Prayer for the sake of others


19 April 2021

Presented By

Archbishop Peter A Comensoli

Last Sunday, Archbishop Peter A Comensoli filmed a brief message for the faithful on the steps of St Patrick’s Cathedral. In it, he shares his joy from two recent pastoral visits: the first was a visit to one of Melbourne’s prisons and the second to the local L’Arche community. Both visits were powerful experiences for the Archbishop who reminds us that we can learn so much from those who, no matter their circumstances, humbly and gently come to the Lord in prayer for the sake of others.


'Hello friends, I'm all dressed up because I've just literally walked straight out of Sunday Mass, to be able to film just on the steps of our cathedral.

You might remember last week, that in the little video message I was not on location because I was actually celebrating Mass in one of the prisons here in Melbourne, and I just wanted to return to that little visit that I had—this celebration of Mass—and to something else that I did this week, which was sharing a meal with the community of friends who are part of the L’Arche community of friends of mine who are disabled, intellectually, and who live together in a community home, and I shared a meal with them during the week.

Why I wanted to mention both prisoners, and the community of L’Arche, is the way in which both of them, the people involved that is, are such great prayers. It's their prayer that shone out in their lives. For the prisoners, their prayer—you might think that they might have just been praying for themselves, you know “I've got this problem... I’m stuck in here... I don't want that... Lord help me get out.” No, not at all. Their prayers were for one another, and their care, and for their families who had not been in the prison. Their prayer was so open to the needs of others. And I thought that was just a tremendous and powerful witness to the faith that our prisoners were giving during the celebration of Mass last weekend.

And my friends in the L’Arche community, their prayer is just full of blessing and delight. They’re extraordinarily simple prayers, and in fact some of them can't even articulate it well in particular words. But there is a heart of prayer that shone through in them.

I want to just raise that as examples of what is prayer. Prayer is this heartfelt, relationship with God, for the sake of the goodness of the Lord, being a part of our lives, and that that goodness might come into the lives of those who are most in need. And that it came from, in a sense, the poor and the broken. Just it was a very powerful experience for me.

We can learn so much from those who humbly and gently, no matter what their circumstances, can come to the Lord in prayer for the sake of others, and for the good of all.

May your own prayer, in your families and in your own circumstances, be ones that come from the heart, and are for the good of others.

Until next week.'