|Fr. Pat Convoy, screen shot capture from C-Span|
“Let us pray,” he began. “We give you thanks, Oh God, for giving us another day. This has been a difficult and contentious week in which darker spirits seem to have been at play in the people’s house.”
Father Conroy then, closed his eyes and lifted his hands in prayer. “In your most holy name, I now cast out all spirits of darkness from this chamber, spirits not from you. I cast out the spirit of discouragement which deadens the hope of those who are of good will,” he prayed. “I cast out the spirit of petty divisiveness which clouds the sense and the desire to be of fruitful productivity and addressing the issues more appropriately before this House.
“I cast out any sadness brought on by the frustration of dealing with matters detrimental to the honorable work each member has been called to engage in. Pour out, Oh Lord, your sacred oil as you did upon Aaron of old. Anoint your servants here in the House with a healing balm to comfort and renew the souls of all in this assembly.
“May your spirit of wisdom and patience descend upon all so that any spirit of darkness might have no place in our midst. Rather, let your spirit of comity of brother and sisterhood and love of our nation and of all colleagues in this chamber, empower our better angels to be at play in the common work to be done for the benefit to be done for all your people. May all that is done within the people’s house be for your greater power and glory. Amen.”
Father Conroy is 68 and has been the House chaplain since 2011. When a CNN reporter noted that the prayer which Father Conroy said he wrote himself, sounded like a prayer of exorcism, he explained it was intentional. "If you are a person of faith," he said, "ultimately everything in our lives, our communities and our culture is a battle between darker spirits and our better angels."
For more inspiration check out Patti's latest book: Holy Hacks: Everyday Ways to Live Your Faith & Get to Heaven. Other books include: Big Hearted: Inspiring Stories from Everyday Families and the best-selling Amazing Grace Series.