Sent: Wed, 30 Jan 2008 5:59 pm
Subject: A New Prayer Apostolate for Hollywood
This is _______, the seminarian in _____, writing to you again. First I wanted to again thank you for the great work you are doing with Act One and the Hollywood RCIA program. You are certainly doing some important work down in the trenches.
I wanted to share with you a new prayer apostolate I and many of my brother seminarians are starting in order to pray for Hollywood. I have included the original e-mail to the seminarians below. Just know that we currently have over 25 seminarians committed to praying for specific actors and actresses. I think we will be able to have individual days of prayer for at least 50 celebrities between now and the end of the semester. We have taken to heart your words that Hollywood in a Mission Field rather than a wasteland. Any words of guidance you would like to give us would be very much welcomed.
Keep up your heroic efforts out there. I am continuing to remember your work in my prayers.
Inspired by _________'s challenge to put our Faith into action as well as the recent call by the Holy Father to make Evangelization and Ecumenicalism the two priorities of the Church (Permalink: http://www.zenit.org/article-21562?l=english), I would like to share with you a particular apostolate of prayer that I am undertaking.
To a certain degree we all took note of the recent death of actor Heath Ledger. It seems all too common that the stars of Hollywood, who seem to have everything they could possibly want in this life, turn to drugs, alcohol, and sex to fill voids in their lives. In the case of Heath Ledger, police are reported to have found as many as six different types of prescriptions for such things as anxiety and insomnia. The point is that, similar to the man mentioned in the story about Mother Theresa, they live in a form of spiritual darkness. We are called to try to “light the lamp” as Mother Theresa did.
Speaking for myself, I must admit a certain degree of cynicism about the apparent lost cause in Hollywood. How can my simple prayer impact such a large deficiency of Grace? I thought of this when considering St. Andrew’s cynicism about the impact five loaves and two fish would have in feeding such a large crowd. A little earlier in this Gospel account the apostles tell Jesus to send the crowd away so that they can get something to eat. Our Lord’s response to the apostles was, “feed them (5,000+) yourselves”. He is still saying that.
Here is one more short point of meditation about these lost causes in Hollywood:It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.[…]There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations – these are mortal and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit – immortal horrors or everlasting splendours. (C.S Lewis)
So here is my idea, and I will try to keep it as simple as possible:
1. I will put together a list of celebrities that we will pray for. Please feel free to recommend names to the list.
2. Every week starting on Sunday I will send out five names for that week. I will send the names out Saturday night for the following week.
3. Remember all five names during your prayer time on Sunday and the following Saturday, particular at Mass.
4. On each day Monday through Friday we will all pray for a particular name from the list of five. This would include morning prayer, mass, evening pray, and private prayer. I figure one extra name a day will not overshadow the other personal intentions we have. At the same time, this individual will have multiple seminarians praying for them through the course of the day.
5. I think, using this format, we can pray for at least fifty celebrities over the remainder of the semester.
To start, I have only sent this on to those few of you who I though may be open to participating in this apostolate. By all means feel free to pass this on to others who you think would like to participate. Please let me know if you would like to be part of this and who you know who would like to participate so that I can create an e-mail list to send names out each week. Please also let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. My hope is to start with the first list of five next Sunday.
P.S. from Barb. Why doesn't everybody join these seminarians and do this for Lent? I'm going to.