Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give thine angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for thy love’s sake. Amen.
The above prayer comes from the Book of Common Prayer’s Compline service. Please don’t gasp that I’m quoting the Book of Common Prayer, but give me a minute to explain.
Falling asleep some nights proves itself no easier than swimming from Dublin to Norway. It takes the matchless prose such as above to get me over the torrential winds that anxiety sometimes is. However, that causes me to think: it’s not the prose, it’s the prayer. God has heard my cry, and he has come to my aid. O Lord, make haste to help me! Thy goodness like the sweet honey, and Thy mercy deeper than any ocean.
Some nights I’ll put on a tape of the Venerable Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen to listen to his speeches and homilies. I understand my faith much more because of those half-hour “episodes.” I’m reminded of his description of Our Lady, the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God. The Venerable Archbishop asked if we could go and create our mother, wouldn’t we make her as flawless and as perfect as any mother is? Wouldn’t we make her the most beautiful lady on earth? Such was God’s mother: for He came down to Earth through the spotless vessel that is the Blessed Mother. The sinless, immaculate Virgin he created, for he loved her before all Creation was made. Our Lady was in His design and plan since the beginning, and that is her vital role in the mystery of Salvation.
That’s a good and comforting thought. If the younger generations today could receive a good catechism, a good lesson in religion, a lot of the anxieties and crosses that younger people bear today would become a much lighter load.
Now to conclude, let’s end with the scripture translation that I will review come noon. The Common English Bible sums up John 16, one of it’s more better translated spots:
Thomas asked, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going. How can we know the way?”
Jesus answered, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”