NOVENA FOR PEACE – Day 1
“Peace Be With You”
John 20: 19-22: “On the evening of the first day of the week, when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father sent me, so I send you.”
• Prayer of Peace by David Haas
Loving God, the resurrection of Jesus sustains our conviction that the world is sustained by your love. Deepen our faith in the resurrection of Jesus which urges us to overcome resentment with pardon, to transform our self-centeredness into the embrace of everyone, to substitute violence with the rule of law, and to change hopelessness to the assurance that our future is in your hands. Amen. (From Praying for Peace Around the Globe by James McGinnis)
The presence of Jesus with the disciples in John’s gospel brings to mind a powerful experience that happened nine years ago when our new congregation was discerning a name for the union of the seven Dominican congregations during the Octave of Easter. The experience of Jesus in our midst was palpable. It was as if the message, “Peace be with you, as the Father sent me, so I send you,” was the affirmation by Jesus of our decision to become Dominican Sisters of Peace. To this day, we have continued to live a life of peace, striving to be peace, build peace and preach peace in a world in need of prayer and contemplation.
(Pause for a moment of silent reflection)
Reflection Question: Reflect on a time when someone brought peace to you or you brought peace to another. How did this experience impact you? What feelings surround the experience?
Response: Lord, hear us.
- For the grace to see every human being as a child of God, regardless of race, language or culture, let us pray to God.
- For the wisdom to receive the stories and experiences of those different from ourselves and to respond with respect, let us pray to God.
- For our communities, that we may respond boldly to the call of the Holy Spirit to act together to end violence and racism, let us pray to God.
- For solidarity in our global community, that we may walk together to protect those who are most vulnerable and most in need, let us pray to God.
(This prayer was modified from 2018 United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website: http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/racism/prayer-of-the-faithful-day-of-prayer-for-peace-in-our-communities.cfm
Your ways, O God, make known to me; teach me your paths, guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior. (Psalm 25: 4-5)
Dominican Blessing: May God the Creator bless us, May God Redeemer heal us and May God, the Holy Spirit, fill us with peace.
Suggested Practice: Intentionally reflect on your day and think about when you experienced peace, and respond to God in prayer, either verbally or through journaling, about what this peace meant to you.
Optional Song: Let There Be Peace on Earth. (You may use this song as a meditative reflection.”
Join us to Be Peace, Build Peace, and Preach Peace. You can reach us via email at email@example.com.
Please share this Novena on your Facebook page and forward it to at least 5 people, and join us on April 3 as we Pray for Peace through Communication.
To download a PDF this prayer and reflection, click here.
Prepared by Sister Julia Grey, OP, New Haven, CT