I’ve posted these prayers before. Currently I say both of them every night after we’ve tucked the children into their beds. I always stay and sit in the rocking chair after lights out and sing them a few songs. Then when the songs have all been sung, I recite these two prayers silently to myself, sit a few more moments in the dark and then give each child one more blessing, touching a head or a hand and telling them that I love them, that Jesus loves them, praying that their guardian angels will watch over them and that they sleep soundly through the night.
I thought I’d share these prayers again because they both strengthen me in my vocation as mother and because the first one also helps me to examine my conscience, to contemplate how well I am striving to meet the goals outlined in the prayer.
O God the Father of mankind, who hast given me these my children, and committed them to my charge to bring them up for Thee, and to prepare them for eternal life: help me with Thy heavenly grace, that I may be able to fulfill this most sacred duty and stewardship.
Teach me both, what to give and what to withhold; when to reprove and when to forbear; make me to be gentle, yet firm; considerate and watchful; and deliver me equally from the weakness of indulgence, and the excess of severity; and grant that, both by word and by example, I may be careful to lead them in the ways of wisdom and true piety.
Pour Thy grace into their hearts, and strengthen and multiply in them the gifts of Thy Holy Spirit, that they may daily grow in grace and in knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ; and so, faithfully serving Thee here, may come to rejoice in Thy presence hereafter.
This second prayer is really more focused on strengthening my husband in his vocation. St Joseph is always my go-to guy when I think of fatherhood. But it is also a general prayer for family as well.
O dear and good St. Joseph who so lovingly cared for your little family at Nazareth, pray for all working men and their families. [and I usually add “especially for Dom and our family,”] Help us all to enjoy a happy Christian family life. Be a father to us all and watch over us even as you cherished the Blessed Virgin Mary and her Holy Child. Patron of the Universal Church, pray for us.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I give you my heart and soul.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, assist me in my last agony.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, may I breathe forth my soul in peace with you.
I often add a few other more specific intentions for Dom and our family which I want to entrust to St Joseph’s care. And I often add prayers for the husbands of my friends as well.