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The US Bishops composed and received approval of a ritual that invokes God’s blessing upon the child in the womb. The idea came from Archbishop Joseph Kurtz when he was the bishop of Knoxville several years ago. What better way to observe Mother’s Day in the USA than for us to be in prayerful solidarity with expectant mothers!

As the Introduction to this rite, the Bishops write that 

“The Church welcomes with joy and compassion the mothers who, recognizing that all life is a gift from God, come to the Church seeking a blessing for their unborn child. Such a blessing sustains the parents by imparting grace and comfort in time of concern and need, unites the parish in prayer for the unborn child, and fosters respect for human life within society.”

Here’s the key prayer: 

God, author of all life, bless, we pray, these unborn children; give them constant protection and grant them a healthy birth that is the sign of our rebirth one day into the eternal rejoicing of heaven.

Lord, who have brought to these women the wondrous joy of motherhood, grant them comfort in all anxiety and make them determined to lead their children along the ways of salvation.

[For the fathers: Lord of the ages, who have singled out these men to know the grace and pride of fatherhood, grant them courage in this new responsibility, and make them examples of justice and truth for these children.]

[For the family: Lord, endow these families with sincere and enduring love as they prepare to welcome these children into their midst.]

Lord, you have put into the hearts of all men and women of good will a great awe and wonder at the gift of new life; fill this (parish) community with faithfulness to the teachings of the Gospel and new resolve to share in the spiritual formation of these children in Christ our Savior, who lives and reigns for ever and ever.

R. Amen.

The full English and Spanish text is available here: Rite for the Blessing of a Child in the Womb.pdf

More info for prolife materials may be found at the USCCB site.

Happy Mother’s Day