Let us pray with the great saints of France, in the face of prowling darkness ...
The news coming out of France is dreadful — hostages, and explosions and gunfire, and a tragic loss of human life. The story is still unfolding, and undoubtedly what is known will change over the course of the next few hours.
In the meantime this demands our attention and our prayers—the only action most of us can take, and yet an action of great power. Let us pray together, as Catholic Christians, calling on those who have gone before us—the holy men and women, martyrs and saints who intercede for us and with us, amid the great cloud of witnesses. As Catholic Christians, let us pray:
Lord, the ones you love are under siege and in danger at the hands of those who do not know you, and who do not love life. Already many are dead, and the grief will be terrible. We beg your mercy on the souls of the dead, and your healing upon those injured; but we beg your mercy upon the city of Paris and the people therein, as they are targeted by a dark madness that travels among us. We understand nothing, Lord, but we know that a light shines in the darkness, and the darkness does not overcome it. Christ Jesus, light of the world, come into this darkness. In your light we see light. Notre Dame de Paris, pray for the people of your city! Our Lady of Grace, you who showed yourself to Saint Catherine Laboure and brought miracles, who smiled upon Saint Therese of Lisieux and created a missionary, in your holy Motherhood, please intercede for your fearful and endangered people; bring your consolations to the people of Paris and all of France. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, hear us. Saint Therese of Lisieux, Patron of France, pray for them Saint Joan of Arc, Patron of France, pray for them. Saint Martin of Tours, Patron of France, pray for them Saint Remigius, Patron of France (pray for them) Saint John Vianney … Saint Jeanne Jugan … Saint St Genevieve… Saint Denis… Saint Bernard of Clairvaux … Saint Germain Cousin … Saint Peter Julian Eymard … Saint Louis … Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque … Saint Peter Fourier … Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat … Saints Louis and Zelie Martin … Saint Jane Frances de Chantal … Saint Catherine Laboure … Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne … Saint John Eudes … Saint Vincent de Paul … Saint Hilary of Poitiers … Saint Isaac Jogues … Saint Jane de Chantal … Saint Jean-Baptiste de La Salle … Saint Benedict Joseph Labre … Coptic Martyrs, victims of ISIS, pray for them All you holy men and women, pray for France, and pray for us. St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the Devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan, and all the evil spirits, who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.
Elizabeth Scalia is Editor-in-Chief of the English edition of Aleteia