18Mar Fourth Sunday of Lent – Prayers of the Faithful etc.

Opening Comment: With St Patrick’s Day behind us, we resume our lenten journey. The season is half over, and the celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus is nearer to us. On this midway Sunday, it is traditional to honour mothers, praying for those still with us and remembering those who have died. Penitential Rite: Let us call to mind the care we experience in our families and recall times we failed to show love:

Introduction to the Scripture Readings

2 Chronicles 36:14-16, 19-23 — The history of the Jewish people is interpreted, with their misfortunes linked by the writer to their sins. Ephesians 2:4-10 — God is rich in mercy, a free gift we each receive. We are invited to be God’s work of art.  John 3:14-21 — God loved us so much that he was generous with his mercy. If we have faith in that mercy, we will not be lost.

  •  Introduction to the Scripture Readings of Year A (which may be used today) 1 Samuel 16:1, 6-7, 10-13 — The choice of the young boy David by God is described. Ephesians 5:8-14 — A reflection on light and darkness, and the new sight that people with faith can have. John 9:1-41 — Describes the healing of the man born blind: believers can go from blindness to new sight.

The General Intercessions

Introduction (by the Presider) We bring our prayers to God, whose love for us has no end.

  1. For Pope N, our Bishop N, and all who minister in the Church (Pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
  2. For those preparing to celebrate baptism at Easter time (Pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
  3. For peace with justice in our country, and throughout the world (Pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
  4. For exiles and refugees, and all who travel in search of a better life (Pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
  5. For the mothers of this community and all who take a mother’s role (Pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
  6. For mothers who have died and for all the dead, especially N & N (Pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.

Conclusion (by the Presider) God of love and mercy, your gifts to your people are boundless. Give us your grace and hear our prayers, we ask in faith, through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Liturgical Suggestions Today is Laetare Sunday, on which Mother’s Day is celebrated each year. Flowers of Lá ‘le Pádraig are retained today but no Gloria, no Alleluia. Preface of Lent 1, page 414 (Preface of the Fourth Sunday of Lent may be used only if Year A Gospel is read.) Eucharistic Prayer 2. Prayer over the People page 108 (preceded by ‘Bow down for the blessing‘ and followed by: ‘And may the blessing of Almighty God…).  Songs: ‘O Sacred Head Surrounded’; ‘A Íosa Glan Mo Chroíse’; ‘Oh the Love of My Lord’.