Staff Prayers

ATeaching: Celebrating our profession" A Teachers Prayer Teacher Reflection A Prayer For Principals and Teachers The Lesson Teach Him Gently... If You Can
A Prayer For A Teacher Of Children A Teacher's Reflection At Grading Time Teachers Prayer Teacher's Prayer In the Middle of a Long, Dull Stretch







Teaching: Celebrating Our Profession

(By: Paul Sarlo & Lonnie Bolton)

Invitation To Worship:
Loving God, daily we need to be reminded of the awesome responsibility that we as teachers possess. Teaching is a sacred task. A Catholic teaching vocation carries with it an obligation to live out the Gospel by example and to lead all those entrusted to our care, to your son, Jesus. James in his letter reminds us of the seriousness of this undertaking.

"My friends, not many of you should become teachers. As you know, we teachers will be judged with greater strictness than others"-(James 3:1)

With the help of your grace and the indwelling presence of your Holy Spirit, may our vocation remain fresh and vibrant, as we live out the daily challenges and hopes that the Gospel brings.

Opening Prayer:
Jesus, The Teacher
He never taught a lesson in a classroom...
He had no tools to work with, no blackboards, maps or charts...
He used no subject outlines, kept no records, gave no grades,
and His only text was ancient and well worn.
His students were the poor, the lame, the deaf, the blind, the outcast...
And His method was the same with all who came to hear and learn...
He opened eyes to faith...
He opened ears with simple truth...
And opened hearts with love, a love born of forgiveness...
A gentle man, a humble man,
He asked and won no honours, no gold awards of tribute to His expertise
Or wisdom...
And yet this quiet teacher from the hills of Galilee has fed the needs,
Fulfilled the hopes, and changed the lives of many millions...
For what He taught, brought heaven to earth and God's heart to mankind.

Reading: (A paraphrase, for teachers, of 1 Corinthians 13-by Rev. Derwyn D. Jones)
Reader #1: Though I teach in ways that are pleasing to both principals and superintendents, but do not have love towards the children, I am no better than a loudspeaker.
Reader #2: And though I am proficient in the science of pedagogy, and hold verification in all advanced courses, but do not love my pupils, all my specialist papers are worthless.
Reader #3: And even though I have studied child psychology and know about the Id and the environmental conditions; yet if I do not actively love my children, it profits me very little.
Reader #4: And though I know the new math inside and out, and have a very good blackboard manner, if I have not love in my heart, I achieve precisely nothing.
Reader #5: Love makes a teacher have infinite patience - love searches out every avenue, during class or in my own time, to be helpful to a backward child.
Reader #6: Love does not try to manipulate children - does not talk down to them, not try to turn them into fan clubs who will idolize their teacher.
Reader #7: Love does not insist that every child progress at a uniform rate pleasing to the teacher, but makes allowances for individual endowments and differences.
Reader #8: Love has good manners, and respects even a child as a whole person in the sight of God and humankind.
Reader #9: Love is not touchy or temperamental, and does not take out the frustrations of the home on children in the class. Reader#10: Love teaches children to be forgiving by showing that we, as teachers, do not hold grudges against them.
Reader#11: Love does not point out or ridicule the slow learners, but rejoices exceedingly when they make progress.
Reader#12: Love knows no limit to its patience, no end to its hopes, no fading of its encouragement. It is the only quality that denotes a real teacher-and a real person.

Invitation To Prayer:

Leader: Lord Jesus Christ,

Left: We belong to you; all our schools belong to you.
You are our light, our hope, and our strength.
You have called us by name.
You have known each of us, intimately, from before time began.
Deeply, unfathomable, you know and cherish each of us here.

All: You stand with us.
We stand together because of you.

Right: You have given us a sacred mission to carry out in this world; you have called us
your friends.
You have poured light into our darkness, empowering us to bring light to others.
You have opened our minds to receive your truth; now we have a truth to proclaim.
You have loved us with a real and undying love; you ask us now to radiate your love in all its power and glory; this sacred task you have entrusted to us.

All: Lord, help us to remember that you are the centre and source of our lives, that anything we do will be successful whenever we remain faithful to you.

