Cabinet Prayers for the 2016-2017 Academic Year

 A Gentle Reminder From Pope Francis

This life will go by fast.

Don't fight with people, don't criticize your body so much,
don't complain so much.
Don't lose sleep over your bills. Look for the person that makes you happy.
If you make a mistake, let it go and keep seeking your happiness.

Never stop being a good parent.
Don't worry so much about buying luxuries and comforts for your home,
and don't kill yourself trying to leave an inheritance for your family.
Those benefits should be earned by each person,
so don't dedicate yourself to accumulating money.

Enjoy, travel, enjoy your journeys, see new places,
give yourself the pleasures you deserve.
Allow dogs to get closer. Don't put away the fine glassware.
Utilize the new dinnerware; don't save your favorite perfume,
use it to go out with yourself; wear out your favorite sport shoes; repeat your favorite clothes.

So what? That's not bad. Why not now?
Why not pray now instead of waiting until before you sleep?
Why not call now? Why not forgive now?
We wait so long for Christmas; for Friday; for Reunions; for another year; for when I have money; for love to come; when everything is perfect...look...

Everything perfect doesn't exist.
Human beings can't accomplish this because it simply was not intended to be completed here.
Here is an opportunity to learn.

So take this challenge that is life and do it now...
love more, forgive more, embrace more, love more intensely and leave the rest in God's hands.

- Offered by Connie Perme

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Women Through the Ages

Spirit of renewal, God of Many Names,
and One Transforming and Abundant Love,
We turn this month, in our nation's life, to reflect on the stories,
The heritage,
and the struggles,
of women throughout the ages.
We seek to learn from all those voices that have been left unheard.
May we pause before the silences of the ages,
Find who has been left out,
And craft new ways of inclusion,
For every week, and every month.
May this spiritual practice,
Bring out the voices of all those struggling,
All those left apart.
May we let go of our assumptions and cold comforts,
Of what is the normal to live by,
Unless it be a standard that is rooted in compassion,
In inclusivity,
In diversity.
May this month of reflection teach us to search
for those stories that are different from our own.
Mother of Possibilities,
In the finding,
May we come to know ourselves changed.
Renewed where we are dry,
Hopeful where we are lost,
And open where we are shut.

- Rev. Jude Geiger; Offered by Kelly Leon

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A Prayer In Spring

Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers today;
And give us not to think so far away
As the uncertain harvest; keep us here
All simply in the springing of the year.

Oh, give us pleasure in the orchard white,
Like nothing else by day, like ghosts by night;
And make us happy in the happy bees,
The swarm dilating round the perfect trees.

And make us happy in the darting bird
That suddenly above the bees is heard,
The meteor that thrusts in with needle bill,
And off a blossom in mid air stands still.

For this is love and nothing else is love,
The which is it reserved for God above
To sanctify to what far ends He will,
But which it only needs that we fulfill.

- Robert Frost; Offered by Dave Johnson

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The Tears Of Solidarity

God of compassion,
Pope Francis challenges us to learn how to cry,
To brave that pain, and so enter into true solidarity with your people.
For those who face hunger,
For those who face war,
For those who face exploitation,
For those who face displacement,
I stand in solidarity.
For those who face unjust discrimination,
For those who face indifference,
For those who face a lack of opportunity,
For those who face a lack of health care,
I stand in solidarity.
But in truth, I stand a little reluctantly.
And I stand a little far off;
Detached and apart from the great human drama,
Lingering in the orchestra, even as you call me to the center stage.
Lord, help me to look again at what has been done to your people,
To their lives and to their dignity,
So that slowly, and then more strongly, I will allow myself to cry.
For it is only in those tears that we truly become one.
My trepidations fall away
And I step forward and stand anew.
Teach me to cry.

- Prayer of Catholic Relief Services; Offered by Steve Herbert

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With your spirit, guide the efforts of humankind to bring peace and justice to the nations of the earth, and give strength to rulers and all who work to establish peace and justice in the world.
Prosper the activities of those who work to preserve human rights.
Promote the endeavours of all who work for reconciliation and justice.
Deliver us from the forces of malice, jealousy and fear.
Direct us into the ways of understanding, cooperation and mutual respect.
Bless all peacemakers.
Sustain all peace keepers.
Break down all barriers of ignorance, suspicion and fear.
Build up those things that make for peace, justice and freedom.
Enable us to live with dignity as brothers and sisters united in our diversity and our desire for a world where war itself is but an event only dimly remembered.

- Peter Teets; Offered by Tom Hayes

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The True Peace

The first peace, which is the most important,
is that which comes within the souls of people
when they realize their relationship,
their oneness, with the universe and all its powers,
and when they realize that at the center
of the universe dwells the Great Spirit,
and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us.
This is the real peace, and the others are but reflections of this.
The second peace is that which is made between two individuals,
and the third is that which is made between two nations.
But above all you should understand that there can never
be peace between nations until there is known that true peace
is within the souls of men.

- Black Elk, Oglala Sioux and Spiritual Leader (1863-1950); Offered by Paul Gore

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A Reflection by Pope Francis

When we talk about crisis, we talk about dangers, but also opportunities. What is the opportunity? That of solidarity. Come, help me. I am counting on you, so that these words may reach everyone, and this intention might become reality. That each one of us may contribute to the common good and to the building of a society that places the human person at its center.

- Joe Feldhaus

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Coming Together

Loving and Gracious God, we come together this day to seek your wisdom, guidance, courage and strength. Be with us in our deliberations and help us to be wise in the decisions we make for the good of all those who have placed their trust and confidence in our leadership. Give us the courage to not only consider ourselves; but all those who are affected by the decisions we make. Give us insight in the midst of difficult decisions to have peace of mind, trust in your guidance, and look toward the long term goals of all whom we serve. Finally, dear Lord, grant us the humility to always seek your will in all that we do and say. All Glory be to you now and forever. Amen.

- Jeff Coleman

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Beginning The New Year

Dear God,
As we begin this new year here at Xavier, we ask your blessing over our students who come to us to learn, grow and develop.
We also offer ourselves as campus leaders-service to the students, service to the university and service to each other.
Please use our voices to encourage and strengthen those around us.
Please use our hands to work and give to others.
Please use our minds for wisdom and creativity.
And please use our hearts to walk with you in the path you've set for each of us.

- Greg Christopher

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