Special Prayers from Parishioners and Others

CMF at Christ, Our Light! Parish

November 28, 2021 1st Sunday of Advent

Jer 33:14-16; Ps 25:4-5, 8-9, 10, 14; 1Thes 3:12-4:2; Lk 21:25-28, 34-36

Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from . . . the anxieties of daily life. (Luke 21:34

Jesus’ warning about anxiety is one of the best pieces of advice we could receive right now. We have all heard the statistic that people are more likely to feel worried or depressed during the month of December than at any other time of the year. The “anxieties of daily life” seem amplified as the holidays approach, and all the emphasis on parties and family gatherings can make some people feel more stressed or isolated. It’s not surprising to find our hearts feeling a little “drowsy” as we begin the season of Advent (Luke 21:34)!

But Advent isn’t meant to be a season of anxiety. It’s meant to be a season of expectation and hope. The Lord is near! He is coming to establish his kingdom! For all the warnings Jesus gives in today’s Gospel, and for all the dark and foreboding images of the end that he portrays, his promise outweighs them all: “Your redemption is at hand” (Luke 21:28).

So Jesus warns us to guard our hearts so that we can experience our “redemption” more deeply this Advent. He warns us not to let anything burden us so much that it keeps us from turning to him in prayer or talking with him during the day. He knows that if we keep him at a distance, for whatever reason, we run the risk of becoming spiritually drowsy—dull to his Spirit and unable to sense his presence.

There is so much that your heavenly Father wants to give you during this time of grace: inner healing, a deeper sense of peace or joy, a powerful encounter with his mercy, and wisdom and guidance for your life. If you can spend just a few minutes each day with the Mass readings and meditations in the Advent booklet you received in the mail, you’ll be opening your heart to these gifts and more.

Don’t let Advent slip away. Your redemption is at hand. Stay awake so that you can receive it!

“Jesus, help me to seek you this Advent!”

Many thanks to The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) for allowing us to use meditations from their monthly devotional magazine. (used with permission). 


CMF at Christ, Our Light! Parish

Together With Jesus

November 21, 2021 The Solemnity Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe Dn 7:13-14; Ps 93:1,2,5; Rev1: 5-8; John 18:33-37

My kingdom does not belong to this world. (John 18:36)

Pilate must have been confused. He had asked Jesus point-blank, “Are you the King of the Jews?” (John 18:33). Jesus didn’t answer him directly, but he made it clear that his kingdom wasn’t what Pilate had been envisioning. Instead, he said this kingdom “is not here” and “does not belong to this world” (18:36).

So where is Jesus’ kingdom, and what’s it like? On today’s feast of Christ the King, let’s reflect on God’s kingdom and how it compares with the kingdom of the world.

The kingdom of the world values power, wealth, honor, and pleasure. These things are not bad in themselves, but we can easily make them idols. We can even fool ourselves into thinking that we are not going after them. But if they are the primary reason we get out of bed in the morning, and if we spend most of our time seeking them out, then we are probably too immersed in the kingdom of the world.

The kingdom of God, on the other hand, values sacrificial love, forgiveness, humility, and service. Such things are not always attractive because they come with a cost. Yet the reward is always greater—not only in this life, as we experience Jesus’ abundant love and mercy, but also in the next, when we will see him face-to-face and live in his joyful embrace forever.

Today as you worship the King of kings at Mass, think about what you most value and what you are most anxious to achieve. Then see if these things are more in line with God’s kingdom or with the kingdom of the world. We are all tempted at times to straddle both kingdoms at the same time. But over and over again, we are faced with choices to serve one or the other. May we always choose to serve Jesus, our King and Lord!

“Praise you, King of kings and Lord of lords!” 


October 31, 2021 31th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Deuteronomy 6:2-6; Psalm 18:2-4,47,51; Hebrews 7:23-28; Mark 12:28-34

You shall love . . . (Mark 12:30, 31)

What does it mean to love God and our neighbor? How do we keep these two great commandments, especially when we aren’t feeling the love? Let’s look to the greatest Lover of all time, Jesus, to find some answers.

How did Jesus love God? His relationship with his heavenly Father was the focus of his life. Jesus spent hours—and even whole nights—praying so that he could converse with his Father. Every action and decision he took reflected his Father’s will.

Out of this loving relationship flowed Jesus’ love for his neighbor. No matter what he was feeling at each moment, Jesus did what God asked of him. He taught and healed people. He forgave his persecutors. Ultimately, he gave his life out of loving obedience to his Father and deep love for each of us.

