Seasons and Feasts

Spiritual Adoption in the Gospel of Life

On six Gospel of Life Sundays, our Gospel of Life Team helps us to focus on different questions which call for attention in our time in history, because we who seek to hear and live the good news of Jesus are called to be people of life. On these Sundays, we use the the spiritual adoption prayer at the conclusion of the Prayers of the Faithful.
Living God of Israel, Christ, Son of the living God, Holy Spirit, Advocate, One God with many names, I lift up to you this year one unborn child at risk, one newborn needing care, one mother afraid or confused, one father with faltering courage, one aging sage in poor health, one human alive on death row, one victim of violence or torture, one civilian in the crossfire of war, one keeper of peace in danger, one man wrestling with prejudice, one woman in need of a neighbor, one hard worker who is still poor, one migrant worker seeking dignity, one teen needing encouragement,
one child having difficulty learning, one family without good health care, one community suffering pollution, and one in need of your grace. As you made each in your image, so you call us to grow into the likeness of the Risen Christ. Let each day of this year bring an advent of hope, a new nativity of faith, lenten solidarity of love, the new way of easter joy, and your abiding pentecost presence. As you have called me by name, and I am yours, so do I adopt them in prayer and beg you grant what you know they need to have life and to the full. Amen.

Prayer of a Eucharistic People

adapted from a Life-Teen prayer.
God, our Father, your Son Jesus is the Bread of Life, taken, blessed, broken and given away so that all might be healed and have Life. Take our lives. We offer them to you with open hands. Through the example of Jesus, teach us to surrender fully to you. Bless us with knowledge that we are your beloved ones and that we truly belong to a community of love and mercy. Break open our hearts so that the seed of the Word and the power of the Eucharist can be planted in fertile ground, take root, and transform us. Give us to the world with the power of the Holy Spirit to witness to the love of Jesus and serve him in each person we meet. Let us be bread for the world. As Christ gave you thanks and fed many, may we give you thanks and may you multiply in our growing and in our service for your glory. Amen.

The Aware Prayer

The Awareness Examen, also called the Examen of Consciousness, is a method or way of regular open dialogue with God. It comes from a Spanish saint, Ignatius of Loyola, who died in 1556. Many find this exercise helpful at night before bed, but it is helpful also in the early evening, late afternoon, noon, or even morning. But generally, later in the day is when it makes most sense for most people.

Joseph Tetlow, S. J., Choosing Christ In The World, Institute of Jesuit Sources, St. Louis, MO, 1989;
David L. Fleming, S.J., Draw Me Into Your Friendship, The Spiritual Exercises, A Literal Translation and A Contemporary Reading, Institute of Jesuit Sources, St. Louis, MO, 1996;
Mark Link, S.J.,Challenge, A Daily Meditation Program Based on The Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius, Thomas More Publishing, 1993, pg. 157;
Rev. Paul Wachdorf, Mundelein Seminary, Archdiocese of Chicago.
I take in the breath of life and rest in the presence of God.

a pause: in PRAISE of God

These are specific gifts of creation that this day I have
and touched…
(Name them.)

Now I remember what God has given me to draw me into fullness of life:

• natural talents and gifts in God’s own image,
• particular strengths in times of difficulty,
• ability to hope in times of weakness,
• sense of humor,
• life of faith,
• intelligence and health,
• family and friends,
• the beloved Son, Jesus, to assure us that God’s kingdom is being established,
• the Holy Spirit, to guide and sustain us,
• a vocation in which to love and be loved,
• a vocation participating in God’s creative, healing, transformative work…
• a pause: in THANKSGIVING

Come Holy Spirit, enlighten me, make me aware.
Inspire me to see with growing freedom
the construction of my life story.

Come Holy Spirit, help me to look upon my actions and motives
with honesty and patience,
with neither condemnation nor complacency,
and thus be open to growth.


Now I review the day, hour by hour, searching for the internal events in my life.

Was my heart divided between:

• helping and disregarding?
• scoffing and encouraging?
• listening and ignoring?
• rebuking and forgiving?
• a word and silence?
• neglecting and thanking?

Were there opportunities for growth in faith, hope and charity?

• How did I respond?
• What moved me?

When I made a choice, picking a particular course of action from the possibilities before me, did I act freely, or was I swept along without freedom?


Lord God, help me to look upon myself as you do,
with compassion, to see myself as you see me.
As I know your concern for me,
help me to know my need for you.
I am sorry for the sins of this day,
and ask you to forgive me
for when I resisted your light.
I thank you for your enlightening presence
and I give you praise for the ways
I have been open to your grace.
Your love for me is complete;
make me totally available to you.

Our Father . . .