Bring me the assistance I need to live the life of dignity you desire for me.
With tax day coming up this week, most of us have been coming face to face with our finances … which doesn’t always bring good news.
There are various heavenly intercessors at the ready to help us with financial stress and difficulty.
For example, Our Lady of Good Remedy got this title thanks to her help with financial needs.
When Father John of Matha began his ministry of rescuing and ransoming Christians from the Moors, he had no idea that those captured and imprisoned numbered in the thousands. John needed money — lots of money — to begin “buying” enslaved Christians back from the Moors. He knew in his heart there would be only one way he might have success. He turned his need over to the Blessed Virgin.
Her prompt and thorough assistance led to devotion to her as the Lady of “good remedy” and we, too, can call on her for help.
As well, devotees of the Infant of Prague have found Christ in this manifestation to be a consolation and support in financial difficulties.
This is due to the story surrounding how the Infant Jesus supported those trying to repair the statue when Prague was invaded and the statue was almost lost forever.
A priest discovered it in the rubble of a church and enshrined it in a new oratory. While cleaning the statue the priest heard the Infant Jesus say to him, “Have pity on Me and I will have pity on you. Give Me My hands and I will give you peace. The more you honor Me, the more I will bless you.” When the priest needed more funds to repair the statue the Infant Jesus said to the priest, “Place Me near the entrance of the sacristy and you will receive aid.” What was needed was miraculously provided and the statue was restored.
St. Matthew, the apostle whom Jesus called from his life as a tax collector, is a patron of accountants, and thus another worthy intercessor in financial trials.
Also consider St. Nicholas, who became associated with Christmas as Santa Claus because he provided for the financial needs of young women needing a dowry.
But of course when we’re praying for help with financial situations, we should take advantage of the occasion to examine our hearts. Do we place too much security in money? Are we “poor of heart” as the Beatitudes say we must be?
Pope Francis has warned over and over again about the spiritual dangers that can come with money. With his characteristic sage humor, he likes to say that the “devil comes in through the pockets.”
In an address to business students last year, he encouraged them to learn to “remain free of the fascination with money, of the slavery in which money encloses those who worship it.”
Here’s a prayer adapted from an examination found at the end of Thomas Dubay’s thorough book on this theme, Happy Are You Poor: The Simple Life and Spiritual Freedom.
God, enkindle in me a pure and total love for you. Help me to pursue you above all else, that nothing else matters more to me than you. Remind me that I am a stranger, a nomad, a pilgrim on this earth, destined to dwell in the place you have prepared for me in heaven. May I live in such a way that all who see me realize that my Homeland is not here below. Make me poor in spirit, that I might be a worthy follower of your Son, who had nowhere on this earth to lay his head.
I turn to you in my financial need, aware that you care for the lilies of the field and the sparrows of the air. Bring me the assistance I need to live the life of dignity you desire for me. Provide for my needs, and help me to rest in trusting you. Amen.