There are—and will be—many times when we don’t feel particularly loving. But as Jesus showed us, love is more than an emotion; it’s a series of actions and decisions that reflect God’s will. When we make our relationship with our Father the focus of our lives, he will give us the grace to love, even when our emotions don’t fall in line.

So how do you love your heavenly Father? Spend time in prayer and Scripture each day. Seek his grace and mercy in the sacraments. Try to fulfill the unique mission you believe God has given you.

And how do you love your neighbor? Care for the people God has put in your life. Build up rather than tear down. Forgive those who have hurt you. Tell people about Jesus.

Today, think about all the opportunities you will have to love God and your neighbor. Then go ahead and do these things. Don’t worry if you don’t “feel the love.” What matters is that you are obeying the two most important commandments—and reflecting God’s love into the world.

“Jesus, show me how to love today.” 

Many thanks to The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) for allowing us to use meditations from their monthly devotional magazine. (used with permission). 


June 13, 2021
EZ17: 22-24; Ps 92 2-3, 13-16; 2 Cor 5:6-10; Mk 4: 26-34
We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:10)
The thought of appearing before the judgment seat of Christ at the end of our lives is, at best, unsettling. That’s because we will receive recompense for what we have done, “whether good or evil” (2 Corinthians 5:10). We know the many times we have fallen short. So how can we have any hope that Jesus will welcome us into his heavenly kingdom?
First, we can remember that Jesus himself will be our judge. On the cross, he promised the criminal beside him, “Today you will be with me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43). He refused to condemn the woman caught in adultery (John 8:10-11). He welcomed tax collectors into his kingdom, including Matthew, who became one of the Twelve and a saint (Matthew 9:9-13). These Gospel stories give us reason to believe that he will treat us with mercy as well.
Second, while we may find it painful to remember some of our past sins and misdeeds, Jesus views our lives very differently. He won’t see only our sins; he’ll also see our good deeds—even the ones we weren’t aware of. You may be surprised by the effects that your love has had on the people around you!
Finally, while we’re still here on earth, we shouldn’t burden ourselves worrying about whether we have done enough good works to earn a spot in heaven. Jesus has already saved us through his “one righteous act”—the shedding of his blood on the cross (Romans 5:18). Our good works are the way in which we respond to the love that God has already shown us.
At Mass today, place any fears you might have about Jesus’ judgment into his loving, merciful hands. Remember that each day is a fresh start to “aspire to please” him in all things (2 Corinthians 5:9). Jesus is a judge, yes, but the most kind and merciful judge you will ever encounter!
“Jesus, I thank you for the mercy you show me each day.” 
Many thanks to The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) for allowing us to use meditations from their monthly devotional magazine. (used with permission). 


CMF at Christ, Our Light! Parish
Together With Jesus
May 23, 2021  Pentecost
Acts 2:1-11; Psalm 104:1, 24, 29-31, 34; 1 Corinthians 12:3-7, 12-13; John 20: 19-23
 They were all filled with the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:4)
Just how big was that “all”? Well, Luke tells that “about one hundred and twenty persons” were together the day the apostles chose Matthias to replace Judas (Acts 1:15). It’s quite possible that many of them had joined the apostles to celebrate the Jewish feast of Pentecost as well.
So those “all” who had gathered that day probably included people like Mary Magdalene, along with some of the other women who went to Jesus’ tomb on Easter Sunday. You can also imagine Simon the Cyrenian being there, along with his sons, Alexander and Rufus (Mark 15:21). And what about Peter’s wife? Or Zacchaeus or Lazarus and Martha and Mary? Maybe Stephen and the other future deacons were there, along with people whose names have been lost to history.
Whoever was there, Luke tells us that they all received the same gift of the Holy Spirit. They all began speaking in tongues. And they all found new courage and boldness to speak “of the mighty acts of God” (Acts 2:11).
You know where this is going, right? God gives the same Spirit that filled Peter and the apostles to everyone who asks. That includes you, your family, your friends, even your enemies. God doesn’t restrict his blessings to a chosen few. He wants to fill everyone!
Try something different at Mass today. Whether you’re gathered with fellow parishioners in your church or joining others online, imagine what it would be like if the Spirit fell on all of you during the liturgy. What would it look like for all of those present—including you—to experience the Holy Spirit in the same way the disciples did? Or to be so filled with joy that all burst out in praise of the Lord? Or to experience God’s love in a deep, intimate way? In fact, don’t just imagine it. Pray for it!
 “Come, Holy Spirit, and fill the hearts of your people!”
 May 23, 2021 Pentecost


For readers of every age:  Psalm 119
Happy are the people who live pure lives. They follow the Lord’s teachings.
Happy are the people who keep His rules.
When I learned that Your laws are fair, I praised You with an honest heart.
How can a young person live a pure life? He can do it by obeying Your word.
I have taken Your words to heart so I would not sin against You. I enjoy living by Your rules as people enjoy great riches.

