Prayer effort for our clergy begins

HENRY — The Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary have invited Catholics to join in their community’s observance of the 2009-2010 Year for Priests by “adopting” priests and praying for them by name.

“As a community, and then particularly here in the Diocese of Peoria, the sisters and the lay apostles of the Servants of the Pierced Hearts will be praying for priests throughout the year,” said Sister Juana Maria Sanchez, SCTJM.

Sister Juana serves as superior among the four Pierced Hearts sisters who have been managing King’s House of Retreats in rural Henry since late last year.

“We will be praying not only here,” she added, “but also in the Archdiocese of Miami in Florida,” where the Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary are based.

Sign-up sheets for those who would like to join the sisters’ prayer campaign for priests are available at King’s House, where the sisters have lists of every priest in the Diocese of Peoria and the Archdiocese of Miami. The sisters also have special written prayers that participants are invited to offer for the priests they have adopted.

An individual who signs up is assigned a specific priest for whom he or she pledges to pray every day. Prayer partners may also ask to pray for additional priests, said Sister Juana.

The purpose, she said, is to provide “spiritual companionship for priests” during the church-wide Year for Priests, which began last Friday. The Diocese of Peoria was to begin its observances during the annual Mass for Jubilarian and Newly Ordained Priests at St. Mary’s Cathedral on Thursday. Coverage of that Mass will appear in next week’s Catholic Post.

For more information on the prayer effort, contact Sister Juana at (309) 364-3084.

It marks the second major prayer project of the religious community. This spring, the sisters at King’s House began receiving and praying for all intentions submitted at the diocesan Web site, www.cdop.org, through the “Peoria Prays” link.

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