Wednesday, August 10, 2016

How Do I Pray Now? (Sometimes With a Printed Prayer)

Whoever thought up holy cards was undoubtedly inspired. These little gems have turned thoughts back to God for centuries, helping focus distracted minds and world-weary hearts.

One collector of holy cards shared "how she prays now" by writing the following...

     "I have been amazed at the great fruit that has come from my commitment to pray several short times a day - sometimes simply reading a holy card or a printed prayer of a saint, making the intention to pray it from my heart. What great things God is doing with this little exercise!
     These initially brief prayer times have been growing in frequency, length, and fervency - and I have begun to recognize why prayer in shorter segments is working for me at this season of my life. 
     I am more likely to go to prayer in the first place when I do so with the idea that I'll stay there for a few minutes. With this attitude, I am not as likely to be tempted by thoughts that I need to clean the kitchen or work on a project before I can be free to take time to pray."

What kinds of prayers are we likely to find on a holy card? I'm sure we each have our favorites. Here are just a few that my friend has found helpful on busy days... 

"Heavenly Father, I offer You all that I shall think or do or say this day, uniting it with what was done by Jesus Christ, Your only Son. Amen."

"O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, and I detest all my sins because of Thy just punishment. But most of all because I have offended Thee, my God, Who art all good and deserving of all my love.  I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace, to confess my sins, to do penance, and to amend my life. Amen."

"Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession, was left unaided. Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins my mother. To thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but hear and answer them. Amen."

Holy cards in US public domain due to age


  1. Nancy, the illustrations that accompany each verse or prayer in your posts, both here and on the Breadbox Letters, would make GORGEOUS, GORGEOUS, GORGEOUS prayer cards. But better still, maybe someday you will publish your own book of breath~prayers for us all. Even if the words do not always hit us first, the pictures often price open the doors of our hearts, and it takes off from there.

    1. Caitlynne Grace, once again you have said just what I needed to hear when I needed to hear it. Yesterday I was doing a graphic/meme for the Breadbox Letters and wondering if I was being too intent on the picture and the overall look rather than the quote I was using. Then I had the thought that the words were so important that I should just forget about having a picture at all. THEN (!)I had the thought that no - the pictures are what draw attention TO the words, and I should continue praying (I do pray about it) to find the best and most appropriate ones available. THEN (!)you stepped in today to confirm that! You, of all people, know how to use pictures. The ones on your blog are exquisite, and consistently touch my heart and mind and soul. And this is a very long way of saying THANK YOU!


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