While many parts of the Mass are always the same (we use the same words for the Gloria; the Holy, Holy, Holy; the Lord’s Prayer; the Lamb of God; etc.), several parts are always different from one Mass to another: the Scripture readings, the homily, and the Prayer of the Faithful. This, of course, gives us an opportunity to invite young people to shape some of the words we use at Mass. In particular, inviting young people to create General Intercessions can itself be a very powerful and prayerful experience. With that in mind, I’d like to offer something I’ve used with young people to help them formulate General Intercessions for a Mass or prayer service. This activity can help get the wheels turning so that their intercessions are coming from their deepest desires. The activity begins by asking the young people to imagine that they have been granted three wishes and that the only stipulations are that the wishes not be for themselves and that they be only for the benefit (not harm) of others.
Download a PDF of the Three Wishes handout.
Also, here’s some good advice about writing intercessions in general.
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