Sacred Space - MarketPlace Sacred Space Marketplace RSS feed for these comments

Every week Sacred Space offers you “Something to think about” as you prepare to pray. Here we offer you a glimpse of some of what others have thought about our reflections.
You are welcome to add your own thoughts.

Gerry O’Hanlon SJ, author of The recession and God reflects on praying in recessionary times

I meet many people who are worried and fed up these days. There seems to be no end to the bad news – unemployment rising, pensions wiped out, uncertainty everywhere and an ugly mood of discontent. I wonder was it like this for Job? Or for the Psalmist who asked ‘how long must we wait?’

Funny how that visit to my 86 year old Uncle Rory last week was one of God’s ways of helping me to see things in a different light. Rory lived with my dad and the rest of their large family in a 3-storey house in Hardwick Street, in the heart of Dublin, back in the 1920s. He described how they had a toilet and tap in the yard: there they washed, and fetched water in a bucket for the cooking. “It was all we knew”, he said “and we were happy”.

I know, Lord, that Rory is not some kind of grumpy Luddite, full of nostalgia for times past. He appreciates so much the real progress we have made, the beautiful houses we live in. But he does regret the passing of those other values which affluence has tended to suppress – like the time we had for one another, the kind of solidarity which excessive competition destroys. I can understand better now what the French poet Charles Péguy meant when he wrote that ‘everything begins in mysticism and ends in politics’.

And so, Lord, help me like Job to be patient, to listen to the many reassurances of Jesus telling me ‘do not be afraid’, to imagine a future in which economic growth will seek a ‘richness of sufficiency’ which will respect our planet and the common good of all – rich and poor – who live on it. Help me to believe that this is possible, because in the resurrection of Jesus you have shown that evil is, in the end, defeated. Fill me with confident hope in your love.

40 Responses to “Praying in the recession”

Comments are listed to show the most recent first. You are welcome to add your comment. All comments are moderated by Sacred Space and a selection is published here. Submission of a comment indicates acceptance of our information policies. Should you prefer to contact Sacred Space in another way, please use this form or consult the Contact page for futther options.
  1. Alice :

    It’s so easy to let the seed of God’s Word get choked up by the desire for material goods, comfort and the anxiety over losing the little of these that we have acquired. Every other day I have to catch myself and ween myself from being swallowed up by fear and worry over uncertainties. It’s a great mercy that God would not abandon me to myself. Instead he allows me to be still and know that He is God.

    With all of His trusting children, I rejoice in His presence, his PEACE, and the gift of friends who draw us to himself time and again …
    like St. Teresa of Avila who reminds us to:

    Let nothing disturb you; Nothing afright you.
    All things are passing. God alone does not change.
    Patient endurance will attain everything.
    Who ever possesses God will not lack anything.
    God alone suffices.


  2. mazel :

    it is really easier to be discouraged than be hopeful at this time of financial crisis as we see and hear bad news everyday. but God has been trying to reassure me that He is the Great Provider, and that He will sustain me in these hard times. and as i reflect, indeed, God has blessed me with more than i need. Thank you Lord, for Your abundant grace.


  3. From Canada :

    Thank you Sacred Space for all you do for us. Dearest Lord, thank you for all you teach us especially in difficult times, if only we pause, turn to you and listen to that quiet voice. Help us to reach out to those near to us and those in far off places who are so very much more worse off. Give us the courage Lord to change, to live within our incomes and not to be full of the greed that brought this crisis upon us. Thank you Jesus for your patience with us.


  4. Donna R :

    I’ve not been back to this page for months. Today I am moved to come back. Commenting on the current economic crisis: My first comment is this is not a crisis. Just a lesson for all of us who have become spoiled. Times are not as tough as the Depression Era generation lived through but somehow it seems nearly as bad because people don’t stick together and work for one another as previous generations did. I hope our faith deepens and we learn lessons.


  5. Lin :

    The Spirit always seems to work at the most unlikely times. When we pray in despair for greater faith, God opens our eyes and we are able to see the quiet beauty and hope that are being offered to us through our circumstances. For so long in this country our eyes have been focused on all the wrong things. Jesus told his followers not to lay up treasures on earth, but we, even in the church, have been fooled and taken in by the deceiver. We built our houses on the sand and they indeed are tumbling down. May we all have the courage to listen to the still, small voice that is beckoning us back to joy, peace, and hearts of compassion and servanthood . It is the voice of the One who truly loves us. His heart is breaking for this world, and he calls broken hearted followers to love those around them in tangible, selfless ways. This is our call. God, help us to listen to Your voice.


Leave your own message:

Name °

Email °


Your message

° Required text
Sacred Space Daily online prayer Sacred Heart Novena Podcast feed for Novena