Bookmark and Share


"God promises the Church not just any sort of shepherds, but shepherds "after his own heart." And God's "heart" has revealed itself to us fully in the heart of Christ the good shepherd. Christ's heart continues today to have compassion for the multitudes and to give them the bread of truth, the bread of love, the bread of life, and it pleads to be allowed to beat in other hearts - priests' hearts: "You give them something to eat" (Mk. 6:37). People need to come out of their anonymity and fear. They need to be known and called by name, to walk in safety, along the paths of life, to be found again if they have become lost, to be loved, to receive salvation as the supreme gift of God's love. All this is done by Jesus, the good shepherd - by himself and by his priests with him.        ...
Every aspect of priestly formation can be referred to Mary, the human being who has responded better than any other to God's call. Mary became both the servant and the disciple of the Word to the point of conceiving, in her heart and in her flesh, the Word made man, so as to give him to mankind. Mary was called to educate the one eternal priest, who became docile and subject to her motherly authority. With her example and intercession the Blessed Virgin keeps vigilant watch over the growth of vocations and priestly life in the Church."

- Blessed John Paul II in his apostolic exhortation Pastores Dabo Vobis

In response to a call to pray for priests, Totus2us is beginning with 9 prayers for priests. You can pray whichever whenever, but they're being especially recorded for a novena of prayer from the Feast of Corpus Christi to the Feast of the Sacred Heart (23rd June - 1st July) for which you can choose the prayer/s you would like to say each day eg the same prayer / a different prayer each day, 3 prayers repeated 3 times over the 9 days, all 9 prayers each day etc. The novena is in thanksgiving for the great gift God has given us in the sacrament of the priesthood and for all our priests who are faithfully living their vocation 'in persona Christi'.

Some of these prayers are also in French, Italian & Spanish.

  • Flash is required!

Mother of Jesus Christ and Mother of priests,

accept this title which we bestow on you to celebrate your motherhood
and to contemplate with you the priesthood of your Son and of your sons,
O holy Mother of God.

Mother of Christ,
to the Messiah Priest you gave a body of flesh
through the anointing of the Holy Spirit
for the salvation of the poor and the contrite of heart;
guard priests in your heart and in the Church,
O Mother of the Saviour.

Mother of Faith,
you accompanied to the Temple the Son of Man,
the fulfillment of the promises given to the fathers;
give to the Father for his glory the priests of your Son,
O Ark of the Covenant.

Mother of the Church,
with the disciples in the Upper Room
you prayed to the Spirit for the new People and their shepherds;
obtain for the Order of Presbyters a fullness of gifts,
O Queen of the Apostles.

Mother of Jesus Christ,
you were with Him at the beginning of His life and of His mission,
you sought the Master among the crowd,
you stood beside Him when he was lifted up from the earth
consumed as the one eternal sacrifice,
and you had John close by you, your son;
accept from the beginning those who have been called,
protect their growth, accompany your sons in their life and in their ministry,
O Mother of Priests. Amen.                                                     - Prayer by Blessed John Paul II in Pastores Dabo Vobis

  • Flash is required!

Lord Jesus Christ, eternal High Priest,

you offered yourself to the Father on the altar of the Cross
and through the outpouring of the Holy Spirit
gave your priestly people a share in your redeeming sacrifice.
Hear our prayer for the sanctification of our priests.
Grant that all who are ordained to the ministerial priesthood
may be ever more conformed to you, the divine Master.
May they preach the Gospel with pure heart and clear conscience.
Let them be shepherds according to your own Heart,
single-minded in service to you and to the Church
and shining examples of a holy, simple and joyful life.
Through the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary, your Mother and ours,
draw all priests and the flocks entrusted to their care
to the fullness of eternal life where you live and reign
with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.                   Prayer by Pope Benedict XVI

  • Flash is required!

Our Father who art in heaven,

Give us priests according to Your Heart.
That Thy name may be hallowed,
Give us priests according to Your Heart.
That Thy kingdom may come,
Give us priests according to Your Heart.
That Thy will may be done on earth as it is in heaven,
Give us priests according to Your Heart.
So as to give us the bread of life,
Give us priests according to Your Heart.
So as to forgive us our sins,
Give us priests according to Your Heart.
That they may help us to overcome temptations,
Give us priests according to Your Heart.
And deliver them and us from every evil. Amen.     

  • Flash is required!

Lord Jesus, you have chosen Your priests among us

and have sent them to proclaim Your Word and to act in Your Name.
For such a great gift to Your Church, we praise You and we thank You.
We ask that you fill them with the fire of Your love,
that their ministry may reveal Your presence in the Church.
Since they are earthen vessels, we pray
that your power may work in their weakness.
In their afflictions do not let them be crushed;
in their doubts, do not let them despair;
in temptation, do not let them be destroyed.
Inspire them through prayer to live each day
the mystery of your death and Resurrection.
In times of weakness, send them Your Spirit
and help them to praise your heavenly Father and to pray for poor sinners.
With the same Holy Spirit place your word on their lips and your love in their hearts,
that they may bring the Good News to the poor and revive the broken-hearted.
Lastly, may the gift of Mary, your mother,
to the disciple whom you loved, be your gift to every priest.
Grant that she, who formed You in your human image,
may form each priest in Your divine image,
through the power of Your Spirit, to the glory of God the Father. Amen.
O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.       

