Memorial Services and Masses for Terri's Day!


Churches may hold memorial services for Terri on or around "Terri's Day" each year, utilizing the following prayers and readings:

Opening Prayer

God of Life, we praise you.
Lover of the weak, we worship you.
You are near us at every moment,
As the Guardian and Protector of our lives.
As we remember Terri Schindler-Schiavo,
Give us the wisdom to recognize
The dignity of all who are weak, frail, or disabled,
And the grace to serve and protect them.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Suggested Readings (see below)

General Intercessions

Introduction: Gathered as the People of Life, let us now intercede for all who are in need.

Prayers: For all God's people, that they work together to build a culture of life that welcomes and protects all the vulnerable, we pray to the Lord...

For the disabled, that their dignity be recognized in law and in practice, and that their lives be honored, we pray to the Lord...

For government leaders, that they fulfill their responsibility to care for the weak and to provide for the needy, we pray to the Lord...

For those who preach God's word, that they will be prophets to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves, we pray to the Lord...

For Terri Schindler-Schiavo, that the Lord may receive her into his eternal life, and that her memory may spur us on to fight for equal protection of every human life, we pray to the Lord...

For Terri's family and for all who fought for her life, that they have the grace and strength to advocate for other families facing similar challenges, we pray to the Lord...

For all those who failed in their obligations toward Terri, that the Lord may forgive them, heal them, and transform them into defenders of life, we pray to the Lord...

For all the sick, especially those who are alone, and for all who have died, we pray to the Lord...

Closing: Father of mercy, You never cease to care for us.Bless all your people. May the weak experience the protection of the strong, And may the strong gain wisdom by caring for the weak. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Lord's Prayer

Closing Prayer

Lord, We have gathered tonight
To remember Terri Schindler-Schiavo
And to pray for all our vulnerable brothers and sisters.
In your mercy, hear our prayers.
Renew your people,
That they may reflect at all times the compassion and care
That you have for every human life.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

*Suggested Readings

There are many Scripture readings that would be appropriate for a memorial service or Mass in remembrance of Terri Schiavo. In particular, we recommend any of the readings in the following sections of the lectionary:

Lectionary selections under Votive Masses -- for the Triumph of the Holy Cross (numbers 897 through 903)
Lectionary selections for Masses For the Sick (numbers 871 through 875)
Lectionary selections for Masses For Any Need (numbers 876 through 880)
Lectionary selections for Masses for Peace and Justice (numbers 831 through 835)

*Mass Prayers

The Sacramentary provides a number of Mass prayers that would be particularly appropriate for Masses in remembrance of Terri Schiavo, when the liturgical rubrics of the day permit them. In particular we recommend the following Masses:

Sacramentary - Mass 21 - For the Progress of Peoples
Sacramentary - Mass 32 - For the Sick
Sacramentary - Mass of September 14 - Triumph of the Holy Cross
Sacramentary - Mass 38-B - For Any Need
Sacramentary - Mass of the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Alternative Opening Prayer

*Homily Hints

The following links provide reflections, articles, and homilies that can provide the preacher with material for a homily at a Mass or other memorial service in remembrance of Terri Schiavo:

Homily at Terri Schiavo's funeral Mass (Fr. Frank Pavone)
Reflection on Terri's final hours
"Atrophy of Compassion"
Terri Schiavo: A Test for us All
Frequently Asked Questions about Terri