Pray Hard

Today we celebrate the Memorial of another great saint who ministered to people in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Maryland: Bishop John Neumann.

He prayed.

He prayed hard.

He prayed well.

He knew that communion with God, nurtured by honest, heartfelt, childlike prayer helps us become what we are, what we are called to be: saints. Among the prayers found in his diary are these:

My God, how great Thou art, how wonderful in all Thy works! Teach me Thy will that I may begin and end all my actions for Thy greater glory.

Speak to me, O my God, let me know Thy will, for behold I am ready to fulfill Thy every command. The difficult, the irksome, I will patiently endure for love of Thee.

O my God, I thank Thee for the love Thou hast planted in my heart. I will cultivate this precious flower. I will guard it night and day that nothing may injure it. Do Thou, O Lord, water it with the dew of Thy grace.

Make it a point to pray well this year. If you pray a little bit, pray a little more. If you pray quite a bit, consider deepening the quality as well as the quantity of time spent in prayer.

Perhaps St. John Neumann’s favorite prayer during the Solemn 40-Hours Exposition may aid you in this endeavor:

How much I love You, O my Jesus. I wish to love You with my whole heart; yet I do not love You enough.

My lack of devotion and my sloth make me anxious. I have one desire, that of being near you in the Blessed Sacrament. You are the sweet bridegroom of my soul, my Jesus, my love, my all; gladly would I endure hunger, thirst, heat and cold to remain always with You in the Blessed Sacrament.


Would that in your Eucharistic presence I might unceasingly weep over my sins. Take entire possession of me. To you I consecrate all the powers of my soul and body, my whole being. Would that I could infuse into all hearts a burning love for You. What great glory would be given to You here on earth, if every heart were an altar on which every human will were laid in perfect conformity with Your will to be consumed by the fire of Your love. 

A consistent and deep prayer life is another great New Year’s Resolution worth adopting – a New Life Resolution indeed!

For more information on this Saint visit this site dedicated to St. John Neumann and the website of St. Alphonsus Parish where St. John Neumann served as a pastor and was consecrated as a Bishop.

Merry Christmas till the very end– January 9, 2011!

Visit our website for various Christmas Season reflections and resources,

including TV shows for online viewing:

(or click on the Christmas image to the right)

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