Zenit, December 30, 2016
Pope Francis is changing up the practice of his monthly prayer intentions, distributed worldwide by the Apostleship of Prayer.
Jesuit Father James Kubicki, national director of the Apostleship of Prayer, explained that a monthly papal prayer intention has been given to the world through the Apostleship of Prayer since the late 1800s. A second intention for missions was added in 1929.
“Today these are called his ‘universal’ and ‘evangelization’ intentions,” Father Kubicki noted, explaining that the “process of soliciting suggestions from Vatican Congregations and from members around the world, then proposing them to the Holy Father, then receiving his final versions and translating them from Italian into various languages, then publicizing them via print—is a long process.”
Now Pope Francis is introducing a change to this process.
He is “returning to the practice of one monthly intention; the twelve intentions for 2017, which alternate between evangelization and universal intentions, have already been published,” Father Kubicki explained. “However, given the speed of communication in the digital age, he is adding a second, urgent prayer intention that he will make known during his Angelus Address on the first Sunday of the month. As soon as we hear what they are we will be publicizing them on our website and other social media.”
The “Morning Offering,” prayed daily by members of the Apostleship of Prayer and others, is an especially liturgically-inspired prayer. The prayer recalls the Holy Father’s monthly intentions, and also the individual’s “prayers, works, joys, and sufferings” which are offered along with Jesus’ self-offering to the Father at Mass.
One version of the Morning Offerings prays: “O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father. Amen.”