There are times when we feel weary, sad, confused or afraid. And then there are times when we burst with joy and thankfulness.Below are a selection of prayers, hymns and readings to help you talk to God in good times and bad. Use the links below to get to the relevant sections.
If on this night you are experiencing an hour of darkness,
a day that has not yet dawned, a light dimmed or a dream shattered,
open your heart with amazement to the message of Easter.
Do not be afraid, He has risen!
Your expectations will not remain unfulfilled,
your tears will be dried, your fears will be replaced by hope.
For the Lord always goes ahead of you,
He always walks before you.
And with him, life begins anew.
2022 Easter Message
For those who are battling with the effects of Covid-19 and lockdown, please click here for a special prayer.
Sign of the Cross
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
We adore you, most holy Lord Jesus Christ, here & in all your Churches throughout the world, & we bless you, because by your Holy Cross, you have redeemed the world.
O God, you gave us in this wondrous Sacrament the memorial of your Passion. Help us so to venerate the sacred mysteries of your Body & Blood, that we may always experience within ourselves the benefits of your redemption, who live & reign forever. Amen
Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those that trespass against us and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women; and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen
I believe in God the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell, on the third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there he will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting. Amen
O my God, I am sorry and beg pardon for all my sins. I detest them above all things, because they deserve your dreadful punishment, because they have crucified my loving Saviour, Jesus Christ, but most of all because they offend your infinite goodness. And I firmly resolve by the help of your grace to avoid the occasions of sin.
My God, I believe in you and all your Church teaches, because you have said it, and your word is true.
My God, I hope in you for grace and glory, because of your promises, your mercy and your power.
My God, because you are so good, I love you above all things and for your sake I love my neighbour as myself.
O my God, I offer up to you all my thoughts, words, actions, joys and hopes, griefs and anxieties of this day. I ask you to grant me the grace to love and serve you and all those you send into my life today. Amen.
Prayer for Liberation from Covid-19
Gracious and merciful Father,
We give thanks anew for your providence and your presence among us. We prayerfully ask your grace in the face of the Covid-19 storm here and throughout the world. We pray for those in need of healing from fear of coronavirus.
We pray that your peace may be with those who are anxious or grieving.
We pray that you will continue to strengthen and sustain all those who are serving their brothers and sisters in response to the pandemic.
We pray that the discernment of the Holy Spirit may guide the leaders of our families, nations, communities and healthcare workers to make the right choices and decisions.
We pray that each of us may see quickly what more we can do to help the vulnerable, especially the sickly, the elderly, the poor and the marginalised.
This prayer for our nation and the family of nations, we gather now with all that is on our hearts, and offer to you, through Jesus Christ our Lord
V. The angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.
R. And she conceived by the Holy Spirit. (Hail Mary)
V. Behold the handmaid of the Lord.
R. Be it done unto me according to your word. (Hail Mary)
V. The Word was made flesh.
R. And dwelt amongst us. (Hail Mary)
V. Pray for us O most holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
V. Let us pray.
Pour forth, we beseech you O Lord, your grace into our hearts, that we to whom the incarnation of Christ our Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by his passion and cross be brought to the glory of his resurrection. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen
Regina Coeli (During Easter Season)
V. Queen of heaven rejoice, Alleluia
R. For he whom you did merit to bear, alleluia
V. Has risen as he said, Alleluia
R. Pray for us to God, Alleluia
V. Rejoice and be glad O Virgin Mary Alleluia
R. For the Lord is truly risen Alleluia
V. Let us pray
God, our Father, who gave joy to the world through the resurrection of your Son our Lord Jesus Christ, grant that through the intercession of the Virgin Mary his Mother, we may obtain the joys of everlasting life. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be world without end. Amen
Father, bless the Families of our Diocese with goodness, love and zeal, so that many young men and women may answer the call to love and serve you and your people in the priesthood, religious life and lay ministry. Amen.
O God of justice and love, bless us the people of Southern Africa, and help us to live in your peace. Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there’s hatred, let me sow love. Where there’s injury, let me sow pardon. Where there’s discord, let me sow harmony. Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be understood, as to understand; to be loved as to love; to receive sympathy as to give it. For it is in giving that we receive, in pardoning that we are pardoned; in forgetting ourselves that we shall find unending peace with others. Amen.
