England: Bishop urges Catholics to pause and pray publicly on Fridays at 3 o’clock

Bp. Kieran Conry of the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton as a good idea.

From The Telegraph:

Catholic Church calls for public prayers in offices on Fridays
Millions of Roman Catholics are being urged to stop and pray publicly at 3pm on first Friday of every month as public expression of faith.

By John Bingham, Religious Affairs Editor

A bishop is recommending that they set the alarms on their mobile phones to remind them of the new observance as part of a move to promote faith in the workplace ahead of the Church’s “Year of Faith”.
It comes in the week that British government lawyers went to the European Court of Human Rights to defend the right of employers to ban the wearing of public symbols of faith such as the cross in the workplace.
The Rt Rev Kieran Conry, the Bishop of Arundel and Brighton and chair of the Church in England and Wales’s evangelisation committee, said the plan drew on traditions of saying special Friday prayers dating back to the 17th century.
He said: “I would like to invite every Catholic, especially during the Year of Faith, to pause for a moment of prayer of praise and thanksgiving at 3pm if possible, or perhaps when you break for lunch, on the first Friday of every month. [How about EVERY Friday?  For that matter, how about – also – every day for the Angelus?]
“Whatever you are doing, as your responsibilities allow, stop, perhaps close your eyes, bow your head and prayerfully and silently meditate on the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross out of love for you and everyone.
“You might even want to set your mobile phone to ring at 2.55pm to remind you to pause for prayer.”
He added: “The exact words used are not so important as just pausing to be with Jesus in that moment. In this way you are not only deepening your relationship with him, but quietly and confidently witnessing to your faith to those around you.” [Or, people could memorize a prayer. Remember memorizing? Something people did before the internet? We should also strive to obtain indulgences while we are at it.]

In the Enchiridion Indulgentiarum there is an appendix in which are listed useful “Pious Invocations”, which we can all use, all the time.  No one need know we are doing so.  You can use them all day, in your normal activities.

First General Grant

partial indulgence is granted to the faithful who, in the performance of their duties and in bearing the trials of life, raise their mind with humble confidence to God, adding even if only mentally — some pious invocation.

This first grant is intended to serve as an incentive to the faithful to put into practice the commandment of Christ that “they must always pray and not lose heart” and at the same time as a reminder so to perform their respective duties as to preserve and strengthen their union with Christ.

Here are some examples of traditional Pious Invocations:

  • We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you; because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world. (Roman Breviary)
  • May the Holy Trinity be blessed. (Roman Missal)
  • Christ conquers! Christ reigns! Christ commands!
  • O Heart of Jesus, burning with love for us, inflame our hearts with love for you.
  • O Heart of Jesus, I place my trust in you.
  • O Heart of Jesus, all for you.
  • Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.
  • My God and my all.
  • O God, have mercy on me, a sinner (Lk 18, 13).
  • Grant that I may praise you, O sacred Virgin; give me strength against your enemies. (Roman Breviary)
  • Teach me to do your will, because you are my God (Ps 142, 10).
  • O Lord, increase our faith (Lk 17, 5).
  • O Lord, may we be of one mind in truth and of one heart in charity.
  • O Lord, save us, we are perishing (Mt 8, 25).
  • My Lord and my God (Jn 20, 28).
  • Sweet Heart of Mary, be my salvation.
  • Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. (Roman Missal)
  • Jesus, Mary, Joseph.
  • Jesus, Mary, Joseph, I give you my heart and my soul. Jesus, Mary, Joseph, assist me in my last agony. Jesus, Mary, Joseph, may I sleep and rest in peace with you. (Roman Ritual)
  • Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like your Heart. (Roman Ritual)
  • May the Most Blessed Sacrament be praised and adored forever.
  • Stay with us, O Lord (Lk 24, 29).
  • Mother of Sorrows, pray for us.
  • My Mother, my Hope.
  • Send, O Lord, laborers into your harvest (see Mt 9, 38).
  • May the Virgin Mary together with her loving Child bless us. (Roman Breviary)
  • Hail, O Cross, our only hope. (Roman Breviary)
  • All you holy men and women of God, intercede for us. (Roman Ritual)
  • Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. (Roman Ritual)
  • Father, into your hands I commend my spirit (Lk. 23, 46; see Ps 30, 6).
  • Merciful Lord Jesus, grant them everlasting rest. (Roman Missal)
  • Queen conceived without original sin, pray for us. (Roman Ritual)
  • Holy Mother of God, Mary ever Virgin, intercede for us. (Roman Breviary)
  • Holy Mary, pray for us. (Roman Ritual)
  • You are the Christ, the Son of the living God (Mt 16, 16).

