Companions in Prayer and Ministry
The Companions in Prayer and Ministry is a spiritual association engaging participants in opportunities for prayer and spiritual development. In 1988, a group of sisters volunteered to explore ways in which Sisters could share spiritually and minister more fruitfully to those with whom we share the work of Catholic education. A survey of apostolic co-workers and friends confirmed a desire on the part of our lay associates to share spiritual opportunities flowing from our IHM spirit and traditions. The initial venture in March 1990, A Day of Reflection for our IHM Lay Associates, was confirmed "a successful and enriching experience" by all who participated.
A committee of interested Sisters and Companions coordinates the activities of the group, which include a yearly day of recollection, monthly prayer and social gatherings for small local groups, and convent outreach. The membership of Companions in Prayer and Ministry is composed of men and women who are or have been associated with the IHM Sisters in apostolic works through the years. All members receive the Newsletter and enjoy book reviews, tidbits of IHM history, articles on spiritual topics and community traditions, and pertinent updates on community events.
The charism of the IHM Congregation
We often hear people speak about the charism of their religious congregations. What is charism? Charism is the spirit of the Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, which animated the founder, Father Louis Florent Gillet, a young Redemptorist missionary in Monroe, Michigan in 1845. "This charism is LOVE, which continues to manifest itself today in the sisters' joyful service of God and his people; creative HOPE, which puts all its confidence in God's loving Providence; and FIDELITY, which inspires fervor in one's vocation in Christ and in one's mission in the Church." (Faithful Witness, #2)
Charism is the lived and living chain of holiness and service linking the spirituality of St. Alphonsus, through the inspiration of Father Gillet with the original spirit of Mother Theresa Maxis and the first Sisters, to each IHM Sister past, present, and future.
Special Devotions in the Alphonsian Tradition
For St. Alphonsus Liguori, growth in the spiritual life was a primary pastoral concern. Typical of his simple approach to prayer, he recommended the practice of a particular virtue each month, beginning with the three theological virtues. St. Alphonsus believed that personal reflection, prayer, and the daily living of the monthly virtue could be a powerful means of "putting on Christ." The daily effort for personal transformation into Christ became the basis of his spirituality. An outline plan appeared in St. Alphonsus' own private notebook.
Read some IHM Stories.
Monthly Virtues and Patrons
||Saints Peter and Paul
||I am the Light of the World. John 8:12
||Because he has hoped in me, I will deliver and protect him, because he has known my name. Psalm 91:14
||Saint James the Great
||Love of God
||Love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, soul and mind, and with thy whole strength. Mark 12:30
||Love of Neighbor
||This is my commandment that you love one another as I have loved you. John 15:12
||Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of God. Matthew 5:3
||Saint James the Less
||Purity of Heart
||Blessed are the clean of heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8
||You are my friends if you do the things that I command you. John 15:14
||Meekness and Humility of Heart
||Learn of me because I am meek and humble of heart. Matthew 11:29
||He that hates his life in this world keeps it to life eternal. John 12:25
||Recollection and Silence
||Jesus, having dismissed the multitude, when up to a mountain alone to pray. Matthew 14:23
||We ought always to pray and not to faint. Luke 18:1
||Self-Abnegation and Love of the Cross
||If anyone will come after me, deny yourselves. Take up the cross, and follow me. Matthew 16:24
IHM Devotional Prayers
St. Alphonsus, God's very nature is an outpouring of love. God has
gone out of himself to the point of folly in order to make himself
lovable to us. This self-outpouring of God erupts into history in
Jesus Christ and is evident for Alphonsus in a special way in the
Incarnation, the Passion and the Eucharist. "The very words Crib,
Cross, Sacrament, should make our hearts thrill with joy," says
Alphonsus. In the Crib we see infinite power become weak for us;
in the Passion, we see a God who shares our life in everything even
in the desolation of death; in the Eucharist we see a God who lives
among us forever as providing nourishment for our journey. (Heritage
Incarnation, Redemption, Eucharist, and Marian Devotion -these are the ever-recurring Alphonsian themes that guide our prayer life. By meditating on these mysteries and uniting ourselves to Jesus Christ, the Redeemer, we become more and more like him and Mary, the Mother of the Love of our lives.
St Alphonsus Evening Prayer to Mary
Most holy and immaculate Virgin, my Mother Mary, who are the Mother of my Lord, the Queen of the universe, the advocate, the hope, the refuge of sinners, to you, I, who am the most miserable of all, have recourse.
I salute you, O great Queen! I thank you for all the favors you have bestowed upon me, particularly for having delivered me from hell, which I have so often deserved. I love you, O most amiable Lady; and, through the love which I bear for you, I promise always to serve you, and to do all that I can to encourage others to love you.
In you, after Jesus, I place all my hopes, all my salvation. Accept me for your servant, O Mother of mercy, and take me under your protection; And, since you are so powerful before God, deliver me from all temptations, or rather obtain for me the grace to conquer them until death. Of you I ask the true love of Jesus Christ. Through your intercession I hope to die a good death.
O my Mother, through the love which you bear to God, I implore you to assist me always but particularly at the last moment of my life. Do not leave me until you see me safe in heaven to bless you and to sing your mercies for all eternity. Amen.
Such is my fervent hope, such my ardent desire.
Memorare to St. Joseph
(The Memorare to St. Joseph is modeled on the prayer of the same type to Our Lady. It first appears in our history in the handwritten manual of Sister M. Aloysius Waters.)
Remember, O most dear and holy father, Saint Joseph, that you have been constituted the dispenser of the riches of Jesus Christ, and that the goodness of your heart has never suffered you to close your ears against the humble prayers of those who supplicate your intercession.
Encouraged by this assurance, we your servants, though wretched sinners, earnestly beseech you to adopt us as your children, to protect us as you did the Divine Infant, Jesus, and to procure for us all the graces we require in life and death.
Do not, O guardian of the Word-made-flesh, do not reject our humble petitions, but graciously hear and grant them. Amen.
Prayer of Father Gillet to Our Lady
Mary, my Mother, protect and defend me. Through the channel of
your pure heart, pour into mine all those graces which I need to
complete God's plan for me. (Immaculata, 36)
Bookmark of St. Teresa of Avila
|Let nothing disturb you
||Nada te turbe
|Let nothing frighten you
||Nada te esponte
|All things are passing
||Todo se pasa
|God alone is changeless.
||Solo Dios basta.
Contact person for Companions in Prayer and Ministry:
Sister Mary Beth Coyle, IHM
Companions in Prayer and Ministry Newsletter
Educational Ministries | Evangelization Ministries
Camilla Hall | Companions in Prayer and Ministry