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Church Unity Octave (Jan. 18th-25th)

Prayer of the Octave

(Recited daily)

ANTIPHON (John 17:21): That they all may be one, as Thou, Father, in Me and I in Thee; that they also may be one in Us; that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me.

℣. I say unto thee that thou art Peter.

℟. And upon this Rock I will build My Church.

Let us pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, Who saidst unto Thine Apostles “peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you”, regard not our sins, but the faith of Thy Church, and vouchsafe to grant unto Her that peace and unity which are agreeable to Thy Will. Who livest and reignest, God, forever and ever.

℟. Amen.

First Day of the Octave

January 18th – The Feast of St. Peter’s Chair at Rome

Intention: The return of the “other sheep” to the One Fold of Christ

Prayer for the Return of the Other Sheep

Let us pray.

O God, in Thy mercy thou dost set aright those who have gone astray and Thou dost save those whom Thou hast gathered together. We beseech Thee to pour down upon all Christian people the grace of union with Thee, so that putting aside disunion and attaching themselves to the true shepherd of Thy Church, they may be able to serve Thee humbly and lovingly. Through Christ Our Lord.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Immaculate Virgin, who wast preserved by a singular privilege of grace from original sin, look down with pity upon our separated brethren, who are still thy children, and call them back to the Center of Unity. Many have, even from afar, preserved a most tender devotion towards thee, O Mother; reward them for their devotion by obtaining for them the grace of conversion. Victorious over the powers of hell from the very first moment of thine existence, renew, now that the necessity is more urgent, thy triumphant progress, as in ages past. Glorify thy Son, O Mother, by bringing back to the One Fold His straying sheep. And may it be thy glory, O Virgin Mary, to banish error from the earth, to put an end to disunity and to restore peace to the world.

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles

O glorious St. Peter, as a reward for thy lively and generous faith, thy profound and sincere humility, and thy ardent love, thou wast singled out by Our Lord and endowed with most special privileges. Thou wast also constituted Prince of the Apostles with primacy over the whole Church, of which thou wert made the Rock and Foundation. Obtain for us, we pray, a lively faith and an ardent zeal so that all of us will labor for the return of our separated brethren. May the desire of Our Divine Redeemer, that there might be but “one Fold and one Shepherd,” be for us, as it wast for thee, the inspiration to work and pray for the return of all those who are still outside the Fold. Strengthened by Divine Grace, may they be led back speedily to the bosom of our common Mother, the Catholic Church.

℟. Amen.

Second Day of the Octave

January 19th

Intention: The return of Oriental Separatists to Communion with the Apostolic See

Prayer for the Reunion of the East and West

Let us Pray.

O Lord, Who hast united all nations in the confession of Thy name, we pray Thee for the Christian peoples of the East. Mindful of the eminent place they have held in Thy Church, we beg of Thee to inspire them to occupy it again, so as to form with us one single fold. Grant that they, together with ourselves, may be penetrated with the teaching of those holy doctors of theirs, who are also our Fathers in the Faith. Grant us that the spirit of peace and charity, which is the mark of Thy presence among the faithful, may hasten the day in which their prayers may be united with ours, so that every people and every tongue may acknowledge and glorify Our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Immaculate Virgin Mary, we thy servants and children, full of confidence in thy powerful protection, humbly beseech thee to implore of the Holy Ghost the abundance of His gifts for our brethren, the separated Christians of the East. Enlightened by His vivifying grace, may they return to the bosom of the Catholic Church. We pray also that our Oriental brethren, once more united to us by the indissoluble bonds of the same faith and the same charity, may, with us, glorify by the practice of good works the most august Trinity, and at the same time pay homage to thee, O Virgin Mother of God, full of grace, now and forever.