For New Pastoral Plan
Loving Father, in Jesus your Son you reveal your plan of bringing all people into your kingdom. Guide us to know what you want of us. Help us to live as an evangelising community serving You, humanity and all creation. Where there is ignorance, give knowledge; where there is darkness, light; where there is fear, courage; where there is indifference, love. May your Holy Spirit guide us in forming and living out our Pastoral Plan. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
O God of life and love, you have given us power to bring new life into the world. But all too often a mother’s womb, which you created as a nursery of life, is made instead a place of its destruction. Help us to remove this evil and ensure respect for all life, made in your image and likeness, called to fulfill its promise on earth and destined to find a home with you for all eternity. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen
Prayer for Special Occasions
Holy Spirit, bring new life to the Church as we battle with Covid-19. Make each one of us sensitive to your presence. Inspire us to use our gifts to build a better world. Help us to overcome the things that divide us, and transform us into a community rendering unselfish service to one another. Awaken in all Christians an awareness of their calling and a desire for unity. Help us to become a sign and instrument of being one with God and with one another. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary that never was it known that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your aid, or sought your intercession, was left unaided. Inspired by this confidence I fly to you, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother. To you I come; before you I stand; sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in your mercy hear and answer me. Amen.
For the Gift of Purity:
For Purity of Mind: Hail Mary…
For Purity of Heart: Hail Mary…
For Purity of Body: Hail Mary…
Hail Holy Queen, Mother of mercy. Hail our life, our sweetness and our hope. To thee do we cry poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs mourning and weeping in this vale of tears. Turn, then, O most gracious Advocate thine eyes of mercy towards us and after this our exile show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
After the Rosary
O God, whose only-begotten Son, by his life, death and resurrection, has purchased for us the rewards of eternal life; grant, we beseech you, that meditating on these Mysteries in the most holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we may imitate what they contain, and obtain what they promise, through the same Christ our Lord. Amen
O God, to whom every heart is open, every desire known and from whom no secrets are hidden; purify the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily praise your holy name. Amen.
Jesus, I believe that in Communion, I receive your flesh to eat and your blood to drink, because you have said it and your word is true. All that I have and all that I am are your gift to me and now you give me yourself.
Soul of Christ, sanctify me. Body of Christ save me. Blood of Christ inebriate me. Water from the side of Christ cleanse me. Passion of Christ strengthen me. O good Jesus hear me. Within your wounds hide me. Never let me be separated from you. At the hour of my death call me and bid me come to you, that, with your Saints, I may praise you forever and ever. Amen
For Priests & Deacons
Father, you have appointed your Son, Jesus Christ, eternal High Priest. Guide those he has chosen to be ministers of word and sacrament and help them to be faithful in fulfilling the ministry they have received. Through Christ, our Lord. Amen
For Benedict Daswa’s Intercession
O Blessed Trinity, you filled the heart of Blessed Benedict Daswa with great love and zeal for building up your kingdom. You chose him and gave him the courage and strength to stand up for his faith without fear and sent him to bear witness to it even unto death.
Loving God, like him, may we always proclaim the truth of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ by the witness of our life. Keep us away from all deeds of darkness; protect us from evil spirits and the powers of evil. Make us true apostles of life in our families and communities.
Father, through Blessed Benedict Daswa’s intercession and if it is according to your will, grant us these graces which we now ask of you… (Special intentions…)
May we always draw strength and courage from the life of your Servant Benedict Daswa whom we venerate as our intercessor and model of holiness. Through Christ our Lord. Amen
For Our Families
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, in you we contemplate the splendour of true love. To you we turn with childlike confidence and trust. Holy Family of Nazareth, grant that our families too may be places of communion and prayer, authentic schools of the Gospel and true domestic Churches. May families never again experience violence, rejection or division. May all who have been hurt or scandalised find ready comfort and healing in you. May what we have learned from the Synods on the Family make us value and promote Marriage & the Family as sacred and inviolable, the Father’s plan from the beginning for bringing new life into the world.
Jesus, Son of Mary, have mercy on us! Mary and Joseph, pray for us! Amen.
