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The Universal Prayer (attributed to Pope Clement Xi)
Lord, I believe in you: increase my faith.
I trust in you: strengthen my trust.
I love you: let me love you more and more.
I am sorry for my sins: deepen my sorrow.
I worship you as my first beginning,
I long for you as my last end,
I praise you as my constant helper,
And call on you as my loving protector.
Guide me by your wisdom,
Correct me with your justice,
Comfort me with your mercy,
Protect me with your power.
I offer you, Lord, my thoughts: to be fixed on you;
My words: to have you for their theme;
My actions: to reflect my love for you;
My sufferings: to be endured for your greater glory.
I want to do what you ask of me:
In the way you ask,
For as long as you ask,
Because you ask it.
Lord, enlighten my understanding,
Strengthen my will,
Purify my heart,
and make me holy.
Help me to repent of my past sins
And to resist temptation in the future.
Help me to rise above my human weaknesses
And to grow stronger as a Christian.
Let me love you, my Lord and my God,
And see myself as I really am:
A pilgrim in this world,
A Christian called to respect and love
All whose lives I touch,
Those under my authority,
My friends and my enemies.
Help me to conquer anger with gentleness,
Greed by generosity,
Apathy by fervor.
Help me to forget myself
And reach out toward others.
Make me prudent in planning,
Courageous in taking risks.
Make me patient in suffering, unassuming in prosperity.
Keep me, Lord, attentive at prayer,
Temperate in food and drink,
Diligent in my work,
Firm in my good intentions.
Let my conscience be clear,
My conduct without fault,
My speech blameless,
My life well-ordered.
Put me on guard against my human weaknesses.
Let me cherish your love for me,
Keep your law,
And come at last to your salvation.
Teach me to realize that this world is passing,
That my true future is the happiness of heaven,
That life on earth is short,
And the life to come eternal.
Help me to prepare for death
With a proper fear of judgment,
But a greater trust in your goodness.
Lead me safely through death
To the endless joy of heaven.
Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Reading 1, Acts 6:1-7
1 About this time, when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenists made a complaint against the Hebrews: in the daily distribution their own widows were being overlooked.
2 So the Twelve called a full meeting of the disciples and addressed them, ‘It would not be right for us to neglect the word of God so as to give out food;
3 you, brothers, must select from among yourselves seven men of good reputation, filled with the Spirit and with wisdom, to whom we can hand over this duty.
4 We ourselves will continue to devote ourselves to prayer and to the service of the word.’
5 The whole assembly approved of this proposal and elected Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, together with Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus of Antioch, a convert to Judaism.
6 They presented these to the apostles, and after prayer they laid their hands on them.
7 The word of the Lord continued to spread: the number of disciples in Jerusalem was greatly increased, and a large group of priests made their submission to the faith.
Responsorial Psalm, Psalms 33:1-2, 4-5, 18-19
1 Shout for joy, you upright; praise comes well from the honest.
2 Give thanks to Yahweh on the lyre, play for him on the ten-stringed lyre.
4 The word of Yahweh is straightforward, all he does springs from his constancy.
5 He loves uprightness and justice; the faithful love of Yahweh fills the earth.
18 But see how Yahweh watches over those who fear him, those who rely on his faithful love,
19 to rescue them from death and keep them alive in famine.
Gospel, John 6:16-21
16 That evening the disciples went down to the shore of the sea
17 and got into a boat to make for Capernaum on the other side of the sea. It was getting dark by now and Jesus had still not rejoined them.
18 The wind was strong, and the sea was getting rough.
19 They had rowed three or four miles when they saw Jesus walking on the sea and coming towards the boat. They were afraid,
20 but he said, ‘It’s me. Don’t be afraid.’
21 They were ready to take him into the boat, and immediately it reached the shore at the place they were making for.