A Mission Moment: Ash Wednesday

By Rev. Timothy Brown, S.J.

During Lent the Rev. Timothy Brown, S.J., assistant to the president for mission integration, will share prayers and other reflections related to the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.

The following prayer of Pope Francis asks the Lord to make the Jubilee of Mercy a year of grace so that the Church, “with renewed enthusiasm, may bring good news to the poor, proclaim liberty to captives and the oppressed, and restore sight to the blind.”

Lord Jesus Christ,
you have taught us to be merciful like the
heavenly Father,
and have told us that whoever sees you
sees Him.

Show us your face and we will be saved.

Your loving gaze freed Zaccheus and
Matthew from being enslaved by money;
the adulteress and Magdalene from seeking
happiness only in created things;
made Peter weep after his betrayal,
and assured Paradise to the repentant thief.

Let us hear, as if addressed to each one
of us, the words that you spoke to the Samaritan woman:
“If you knew the gift of God!”
You the visible face of the invisible
Father,
of the God who manifests his power above
all by forgiveness and mercy:
let the Church be your visible face in the
world, its Lord risen and glorified.

You willed that your ministers would also
be clothed in weakness
in order that they may feel compassion for
those in ignorance and error:
let everyone who approaches them feel
sought after, loved, and forgiven by God.

Send your Spirit and consecrate every one
of us with its anointing,
so that the Jubilee of Mercy may be a year of
grace from the Lord,
and your Church, with renewed
enthusiasm, may bring good news to
the poor,
proclaim liberty to captives and the
oppressed, and restore sight to the blind.

We ask this through the intercession of
Mary, Mother of Mercy,
you who live and reign with the Father and
the Holy Spirit forever and ever.

Amen.

Find more reflections from Fr. Brown posted throughout Lent here.

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