may be better known, accepted, and lived as the source of freedom and joy.
Christians in Laos, Cambodia, and Myanmar. That by trusting the Holy Spirit, Christians in Laos, Cambodia, and Myanmar may, amid great difficulties, courageously proclaim the Gospel to their brothers and sisters.

OCTOBER
Sunday Eucharist. That Sundays may be lived as the day on which Christians gather to celebrate the Risen Lord in the table of the Eucharist.
Spirit of Mission. That all the people of God, whom Christ has commanded to go and preach the Gospel to every creature, may diligently fulfill their missionary responsibility.

NOVEMBER
Care of Creation. That all people of good will, especially those who make political and economic policies, may commit themselves to care for all creation.
Peace of God. That believers of every religion may witness through their lives and through dialogue that the Name of God brings peace.

DECEMBER
Children.
That children may be respected, loved, and never exploited.
Christ, Light of the World. That during Christmas the peoples of the earth may recognize the Incarnate Word as the light that illuminates every person, and that every nation may open its doors to Christ, the Savior of the world.

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Closing Prayer

Psalm 45: Canticle of Love to the King

My heart overflows with a good theme;
I address my verses to the King;
My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.

Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One,
In Your splendor and Your majesty!
And in Your majesty ride on victoriously,
For the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness;
Let Your right hand teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp;
The peoples fall under You;
Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.

Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of joy above Your fellows.
All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.