I think about Your orders and study Your ways. I enjoy obeying Your demands. And I will not forget Your word.

Open my eyes to see the wonderful things in Your teachings. Keep me from looking at worthless things. Let me live by Your word.

How I love Your teachings! I think about them all day long. Your commands make me wiser than my enemies because they are mine forever.

Your word is like a lamp for my feet and a light for my way. I love Your teachings. You are my hiding place and my shield. I trust Your word.

Lord, I call to You with all my heart. I wake up early in the morning and cry out. I am happy over Your promises as if I had found a great treasure.

(Thomas, Mack, editor. The Wonder Bible. Questar Publishers, 1993, p. 234)

Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021 6th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lv 13:1-2, 44-46; Psalm Ps 32:1-2, 5, 11; 1 Cor 10:31—11:1; Mk 1:40-45
I do will it. Be made clean. (Mark 1:41)
If you suffered from a disease that rotted your flesh and deadened your nerves, as this leper did, you wouldn’t deny your need for healing, would you? No, the problem would be obvious. You’d almost instinctively cry out to the Lord for help. But what about other kinds of wounds that may not be so obvious?
For example, if you tend to overreact or become extremely anxious, even over minor issues, you might need to reach out to Jesus for an emotional healing, perhaps with the help of a trained counselor. Maybe you find you are in a difficult relationship, one filled with tension and stress. Jesus could heal that relationship by showing you how to love that person better. Or if you’re harboring unforgiveness and resentment, you may need God’s grace to help you forgive. You might be stuck in a sin pattern that you don’t want to face, and so you avoid bringing it into the light and receiving God’s mercy in Confession.
It’s tempting to think that we can handle such situations on our own. Or we might not even recognize that these are things that Jesus can heal. But what Jesus said to the man in this story, he says to us: “I do will it. Be made clean” (Mark 1:41). He wants to heal us of anything that doesn’t reflect his will for our lives.
Today, ask the Holy Spirit to help you become aware of just one area of your life in which you need his healing touch. How might unhealed wounds be holding you back or causing pain to yourself or someone around you? How might they be leading you away from God and into sin?
We all accumulate wounds as we go through life, so don’t get discouraged. Like this man with leprosy, just believe that Jesus has the will—and the power—to heal whatever ails you.
“Jesus, I need your healing touch today!” 

Many thanks to The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) for allowing us to use meditations from their monthly devotional magazine. (used with permission). 


