Announcing the “Matt Talbot Prayer Group”

A few weeks ago I was invited to join Hozana, an online prayer community. It is an online gathering space for Catholics and other Christians to come together in prayer and mutual encouragement. It isn’t a social network on the order of a Facebook, MeWe or whatever else is out there, but you can follow others and communicate with them. Activity is centered around prayer communities which are ordered towards novenas and other liturgical seasons, as well as ongoing prayer necessities. There is also a “prayer intentions” feed where members can post prayer requests which remain available for 48 hours (you can always repost, if needed). Members click on a prayer intention which opens up in a little window. A virtual candle lights up underneath the intention and it changes color slowly from bottom to “flame.” Then you click “Amen” and if you wish, continue on to another intention that interests you. The person is notified that you prayed for them. The same for when you post an intention; you’ll get notified when people pray for you! It way cool.

It lacks the noise and obnoxiousness of other social media sites. It’s quiet and I typically reserve one browser tab for Hozana. I pin the tab to one side and return every so often to see who else needs praying for, or visit one of the many communities that interest me. And speaking of which…

The invitation to join Hozana came from a nice lady who volunteers for it; she found this blog and thought I would find Hozana useful as there are many prayer requests involving alcoholism and addictions. Maybe I could start a prayer community for these people, and share stuff from this blog and whatever else that’s helpful? Boy, could I!!!!! And so I did!

So, here is YOUR personal invitation to join Hozana and become a part of the Matt Talbot Prayer Group! Here’s the link for Hozana (in English, the site also has Spanish, French and Portuguese versions): Hozana. And here is the link for the prayer group: Matt Talbot Prayer Group. My profile: Me

From the description I wrote: “Welcome to the Matt Talbot Prayer Group! Join us in prayer and fellowship as we encourage one another in our sobriety and recovery from addictions!

Hebrews 3:13 “…exhort one another every day, while it is still called ‘today’…”

Romans 12:2 “And do not choose to be conformed to this age, but instead choose to be reformed in the newness of your mind, so that you may demonstrate what is the will of God: what is good, and what is well-pleasing, and what is perfect.” (Both from the Douay-Rheims Bible)

Prayers, linked articles, images, quotes from Scripture, the Catechism and the writings of Saints and others that can be useful in your recovery journey will be occasionally posted here. PLEASE make use of the comments section of the posts to reach out to one another!

Our patron is the Venerable Matt Talbot, an Irishman who lived from 1856-1925. A drunkard, he “took the pledge” to quit drinking after his friends one day refused to loan him money to buy liquor. This worked for a while, but it wasn’t until he decided to transfer his love for the drink onto Jesus Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary that his sobriety took hold. He was a daily Mass goer and had a profound prayer life. Matt exemplified the recovery values of acknowledging your weakness over addiction and the need for God to come in and restore your life and help you to amend and rebuild it, years before any modern recovery movements were founded.”

I may recruit one or more people to assist in running it. One thing that distinguishes Hozana from other social sites or even traditional discussion forums is that only administrators and moderators can start discussion topics, members can only reply in the comments; so it would help if there are is more than one person running things to keep it active. I have ideas as to whom I may recruit. (I have to know you fairly well.)

A side note for those readers who have been with me for over a decade: I have tried for almost ten years to develop a sustainable online community for Catholics suffering from addictions. Only the first one was any good but it had to be terminated because the platform it was on abolished free communities. As I could not afford to host it with them, it was axed. No successors really had the activity and charm of that first one back in 2008-10. 🙁 This one is different as it isn’t my idea. It wasn’t my will to create it; the suggestion came from someone else, and hence it may be in greater conformity with God’s Will. We’ll see. But regardless, sign up! The link is there, the invitation is open, and the people who run Hozana are nice and friendly. (It is based in France.)

See you there!

Know someone, perhaps yourself, who might like Catholic devotionals for alcoholics? Please take a look at my books! "The Stations of the Cross for Alcoholics" and "The Recovery Rosary: Reflections for Alcoholics and Addicts" (Thank you!!)