O Jesus,

I pray for your faithful and fervent priests;
for your unfaithful and tepid priests;
for your priests laboring at home or abroad in distant mission fields.
for your tempted priests;
for your lonely and desolate priests;
For your young priests;
for your dying priests;
for the souls of your priests in Purgatory.
But above all, I recommend to you the priests dearest to me:
the priest who baptized me;
the priests who absolved me from my sins;
the priests at whose Masses I assisted and who gave me Your Body and Blood in Holy Communion;
the priests who taught and instructed me;
all the priests to whom I am indebted in any other way (especially …).
O Jesus, keep them all close to your heart,
and bless them abundantly in time and in eternity. Amen.           Prayer of St Therese of the Child Jesus

Mary, Mother of Jesus,

throw your mantle of purity over our priests.
Protect them, guide them, and keep them in your heart.
Be a Mother to them,
especially in times of discouragement and loneliness.
Love them and keep them belonging completely to Jesus.
Like Jesus, they, too, are your sons, so keep their hearts pure and virginal.
Keep their minds filled with Jesus, and put Jesus always on their lips,
so that he is the one they offer to sinner and to all they meet.
Mary, Mother of Jesus, be their Mother,
loving them and bringing them joy.
Take special care of sick and dying priests, and the ones most tempted.
Remember how they spent their youth and old age,
their entire lives serving and giving all to Jesus.
Mary, bless them and keep a special place for them in your heart.
Give them a piece of your heart, so beautiful and pure and immaculate,
so full of love and humility, so that they, too, can grow in the likeness of Christ.
Dear Mary, make them humble like you, and holy like Jesus. Amen.        Prayer by Blessed Mother Teresa

Heavenly Father,

grant that our priests be strengthened and healed
by the power of the Eucharist they celebrate.
May the Word they proclaim give them courage and wisdom.

We pray that all those whom they seek to serve
May see in them the love and care of Jesus,
Our Eternal High Priest, who is Lord for ever and ever. Amen.

Mary, Mother of the Church, look tenderly upon your sons, our priests.
St Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church, pray for us all.

O my Jesus, I beg You on behalf of the whole Church:

Grant it love and the light of Your Spirit
and give power to the words of priests
so that hardened hearts might be brought to repentance
and return to You, O Lord.

Lord, give us holy priests;
You Yourself maintain them in holiness.
O Divine and Great High Priest,
may the power of Your mercy accompany them everywhere and protect them
from the devil's snares which are continually being set for the souls of priests.
May the power of Your mercy, O Lord,
shatter and bring to naught all that might tarnish the sanctity of priests,
for You can do all things.              - Prayer by St Faustina

Dear Saint John Mary Vianney,

your childhood dream was to be a priest, to win souls for God.
You endured years of toil and humiliation to attain the priesthood.
You became a priest truly after God's own heart,
outstanding in humility and poverty, prayer and mortification,
totally devoted to the service of God's people.
The Church has exalted you as model and Patron Saint of all parish priests,
trusting that your example and prayers will help them
to live up to the high dignity of their vocation to be faithful servants of God's people,
to be perfect imitators of Christ the Saviour
who came not to be served but to serve, to give His life in ransom for many.

Pray that God may give to His Church today many more priests after His own heart.
Pray for all priests under your patronage,
that they may be worthy representatives of Christ the Good Shepherd.
May they wholeheartedly devote themselves to prayer and penance;
be examples of humility and poverty; shining modelss of holiness;
tireless and powerful preachers of the Word of God;
zealous dispensers of God's Grace in the sacraments.
May their loving devotion to Jesus in the Eucharist and to Mary His Mother
be the twin fountains of fruitfulness for their ministry. Amen.