Prayer/Blessing sent to a Parishioner During This Challenging Time:
Our prayer for you is that God will lift this
Incredible veil of darkness that covers our land,
And while He performs His wondrous work
That He takes the time to comfort and quiet you
Until the light of hope pierces through.
CMF at Christ, Our Light! Parish/All "Together with Jesus" entries reprinted with permission from Word Among Us
Together With Jesus
Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021 The Baptism of Jesus Is 55:1-11; Is 12: 2-6; 1 John 5:1-9; Mk 1:7-11
You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.
Before the London summer Olympics, the 1981 film Chariots of Fire was rereleased for the big screen. It’s a stirring true story about British runners at the 1924 Olympics—one of them, the Scottish sprinter Eric Liddell. The movie accurately depicts Liddell as a devout Christian. And though it shows him explaining his athletic motivation in words he probably never spoke—“When I run, I feel his pleasure”—the line is a window into how Liddell related to God in real life.
When I run, I feel his pleasure. Think about that statement for a minute. Are there times when you experience God’s delight in you?
Do you rest secure in the knowledge that your Father loves and affirms you? Or do you feel overlooked or rejected by a God who finds you wanting? If you oscillate between these two poles, as many of us do, you’ll find an important message in Jesus’ baptism.
Why, do you think, did the sinless Son of God embrace a baptism of repentance? One simple answer is this: so that each of us could hear our Father say, “You are my beloved child. With you I am well pleased”! This isn’t wishful thinking. When you were baptized, you were united to Jesus and drawn into his relationship with the Father. That means that as you seek it out, you really can experience the Father’s love for you!
Do you believe that God rejoices in you? If you’re not living in that reality, ask him for whatever you need to restore that baptismal flow of love—insight, healing, a spirit of repentance. Then, not only when you’re running, praying, or working, but at all times, you can rejoice in your identity as a beloved child who makes your Father smile.
“Jesus, with a thankful heart, I stand with you in the Jordan today.
Let nothing separate me from you.
Father, show me your love!”
Readings 1
Together With Jesus 
Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020
Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14; Psalm 128:1-5; Colossians 3:12-21; Luke 2:22-30
Put on love. (Colossians 3:14)
Everyone knows that family life is a combination of happiness and sadness, with a lot of the ordinary in between. But what about the Holy Family? Surely there was nothing but peace and happiness?
Not really. Life wasn’t always a bed of roses for them. Remember Joseph’s initial plan to divorce Mary to protect her from shame when her pregnancy was discovered (Matthew 1:19)? Or Mary having to give birth in a stable (Luke 2:1-7)? Or what about Mary and Joseph losing track of their son on the way home from Jerusalem (2:44)? They also had to deal with Herod’s murderous rage, a secret flight to Egypt, resettlement in Nazareth, and Joseph’s early death. All of these occasions, and more besides, could have filled them with anxious, fearful thoughts. In similar circumstances, we certainly would have felt tempted to wish for an easier life.
But whatever Mary and Joseph and Jesus thought about their struggles, one thing is clear. They never gave up. In their faithfulness and trust—and even more so, in their commitment to love one another they show us how to weather the storms of life.
Love. That’s what makes a holy family. Not the sentimental love of songs and movies but the strong, relentless, stubborn love of God.
The divine love that the Spirit pours into our hearts (Romans 5:5).
The selfless love that bears all things, hopes all things, and forgives all things.
The pure love of a God who became one of us and died to save us.
No family has a perfect life. Every family faces hardships of one sort or another. But every family also has a heavenly Father who loves them and delights in teaching them how to love each other. So on this feast of the Holy Family, let’s pray for our families, and for every family on earth. May we all learn to “put on love” (Colossians 3:14)!
“Father, pour out your merciful, healing love on every family today.” 

Prayer for the Nation

Almighty God, You have given us this good land for our heritage. We humbly ask You that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of Your favor and glad to do Your will. Bless our land with honorable endeavor, sound learning and pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion, from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties and fashion into one united people the multitude brought here out of many nations and tongues. Endow with the Spirit of wisdom those to whom in Your Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that through obedience to Your law we may show forth Your praise among the nations on earth. In time of prosperity fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble do not allow our trust in You to fail. Amen.

~~ by Thomas Jefferson, taken from "Prayers for Today," published by Leaflet Missal Company


Posted 9-9-20: Many thanks to The Word Among Us for allowing us to use this material

Wrath and anger are hateful things, yet the sinner hugs them tight. (Sirach 27:30)

Grudges. We’ve all carried them. At some point, each of us has been hurt by a friend, family member, or coworker. We can feel wounded and hold onto our anger, to the point where it defines us as a victim. But our first reading tells us this is not a healthy response.

When Sirach wrote these words two thousand years ago, he was clued into something that modern psychologists are only now coming to understand. Withholding forgiveness affects our physical and mental health. It can elevate our blood pressure, disrupt our sleep, and weaken our immune system. It can decrease our ability to trust people and reinforce a negative mindset about life. Why would we “hug tight” to these things that harm us? Only forgiveness can help us loosen our grip.

When we choose to forgive, even if the offender doesn’t ask for forgiveness, we stop being that “wronged person.” We overcome the stress and bitterness and negativity that were wrapped around us. Best of all, we open ourselves up to the Lord’s healing.

God knows everything we’ve gone through: the ways we’ve been hurt and the ways we’ve hurt the people around us. He forgives us, like the master in today’s Gospel. If we can let God’s forgiveness soften our hearts and break through our guilt, shame, and sadness over the hurts we have caused, we will find the grace to act the same toward the people who have hurt us.

If you’re struggling with a grudge or offense, bring it to God in prayer. Ask him to help you release your hold on anger, even if you feel justified. Forgive the person who hurt you even if you can’t physically reconcile with them. Let the act of forgiveness bring you peace and help you move on.

“Father, help me to let go of wrath and anger.

I don’t want to refuse mercy to anyone.

Teach me how to forgive!” 