Left: Stay close to us in our work: at the photocopier, on yard duty, at meeting, in the classroom.
Stay close to us in our dreaming and our hoping, in struggle and victory.
Open our eyes to see our students and our colleagues as children of your light, as people who need your love and strength as deeply as we do.
All of us, even if in secret, are searching for the same Love, the same Peace, the same Strength.

Right: Set us on fire with an ever deeper and evermore passionate faith, with hearts ready to love and to forgive, so that the light we kindle in our school will radiate to the ends of the earth.

Left: I touch the face of humanity each day in my school, for I reach the ambitious and the indolent, the brilliant and the slow, the mature and the immature. I gaze at a quiet classroom, heads bent, minds intent on the lesson...I catch the enthusiasm of the eager search of a bright-eyed young scholar for an answer to her question... I study the prospective dropout, the disinterested "Clock-watcher," and the bitter delinquent - master of wisecracks and rebellion.

Right: I contemplate the endless quest of my young philosophers in their determination to know the core of life. I listen to a twelve year old lay her soul bare before me in a few moments of counseling. These daily scenes emphasize that no human endeavour requires more wisdom, more humanity, more labour, or dedication than education.

All: God, our father, you have made us your co-workers in the task of building your kingdom on earth. Help us to fulfill that responsibility as Catholic Educators. Give us wisdom and understanding to see the issues clearly and to make the right decisions. Fill us with your Spirit that we may act only under that Spirit's inspiration. Give us hearts to love those on whose behalf we meet: our parents, our young people, our teachers and administrators. Keep us always mindful that we are privileged to be your co-workers, accomplishing only what you will. Help us to follow that will after the model of your son, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you forever and ever. AMEN


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A Prayer for a Teacher of Children

Lord, let me be just what they need.
If they need someone to trust, let me be trustworthy.
If they need sympathy, let me sympathize.
If they need love, (and they do need love), let me love, in full measure.
Let me not anger easily, Lord but let me be just.
Permit my justice to be tempered in your mercy.
When I stand before them, Lord, let me look strong and good and honest and loving.
And let me be as strong and good and honest and loving as I look to them.
Help me to counsel the anxious, crack the covering of the shy, temper the
rambunctious with a gentle attitude.
Permit me to teach only the truth.
Help me to inspire them so that learning will not cease at the classroom door.
Let the lessons they learn make their lives fruitful and happy.
And, Lord, let me bring them to You.
Teach them through me to love You.
Finally, permit me to learn the lessons they teach.


(Author: Charman Kinzelman)

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A Teachers Prayer

Lord, let me be just what they need.
If they need someone to trust, let me be trustworthy.
If they need sympathy, let me sympathize.
If they need love, (and they do need love), let me love, in full measure.
Let me not anger easily, Lord but let me be just.
Permit my justice to be tempered in your mercy.
When I stand before them, Lord, let me look strong and good and honest and loving.
And let me be as strong and good and honest and loving as I look to them.
Help me to counsel the anxious, crack the covering of the shy, temper the
rambunctious with a gentle attitude.
Permit me to teach only the truth.
Help me to inspire them so that learning will not cease at the classroom door.
Let the lessons they learn make their lives fruitful and happy.
And, Lord, let me bring them to You.
Teach them through me to love You.
Finally, permit me to learn the lessons they teach.

(Author: Charman Kinzelman)

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A Teacher's Reflection

God, I have come to the frightening conclusion.
I an the decisive element in the classroom.
It is my personal approach that creates the climate.
It is my daily mood that makes the weather.
As a teacher I possess tremendous power to make a child's
life miserable or joyous.
I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration.
I can humiliate or humour, hurt or heal.
In all situations it is my response that decides whether a crisis
will be escalated or de-escalated and a child humanized or
Grant me the insight and patience to make the right decisions 
to model Jesus in my classroom.


(Source: Unknown)

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Teacher Reflection

Everything depends on the person who stands in the front of
the classroom.  The teacher is not an automatic fountain from which
intellectual beverages may be obtained.  He is either a witness or a
stranger.  To guide a pupil to the promised land he must have been there
himself.  When asking herself: do I stand for what I teach?  do I believe 
what I say?  she must be able to answer in the affirmative.

