Sunday, 22 March 2020 09:37

Seven Sisters in Effingham prays for priests

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Our priests need our prayers and they need them consistently. That’s the mission behind Seven Sisters, a prayer group at Sacred Heart Parish in Effingham. As part of the Seven Sisters Apostolate, which has local groups in parishes throughout the world, the Effingham group started in January of 2018.

“I found out about the Seven Sisters Apostolate and knew this was something every priest needs,” said Nancy Bence, the group leader at Sacred Heart. “Every priest needs his parishioners to pray for him.”

The Seven Sisters are called that because the priest has one woman praying a Holy Hour for him each day of the week. The Holy Hour can be prayed in a chapel or church and is spent entirely praying for the strengthening and sanctity for the particular priest of that group.

“We pray for the priest’s physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs as well as for his deepening devotion to the Blessed Mother,” Bence said. “The core group of Seven Sisters consists of seven women and a few substitutes. The patron saints of each Seven Sisters group are Our Lady Madonna of the Grapes, St. John Vianney, and St. Margaret Clitherow.”

Bence encourages other parishes to start their own Seven Sisters group because “Our priests need our prayers and support more than ever.”

“The best thing we can do for our priests is to pray for them,” Bence said. “God is so gracious and will never be outdone in generosity. For a priest to know he has someone specifically praying for him every day of the week throughout the year must be very consoling. I’m sure it’s rewarding for each Seven Sister to work in collaboration with the priest through prayer to help him grow in holiness as well as to help save souls through the priest’s unique ministry.”

There are prayer booklets printed by the Seven Sisters Apostolate that offers guidelines of what to pray for during each woman’s Holy Hour, however, each woman can ultimately decide how she wants to pray for the priest. The Seven Sisters group commit to pray for one year and renew each year normally in June on the feast day of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

More information on Seven Sisters can be found here: sevensistersapostolate.org.