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to the Fathers of the Eastern Church

O glorious martyrs, Saint Ignatius of Antioch and Saint Polycarp of Smyrna, and thou, illustrious Doctors of the Church, Saint Athanasius, Saint John Chrysostom and Saint Basil, who worked and suffered so much for the purity of faith and the salvation of the souls entrusted to thy paternal care, look down from heaven upon thy beloved Eastern countries, which, forgetful of thy teaching and example, live now separated from the body of the true Church. By thy powerful intercession, O holy Eastern Fathers, obtain for all separated Oriental Christians the grace to return to the Center of Unity, and to form with us one and the same family, in Christ Jesus, Our Lord.

℟. Amen.

Third Day of the Octave

January 20th

Intention: The conversion of the Anglicans

Prayer for the Conversion of England

Let us pray.

O Jesus, Good Shepherd, look down benignly upon the great and noble English nation. Converted to Thee through the labors of St. Augustine and his companions, it was for many centuries rich in fruits of faith and sanctity. So devoted was this nation to Thy holy and Immaculate Mother that it was known throughout Christendom as the “Dowry of Mary.” When it was separated from Thee in cruel fashion, many hundreds of its people willingly shed their blood in testimony of their loyalty to Thee and Thy Church. O Loving Shepherd of souls, recall this great nation once more to the unity of Thy Church, and grant peace of soul to all those now separated from Thy flock.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, and our own most gentle Queen and Mother, look down in mercy upon England, thy Dowry, and upon us all who greatly hope and trust in thee. Through thee it was that Jesus our Savior and our Hope was given unto the world; and He has given thee to us that we might hope still more. Plead for us thy children, whom thou didst receive and accept at the foot of the Cross, O sorrowful Mother. Intercede for our separated English brethren, that they may be united with us in the One True Fold. Pray for us all, dear Mother, that by faith fruitful in good works we may all deserve to see and praise God together with Thee in our heavenly home.

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to the English Martyrs

O Glorious Martyrs of England, Saint Thomas More, Saint John Fisher and thy companions, who, to sustain the voice of the Supreme Head of the True Church against the decrees of your rulers, didst willingly and courageously suffer death, pray now that the great nation to which thou didst belong may once more return to the bosom of the Church from which it was so cruelly wrested.

℟. Amen.

Fourth Day of the Octave

January 21st

Intention: The return of Lutherans and other Protestants of continental Europe to the Holy Church

Prayer for the Conversion of Protestants

Let us pray.

O most beloved Lord Jesus Christ, Who hast redeemed the world at the price of Thy Most Precious Blood, look down in Thy mercy upon the Christian peoples of Europe, who are still outside Thy Fold, and let the full blaze of the light of Thy truth shine upon them. Multiply, O God, the true messengers of Thy Gospel, inspire them with fervor, make them fruitful in good works, and bless with Thy grace their zeal and their labors, so that the separated Christians of Europe may be fully converted to Thee, their Creator and Redeemer. Recall the stray sheep to Thy Fold, and the wanderers to the bosom of Thy one true Church. Hasten, O dearest Savior, the happy advent of Thy Kingdom on earth, draw all men to the treasures of Thy Sacred Heart, so that all may share in the priceless benefits of Thy Redemption in the eternal happiness of Heaven.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Mary, Mother of Mercy and Refuge of Sinners, we beseech thee to look with pitying eyes upon the Protestant peoples of Europe. O Seat of Wisdom, enlighten their minds, so that they may come to know that the Catholic Church is the one, True Church of Christ. Complete their conversion by obtaining for them the grace to believe every truth of our Holy Faith. Once more united to us by the bonds of divine charity, they will sing with us forever thy glorious praises. “Rejoice, O Virgin Mary, thou alone hast destroyed all error in the whole world.”

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to St. Agnes on Her Feast

O singular example of virtue, glorious Saint Agnes, the lively faith that animated thee from thy childhood rendered thee so acceptable to God that thou didst merit the crown of martyrdom. Obtain for us, we pray, the grace to preserve entire in our hearts the Catholic Faith, and to seek the conversion to the faith of our Christian brethren now separated from us, so that all may become Christians not only in word but also in deed. Pray for us today that, as we confess Jesus openly in the face of men, Jesus may give favorable testimony of us before His Father in heaven.

