by Kathie England

Hope and Meaning

One year ago I shared the Prayer of St Francis, also known as the Prayer of Peace, with the hope that it provide perspective for the tumultuous year we had experienced.
I want to share this prayer again to help provide hope and meaning as we end 2018. I just finished listening to the On Being podcast with Krista Tippett where she interviewed Pauline Boss, the family therapist who introduced the idea of “ambiguous loss.” This is loss without closure. During this interview, Boss recounted the words of Viktor Frankl.

“Without hope there is no meaning. Without meaning there is no hope.”

May this prayer offer hope and meaning for the year ahead!

“Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Where there is hatred, let me bring love.

Where there is offense, let me bring pardon.

Where there is discord, let me bring union.

Where there is error, let me bring truth.

Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.

Where there is despair, let me bring hope.

Where there is darkness, let me bring your light.

Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.

O Master, let me not seek as much

to be consoled as to console,

to be understood as to understand,

to be loved as to love,

for it is in giving that one receives,

it is in self-forgetting that one finds,

it is in pardoning that one is pardoned,

it is in dying that one is raised to eternal life.”

This prayer was read in the United States Senate to mark the end of World War II. Mother Teresa included the prayer in her acceptance of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. It was sung as a hymn at the funeral of Princess Diana in 1997.
May we embrace its message to help us find the courage to take many small steps in 2019!