Together With Jesus from Sunday Sept 6, 2020 (2017)23rdSunday in Ordinary TimeEzekiel 33:7-9; Psalm 95:1-2, 6-9; Rom1 3 : 8-10 Matthew 18:15-20You . . . I have appointed watchman. (Ezekiel 33:7)
Just as God appointed Ezekiel as a watchman for “the house of Israel,” so has he appointed parents to watch over their own “house,” their family (Ezekiel 33:7). Like a prophet, their role is to hear from God, to encourage their children, to warn them about sin, and to help them livein a way that pleases the Lord. This call isn’t limited to parents, either. God wants all of us to be looking out for each other. Being a watchman can feel overwhelming. The very word “watch” means to guard and protect. In the case of parents especially, God has entrusted them with their children’s physical welfare and their eternal welfare. How can anyone ever live up to such expectations?Through intercession. Parents know they cannot control every aspect of their children’s lives. There are limits totheir influence, especially as their children mature and strike out on their own. But there is no limit to the power of prayer!Interceding for your family is not a waste of time. You may have a very long list if you include your brothers and sisters andyour grandchildren. Still, make it a point to pray for each of them by name, and be specific about the intention you are praying for. Then, offer a prayer for everyone: “Lord, protect and guide my family. Bless them and protect them from evil. Fill them with your peace and your love.”How powerful are the prayers of a watchman? Just ask Jesus. On the night before he died, he prayed for the strength to endure the cross. He prayed for the protection of his apostles. He prayed for all of us (John 17:1-26).Two thousand years later, his prayers are still being answered.So imitate Jesus, the great Watchman of his Church. Commit your family to the care of your heavenly Father. God will never let you down.“Lord, help me to watch over my family.I trust in your protection.”
Our staff was blessed to hear Sister Miriam James Heidland at the 2019 Parish Day of Renewal. Her message applies to anyone, and it is hoped that visitors to this website will enjoy and benefit from time viewing it, especially starting at about the "4 minute" mark: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bkFFZJ8kXg&list=PLN5kNnZkZI1BGNS8N8oM4pBSf0rvC6DJn&index=2



- submitted by Gerry Connell

Back in 2012 I wrote out a Scripture Passage and an exercise for the Fellowship that I do using Eph. 6: 10-18. I pass it along to you now in the hope that, sparked by the Holy Spirit, Our Lord uses it to reveal Himself more fully to you, especially as we protect ourselves with God’s graces during this challenging time.

Eph. 6: 10-18: Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

 I picture Jesus giving me each piece of armor, actually gripping “the shield” with my left hand, taking up ‘the sword’ in my right, etc.

In the evening, I often review how well I have worn the armor ... how truthful was I? How well did I bring peace to someone or an incident? Did I protect and defend someone, or did I share in humor at their expense? It’s not intended to be an conscience examination exercise, but I think it follows that line of thought.


 In your name, Jesus, and by Your authority, I put on Your armor, Lord.

I accept from You and put on Your belt of truth.

I acknowledge that You are The Way, The Truth and The Life, that I may be truthful in all that I do this day;

that I may recognize Your truth in all areas of my life and relationships; that I may be true to my spouse, myself and to You.

I accept from You and put on Your breastplate of righteousness.

I acknowledge that You are my righteousness.  Help me to live out Your values and discard any values that are not of Your will. Grant me a softened heart to receive Your love and allow that love to change me; that everything that is right and true comes by You and through You; that I am only right in You.

I accept from You and shod my feet with Your footwear of peace,

that I may go where You want to take me today, that I may walk with and support others in their effort for peace, that I may seek out those in need of You and Your love today, that I may be swift in leaving areas of temptation and not stumble and fall.

I accept from You and put on Your helmet of salvation.

Thank You, Lord, for saving me, not just for eternity (though that would be enough), but for saving me from foolishness and sin … keeping me from destroying the relationships that are so dear.

Thank You for Your love and friendship, that my mind be protected by Your thoughts for me and others and not occupied by those of the world, I do pray for and accept Your gifts of wisdom, knowledge and discernment and the courage to act on them to bring You glory this day

I accept from You and take up Your shield of faith, that I may protect and defend myself and others from the fiery darts of Satan. Help me to recognize hate, fear, despair, discouragement and loss of hope and use Your shield wisely.

I accept from You and take up Your sword of Your Spirit – Your holy word, the Scriptures, that I may cut through the jungle of lies and deceit, that I may see You more clearly, that I may defend myself and others against hatred and violence.

Please grant me confidence in Your protection, and may You be worshipped and glorified in all Your works You do through me and all of Your people today.                                                                                                                                         



Note: This exercise was submitted by Elaine Cervera and consists of the two vertical, blue boxes (not side-by-side as stated in text of larger box...)