A few years ago a friend of mine who is Roman Catholic gave me a bookmark to put in my Bible (I have umpteen dozen bookmarks stuffed in various Bibles I use.) This bookmark has a prayer written by St. Francis of Assisi. The marker says he would pray this before a crucifix. Though I am not Catholic, and I do not pray before a crucifix, I think the words of this remarkable man from the Middle Ages summarize very nicely the attitude of many hearts today:

“Most high glorious God, enlighten the darkness of my heart,

And give me, Lord, a correct faith,

A certain hope,

A perfect charity,

Sense and knowledge,

So that I may carry out

Your holy and true command.”

In Jesus’ holy name we pray,

Amen.