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Geoffrey says:

    I think it is a wonderful suggestion. For many years now I have tried to pause at noon and 3pm every day, to pray the Angelus (or Regina Caeli) and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. I know that many of the faithful try and do the same.

  2. amymev says:

    My phone alarm has had a 3 o’clock alarm for years. I offer up this prayer from the Diary of St. Faustyna:

    You expired, Jesus, but the source of life gushed forth for souls,
    and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world. O Fount of
    Life, unfathomable Divine Mercy, envelope the whole world and
    empty Yourself out upon us. Amen.

    “I remind you, My daughter, that ,as often as you hear the clock
    strike the third hour, immerse yourself completely in My mercy,
    adoring and glorifying it; invoke its omnipotence for the whole
    world, and particularly for poor sinners; for at that moment mercy
    was opened wide for every soul. In this hour, you can obtain
    everything for yourself and for others for the asking; it was the
    hour of grace for the whole world – mercy triumphed over justice.
    My daughter, try your best to make the Stations of the Cross in
    this hour, provided that your duties permit it; and if you are not
    able to make the Stations of the Cross, then at least step into
    the chapel for a moment and adore, in the Blessed Sacrament, My
    Heart, which is full of mercy; and should you be unable to step
    into the chapel, immerse yourself in prayer there where you happen
    to be, if only for a very brief instant. I claim veneration of My
    mercy from every creature… (Diary 1572).”

  3. pelerin says:

    This is intriguing – I am in the diocese of Bishop Conry and I first learn about this from the other side of the world! There are of course the usual anti Christian/Catholic comments on the Telegraph website including one quoting the Bible as saying that we should pray in private by going into a room and shutting the door. I don’t think Bishop Conry’s suggestion contradicts this – both private prayer and public prayer surely are acceptable to the Almighty?

  4. jessicahoff says:

    What an excellent idea.

  5. Supertradmum says:

    pelerin, this was on a English blog this morning. Also, in Telegraph on line early today. Bishop Kieran is also one of the few to come out against civil unions. God bless him.

  6. Trad Dad says:

    Amen Amymev .The Chaplet of divine Mercy was given to St. Faustina by Our Lord as a devotion for our times . The 3 o`clock prayer calls down great graces on the whole world . This can be said as a mental prayer in a few seconds but recollecting Our Lord`s Passion can stay with us throughout the day .
    Pax et bonum .
    From Our Lady`s Land of the Southern Cross .

  7. The Masked Chicken says:


  8. acardnal says:

    Let’s remember it was the British bishops who recently reintroduced abstinence on Fridays, too!
    Come on American bishops! Follow your colleagues in Britain.

  9. FranzJosf says:

    I like to use the first part of the pontifical blessing at the start of prayer to remind me of my duty and of our great and glorious God.

    Blessed be the name of the Lord.
    Both now and for evermore.
    Our help is in the name of the Lord.
    Who hath made heaven and earth.

  10. tioedong says:

    we have the “3 pm habit” here in the Philippines: even some radio/TV stations stop and have a public service announcement to remind people to pray every day at 3 pm.

  11. pinoytraddie says:

    Here’s the Philippine version of the 3 P.M Habit:

    You died Jesus, but the source of life flowed out for the souls and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world. O Fountain of Life, immeasurable Divine Mercy. cover the whole world and empty yourself out upon us. O Blood and Water which flowed out from the heart of Jesus as a fountain of mercy for us, I trust in You.

    Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and the whole world. (3 times) Amen

    Jesus, King of Mercy, I trust in You!

  12. Faith says:

    But…it was suggested for FIRST fridays.
    However, that will be forgotten unless it is every Friday.

  13. Sixupman says:

    +Conry is something of a very mixed-up guy, Doctrinally. Just this morning on BBC, we had a +++Martini fest from +Conry, not to mention the female “theologian” Beattie – who espouses the view that women have only recently benefited of a level of education allowing them to understand and interpret what scripture really means and not that which The Church says it means.

  14. Johnno says:

    I say the Divine Mercy Chaplet everyday at 3. Maybe not on the dotall the time, but whenever I find a small respite fromt he workload.

  15. catholicmidwest says:

    This isn’t possible on the job for everyone–aka department store clerks, factory workers.

    On the other hand, in the UK, there is a much larger population of Muslims than Catholics, and they get away with it on Friday. I don’t know why we can’t. Perhaps this English bishop has something here. Catholics do need a public corporate witness of this sort.

    We used to have meatless Fridays. 3PM Friday Our Fathers would work too.

  16. Philip Gerard Johnson says:

    Thank you for these!

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