The Notre Dame Book of Prayer
Edited by Heidi Schlumpf
Notre Dame, IN: Ave Maria Press, 2010
For over one hundred years, the Campus Ministry Office at Notre Dame has offered prayer books to incoming first-year students. "The Notre Dame Book of Prayer" is an attempt to share that gift with the larger Notre Dame community and the world in general. The ties to Notre Dame are quickly relevant with references to places on campus abounding. However, if one can get beyond that, there is truly a treasuretrove of prayers in this book.
The prayers are divided into sections. Among these are: "In the Beginning," "Bless Us, O Lord," "Work of Human Hands," "To Everything There is a Season," and "It is Finished." While there are many prayers one might expect, there are many unexpected prayers such as a "Runner's Prayer before Beginning a Race," "Prayer for Parenting a Special-Needs Child," "Prayer for Conflict with a Coworker or Friend," "Blessing for Women in Transition," "Menopause Prayer," and a "Prayer after Suicide."
One prayer that spoke to me was "Give Me Someone;"
when I am famished,
give me someone who needs food;
when I am thirsty,
give me someone who needs water;
when I am cold,
give me someone to warm;
when I am hurting,
give me someone to console;
when my cross becomes heavy,
give me another's cross to share;
when I am poor,
lead someone needy to me;
when I have no time,
give me someone to help for a moment;
when I am humiliated,
give me someone to praise;
when I am discouraged,
send someone to encourage;
when I need another's understanding,
give me someone who needs mine;
when I need somebody to take care of me,
send me someone to care for;
when I think of myself,
turn my thoughts toward another.
"The Notre Dame Book of Prayer" would make a great addition to any Catholic's prayer collection.
Reviewed by Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur