“There is something almost sacramental about the life of the rural family” said the venerable missionary Bishop Wehrle, O.S.B., of Bismarck, North Dakota, in addressing the little group of priests and laymen and laywomen who assembled in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1923 to establish the National Catholic Rural Life Conference. The call to that Conference was issued appropriately in a publication entitled “St. Isidore’s Plow.” The occasion was the opening of the first furrow in the American Catholic Rural Life movement.
The intervening years have been a long springtime of planting and cultivating through labor and prayer. Manuals for the development of the material and social aspects of the movement have been wisely provided. It is fitting that a manual expressive of the religious foundation and spiritual aspirations of the movement should be made available in this Rural Life Prayerbook.
It appropriately begins with devotions at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass which is the center of Catholic worship. Here will be found prayers suitable for various times and seasons and feasts dear to the farmer and his family. It also includes significant farm blessings from the Roman Ritual and Novena prayers to St. Isidore, the patron of farmers.
May the devotion to St. Isidore and his spirit of faith unite the Catholic farm families of our country in a spiritual and social movement which will enrich the Church in America with a fruitful rural apostolate.
Feast of St. Isidore
+EDWIN V. O’HARA, Archbishop
Bishop of Kansas City
Honorary President, National Rural Life Conferenc
CONTENTS Forward Introduction PART I ORDINARY OF THE MASS PRAYERS FOR THE COUNTRY FAMILY We Choose the Country Prayer in Honor of St. Isidore A Countryman Gives Thanks ORDINARY OF THE MASS Prayers after Mass PART II OCCASIONAL PRAYERS FOR VARIOUS TIMES, FEASTS, AND SEASONS OF THE YEAR A Note about the Prayers New Year's Prayer for Church and State A Holy Name Prayer A Prayer for the Whole Family Dedication of the Rural Family to the Divine Majesty A Prayer for Church Unity A Prayer for Candlemas Day To Jesus my Friend A Prayer for the Wood-Lot A Prayer to Simon of Cyrene A Prayer to St. Thomas Aquinas for Catholic Schools The Breastplate of St. Patrick A Prayer to St. Joseph A Prayer to St. Isidore, Patron of Country People A Prayer for Lent A Prayer at Easter A Prayer in Planting Time A Prayer to Christ, King of the Universe Prayer for May First A Prayer for Choosing a State of Life A Prayer to Mary for Charity A Prayer to the Holy Spirit Consecration of the Family to the Sacred Heart of Jesus A Prayer for the Wheat A Novena Prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus A Prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus A Prayer for Gardens and Orchards Prayers for Rain Canticle of the Three Young Men in the Fiery Furnace Prayer of St. Ignatius for Generosity A Prayer to St. John Vianney, the Parish Priest of Ars, for the Pastor and the Parish A Prayer on the Feast of Mary's Assumption A Prayer to the Immaculate Heart of Mary A Prayer for the Corn A Prayer in Time of Debt St. Francis of Assisi's Prayer for Peace A Prayer to the North American Martyrs A Prayer in Autumn for Country Living A Prayer to the Holy Guardian Angels Canticle of the Sun, St. Francis of Assisi A Prayer to St. Luke for the Family Doctor A Prayer to Christ the King A Prayer to all the Saints A Prayer in a Country Cemetery A Prayer for Protection against Fires A Prayer of Thanksgiving for God's Blessings A Prayer in Advent A Prayer in Winter A Prayer at Christmas Time for Country Living Hymn of Thanksgiving (Te Deum) PART III BLESSINGS FROM THE ROMAN RITUAL A Note on the Blessings Blessings of the Country Home and the People in It Blessing of the People with Holy Water, to be given on Sundays Blessing of a Baby Blessing of a Child to Obtain for It the Mercy of God Blessing for Sick Children Blessing of a Woman before the Birth of a Child Blessing of a Woman after Childbirth Blessing of a Sick Adult Blessing of Land or House Another Blessing of a Home Blessing of a Bedroom Blessing of an Image of Our Lord Jesus Christ, or of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or of a Saint Blessing of Candles Blessing of Candles on the Feast of St. Blaise, Bishop and Martyr Blessing of Fire Blessing of Water Blessings of Food and Drink Blessing of Bread Another Blessing of Bread Blessing for Bread and Cakes Blessing of a Lamb Blessing of Lard or Bacon Blessing of Cheese or Butter Blessing of Eggs Blessing of the Barn and the Stored Harvest Blessing of Grapes Blessing of Fresh Fruit Blessing of Any Food Blessing of Wine on the feast of St. John, Apostle and Evangelist Blessing of Wine for the Sick Blessing for Any Medicine Blessings of Farm Animals and Their Needs Blessing for All Domestic Animals Blessing for Horses or Other Animals Blessing for Animals Afflicted with a Serious Disease Second Blessing for Animals with a Serious Disease Blessing of Poultry Blessing of Bees Blessing of Salt or Feed for Animals Blessings of Fields and Crops Blessing of Crosses to be Set in Fields, Vineyards, etc., which is performed on the Feast of the Finding of the Holy Cross, or on the next Sunday Blessing of Sprouting Seed Blessing of Seeds, Flowers, and Crops on the Feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary Blessing of All Kinds of Fruit Trees and Vines Blessing to Ward Off Destructive Insects and Other Small Animals Blessings of Buildings, Vehicles, Etc. Blessing of a Mill Blessing of a Spring or Well Blessing of a Bridge Blessing Against Floods Blessing of a Stable Blessing of an Automobile, a Wagon, or Tractor Blessing of the Cornerstone of a New Building Blessing of a School Blessing of a Library Blessing for Any Object PART IV PRAYERS AND DEVOTIONS Prayers Every Catholic Should Know by Heart The Lord's Prayer The Hail Mary The Apostles' Creed An Act of Faith An Act of Hope An Act of Love An Act of Contrition Morning Offering A Prayer to the Holy Family Evening Prayer of a Rural Family Examination of Conscience Holy Communion Soul of Christ Prayer before a Crucifix Offering of Self Litany of the Sacred Heart A Short Act of Consecration to the Sacred Heart The Promises of Our Lord to St. Margaret Mary Litany of the Holy Name Litany of the Blessed Virgin The Angelus Regina Coeli A Farmer's Prayer to Mary The Rosary of Our Blessed Lady Litany of St. Joseph Novena to St. Joseph Prayer for the Church Unity Octave Prayer for Elected Officials An Act of Resignation Hymns and Prayers for Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament The Way of the Cross PART V LITURGICAL DEVOTIONS FOR COUNTRY LIVING Novena in Honor of St. Isidore Litany of St. Isidore Hymn for the Novena to St. Isidore Devotions for the Feast of St. Isidore Mass of St. Isidore Mass of St. Joseph the Worker Mass of St. Mark Ceremonies for the Observance of the Rogation Days Mass of the Rogation Days Mass of the Sacred Heart Harvest Prayers and Blessings for the Feast of the Assumption in honor of Our Lady of the Fields Mass of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Prayers and Blessings for the Family and Parish Observance of Thanksgiving; Mass of Thanksgiving; Prayer for Church and State; Canticle of the Three Youths; Blessing of the Harvest Prayer of Thanksgiving The Company of St. Isidore PART VI SELECTED PSALMS Psalm 103 Psalm 117 Psalm 127 Psalm 146 Psalm 148 A Meditation INDEX
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