July 22, 2019

Litany of Forgiveness and Healing

To each invocation, the response is: Forgive Your Church, O Lord.

For all the ways Your shepherds have failed to care for Your flock…
For the innocent lives that were violated, ruined, or scarred…
For the warnings and complaints that were resisted or ignored…
For the many instances of shattered trust…
For all the acts of selfishness and betrayal…
For all the lies, denials, and cover-ups…
For the failures of those entrusted with leadership and authority…
For those who should have acted to protect Your children, but did not do so…
For the times Your appointed leaders chose to act according to this world’s standards, instead of the values of Your Kingdom…
For the scandal caused by bishops and priests who failed to live by their sacred vows…
For all the actions, decisions, and values contrary to Your Holy Will…
For all the ways the Gospel has been compromised, undermined, or discredited…

Now the response will be: Give them Your Peace, O Lord.

To all who have suffered any form of abuse or injustice…
To those whose cries for healing and justice were not heard or taken seriously…
To those whose innocence and trust was violated and betrayed…
To those whose belief in a loving God was harmed or destroyed…
To those who were manipulated by fear, confusion, or misplaced authority…
To those whose trust in the Church was forever shattered…
To those whose lives were ruined by anger, self-doubt, or shame…
To those who now find it difficult to trust, to believe, and to open their hearts to love…
To all who were robbed of their sense of wonder and joy in life…
To those who now find it hard to share of themselves in a deep and trusting way with family and loved ones…
To those who wrongly blame themselves for the sins committed against them…
To all who cry out to You for inner freedom and healing…

Now the response will be: Hear us, O Lord.

That Your Church may be forever cleansed of all evil, we pray…
That those entrusted with authority may always exercise it in an authentic, responsible, and loving manner, we pray…
That the fullness of justice and compassion may be extended to all victims of abuse, whether in the Church or in society as a whole, we pray…
That parishes, schools, seminaries, and other Church sites and institutions may truly be places of refuge and security for all Your people, we pray…
That this time of penance and purification may lead to a more faithful, effective, and fruitful proclamation of the Gospel, we pray…
That all children and families may be confirmed in the way of righteousness and truth, and experience the fullness of Your joy and peace, we pray…
That young people throughout our society and the entire world be preserved from violence, abuse, neglect, and every other violation of human dignity, we pray…
That those who have removed themselves from Your grace may repent of their sins and moral failings with genuine sincerity and humility, we pray…
That those who have been falsely accused, wrongly removed from ministry, imprisoned, or otherwise unjustly punished may be vindicated, restored, and more closely conformed to You as a result of carrying this cross, we pray…
That all of us may be more effective witnesses of Your merciful love, we pray…
That the Holy Spirit may enlighten us, the Heavenly Host of Angels protect us, the intercession of Our Lady renew us, and the example of the Saints encourage and inspire us, so that Your grace may fully be at work in Your Church and in our lives, we pray…
And that Your peace may reign in every human heart, we pray…

Amen!

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Written by
Fr Joseph Esper

REVEREND JOSEPH M. ESPER is a priest of the Archdiocese of Detroit and pastor of Immaculate Conception parish in Anchorville, Michigan. He received his Master of Divinity degree from St. John's Provincial Seminary in Plymouth, Michigan. Through the years, Father Joe has lectured at Marian conferences, appeared on EWTN, spoken on Catholic radio, and written more than a dozen articles for This Rock, The Priest, Homiletic and Pastoral Review, and other publications. He is also the author of numerous books, including Saintly Solutions, More Saintly Solutions, After the Darkness, Lessons from the Lives of the Saints, and Why Is God Punishing Me? In addition to Amazon, many of his most recent books are available through Queenship Publishing.

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Written by Fr Joseph Esper