What are your litanies like?

The use of litanies is an ancient tradition in Christianity that some people may think is out of date.  However, I´m sure that is not true.  Litanies are a form of petition. The earliest litany was probably the repetition of the Kyrie, eleison (Lord have mercy).  The litany of the saints can be traced back to the 3rd and 4th century.  The Church has often used this form of prayer in times of calamity and crisis.  Nowadays, in our cultures we have many crises.  In these situations we need to pray to God with humility and insistence.  Praying the litanies is like drawing close to and knocking at the door of God´s mercy and grace.  If we insist like the impertinent friend of the gospel parable, who keeps knocking until his friend rises to give him bread for another friend who has come to visit, God will certainly respond to our pleas.  The litanies are a form of prayer we should practice to ask God for all kinds of graces, such as the gift of fortitude to go against the tide of the prevailing culture.

Some saints have litanies approved for prayer.  Blessed Pier Giorgio is one of those holy persons.  He is a great patron saint for the youth and devote faithful have written special litanies for him.  The litanies of Blessed Pier Giorgio are a perfect summary of the saintly and profoundly human qualities that can be found in his life.  His joyful and attractive existence should remind us that grace does not destroy nature, but elevates it.  When we read the litanies of Blessed Pier Giorgio we should be attracted by his virtues and inspired to imitate him.  And when we read his litanies we should ask ourselves a very profound and telling question: what are my litanies like?  That means, if the life of each one of us were seen with complete transparency what would our list of litanies be like.   Are my litanies an inspiring list of evangelical virtues?  If not, we need help, we need conversion.  One of our great intercessors before God can be Blessed Pier Giorgio, through his litanies we can ask for the grace of conversion and the virtues we need to grow in holiness.

Today´s society is suffering a great crisis that needs to be cured by holiness and truth.  Atheism, materialism, drugs, sex separated from real faithful love, and cruel ambition are some of the enslavements and vices men and women are plummeting themselves into.  The world needs lights that shine in the darkness.  Men and women of saintly lives, like Blessed Pier Giorgio, are beacons of light.  Postmodern society’s crisis needs young men and women who will be transformed in Christ, like Pier Giorgio.  That is the only way to heal the crisis the world is suffering.  Blessed Pier Giorgio was an apostle of prayer and fasting.  Blessed Pier Giorgio was strong in safeguarding chastity.  Blessed Pier Giorgio put his heart where it should be; he was a guide to a deep love for Jesus.   These are just a few of his litanies.  Let us ask ourselves in prayer: what are my litanies like?  Then pray for God´s mercy and grace and turn to Blessed Pier Giorgio as an inspiration and great intercessor. 

Litanies of Blessed Pier Giorgio

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
God our Father in heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
All the angels and saints, pray for us.
Blessed Pier Giorgio, pray for us. (Repeat after each invocation.)
Loving son and brother,
Support of family life,
Friend of the friendless,
Most Christian of companions,
Leader of youth,
Helper of those in need,
Teacher of charity,
Patron of the poor,
Comfort of the sick,
Athlete for God’s kingdom,
Conqueror of life’s mountains,
Defender of truth and virtue,
Opponent of every injustice,
Patriotic citizen of the nation,
Loyal son of the Church,
Devout child of the Madonna,
Ardent adorer of the Eucharist,
Fervent student of the Scriptures,
Dedicated follower of St. Dominic,
Apostle of prayer and fasting,
Guide to a deep love for Jesus,
Diligent in work and study,
Joyful in all of life’s circumstances,
Strong in safeguarding chastity,
Silent in pain and suffering,
Faithful to the promises of Baptism,
Model of humility,
Example of detachment,
Mirror of obedience,
Man of the Beatitudes,

Lamb of God, You take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, You take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, You take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

Pray for us, Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray: Father, You gave to the young Pier Giorgio Frassati the joy of meeting Christ and of living his faith in service of the poor and the sick. Through his intercession, may we, too, walk the path of the Beatitudes and follow the example of his generosity, spreading the spirit of the Gospel in society. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.