The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

Growing Old

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This week's story is about something I know a great deal about - growing old and failing memory. I don't know if you've noticed, but old people can be very 'down to earth' about their views on life. A famous actress, whose name I can't remember, was being interviewed on BBC Radio, as she was 97 years old; she was asked if the prospect of death worried her at all. She replied, "No, but doing anything new for the first time, does make me nervous."

I recently found this 17th century nun's prayer, but just as valid today - see what you think.

A Nuns Prayer

Lord Thou knowest better than I know myself that I am growing older and will someday be old.
Keep me from the fatal habit of thinking I must say something on every subject and on every occasion.

Release me from craving to straighten out everybody's affairs.
Make me thoughtful but not moody: helpful but not too bossy.
With my vast store of wisdom it seems a pity not to use it all, but thou knowest O Lord that I still want a few friends at the end.
Keep me free from recital of endless details and give me wings to get to the point.
Seal my lips on my aches and pains as they are all increasing
But my love of rehearsing them is becoming sweeter as the years by.
I dare not ask for grace enough to enjoy listening to the pains of others, But Lord, help me to endure them with the utmost patience.

I dare not ask you for an improved memory, but for growing humility
But thou knowest, Lord that my memory sometimes clashes with others.
Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be mistaken.
Keep me reasonably sweet, but not like a Saint, for they are hard to live with,
But not like a sour old person, as they are one of the crowning works of the devil.
Give me the ability to see good things in unexpected places,
And to see good talents in unexpected people.
And finally, Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.

"We should all try to live in a state of joy, appreciation and love.
Loss is hard when it is forever, so live in joy now, while it is still possible."

Published Mon 14th Oct 2013 09:40:17

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