Since the nineteenth century, popes have asked the Apostleship of Prayer to pray for specific intentions. Two prayer intentions are requested each month from the Holy Father, a general intention and a mission intention. Let us join the Apostleship of Prayer’s dedication to pray for these intentions each day. Pope Benedict XVI’s October prayer intentions are:
General Intention – Terminally Ill: That the terminally ill may be supported by their faith in God and the love of their borthers and sisters.
This month’s prayer intention is appropriate for October, Respect Life Month. Our culture tends to see the terminally ill as a burden. There’s this attitude: “They’re going to die soon anyway; why not euthanize them?”
This month’s prayer intention expresses our two obligations toward the terminally ill. First, we must support them in the faith that every human life from conception to natural death is sacred. We support them by helping them find meaning in their suffering . . . For when we unite our sufferings to Christ, we contribute to the ongoing salvation of the world.
Our second obligation to the terminally ill, whether family members or strangers, is to give them compassionate care, as the Samaritan did for the wounded stranger on the roadside. What we do for those who are sick, we are doing for Christ.”
Mission Intention – World Mission Day: That the celebration of World Mission Day may foster in the People of God a passion for evangelization with the willingness to support the missions with prayer and economic aid for the poorest Churches.
On the 23rd this month we celebrate World Mission Day. In his message for this day, Pope Benedict reminds us this day is not an “isolated moment” in the Church year, but an opportunity to reflect how we live our missionary vocation throughout the year.
Let us join Pope Benedict in praying for the success of this annual celebration of evangelization. May we all have a passion for spreading the Gospel that leads us to do something concrete – support the work of the missions in the poorest countries through prayer and contributions. In Pope Benedict’s words, “May World Mission Day revive in each one the desire to go and the joy of going.”
Visit Apostleship of Prayer for deeper reflection, Scripture reading, and resources on these monthly intentions.