Prayer Service - Touching Lives, Healing Communities

July-August 2007

BY: SR. PATRICIA A. TALONE, RSM, Ph.D.

LEADER
As we gather today, we pray in a special way for the sick among us: for those in our facilities, for members of our families, for any of our co-workers who are sick. Through the healing narratives in the Gospel, we learn about Jesus the Healer. Jesus touched people, physically, and spiritually, reaching out beyond social and disease barriers to heal both illness and isolation. His healing touch brought the sick back to their communities. Let's listen to the words of Luke, describing the healing of Jairus's daughter.

READER
"And there came a man named Jairus, and he was an official of the synagogue; and he fell at Jesus' feet, and began to implore Him to come to his house; for he had an only daughter, about twelve years old, and she was dying. But as He went, the crowds were pressing against Him. . . . While He was still speaking, someone came from the house of the synagogue official, saying, 'Your daughter has died; do not trouble the Teacher anymore.' But when Jesus had heard this, He answered him, 'Do not be afraid any longer; only believe, and she will be made well.' When He came to the house, He did not allow anyone to enter with Him, except Peter, James and John, and the girl's father and mother. Now they were all weeping and lamenting for her; but He said, 'Stop weeping, for she has not died, but is asleep.' And they began laughing at Him, knowing that she had died. He, however, took her by the hand and called, saying, 'Child, arise!' And her spirit returned, and she got up immediately, and He gave orders for something to be given her to eat. Her parents were amazed; but He instructed them to tell no one what had happened" (Lk 8:41-42, 49-56).

REFLECTION
Take some time to reflect upon the following:
(The facilitator may play quiet instrumental music during the reflection.)

  • Who are the parents and loved ones who come to our doors for healing?
  • How do we touch them? How do we comfort them?
  • In what ways do we restore them to their communities?
  • What programs or services do we offer that might elicit laughter from others?
  • How do we respond to those taunts?
  • What can I learn from Jesus' manner with Jairus? His wife? His daughter? His neighbors?

LEADER
Let us bring the needs of the sick, within our facilities and within our communities, before our God, who desires to heal us all.

Response is: "Lord, hear our prayer."
(Members of the group present their petitions.)

Lord God, as we hold up to you those members of our community who stand in need of healing, fill us with compassion for all the sick, and a deep conviction that we carry on your ministry in all that we do as members of Catholic health care. We ask this in the name of Jesus, your Son and our brother.

ALL
Amen.

Sr. Patricia Talone, RSM, Ph.D.
Vice President, Mission Services
Catholic Health Association

 

Copyright © 2007 by the Catholic Health Association of the United States
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