Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy

Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy

Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy

Lenten And Holy Week Resources

We offer you Lenten and Holy Week Resources under the following categories:

  • Prayers
  • Prayer Services
  • Videos
  • Hymns and Lyrics
  • Slideshows
  • Links

To view a printable PDF of these resources, please click here


A Prayer To Begin My Lenten Journey (Ash Wednesday)

Loving Jesus,
as I place on my forehead the sign of your loving cross.
You say to me, repent and believe in the Gospel.
Walking into Lent my heart is set on you.
May my fasting fill me with hunger for you,
may my prayer draw me deeper into your presence,
may my acts of charity bring your love
to my home and community.
Lord of Life,
grant that by turning back to you in these 40 days
I will reawaken the joy of my Easter faith;
for you raise me up from fear and despair
and call me to hope and trust in God who is with me always.
With you, I will rise again

Prayer for Ash Wednesday

We forget sometimes that ashes come from fire,
That this soft black powder was once a firm green frond,
Bright and vibrant before it became dry and brittle,
Stiff and fibrous before a flame transformed it into dust.
Every living thing submits to change.
Let’s not fear it.
From seed to plant, palm to ash,
This bit of the earth smudged on our foreheads today
Was carried lovingly in the hands of the Creator.
What fires will we step into this Lent?
What new forms will our souls take
When we encounter the holy blaze of the Living God?
We are — it is true — ash to ash and dust to dust,
But whether in youth or in old age, in life or in death,
Let us be assured,
We are held, and we are God’s.
(Cameron Bellm)

Fasting This Lent

Fast from hurting words and say kind words
Fast from sadness and be filled with gratitude
Fast from pessimism and be filled with hope
Fast from worries and trust in God

Fast from pressure and be prayerful
Fast from bitterness and fill your heart with joy
Fast from selfishness and be compassionate to others

Fast from grudges and be reconciled
Fast from words, be silent, so you can listen
Pope Francis

 Desert Prayer

In the desert of despair may we find Hope
In the desert of fear may we find Release from Bondage
In the desert of hunger and homelessness may we find Water
In the desert of waste and want may we find Shared Bread
In the desert of sickness and infirmity may we find Trust
In the desert of emptiness and doubt may we find the Vast Expanse
In the desert of isolation and rejection may we find a Desert Flower.
In the desert of pollution and desecration may we find Forgiveness
In the desert of spiritual drought may we find The Well.
In the desert of sorrow and tears may we find the Empty Tomb.
In the desert of the darkest night may we find The Presence

A Prayer for Lent

O gracious Master, infuse in our hearts the spotless light of Your Divine Wisdom and open the eyes of our mind that we may understand the teachings of Your Gospel. Instill in us also the fear of Your blessed commandments, so that having curbed all carnal desires, we may lead a spiritual life, both thinking and doing everything to please You. For You, O Christ, our God, are the enlightenment of our souls and bodies; and to You we render glory, together with Your eternal Father, and with Your all holy, life-creating Spirit, now and ever, and forever. – (Catholic Online)

Country Prayer For Lent

Dear Lord, we are now in the holy season of Lent. We begin to realize anew that these are the days of salvation, these are the acceptable days. We know that we are all sinners. We know that in many things we have all offended Your infinite majesty. We know that sin destroys Your life in us as a drought withers the leaves and chokes the life from the land, leaving an arid, dusty desert. Help us now, Lord, in our feeble attempts to make up for past sin. Bless our efforts with the rich blessing of Your grace. Make us realize ever more our need of penance and of mortification. Help us to see, in our ordinary difficulties and duties, in the trials and temptations of every day, the best opportunity of making up for past infidelities. Every day we are so often reminded in field and wood, in sky and stream, of Your own boundless generosity to us. Help us to realize that You are never outdone in generosity, and that the least thing we do for You will be rewarded, full measure, pressed down, shaken together, and flowing over. Then we shall see, in our own souls, how the desert can blossom, and the dry and wasted land can bring forth the rich, useful fruit that was expected of it from the beginning. Amen. – (Catholic Online)

Lenten Prayer for Spiritual Renewal

God, heavenly Father,
look upon me and hear my prayer
during this holy Season of Lent.
By the good works You inspire,
help me to discipline my body
and to be renewed in spirit.

