Opening Comment (for Presiders)
Just 12 days into the season of Lent, we keep the feast of Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. We mark the day by praising God the creator, who sustained Patrick, and who sustains the Church, in good times and bad.
Alternative opening prayer (from 1998 ICEL Missal)
Lord God, in your loving providence
you sent the holy bishop Patrick to preach your glory to the people of Ireland;
grant through his merits and prayers that all who rejoice in the name of Christian may proclaim your wonderful deeds to all the world.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever.
Introduction to the Scripture Readings (for Ministers of the Word)
Ecclesiasticus (Sirach) 39:6-10 (in Lectionary Volume II, page 1504): The wisdom and spirituality of Patrick lives on. Psalm 115: 12-19 (see Lectionary Volume I, page 485)
2 Timothy 4:108 (in Lectionary Volume II, page 572): Paul’s advice bore fruit in Patrick’s life: he refuted falsehood, corrected error and called to obedience, but all with patience. He fought the good fight to the end.
Matthew 13:24-32 (Lectionary Volume I: page 681, first two paragraphs): The seed the Patrick planted, the faith of the Irish, is like a mustard seed which has become the biggest of shrubs.
Introduction (by the Presider) Let us bring our needs to the Lord of all nations.
- That the people of God in Ireland / may keep alive the faith that Patrick preached (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- That Christians everywhere / may live in harmony and peace with each other (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- That Irish people the world over / may enjoy God’s favour and protection (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- That those in need at home and abroad / may experience care and compassion (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- That our people who have died / may have the light of heaven (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- That we may have divine assistance / in all our needs (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
Conclusion (by the Presider) God of truth and beauty, you look after us through the prayer of our friends, the saints: keep us and all your Irish flock in your care, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SUGGESTED SONGS: Christ Be Near At Either Hand; Ag Críost an Síol; ár nAthair; Hail Glorious St. Patrick; Dóchas Linn Naomh Pádraig’.