July 2, 2023
Dear Parish Family:
This Tuesday is Independence Day. The Fourth of July is a time for us to remember and honor the “Founding Fathers” of our nation. While it is a great day for picnics and fireworks, it is also an important day for prayer for our nation.
Bishop John Carroll, the first bishop (and later archbishop) in the United States and patriarch of American Catholicism, wrote this beautiful Prayer for the Nation for the inauguration of President George Washington. Carroll urged American Catholics to recite it regularly for God’s blessings on our nation, on our president, and on our Church. I invite all of us to pray it in a special way this week.
We pray you, O God of might, wisdom, and justice, through whom authority is rightly administered, laws are enacted, and judgment decreed, assist with your Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude the President of these United States, that his administration may be conducted in righteousness, and be eminently useful to your people, over whom he presides; by encouraging due respect for virtue and religion; by a faithful execution of the laws in justice and mercy; and by restraining vice and immorality.
Let the light of your divine wisdom direct the deliberations of Congress, and shine forth in all the proceedings and laws framed for our rule and government, so that they may tend to the preservation of peace, the promotion of national happiness, the increase of industry, sobriety, and useful knowledge; and may perpetuate to us the blessing of equal liberty.
We pray for the governor of this state, for the members of the assembly, for all judges, magistrates, and other officers who are appointed to guard our political welfare, that they may be enabled, by your powerful protection, to discharge the duties of their respective stations with honesty and ability.
We recommend likewise, to your unbounded mercy, all our fellow citizens throughout the United States, that we may be blessed in the knowledge and sanctified in the observance of your most holy law; that we may be preserved in union, and in that peace which the world cannot give; and after enjoying the blessings of this life, be admitted to those which are eternal. Grant this, we beseech you, O Lord of mercy, through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.
Have a wonderful Fourth everyone!
Love and prayers,
Father Neil Sullivan