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Prayer for unity in the Church and among Christians by John Paul II

POPE JOHN PAUL II
GERARD JULIEN | AFP
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He invokes Mary, Mother of Unity, to help heal what divides Christians in today's world.

Ever since the time of the 12 apostles, there has been some sort of division among the Christian faithful. It is a reality that is difficult to overcome in a fallen world, and yet, Jesus desires unity as he prayed to God the Father, “that they may be one even as we are one” (John 17:22).

Pope John Paul II recognized this unfortunate reality as well and did what he could to heal past wound and work towards a unified Church.

Here is one prayer that he prayed at the Polish shrine of Jasna Gora, in honor of Our Lady of Czestochowa. He places the unity of the Church in the hands of the Virgin Mary, “Mother of Unity.”

I entrust to you, Mother of the Church, all the problems of this Church, the whole of her mission and of her service, while the second millennium of the history of Christianity on earth is about to draw to a close.

Spouse of the Holy Spirit and Seat of Wisdom, it is to your intercession that we owe the magnificent vision and the program of renewal of the Church in our age that found expression in the teaching of the Second Vatican Council…Grant that the whole Church may be reborn by drawing from this new fount of the knowledge of her nature and mission, and not from other foreign or poisoned “cisterns” (cf. Jer 8:14).

Help us in the great endeavor that we are carrying out to meet in a more and more mature way our brothers in faith, with whom so many things unite us, although there is still something dividing us. Through all the means of knowledge, of mutual respect, of love, of shared collaboration in various fields, may we be able to rediscover gradually the divine plan for the unity into which we should enter and bring everybody in, in order that the one fold of Christ may recognize and live its unity on earth. Mother of unity, teach us constantly the ways that lead to unity.

Mother of the Church, grant that the Church may enjoy freedom and peace in fulfilling her saving mission and that to this end she may become mature with a new maturity of faith and inner unity. Help us to overcome opposition and difficulties. Help us to rediscover all the simplicity and dignity of the Christian vocation. Grant that there may be no lack of “laborers in the Lord’s vineyard”. Sanctify families. Watch over the souls of the young and the hearts of the children. Help us to overcome the great moral threats against the fundamental spheres of life and love. Obtain for us the grace to be continually renewed through all the beauty of witness given to the Cross and Resurrection of your Son.

How many problems, Mother, should I not present to you by name in this meeting! I entrust them all to you, because you know them best and understand them.

I who am the first servant of the Church offer the whole Church to you and entrust it to you here with immense confidence, Mother. Amen.

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