Tag Archives: prayer

“lead us not into temptation”

The Our Father & Pope Francis’ Suggested Change

When I read about the Pope’s suggested change from: “lead us not intoThe_Temptation_of_Christ_by_the_Devil_-_Google_Art_Project temptation” to “God help us not to fall into temptation,” made sense to me and I even began to incorporate this change when I prayed the Our Father.

Last week in preparing for my Homily for the first Sunday of Lent specifically Mark’s gospel regarding The Temptation of Jesus I found a few reasons why it should remain in its original content. They are:

  • The Jewish thought at the time of Jesus was that whenever a person received in honor, testing or temptation followed. In understanding the first verse of Mark’s gospel we had to look back to Jesus’ Baptism, when the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus in the form of a dove and a voice from the cloud said: “this is my beloved Son in whom I am very well pleased.” This certainly was an honor and according to Jewish thought temptation would follow.

  • In our baptism we also received a great honor: in our baptism we died with Christ so that we can also live with Christ forever and eternal life. I looked upon this as an honor and keeping with the Jewish thought temptation would follow.

  • Jesus overcame the temptations because God was present with him in his humanity with the angels ministering to him. In our temptation God is with us too. Remember, Jesus’ great temptation when he asked the Father if this cup could pass from him but not his will but God’s will be done. What happened? God sent an angel to strengthen Him.

As I looked at the results that happen to us when we are tempted and that they were positive and strengthened our relationship with God, temptation made sense to me.

  • Temptation helps us to detach ourselves from the things of this earth and focus on God.

  • Temptation helps us to develop a more ardent desire to be with God in heaven.

  • When we are tempted we become disturbed by temptation and see the danger of committing sin which disappoints God and overcoming temptation shows our love for God.

  • It renews our determination to avoid sin and not to offend God.

St. Augustine says:

“Our pilgrimage cannot be exempt from trial we progress by means of trial no one knows themselves except through trial or receives a crown except after victory or strives against an enemy temptations.

If in Christ we have been tempted, in Christ we overcame the devil. Do you think only of Christ’s temptations and fail to think of his victory? See yourself as tempted in Christ, and see yourself as victorious in Christ. He could have kept the devil from Himself but if Jesus was not tempted he could not teach us how to triumph over temptation.”

In our Baptism we received the strength of the Holy Spirit to overcome temptation and the graces we need for eternal life.

God has given us the gifts and graces we need, now it’s up to us to use them.

God Bless – Deacon Steve


The Perfect Prayer

Many years ago, while still a member of the laity (in fact, the diaconate wasn’t even on my radar), I had settled into my pew a few minutes early before Mass, finished a brief prayer, then read the readings for the day in the missal. As I turned the missal over to set it on the pew, the prayers on the back cover caught my attention.

Lord Jesus Christ, take all my freedom, my memory, my understanding and my will. All that I have and cherish you have given me. Your love and your grace are wealth enough for me. Give me these, Lord Jesus, and I ask for nothing more. Amen.

I was familiar with many of them, but this day, a prayer I’d never noticed popped out at me:  The Dedication to Jesus. As I read the prayer, I felt it resonate deep within my heart… these words spoke to me in a way that no prayer ever had. When I’d finished reading, I noticed the attribution to St. Ignatius of Loyola.

I took the missal home, memorized it over a period of a few months; it became my “go-to” prayer. A short, meaningful rededication of my faith and trust in Jesus.

Ignatian spirituality has become a central theme in my prayer life since then. I was content… at peace in my acceptance of Christ the King. And then Sr. Faustina crossed my path. She hadn’t been canonized… her cause was certainly an active one, but I’d never encountered The Chaplet of The Divine Mercy. And, as you might expect, one aspect of the Chaplet clung to my heart just as tenaciously as the Ignatian Dedication:  The Our Father bead prayer… coupled with the 10th Hail Mary bead prayer.

For me, on this Divine Mercy Sunday, I am thankful for this prayer which has a singular place for me outside of the Chaplet:  just before the reception of the Holy Eucharist, I offer all that Jesus is giving to me in His Holy Body & Blood to our Heavenly Father. It centers me… provides me with a powerful focus for reception of the sacrament. Most of all, year-round, I commemorate His Passion for salvation of the whole world.

Mercy… Yes!

Flash Prayer? YES!

The first use of the phrase “Flash Crowd” was coined by John Pettit of beyond.com in 1996 and built on concepts from Larry


Copyright Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities

Niven, Sci-Fi writer, who in his 1970 writings proposed that large, spontaneous crowds could disrupt transportation, etc. Of course, this truly precedes the Internet as we know it, where “Flash Crowds” are creating in a matter of minutes by tweets, FB posts, etc.

A great deal has changed since then, and the “internet of all things” has become the transport mechanism for bringing people from around the globe for shared purposes. And tomorrow is just one of those “shared purposes”:

Yes, tomorrow, people world wide will pray to Saint Marianne Cope. “our” saint, a woman who devoted her life to those with leprosy in the Pacific. Please join us tomorrow in prayer.

A special thanks to Danielle Cummings, Chancellor/Director of Communications, Diocese of Syracuse for the this information celebrating the Feast of Saint Marianne Cope.


In our prayers…

As men of faith, we unite in prayer each day:  Morning, Evening & Night to pray the Liturgy of the Hours, the sacred prayer of the church.  Especially at those times we remember those who are in need:  for healing, guidance, courage in the face of life’s challenges, and of course, those departed and no longer with us.

We believe that our prayers are both heard… and acted upon by our gracious and loving God.  Yet we know that often the answer to the prayer requests may be answered in ways that we neither expect, nor necessarily understand.  Truly, our prayers are in God’s hands!

Join us in adding your requests to our daily prayers:  our deacons will receive your Prayer Request and pray on your behalf for the next 30 days. It’s very easy to make a request… it will take you but a moment.  Then it’s in our helping hands and His.  Here’s the link:  http://www.deacons.us/prayer-request

God Bless!