Without You I can do nothing.
By Your Spirit help me to know what is right
and to be eager in doing Your will.
Teach me to find new life through penance.
Keep me from sin, and help me live
by Your commandment of love.
God of love, bring me back to You.
Send Your Spirit to make me strong
in faith and active in good works.
May my acts of penance bring me Your forgiveness,
open my heart to Your love,
and prepare me for the coming feast
of the Resurrection of Jesus.

Lord, during this Lenten Season,
nourish me with Your Word of life
and make me one
with You in love and prayer.

Fill my heart with Your love
and keep me faithful to the Gospel of Christ.
Give me the grace to rise above my human weakness.
Give me new life by Your Sacraments, especially the Mass.

Father, our source of life,
I reach out with joy to grasp Your hand;
let me walk more readily in Your ways.
Guide me in Your gentle mercy,
for left to myself I cannot do Your Will.

Father of love, source of all blessings,
help me to pass from my old life of sin
to the new life of grace.
Prepare me for the glory of Your Kingdom.
I ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever.
(Catholic Online)

A Prayer on Palm Sunday

Loving Father, with palm branches
 we recall when Jesus was welcomed by crowds
 into the city of Jerusalem.
 Bless us with your Spirit as we prepare to journey
 through Holy Week.
 May we find time to listen again
 to the story of the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus.
There, may we discover the love of God, which knows no bounds.
We bring with us our suffering and pain, our worry and loss
 and the suffering, pain, worry and loss of the whole world at this time.
May we hear proclaimed this coming Easter Day that Jesus is risen!
May we have our hope renewed in God
who brings good out of bad and even life out of death.

A Lenten Prayer Called the Passion

Dear Lord Jesus,
by Your Passion and Resurrection
You brought life to the world.
But the glory of the Resurrection
came only after the sufferings of the Passion.

You laid down Your life willingly
and gave up everything for us.
Your body was broken and fastened to a Cross,
Your clothing became the prize of soldiers,
your blood ebbed slowly but surely away,
and Your Mother was entrusted to the beloved disciple.

Stretched out on the Cross,
deprived of all earthly possessions and human aid,
You cried out to Your Father that the end had come.
You had accomplished the work given You,
and You committed into His hands,
as a perfect gift,
the little life that remained to You.

Lord, teach me to accept all afflictions
after the example You have given.
Let me place my death in Yours
and my weakness in Your abandonment,
Take hold of me with Your love,
that same foolish love that knew no limits,
and let me offer myself to the Father
with You so that I may rise with You to eternal life.
(Catholic Online)

Holy Week Prayers


God of love,
My prayer is simple:
Your son, Jesus, suffered and died for me.
I know only
that I cannot have real strength
unless I rely on you.
I cannot feel protected
from my many weaknesses
until I turn to you
for forgiveness and your unalterable love.
Help me to share this
strength, protection and love with others.


God of such unwavering love,
how do I “celebrate”
the passion and death of Jesus?
I often want to look the other way
and not watch,
not stay with Jesus in his suffering.
Give me the strength
to see his love with honesty and compassion
and to feel deeply
your own forgiveness and mercy for me.
Help me to understand
how to “celebrate” this week.
I want to be able to bring
my weaknesses and imperfections with me
as I journey with Jesus this week,
so aware of his love.

Spy Wednesday

My savior,
do you invite me to share
in the glory of the resurrection?
Please stay with me
as I struggle to see
how accepting the crosses of my life
will free me from the power
of the one who wants only
to destroy my love and trust in you.
Help me to be humble and accepting
like your son, Jesus.
I want to turn to you
with the same trust he had in your love.
Save me, Lord. Only you can save me.

Holy Thursday

Loving Provider,
you gather me in this upper room with your son,
to be fed by your love.
At that supper, Jesus told us to “love one another”
and I know that is the heart of his gift,
his sacrifice for me.
I ask that I might find the source of my own heart,
the meaning for my own life,
in that Eucharist.
Guide me to the fullness of your love and life.

Good Friday

My Lord,
your son has suffered so much, shed so much blood.
I was born with so many faults
and my nature is so full of weakness,
and yet your son Jesus has died on the cross.
For me.
I know your grace has the power
to cleanse me of my many sins
and to make me more like your Son.
Thank you for your goodness and love for me.
I ask you, Father, to watch over me – always.