For Liberation from Addiction
Most merciful Father, give strength, we ask you, to all your children who are held bound by the chains of addiction to drugs and alcohol. Bless them with perseverance in their fight to be free. May they reach out and receive the help they need to take the first steps towards recovery. Give courage and hope to their families, friends and communities, and draw them close together in the power of your mercy and love. May your Son, Jesus Christ, who ministered to all who came to him in need, assist all who today accompany and care for those who suffer from addiction. Grant them understanding but above all, love that endures and transforms all things. Through Christ our Lord. Amen
For Discerning Our Vocation
Oh God our Father, as we your sons and daughters thank you for the blessing of knowing your Son, Jesus Christ, we ask you for the faith, hope and love which we need to be his true disciples. May we always walk close to Him in order to discern and live our vocation to be perfect even as you, Father, are perfect!
Holy Spirit, give us faith and courage to “go forth into the world and make disciples of all the nations”, witnessing to our Risen Lord every day and in every way.
Mary, our Mother conceived without sin, we thank you for constantly showing us how the Mighty One has done great things for us. Guide us as we strive to understand and live in the presence which your Son promised us: “I am with you always, even to the end of the age!”
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Holy Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do you, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.
My Guardian Angel
Angel of God
My guardian dear, to whom his love commits me here,
ever be at my side to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen
For the Poor Souls
May the souls of all the Faithful departed through the mercy of God
rest in peace. Amen
Five Basics for Christian Living.
a) Read, pray, share the Scriptures. “Walk with Jesus”
b) Be a caring disciple. “Build the Church by your Faith & good works”
c) Receive the Sacraments devoutly. “Make Jesus your life’s centre”
d) Pray alone, with Family & Faith Community. “Witness to your Jesus”.
e) Share with those who have less. “Give as you have received”!
I give you my hands to do your work.
I give you my feet to go your way.
I give you my eyes to see as you do.
I give you my tongue to speak your words.
I give you my mind that you may think in me.
I give you my spirit that you may pray in me.
Above all, I give you my heart
that you may love in me your Father and all mankind.
I give you my whole self that you may grow in me,
so that it is you, Lord Jesus,
who live and work and pray in me.
Teach me to be generous;
Teach me to serve You as You deserve;
To give and not count the cost;
To fight and not to heed the wounds;
To toil and not to seek reward, except that of knowing that I do Your will.
May God grant you always
A sunbeam to warm you
A moonbeam to charm you
A sheltering angel
So nothing can harm you
Laughter to cheer you
Faithful friends near you
And whenever you pray
Heaven to hear you.
God, my Father – let your love be my key
to this new day.
Let me live each moment in your name.
Jesus, my Saviour – I pray that those
who have yet to hear your message of
salvation, will hear it today.
Holy Spirit – fan the flame of faith in
my heart. And show me how to share
the warmth with others around me.
Lord, as I close the lock on today . . .
If I have disappointed you
I ask your forgiveness.
If I have pleased you,
I thank you for showing me the way.
In these hours of darkness,
I ask you to watch over me,
and hold safe my key
to tomorrow’s new day.
A hymn of comfort to remind us that God is always near
Day is done, but love unfailing
Dwells ever here;
Shadows fall, but hope, prevailing,
Calms every fear.
Loving Father, none forsaking,
Take our hearts, of Love’s own making,
Watch our sleeping, guard our waking,
Be always near.
Dark descends, but Light unending
Shines through our night;
You are with us, ever lending
New strength to sight;
One in love, your truth confessing,
One in hope of heaven’s blessings,
May we see, in love’s possessing,
Love’s endless light!
Eyes will close, but you, unsleeping,
Watch by our side;
Death may come: in Love’s safe keeping
Still we abide.
God of love, all evil quelling,
Sin forgiving, fear dispelling,
Stay with us, our hearts indwelling,
God of our life,
There are days when the burdens we carry chafe our shoulders and weigh us down;
When the road seems dreary and endless, the skies grey and threatening;
When our lives have no music in them, and our hearts are lonely,
and our souls have lost their courage.
Flood the path with light, run our eyes to where the skies are full of promise;
Tune our hearts to brave music;
Give us the sense of comradeship with heroes and saints of every age;
And so quicken our spirits that we may be able to encourage
the souls of all who journey with us on the road of life,
to Your honour and glory.
