March 15 AIC Day of Prayer

The following was received in a letter from the AIC Secretary International. We encourage all members to join in prayer on March 15.

Dear Presidents and friends,

As in previous years, the 15 March will be our AIC Day of Prayer.

It seems important to us that, once a year, the 200,000 AIC volunteers throughout the world should be specially united in prayer, to strengthen us in our determination, our creativity and our dynamism working alongside people who are in need.

So I ask you to encourage the volunteers in your country to join in prayer on that day, or during the days following 15 March*, by taking part in a group Mass, using the intentions which have been suggested to you or using a spiritual reflection with the help of the 2011 sheets about St. Louise.

With love and prayers for 15 March,

Best wishes,

Laurence, Natalie, Marla and Maru

*We take advantage of this letter to transmit to you the Holy Father’s message sent to us for Lent. Click to view PDF

* * *

This year, following the 350th Anniversary of the death of St Vincent and St Louise, for our spiritual reflections we have chosen to walk with St Louise. Indeed, as early as 1625, Saint Vincent asked her to be the 1st coordinator for all the new charities.

The life of Saint Louise with the 1st charities speaks to us:

She was an excellent organiser, intelligent and bighearted.  During her visits she used to gather the ladies together and ask them about the work they were doing, stressing the importance of educating girls – a subject which she considered to be very important – and she used to ask them to pray and to practise charity.

For Louise de Marillac any Mission carried out for the suffering members of Christ was not “a personal question”. This Mission had to be lived within the Church.

Louise de Marillac liked to reread with all the members of the confraternities the passage in the Rules concerning mutual relationships: “They will be united as sisters of Our Lord and will remain united by His love”.

And concerning the way to serve the poorest people: “on coming across them, you will greet them cheerfully and with charity”.

Saint Louise had absolute respect towards the members of the confraternities and an attentive ability to listen, which is indispensable for coming to the aid of the people we help.

At the end of her visits, Louise was always concerned about the spiritual life of the group.  She had to ask them questions, because the women of the confraternity did not speak spontaneously.

Let us pray with Saint Louise:

As we approach our international Assembly in March 2011 in Madrid with the theme: “Education, a pathway to build together ”

We pray that she may continue to inspire us in our mission towards the poor.

We pray also that she may help us to realise that to educate is to help the person to grow in all their physical, intellectual, spiritual and relationship dimensions and to realise that this applies also to those people we help, as well as the members of our AIC groups and to ourselves.

Suggestions for prayer intentions:

We pray that we may know how to follow the example of Saint Louise and the advice of Saint Vincent, for the greater glory of God and for the good of the poor.

St Vincent showed special love and concern for the poor. We pray that we will always find inspiration in the example that he gave us through his devotion to serving the poor. Give new strength to all our members and help us to inspire new volunteers to join us in the future, to serve the poor with genuine love.
Lord hear us.
Response: Lord, graciously hear us.

We pray for all the poor people whom we strive to help, that they may find happiness and fulfilment in their lives.

Lord hear us.
Response: Lord, graciously hear us.

God our Father, you gave St Vincent the strength and courage to work for the well-being of the poor.  Help us to be zealous in continuing his work and teach us all through the example of St Vincent that helping the poor brings great joy.
Lord hear us.
Response: Lord, graciously hear us.

Amen

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