Holy Saturday

God, Creator of heaven and earth: Grant that,
as the crucified body of your dear Son was laid in the tomb and rested on this holy Sabbath,
so we may await with him the coming of the third day,
and rise with him to newness of life;
who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

(online ministries)

Prayers For Easter Sunday

May the glory and the promise of this joyous time of year bring peace and happiness to you and those you hold most dear.

And may Christ, Our Risen Savior, always be there by your side to bless you most abundantly and be your loving guide.
(Author Unknown)

Lord God,
You loved this world so much,
That you gave your one and only Son,
That we might be called your children too.
Lord, help us to live in the gladness and grace
Of Easter Sunday, everyday.
Let us have hearts of thankfulness
For your sacrifice.
Let us have eyes that look upon
Your grace and rejoice in our salvation.
Help us to walk in that mighty grace
And tell your good news to the world.
All for your glory do we pray, Lord,
(Rachel Marie Stone)

Dear Lord, may I realize afresh today what
Your death and resurrection mean for me.
Forgiveness, freedom, and the ability to walk with
You through this fallen world into eternity.
May I always find my satisfaction in
You and Your willingness to offer
Yourself to me.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
(Rachel Olsen)

Prayer Services

Ash Wednesday Prayer Service

Materials Needed:  Participants need a candle and lighter/matches.  Groups may want to prepare a central prayer space to add their candles to.

Preparing a Prayer Space:  Prayer spaces may include fabrics or table cloths.  Mercy crosses, candles, items from nature like flowers or seashells, and items significant to your community like a school emblem or community covenant.

To view Ash Wednesday Prayer Service (Mercy International) please, click here.

Lenten Prayer Service

To view Lenten Penitential Prayer Service for the Gift of the Earth (Trocaire), please click here.

Stations of the Cross

To view Stations of the Cross (KANDLE website), please click here.

Stations of the Cross (Traditional) by Saint Alphonsus Liguori, please click here

To view a Stations of the Cross for Our Times (KANDLE Website), please click here.

To view a Stations of the Cross – Liliana’s Story (APT), please click here.

Holy Week at Home

To view Holy Week and Easter Sunday resources (KANDLE website) and suggestions on how to spend each day (special meals, films to watch, talking etc.) which can be used at home, please click here


Lent – 40 Days of Renewal (Presentation), please click here

A Prayer for Lent (Prayer), please click here

Lenten Prayer For Spiritual Renewal (Prayer), please click here

Praying the Lenten Reflections – Week 2 (KANDLE website), please click here

Praying the Lenten Reflections – Week 3 (KANDLE website), please click here

Praying the Lenten Reflections – Week 4 (KANDLE website), please click here

To view the film Jesus of Nazereth, please click here

Hymns and Lyrics

We Walk By Faith – Marty Haugen, please click here

The Servant King (From Heaven You Came) – Emmaus Music, please click here

Psalm 51 – Be Merciful, O Lord – Marty Haugen, please click here

At The Cross Her Station Keeping – Patrick Dwyer, please click here

Psalm 130 (I Will Wait For You) – Keith & Kristyn Getty, please click here

Psalm 91 (My God, In Him I Will Trust) – Esther Mui, please click here


Poems for Lent – Joyce Rupp, please click here

New Beginnings – A Journey from Lent to Easter – A Lent reflection leaflet by Anne O’Connor.  To view, please click here

Lenten Reflection Guide for 2022 from the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns.  To view, please click here

To subscribe to a free weekly email on the readings, please click here.   The email goes out each Monday @ 8.30 am

The Tarsus Scripture School offers biblical programmes online following the church year. For Lent and Easter 2022, it consists of 9 presentations, 1 webinar and 1 meditation: all for €30 per household/community. To register, please click here.

The National Bible Society of Ireland is offering an online Lenten course called Opening the Scriptures. To register, please click here.

The Irish Messenger has been publishing a series called Hearers of the Word on the readings for Advent/Christmas, Lent/Holy Week, Easter/Pentecost. The series is now complete with the 8th volume for Lent and Holy Week and the 9th volume for Easter and Pentecost. For more information, please click here.

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