Merry Christmas! My favorite sentiment at Christmas is its message of peace, so today I’d like to share a prayer with you which reflects that message. The Prayer of Saint Francis is also known as the Peace Prayer.
The grade school which I attended was staffed by the Sisters of St. Francis of Clinton Iowa, so I was introduced to this prayer as a child. We live in the same parish I grew up in and my children have all attended the same school. Although it is no longer staffed by the sisters, the Franciscan heritage is still strong there and the students still learn this prayer.
In fact, the school motto is “Apostles of Peace” and all members of the school community – students, teachers, and parents – are encouraged to be apostles of peace in all aspects of their lives. It is also tied in to the school bullying prevention program, with the theme being Protect and Encourage All Children Everyday (to spell out PEACE).
So today, I wish you peace and I encourage all of us, Scouts and Scouters alike, to strive to be instruments of peace.
Prayer of St. Francis
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.