GMD 137-141: Concluding Prayer

The bishops conclude Go and Make Disciples with a prayer. We need this prayer. I would certainly agree that Catholics in the United States need renewal. With the bishops, I believe there is indeed a “hunger of our nation for God and the Gospel of Jesus.” (GMD 137)

The prayer begins:

We pray that our Catholic people will be set ablaze with a desire to live their faith fully and share it freely with others. May their eagerness to share the faith bring a transformation to our nation and, with missionary dedication, even to the whole world. We ask God to open the heart of every Catholic, to see the need for the Gospel in each life, in our nation and on our planet. (GMD 138)

The intercession of the Blessed Mother:

We ask Mary, the one through whom Jesus entered our world, to guide us in presenting Jesus to those who live in our land. May her prayers help us to share in her courage and faithfulness. May they lead us to imitate her discipleship, her turning to Jesus, her love for God and for all. May the compassion that Mary has always reflected be present in our hearts. (GMD 139)

A fire is indeed a good thing for disciples. The bishops cite the Easter morning journey to Emmaus:

We also pray that, like the disciples walking that Easter morning to Emmaus, all Catholics may feel their hearts burning through the presence of Jesus. (Cf. Luke 24:13-35) As those two disciples felt the presence of Jesus in their journey, we ask that the ministry of evangelizing help believers feel anew the presence of Jesus and that it help others discover his gracious presence. (GMD 140)

Discipleship is absolutely the target for believers:

We pray that the fire of Jesus enkindled in us by God’s Spirit may lead more and more people in our land to become disciples, formed in the image of Christ our Savior. (GMD 141)

Let me ask: do you readers have a good grasp on what is meant by being a disciple? Something beyond someone who does a little more, gives a little more, right? Until we have a clearer idea on discipleship, our parishes and efforts will continue to founder.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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