Daily Prayer for the World
Bless the world that you have created,
and those of us who live in it.
Help us change hatred to love,
and war to peace, in your name.
In those places where people don’t know you,
let your light now shine on them.
To anyone who is sick and suffering, in body or spirit,
including (name), please give comfort and healing.
Where fear of any kind rules, including (name),
let your hope and reassurance replace it.
To those who feel abandoned, alone, and forgotten,
including (name), give a sign of your protective presence.
Where death is close (including name)
grant a glimpse of eternal life hereafter.
And to those who work for your Kingdom,
including (the Zulu Missions), give strength and perseverance.
In my prayer, I also ask the support of
Our Holy Mother, Mary, and all the Saints.
Prayer for Courage
Lord, give us all the courage we need to go the way you shepherd us,
That when you call we may go unfrightened.
If you bid us come to you across the waters,
That we may not be frightened as we go.
And if you bid us climb the hill,
May we not notice that it is a hill, mindful only of the happiness of your company.
You made us for yourself, that we should travel with you a
And see you at last in your unveiled beauty in the abiding city,
Where you are light and happiness and endless home.
For the sick
Almighty Father, look down
on your children who are
suffering illness and pain.
Give them the strength and patience
to carry this cross.
Grant them comfort and relief
at the hands of those who bring love
and care to them in your name.
And if it is your will,
let them be whole and healthy again.
Prayer to Mary for caregivers
Blessed Mary, as mother to Jesus, you lived
the special calling of being His caregiver.
There were times when you didn’t understand, but
you gave understanding.
There were times when you were weary
but you never failed to keep giving.
There were times when sorrow pierced you,
but the other’s pain was more important to you.
You never ceased to give love, care and comfort
even when it seemed that you had no more to give.
Please bless all caregivers in our world with
the special grace they need to carry out their work –
in Jesus’ name.
For Those Contemplating Suicide
Most loving and forgiving God,
hear our prayers for all
who seek to end their life
by their own hand.
The despair is too great,
the loneliness is unbearable,
the inability to share thoughts and feelings overwhelming,
the seeming lack of options a dead end.
Bless them with the strength of love
to meet each day with new courage;
friendships to bring moments of joy
in their days of anguish;
and hope for the future.
Prayer for the Dying
Dear Heavenly Father,
With heavy hearts we come to You;
A life is leaving us and sorrow is waiting to take us down.
Thank you for the comfort we find in Your presence.
Send us Your peace Lord; don’t let us waiver and doubt.
Take the hand of our dear sister/brother and make Yourself known.
As we wait and watch, we know Lord that none of us will escape this journey through death.
Teach us how to embrace it with faith.
Give us strength to hold up those who are stepping closer to seeing You face to face.
Take away the fear in the heart of our loved one who will soon see You.
Let them find peace in Your grace,
Comfort in Your love,
And strength in Your mighty power over death.
Comfort us as our grief seems to overpower us.
Prayer for the Unborn Child
Thou hast given us the gift of freedom to love
And to follow in Thy ways and commands.
Some parents choose to abuse this freedom
By destroying the gift of life which Thou hast given to their offspring.
Please forgive those who destroy human life
By aborting their unborn babies.
Give these unborn children the opportunity to enjoy Thee
For all eternity, if it according to Thy ordinance.
Assist me in being one in solidarity with Thy little ones
By taking to heart the words of Thy Son,
“Whatever you did for one of these least brothers of Mine,
you did for Me.” (Mt. 25:40)
Therefore, allow me today, Father, to adopt spiritually an unborn child
And to offer my prayers, works, joys and sufferings for that little one,
So that child will be able to be born and live for
Thy greater honour and glory.
We pray this in Jesus’ name, in union with the Holy Spirit
One God forever and ever.
Prayer for a child’s baptism
Dearest Father in Heaven,
Bless this child and bless this day
Of new beginnings.
Smile upon this child
And surround this child, Lord,
With the soft mantle of your love.
Teach this child to follow in your footsteps,
And to live life in the ways of
Love, faith, hope and charity.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph,
you are the Holy Family.
