Prayer is Essential

Have you ever felt the need to pray, but when you get down on your knees (or lie in your bed or sit in your recliner), you just can’t think of what to say? You’re not alone! Often we come to prayer with the best of intentions — but the cares of the world, our physical condition, or a dozen other things get in the way.

I hope I have something to help you, two new items from the Sisters of Charity to inspire your prayer. These new 5″ x 7″ easel-back plaques of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary are just the right size for your bedside table or some other prominent place in your home. They’re suitable for framing and can be a great gift for a loved one or yourself.

Mother Elaine reads to her students at St. John’s School in Old Saybrook, CT, where she serves as principal. The Sisters of Charity have taught there for many years.

The Sisters of Charity of Our Lady, Mother of the Church have a long tradition of sharing God’s love with the poor, the young, the aged, and the sick. We witness to God’s goodness in whatever way we are needed, in a spirit of humble service. No fanfare, no bright lights; just quiet service to those whose lives touch ours in schools, healthcare facilities, our shelter for the homeless, our food pantry, and our care of newly arrived immigrants. Ministry, we call it, and if it’s part of the mission of the Church, we’ll do it.Friend, prayer is what makes it all possible. Sometimes praying comes naturally, and sometimes it’s pure hard work. But it brings us peace.

One day, when we were preparing to begin our morning prayers in the parish school where I taught, a child raised his hand. “Sister, can I ask for a prayer if you promise you won’t get mad?” “I promise I won’t get mad,” I replied. “What would you like us to pray for?” “Well, Sister, it’s my hamster, Tatter. I don’t know if he’s sick or dead, but he didn’t look too good when I left for school, and I’m worried because he’s the kindest hamster I ever had.”

I can’t remember what happened to kind Tatter, but I do remember how those children poured their hearts into that prayer. I think God smiled on their little souls, too. It helped me realize that nothing is too small to bring to God in prayer.

Perhaps our new Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary 5″ x 7″ easel-back plaques can help you focus your heart and spirit while you are praying — as you bring to Jesus and His Holy Mother all that matters to you, great and small. Each time you look at their beautiful portraits, be reminded that our Dear Lord and our Blessed Mother hold you close to their hearts, that they love you deeply and tenderly, and they know you by name.

This seems like a sorry world sometimes, but each day when morning comes, it strikes me that God hasn’t given up on us yet. He believes in us enough to give us another day, another chance, knowing fully well that we can’t do a thing without Him. The more we ask, the more we can do.

In our ministries the Sisters have learned that often, hope is all some people have left. The homeless who come to us late at night looking for a place to stay. The man in our nursing home who has suffered for two years with Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The newly arrived immigrants, often confused and frightened. The teens in our high school who are frantic about college application essays. And the young man on the plane who asks us to pray for his wife who just got bad news about her blood test. Each of them has hope that their prayers will be answered in a way that will provide courage to face tomorrow.

We Sisters of Charity are privileged to be allowed into the lives of countless souls who count on us as prayers, and who rely on our prayers. For us, prayer is essential. It’s a privilege that fills our lives with joy.

Can we offer a prayer for you? For your needs and intentions? For your family? We will bring you and your loved ones to the Altar each morning — asking God to bless you in ways too profound to even ask or imagine.

If you can assist us in our need with your offering, we would be deeply grateful for that, too. The poor, the aged, the children and the sick we serve, and our ill and elderly Sisters, would be so grateful for anything you can do for us. If not a financial gift, then by your prayers for us. That’s a good arrangement — we pray for you, and you pray for us.

Peace to you! We hope you like our new Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary 5″ x 7″ easel-back plaques. They are now available on our gift shop.

Gratefully, in Mary, Mother of the Church,

Mother Marie Julie,
SCMC Superior General


P.S. In sincere appreciation for your kindness, the Sisters offer you the promise of a holy remembrance of your personal intentions in our Masses and daily prayers. I truly hope to hear from you soon. God bless you!

“With Mary, our lives continually proclaim the greatness of the Lord and the joy experienced in rendering service to Him.”

Holy Rule

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