℟. Amen.

Fifth Day of the Octave

January 22nd

Intention: The union of Protestants in America with the Chair of Saint Peter

Prayer for the Conversion of America

Let us pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, grant unto all Thy servants, but especially to the people of our own nation, the grace of being fully united to Thee in Thy Church. O Divine Redeemer, of Whom the prophet sang “all the kings of the earth shall adore Him and all the nations shall serve Him,” extend Thy Kingdom over the entire human race, but especially over our own beloved country. Grant in Thy mercy that the people of our land may be converted to Thee, and humbly and lovingly serve Thee. This we ask, O Savior, through the intercession of Thy Immaculate Mother, the benevolent patroness and protectress of our country.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

Most Holy Virgin, who wast pleasing to the Lord and became His Mother, Immaculate in body and spirit, in faith and in love, look down kindly upon us poor sinners. We now implore thy powerful patronage for all the people of our beloved land. The wicked serpent, against whom the first curse was hurled, continues fiercely to attack and ensnare the unhappy children of Eve. O Blessed Mother, our Queen and our advocate, who crushed the head of the enemy from the very first moment of thine existence, receive from us the prayers which we implore thee to present at the throne of God. Pray that we may never fall into the snares laid out for us, and that we may all arrive at the port of salvation. May the Church and Christian society, now in so many dangers, sing once again the hymn of deliverance, of victory, and of peace.

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to Saint John the Baptist

O most zealous messenger of God, Saint John the Baptist, while thou didst work no miracles on others, thou didst draw after thee crowds, to prepare them to receive Our Savior worthily and to listen to His heavenly teaching. This thou didst do solely by the example of thy holy life and the practice of every good work. Pray that we also may receive the grace to lead many souls to God, but, above all, the souls of those who are still outside the One Fold in our own beloved country.

℟. Amen.

Sixth Day of the Octave

January 23rd

Intention: The return of lapsed Catholics to the Sacraments

Prayer for Lapsed Catholics

Let us pray.

O Almighty Father, Who desirest not the death of the sinner, but rather that he be converted and live pour out upon us thy mercy and listen to the prayers of Thy servants. Soften the hearts of those children of Thine who have strayed from the true paths, which Thou didst establish for their salvation. They are now forgetful of their duties as Catholics and pursue only the transitory pleasures of the world. Grant that they may speedily return to the practice of every Christian virtue, so that their fives may shine with the integrity of faith, the fervor of piety, and the ardor of charity. Restore all of them to Thy Sacraments and to the life of Thy grace, through the merits of the Most Precious Blood of Thy Son, Our Savior Jesus Christ.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Mother of Jesus Christ and our Mother, we pray thee to obtain for us the grace of serving God faithfully in this world that we may have the happiness of loving Him eternally in heaven. Hear the prayers that we address to thee, O Mother; defend us against the enemies of our salvation, and against our own infirmities. Obtain for us pardon for our sins and perseverance in the determination never to fall away again. We implore thee to take under thy protection those who have abandoned the practice of their Catholic duties. May they be converted again and become faithful servants of thy Son. O Mother of Mercy, be for us all “the cause of our joy” and show unto us Jesus Christ, thy Son, as thy gift to us both for time and for eternity.

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to Saint Peter

O glorious Saint Peter, Prince of the Apostles and firm foundation of the Church, obtain for us a lively faith, which we may openly and fearlessly profess in its integrity and purity, even, if need be, to the shedding of our blood. Obtain for us also a true love of our Holy Mother the Church, and make us zealous in the fulfillment of our religious duties. We pray to you today to intercede for those who have wandered from the Church which Christ established for their salvation. May they receive from Almighty God, through your intercession, the grace to return speedily to their Father’s love, so that they may enjoy here on earth peace and tranquillity, and one day attain everlasting happiness in heaven.