What we need more than anything else is not textbooks but textpeople.  
It is the personality of the teacher which is the text that the pupils read:
the text that they will never forget.

(Author: Rabbi Abraham Heschel)

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At Grading Time

There they sit, Father,
a neat stack of yellow report cards.
And here I sit,
an anxious and bewildered Solomon, 
praying in my heart for wisdom,
while the controversy about grading surges on.

Should there be an objective standard
whereby children are measured against other children?

And how do we weigh a child's achievement 
against his ability and effort?
Can we penalize a child for having little natural ability,
when he can't get a high mark
no matter how hard he tries?
And what about the child for whom "A"s come easily?
Will he skim through school never knowing what it is to try?

And what is happening 
when an "A" becomes so important that a child will
cheat for it,
perhaps to avoid abuse at home?

So here I sit, Father,
forced to take these cards seriously
because other people do.
Long on questions,
short on answers.

as I reach reluctantly for the top card,
let me also reach for your promise:
"If any one of you lacks wisdom,
let him ask of God."

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A Prayer For Principals and Teachers

Heavenly Father, we thank You for these men and women 
who lead our schools.  We ask You, Father, that You would give them
words filled with grace, seasoned, as it were, with salt, so that
they may know how they should respond to the broken-hearted
children, to a rebellious teen, a concerned parent, a discouraged

May their words be words that are helpful, for building others up
according to their needs.  We pray Father that you would give 
them a spirit, like eagle wings, to fearlessly soar across the paths 
of many with the message of God's love.

Father, we pray that You teach them to number their days and
recognize how few they are; help them to spend them as they should.

Father, we pray that You fill them with your strength so that they
can keep going no matter what... always full of joy of the Lord
and always thankful.
We pray that they would be able to laugh at their mistakes and 
to accept criticism, but may the "spirit of criticism" never stop
them from doing what is right.

Father, we pray that these men and women may walk in a
manner worthy of the God who calls them to their important

Let each of these men and women be a "Collector".  May they
find time to walk through the halls of the school giving a hug or
a reassuring smile to a child.  Let them not be afraid to put their
arms around someone or hold a hand, as if to say, "it will be
okay".  Father, let not the paperwork become so heavy as to 
crush their "spirit of giving".

And Father, forget them not; for they too are human.  Send
someone to cross their path to say a cheery "good morning...",
that really means: "I'm glad you're here!"  And a teacher or a
child who would say, "guess what I did..." which really means
"I'd like to share this with you because you're important to me."

But most important, send them a hand with a loving touch.
Send them the hand that understands for it was pierced.  Send
them that hand that hugged small children, taught the wise and
calmed the sea.

Send them, Father, the loving hand of Your Son, Jesus Christ.

In Jesus' name we pray.


(Author: Unknown)

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Teachers Prayer

God grant me wisdom, creativity and love.

With wisdom, I may look to the future
and see the effect that my teaching will
have on these children and thus adapt my
methods to fit the needs of each one.

With creativity, I can prepare new and interesting
projects that can challenge my students and expand
their minds to set higher goals and dream loftier dreams.

With love, I can praise my students for jobs well done 
and encourage them to get up and go when they fall.


(Author: Unknown)

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The Lesson

Then Jesus took His disciples up the mountain
and gathering them around Him he taught them
"blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of
blessed are the meek
blessed are they that mourn
blessed are the merciful
blessed are they who thirst for justice
blessed are all the concerned
blessed are you when persecuted
blessed are you when you suffer
be glad and rejoice for your reward is great in heaven.
Try to remember what I'm telling you"

Then Simon Peter said
"Will this count?"
And Andrew said
"Will we have a test on it?"
And James said
"When do we have to know it for?"
And Phillip said
"How many words?"
And artholomew said
"Will I have to stand up in front of the others?"
And John said
"The other disciples didn't have to learn this"
And Matthew said
"How many marks do we get for it?"
And Judas said
"What is it worth?"

