Prayers

For Community Members Who are Sick

» Download a Word version of the prayer

It is a cry that we hear every day in our Catholic hospitals and nursing homes: "I want to see." In some circumstances, it is a cry for physical sight that has been taken away by age or accident. But in many circumstances, it is a cry for meaning and insight as persons suffer spiritual crises spurred by ill health and disaster. What is the meaning of life with disability? Is there purpose in my pain? How could a good God allow this to happen? What happens after I die?

READER 1
Spiritual care is not unique to Catholic hospitals and nursing homes, but it is integral to their identity. Catholic teaching lifts the importance of honoring the whole person — both body and spirit — seeing the two as integrally connected. It would be impossible for us to offer Catholic health care without dedicating colleagues to spiritual care. They go by many different names — chaplains, pastoral caregivers, spiritual companions and more. Most are professionals who've prepared for their ministry with years of study and certification. Others are generous volunteers from the local community. All help us to fulfill our mission in an explicit way. And today we give thanks for their presence in our midst.

(Invite all pastoral caregivers present to stand.)

READER 2
As a pastoral caregiver, yours is the face of Christ for many of our patients/residents and staff. Today, we offer thanks to God for you and ask God's blessing. Let us pray:

READER 3
For the generosity and gentleness of these women and men ...

ALL
We give thanks.

READER 1
For their courage and perseverance in accompanying those in grief and pain …

ALL   
We give thanks.

READER 2   
For their wisdom in dealing with life's most difficult questions …

ALL   
We give thanks.

READER 3   
For the gift of fidelity to their call …

ALL   
We call upon you, O God.

READER 1   
For the gift of ongoing strength and endurance in their ministry …

ALL   
We call upon you, O God.

READER 2   
For continued growth and insight before the mysteries of life and death …

ALL   
We call upon you, O God.

Let us pray:
ALL
Bless these women and men whom you have called to serve you as spiritual companions of the infirm and suffering. Make them ministers of the "sight" that we all need in our lives in times of trial. We ask this in the name of Jesus, the healer, who attends to both body and spirit. Amen.