SAGINAW — Each year, Christians around the world are invited to pray for the fulfillment of Jesus’ desire that he shared at the Last Supper, that his followers “may all be one” (John 17:21). In 2023, this week of prayer begins on January 18 and concludes on January 25, the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul.
The theme for this year’s Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is “Do good; seek justice” (Isaiah 1:17). According to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops , the theme reflects Isaiah’s “concern for the oppressed who suffer from injustice and inequality fed by hypocrisy that leads to disunity. He teaches that God requires righteousness and justice from all of us, to create the peace and unity that God desires. These virtues originate in God's love for all, and racism runs counter to this vision. Isaiah's challenge to do good and seek justice together applies equally to us today.”
The Catholic Church also encourages her members to pray for the gift of Christian Unity throughout the year. One way is to include this specific intention in a daily Morning Offering, such as this adapted version of the prayer composed by Father Francois Xavier Gaulrelet in 1844 for the Apostleship of Prayer which he founded that year:
O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer you my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world. I offer them for all the intentions of your Sacred Heart: the salvation of souls, the reparation for sin, and the reunion of all Christians. I offer them for the intentions of our bishops…and in particular for those recommended by our Holy Father this month.
Click the QR Code below learn more and find resources for this week of prayer.