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United we stand

If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14

As we just celebrated the 243rd birthday of our nation, our country is fraught with division and strife. We are in a cultural battle between good and evil. Our only hope is to turn to God to heal our land.

On January 22, 1999, when St. John Paul II named Our Lady of Guadalupe patron of the Americas, he asked her to intercede for peace, justice and respect:

Holy Virgin of Guadalupe, Queen of Peace! Save the nations and peoples of this continent. Teach everyone, political leaders and citizens, to live in true freedom and to act according to the requirements of justice and respect for human rights, so that peace may thus be established once and for all.[1]

Three years later, at the canonization of St. Juan Diego, St. John Paul II invoked the prayers of Juan Diego for the strengthening of families and for peace in our land:

Happy Juan Diego, true and faithful man! We entrust to you our lay brothers and sisters so that, feeling the call to holiness, they may imbue every area of social life with the spirit of the Gospel. Bless families, strengthen spouses in their marriage, sustain the efforts of parents to give their children a Christian upbringing. Look with favour upon the pain of those who are suffering in body or in spirit, on those afflicted by poverty, loneliness, marginalization or ignorance. May all people, civic leaders and ordinary citizens, always act in accordance with the demands of justice and with respect for the dignity of each person, so that, in this way peace may be reinforced.[2]

Lord please heal our land that we may again be “One Nation Under God.” Our Lady of Guadalupe, Patroness of the Americas and St. Juan Diego, pray for us!

Prayer to Jesus Christ for the Families of America[3]

We thank you, Lord Jesus, because the Gospel of the Father’s love, with which you came to save the world, has been proclaimed far and wide in America as a gift of the Holy Spirit that fills us with gladness.

We thank you for the gift of your Life, which you have given us by loving us to the end: your Life makes us children of God, brothers and sisters to each other. Increase, O Lord, our faith and our love for you, present in all the tabernacles of the continent.

Grant us to be faithful witnesses to your Resurrection for the younger generation of Americans, so that, in knowing you, they may follow you and find in you their peace and joy. Only then will they know that they are brothers and sisters of all God’s children scattered throughout the world.

You who, in becoming man, chose to belong to a human family, teach families the virtues which filled with light the family home of Nazareth.

May families always be united, as you and the Father are one, and may they be living witnesses to love, justice and solidarity; make them schools of respect, forgiveness and mutual help, so that the world may believe; help them to be the source of vocations to the priesthood and the consecrated life, and all the other forms of firm Christian commitment.

Protect your Church and the Successor of Peter, to whom you, Good Shepherd, have entrusted the task of feeding your flock. Grant that the Church in America may flourish and grow richer in the fruits of holiness.

Teach us to love your Mother, Mary, as you loved her. Give us strength to proclaim your word with courage in the work of the new evangelization, so that the world may know new hope. Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of America, pray for us!

[1] John Paul II, Homily of John Paul II, Apostolic Journey to America, Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico City, 23 January 1999; internet: http://w2.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/homilies/1999/documents/hf_jp-ii_hom_19990123_mexico-guadalupe.html (accessed July 6, 2019).

[2] John Paul II, Homily of The Holy Father John Paul II, Canonization of Juan Diego, Mexico City, 31 July 2002; internet: http://w2.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/homilies/2002/documents/hf_jp-ii_hom_20020731_canonization-mexico.html (accessed July 6, 2019).

[3] John Paul II, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Ecclesia in America, given at Mexico City, 22 January 1999; internet: http://w2.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/apost_exhortations/documents/hf_jp-ii_exh_22011999_ecclesia-in-america.html (accessed July 6, 2019).