Please bless and protect my family.
Keep them safe in body and spirit, and faithful to you.
Prayer for the home
Lord, my home is your home.
Please bless my dwelling
and let it always be a safe haven
for those who come to its door.
Prayer for families
God, Our Father, come into my home,
and take away all my worries and illnesses.
Please watch over me, and my family,
healing each one of us when it is needed.
Please also give your love, healing and guidance
to other families . . . .
poor families on the missions in Africa . . .
struggling and broken families in my own
country . . . and around the world.
Father, imprint the Holy Family on their hearts
to be their role model, and thereby
heal the sad state of ‘family’ which is
so much under threat in these days.
Prayer at mealtimes
You’ve blessed the earth with abundance
that mankind may have food.
And we humbly thank you for the meal
that is before us now.
But we know that there are many of your
children who go hungry daily.
Help us, always, to remember them and
to share with to them, in your name.
Dearest Jesus, who wept at the death of your friend and taught that they who mourn shall be comforted,
Grant us the comfort of your presence in our loss.
Send Your Holy Spirit to direct us lest we make hasty or foolish decisions.
Send Your Spirit to give us courage lest through fear we recoil from living.
Send Your Spirit to bring us your peace lest bitterness, false guilt, or regret take root in our hearts.
The Lord has given.
The Lord has taken away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord.
Keep your priests, dearest Lord –
Keep them safe as they journey
in your footsteps, and the footsteps
of the Apostles.
Keep them protected from the
dangers and challenges of the world.
Keep them true when faced
Keep them comforted in hours
of loneliness, discouragement, and pain.
Keep them dedicated to your
work on earth.
And keep their place at your right hand,
when their task is done.
Keep, and bless all your priests,
wherever they might be,
and especially (Name any particular priest/s).
Prayer for Mission Priests
Lord, Jesus, you sent your disciples
into the world to teach all nations.
Many have followed in their footsteps
taking your teachings to foreign lands.
I pray that you will specially bless all
your mission priests in their work today.
In their often lonely lives,
be present for them.
As they travel through challenging or
dangerous territory, protect them.
As they learn new languages, give
them the help of the Holy Spirit
Keep their faith strong, and let their
example shine, to light the way for
others to know and love you.
Please hear my prayer now – for all
mission priests around the world,
and especially for those in Africa.
Prayer to be Merciful to Others: St. Maria Faustina Kowalska (Diary, 163):
O Most Holy Trinity!
As many times as I breathe, as many times as my heart beats, as many times as my blood pulsates through my body, so many thousand times do I want to glorify Your mercy.
I want to be completely transformed into Your mercy and to be Your living reflection, O Lord. May the greatest of all divine attributes, that of Your unfathomable mercy, pass through my heart and soul to my neighbour.
Help me, O Lord, that my eyes may be merciful, so that I may never suspect or judge from appearances, but look for what is beautiful in my neighbours’ souls and come to their rescue.
Help me, that my ears may be merciful, so that I may give heed to my neighbours’ needs and not be indifferent to their pains and moanings.
Help me, O Lord, that my tongue may be merciful, so that I should never speak negatively of my neighbour, but have a word of comfort and forgiveness for all.
Help me, O Lord, that my hands may be merciful and filled with good deeds, so that I may do only good to my neighbours and take upon myself the more difficult and toilsome tasks.
Help me, that my feet may be merciful, so that I may hurry to assist my neighbour, overcoming my own fatigue and weariness. My true rest is in the service of my neighbour.
Help me, O Lord, that my heart may be merciful so that I myself may feel all the sufferings of my neighbour. I will refuse my heart to no one. I will be sincere even with those who, I know, will abuse my kindness. And I will lock myself up in the most merciful Heart of Jesus. I will bear my own suffering in silence. May Your mercy, O Lord, rest upon me.
You Yourself command me to exercise the three degrees of mercy. The first: the act of mercy, of whatever kind. The second: the word of mercy — if I cannot carry out a work of mercy, I will assist by my words. The third: prayer — if I cannot show mercy by deeds or words, I can always do so by prayer. My prayer reaches out even there where I cannot reach out physically.
O my Jesus, transform me into Yourself, for You can do all things.