Holy Spirit Province Saint-Esprit
Franciscans of CanadaFranciscains du Canada

Ordo Fratrum Minorum

Triduum: A Kyrie Litany

Triduum: A Kyrie Litany

Kyrie Eleison – Lord have mercy

Very often when we hear Kyrie eleison or Lord have mercy we often think of forgiveness and pardon. This is true and very good but is only one aspect of mercy. God’s mercy can be defined as “loving care from God for all creation.” Yes, this evokes the ideas of forgiveness and pardon but there is more to it. The Hebrew word for mercy has three definitions – which means: “goodness, womb (compassion) and grace.” These are powerful words which evoke images of deep forgiveness and also the inherent depth of God’s mercy seen in goodness, compassion and grace.

When we consider mercy as goodness, hopefully we can call to mind the goodness we have experienced in our life, the very fact we are created in the image of God which is good and the bonds of goodness we have with so many people. When we ponder mercy as womb, we can see it as the very place of life, the sacred place which holds us and first introduces us to compassion and tenderness. When we look at mercy as grace, we are reminded of God’s gift of free love to us; God willingly bestowing upon us generous love and passion for us. It is with these thoughts that I offer a Kyrie Litany for Triduum 2020 as we enter into these holy days in a very unprecedented time. God’s mercy is indeed present as God’s goodness, compassion and grace give shape to the days of Triduum.

For those of us who are struggling with the fact that we will not be in churches to celebrate these three sacred days and then gathering with family, let us be mindful of the hundreds of thousands of Christians who for many years have had to worship in secret or alone due to persecution. Let us be mindful of the hundreds of homeless and poor who do not feel they can walk through the doors of our church ever. The Body of Christ is still the Body of Christ broken and hurting but always with eyes fixed on the Resurrection.

For the times we have failed each other or failed to notice each other may this mercy be upon us. For the times in which goodness, compassion and grace have blessed us may we respond in mercy. For these times may mercy comfort us.

Lord have mercy.
Christ have mercy.
Lord have mercy.

Lord have mercy
on the peoples of the world
on the nations of the world
on the whole of creation

Christ have mercy
on the lonely
on the broken
on the hurting

Lord have mercy
on the homeless
on the hungry
on the abandoned

Christ have mercy
on the sick
on the dying
on the dead

Lord have mercy
on those working for the common good
on those working for justice
on those working for peace

Christ have mercy
on health care teams
on emergency workers
on medical specialists

Lord have mercy
on farmers and food providers
on food banks and soup kitchens
on postal workers, delivery drivers and packers

Christ have mercy
on those caught in violence
on those caught in addictions
on those caught in war

Lord have mercy
on refugees
on migrants
on forgotten peoples

Christ have mercy
on elders and the elderly
on babies and infants
on children and teens

Lord have mercy
on single parents
on married couples
on widows and widowers

Christ have mercy
on young professionals
on those nearing retirement
on minimum wage earners

Lord have mercy
on grocery store clerks and stocking staff
on pharmacists, drug store staffs and lab technicians
on restaurant owners and servers

Christ have mercy
on those alone in isolation
on those with special needs and their care givers
on those in hospital and those having treatments

Lord have mercy
on those who must work for the good of all
on those working long hours
on those who need work

Christ have mercy
on police officers
on military personnel
on firefighters

Lord have mercy
on teachers, instructors and administrators
on support staffs and janitors
on students

Christ have mercy
on daycare staffs and care aides
on town maintenance crews
on gardeners and florists

Lord have mercy
on those working to provide power
on those working to provide electricity
on those working to provide water to our homes

Christ have mercy
on pilots and airline crews
on construction workers
on therapists and mental health advocates

Lord have mercy
on pastors, ministers and priests
on rabbis
on imams
                  and their congregations

Christ have mercy
on volunteers
on neighbours
on generous donors

Lord have mercy
on small business owners
on managers
on the self-employed and employers

Christ have mercy
on those who work with online technology
on those working in and for social media
on those working in medical technologies

Lord have mercy
on cooks and bakers
on cleaners and those sanitizing
on dishwashers and food services teams

Christ have mercy
on couples preparing for marriage
on families preparing for the birth of a child
on children waiting for adoption

Lord have mercy
on seniors in assisted living homes
on those dealing with natural disasters
on families separated because of hurts

Christ have mercy
on families of all sizes
on communities of all sizes
on cities, towns and villages

Lord have mercy
on governments
on leaders of nations and lands
on leaders of communities and peoples

Christ have mercy

Lord have mercy
on my community and neighbourhood
on my family
on me.

Lord have mercy
Christ have mercy
Lord have mercy

Your love is our strength.
Your presence among us our hope.
Your way is our peace.

Our faith is weak,
our ways are feeble,
our work is stumbling,
You are our strength,
You are our hope,
You are our peace.

Your mercy is goodness.
Your mercy is compassion.
Your mercy is grace.


God of Mercy,

we know you are here with us

during these holy days

and through this pandemic.

We are tired and weak,

we are bombarded with a lot,

we are trying our best,

we are learning to slow down,

we are listening more closely to our hearts,

we are working at being more humane,

we are trying to learn, to hear and to be.


fill us with your mercy today,

these days and always.




Blessings of peace to you as you journey

to the Last Supper, to the cross,

to the sealed tomb and to the empty tomb.