The fifth of nine days of prayer and readings. On Day Five, we pray for those who experience imprisonment.
For those who experience imprisonment
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
The Lord is faithful in all his words, and gracious in all his deeds.
The Lord upholds all who are falling, and raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you,
and you give them their food in due season. You open your hand,
satisfying the desire of every living thing. The Lord is just in all his ways,
and kind in all his doings.
The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end.
When morning came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people conferred together against Jesus in order to bring about his death. They bound him, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate the governor.
Matthew 27: 1-2
Jesus, the Word made flesh, through whom all things were created, was betrayed and arrested. He was bound and taken to the house of the high priest and interrogated. False witnesses testified against him. He was accused of blasphemy, beaten and spat upon. He spent the night in a dungeon in the house of the high priest, which prisoners were lowered into on a rope. There was no light, his one companion was darkness.
We pray for those who are in prison in our society, whether justly or unjustly, who miss their families, whose families miss them. We pray for those who sit in judgement, who govern the prisons, that they will act with justice, mindful of the dignity of all, both the victims of crime and those who are accused. We pray that in our communities we will never judge those who are released from prison, but offer welcome and a helping hand as they try to rebuild their lives.
For more information on how Catholic parishes can sign up to be places of welcome for those coming out of prison, see The Welcome Directory – a site that helps faith communities welcome people leaving prison.
your risen Son sent us out
into the world as ambassadors for the kingdom of God; inspire us with your Spirit
of compassion, justice and truth to declare the Good News
to those who are poor, to work
for the relief, defence and liberation of all who are trapped
in oppressive circumstances. We make this our prayer through Christ our Lord.
And there are also people who suffer, who are discarded by society, at least for a period, and Jesus goes there to tell them: ‘You are important to me’. Jesus comes to serve us, and the sign that Jesus serves us here today, in the ‘Regina Coeli’ prison, is that he wanted to choose 12 of you, like the 12 Apostles, to wash your feet. Jesus takes a chance with each of us. Understand this: Jesus is called Jesus; he is not called Pontius Pilate. Jesus does not know how to wash his hands of people: he only knows how to take a risk! Look at this beautiful image: Jesus bent down among the thorns, risking to hurt himself by picking up the lost sheep.Pope Francis, Regina Coeli prison, 2018
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