PETER CHANEL, PRIEST, FIRST MARTYR OF OCEANIA
Born in France in 1803, St Peter Chanel did pastoral work there for a few years after ordination, and then entered the Marist Society and was sent to Oceania. There was considerable resistance to missionaries at the time, though he did receive a few converts into the faith before he was clubbed to death on the island of Futuna in 1841.
you called Saint Peter Chanel to work for your Church
and gave him the crown of martyrdom.
May our celebration of Christ’s death and resurrection
make us faithful witnesses to the new life he brings,
for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever
St Peter Chanel, you left your homeland
to proclaim Jesus, Saviour of the world,
to the peoples of Oceania.
Guided by the Spirit of God,
who is the strength of the gentle,
you bore witness to love,
even laying down your life.
Grant that, like you, we may live our daily life
in peace, in joy, and in fraternal love.
May your prayer and example
call forth from our midst
many workers for the Gospel
so that God’s Kingdom may reach
to the ends of the earth.
For all Christians, that they might commit
themselves more deeply each day to the
Lord’s call to follow him, giving witness to the
Kingdom. Lord, hear us.
St Peter Chanel followed the call
of the Lord that led to his death and
the eventual conversion of the island of Futuna.
May his witness inspire many to commit their
lives to the Gospel and so “bear much
fruit.” Lord, hear us.
May many young people hear the Lord’s
invitation to be his friends and listening
attentively to his Word, live with him in
religious life and priesthood. Lord, hear us.