Litany for Priests

Let us pray for the Holy Father: fill him with courage and grace, O Lord.
Cardinals, archbishops, and bishops: give them a shepherd's heart, O Lord.
Diocesan priests: fill them with your Spirit, Lord.
Priests in religious orders: perfect them in their calling, Lord.
Priests who are ill: heal them, Lord.
Priests who are in danger: deliver them, Lord.
Priests who are weak: strengthen them, Lord.
Priests who are poor: relieve them, Lord.
Priests who have lost their zeal: renew them, Lord.
Priests who are sad: console them, Lord.
Priests who are worried: give them peace, Lord.
Priest who are old: sustain them, Lord.
Priests who are alone: accompany them, Lord.
Missionary priests: protect them, Lord.
Priests who are preachers: enlighten them, Lord.
Priest who direct souls: instruct them, Lord.
Priests and religious who have died: bring them to glory, Lord.
For all priests: give them Your wisdom and knowledge.
For all priests: give them Your understanding and counsel.
For all priests: give them reverence and awe of You.
For all priests: give them patience and love.
For all priests: give them obedience and kindness.
For all priests: give them a burning zeal for souls.
For all priests: give them virtues of faith, hope and love.
For all priests: give them an intense love for the Eucharist.
For all priests: give them loyalty to the Holy Father and their Bishops.
For all priests: give them respect for life and human dignity.
For all priests: give them integrity and justice.
For all priests: give them humility and generosity.
For all priests: give them strength in their labors.
For all priests: give them peace in their sufferings.
For all priests: give them great love for the Trinity.
For all priests: give them great love for Mary.
For all priests: let them be the light of Christ.
For all priests: let them be the salt of the earth.
For all priests: let them practice sacrifice and self-denial.
For all priests: let them be holy in body, mind and spirit.
For all priests: let them be men of prayer.
For all priests: may faith shine forth in them.
For all priests: may they be concerned for our salvation.
For all priests: may they be faithful to their priestly vocation.
For all priests: may their hands bless and heal.
For all priests: may they burn with love for you.
For all priests: may all their steps be for the glory of God.
For all priests: may the Holy Spirit fill them, and give them His gifts in abundance.

Let us pray.
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, hear the prayers we offer for our priests. Let them know clearly the work that You are calling them to do. Grant them every grace to answer Your call with courage, love, and lasting dedication to Your will.
We ask Mary's intercession as their loving mother. Amen.


Benedict XVI - on the connection between the Blessed Virgin Mary and the priesthood

General Audience - 12th August 2009
- in Croatian, English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese & Spanish

I wish to speak of the link between Our Lady and the priesthood. This connection is deeply rooted in the Mystery of the Incarnation.

When God decided to become man in his Son, he needed the freely-spoken "yes" of one of his creatures. God does not act against our freedom. And something truly extraordinary happens: God makes himself dependent on the free decision, the "yes" of one of his creatures; he waits for this "yes". St Bernard of Clairvaux explained dramatically in one of his homilies this crucial moment in universal history when Heaven, earth and God himself wait for what this creature will say.

Mary's "yes" is therefore the door through which God was able to enter the world, to become man. So it is that Mary is truly and profoundly involved in the Mystery of the Incarnation, of our salvation. And the Incarnation, the Son's becoming man, was the beginning that prepared the ground for the gift of himself; for giving himself with great love on the Cross to become Bread for the life of the world. Hence sacrifice, priesthood and Incarnation go together and Mary is at the heart of this mystery.

Let us now go to the Cross. Before dying, Jesus sees his Mother beneath the Cross and he sees the beloved son. This beloved son is certainly a person, a very important individual, but he is more; he is an example, a prefiguration of all beloved disciples, of all the people called by the Lord to be the "beloved disciple" and thus also particularly of priests. Jesus says to Mary: "Woman, behold, your son!" (Jn 19: 26). It is a sort of testament: he entrusts his Mother to the care of the son, of the disciple. But he also says to the disciple: "Behold, your mother!" (Jn 19: 27). The Gospel tells us that from that hour St John, the beloved son, took his mother Mary "to his own home". This is what it says in the [English] translation; but the Greek text is far deeper, far richer. We could translate it: he took Mary into his inner life, his inner being, "eis tà ìdia", into the depths of his being. To take Mary with one means to introduce her into the dynamism of one's own entire existence it is not something external and into all that constitutes the horizon of one's own apostolate. It seems to me that one can, therefore, understand how the special relationship of motherhood that exists between Mary and priests may constitute the primary source, the fundamental reason for her special love for each one of them. In fact, Mary loves them with predilection for two reasons: because they are more like Jesus, the supreme love of her heart, and because, like her, they are committed to the mission of proclaiming, bearing witness to and giving Christ to the world. Because of his identification with and sacramental conformation to Jesus, Son of God and Son of Mary, every priest can and must feel that he really is a specially beloved son of this loftiest and humblest of Mothers.

The Second Vatican Council invites priests to look to Mary as to the perfect model for their existence, invoking her as "Mother of the supreme and eternal Priest, as Queen of Apostles, and as Protectress of their ministry". The Council continues, "priests should always venerate and love her, with a filial devotion and worship." The Holy Curé d'Ars, whom we are remembering in particular in this Year, used to like to say: "Jesus Christ, after giving us all that he could give us, wanted further to make us heirs to his most precious possession, that is, his Holy Mother." This applies for every Christian, for all of us, but in a special way for priests. Dear brothers and sisters, let us pray that Mary will make all priests, in all the problems of today's world, conform with the image of her Son Jesus, as stewards of the precious treasure of his love as the Good Shepherd. Mary, Mother of priests, pray for us!