And the other disciples likewise.

Then one of the Pharisees who was present
asked to see Jesus' lesson plan
and inquired of Jesus
His long range objectives in the cognitive domain

and Jesus wept.


(Author: Unknown)  

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Teacher's Prayer

I want to teach my students how
To live this life on earth
To face its struggles and its strife
And to improve their worth
Not just the lesson in a book
Or how the rivers flow
But how to choose the proper path
Wherever they may go
To understand eternal truth And know
The right from wrong
And gather all the beauty of a Flower
And a song for if
I help the world to grow In wisdom
And in grace
Then I shall feel that I have won
And I have filled my place
And so I ask Your guidance, God
That I may do my part 
For character and confidence
And happiness of Heart.


(Author: Unknown)

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Teach Him Gently... If You Can

My young son starts school tomorrow . . . It's all going to be strange and new
to him for a while, and I wish you would sort of treat him gently.

You see, up to now, he's been our little boy.

He's always been the boss of the backyard . . . His mother has always 
been around to repair his wounds, and I've always been handy to soothe
his feelings.

But now, things are going to be different. . . 

This morning he's going to walk down the front steps, wave his hand, 
and start out on the great adventure . . . It's an adventure that will
probably include wars and tragedy and sorrow.

To live his life in the world he will live in requires faith and love and courage.

So, world, I wish you would sort of take him by his young hand and teach 
him the things he will have to know.

Teach him, but gently . . . if you can.

He will have to learn, I know, that all men are not just, that all men are
not true.

But teach him also that for every scoundrel there is a hero . . .  That
for every selfish politician, there is a dedicated leader . . . Teach him that for
every enemy, there is a friend.

It will take time, world, I know, but teach him, if you can, that a 
nickel earned is of far more value than a dollar found . . . Teach him to
learn to lose . . . and to enjoy winning.

Steer him away from envy, if you can, and teach him the secret of quiet laughter.

Let him learn early that the bullies are the easiest people to lick . . . 
Teach him, if you can, the wonder of books . . . But also give him
quiet time to ponder the eternal mystery of birds in the sky, bees in the sun
and flowers on a green hillside.

In school, world, teach him it is far more honorable to fail than to cheat . . . 
Teach him to have faith in his own ideas, even if everyone tells him they 
are wrong . . . Teach him to be gentle with gentle people and tough
with tough people.

Try to give my son the strength not to follow the crowd when everyone
else is getting on the bandwagon . . . Teach him to listen to all men . . . 
But teach him also to filter all the hearts on a screen of truth and take
only the good that comes through.

Teach him, if you can, how to laugh when he is sad . . . Teach him there is 
no shame in tears . . . Teach him there can be glory in failure and despair in success.  

Teach him to scoff at cynics and to beware of too much sweetness. . . 
Teach him to sell his brawn and brains to the highest bidders but never to put
a tag on his heart and soul.

Teach him to close his ears to a howling mob . . . and to stand and fight
if he thinks he's right.

Treat him gently, world, but don't coddle him, because only the test of fire
makes fine steel.  

Let him have the courage to be impatient . . . let him have the patience 
to be brave.

Teach him always to have sublime faith in himself.  Because then he will
always have sublime faith in mankind.

This is a big order, world, but see what you can do . . . He's such 
a fine little fellow, my son!


(Author: Dan Valentine)

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In the Middle of a Long, Dull Stretch

I confess that the prospect of another day
stretching before me
is a burden, 
rather than a joy.

I've lived these past few weeks
in a state of mental and emotional malaise,
going routinely about my work,
without those sparks of creativity and spontaneity
that make life so exciting and satisfying.

The days are hectic,
crammed with pressures and demands,
but the hours pass slowly by B empty and barren.

Refresh me, Father.

Ease the tension that comes form boredom.

Show me how to bring vitality to a job that's gone stale.

Restore to me the absorbing joy of an artist at work,
for truly good teaching is an art.
Oh, Father,
you have given me time,
and you have given me skill.
Teach me to take delight in both,
using my time and my skill
to do something worthwhile,
to teach.


(Author: Unknown

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