℟. Amen.

Seventh Day of the Octave

January 24th

Intention: The conversion of the Jews

Prayer for the Conversion of the Jews

Let us pray.

O God, Who dost manifest Thy mercy and compassion towards all peoples, have mercy upon the Jewish race, once Thy Chosen People. Thou didst select them alone out of all the nations of the world to be the custodians of Thy sacred teachings. From them Thou didst raise up Prophets and Patriarchs to announce the coming of the Redeemer. Thou didst will that Thine only Son, Jesus Christ Our Lord and Savior, should be a Jew according to the flesh, born of a Jewish maiden in the Land of Promise. Listen to the prayers we offer Thee today for the conversion of the Jewish people. Grant that they may come safely to a knowledge and love of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah foretold by their Prophets, and that they may walk with us in the way of salvation.

℟. Amen.

Prayer of the Congregation of Our Lady of Sion

God of all goodness and Father of mercies, we beseech Thee, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and by the intercession of the Patriarchs and holy Apostles, to cast a look of compassion upon the children of Israel, that they may be brought to the knowledge of our only Savior, Jesus Christ, and may partake of the precious fruits of the Redemption. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to Saint Paul

O holy Apostle Paul of Tarsus, from thy glorious place in heaven, look down upon the race thou didst love so well. True it is that many of them remained deaf to thy ringing words of truth, and that some of them even stirred up persecution against thee and thy fellow believers, but thou wert so devoted to thy people that thou didst will to become a castaway for the sake of their conversion. Now that thou art glorious in heaven, obtain for thy brethren the grace of repentance and conversion, so that they may finally take their rightful place in the great family of the Catholic Church.

℟. Amen.

Eighth Day of the Octave

January 25th – Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul

Intention: The missionary conquest of the world for Christ

Prayer for the Conversion of Our Brethren

Let us pray.

Eternal God, Creator of all things, remember that the souls of unbelievers have been created by Thee, and formed to Thine own image and likeness. Behold, O Lord, how to Thy dishonor hell is being filled with these same souls. Remember, O God, that for their salvation Thy Son Jesus Christ underwent a most cruel death. Do not permit, O Lord, that Thy Divine Son be any longer despised by unbelievers; but be appeased by the prayers of the Saints and of the Church, the Spouse of Thy most holy Son, and forgetting their idolatry and unbelief, grant that they may at last come to acknowledge Thy Son Jesus Christ, Who is our Salvation, Life and Resurrection, through Whom we have been saved and redeemed; to Whom be glory forever and ever.

℟. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Blessed Mother of God, whose stainless heart is full of mercy and compassion, look down in pity upon those who have not yet heard the tidings of the Gospel. Remember that they are the work of the hands of thy Son that they have been created in His image and redeemed by His Most Precious Blood. Obtain for these poor brethren of ours the knowledge of our Holy Faith, and the grace to love, embrace, and to practice it faithfully. Intercede at the throne of the Most High, O Mother, that many more missionaries may be sent to pagan lands, there to win souls for thy Divine Son. O Virgin Mother of God, pray that all of us may soon be united in one and the same hope, and in one and the same love. Attentive to the words of thy Divine Son, may we dwell in peace and happiness in the Church He instituted for our salvation.

℟. Amen.

℣. Our Lady of the Atonement, intercede for us.

℟. That there may be fulfilled the prayer of thy Divine Son, “That all may be one.”

Prayer to Saint Paul

O glorious Saint Paul, from a persecutor of the Christian name thou didst become an Apostle of burning zeal, and in order that Jesus Christ might become known to the furthermost bounds of the earth, thou didst joyfully suffer imprisonment, scourging, stoning, shipwreck, and every kind of persecution. Obtain for us now the grace to pray at all times for those who have not as yet been blessed with the gift of faith. Help us to use all our strength for the conversion of those who have not as yet heard the Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

℟. Amen.

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