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YEAR OF FAITH – What is prayer?

posted 11 Oct 2013, 05:26 by Susan Weaver

Here are some thoughts about the nature of prayer: “For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned towards heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy.” St Therese of Lisieux. “You are great, O Lord, and greatly to be praised ...you have made us for yourself, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” St Augustine. “Prayer in my opinion is nothing else than a close sharing between friends; it means taking time frequently to be alone with him whom we know loves us.” St Teresa of Avila. “Keep your soul in peace.  Let God work in you.  Welcome thoughts that raise your heart to God.  Open wide the window of your soul.” St Ignatius of Loyola. “My secret is quite simple: I pray.  And through my prayer I become one with the love of Christ and see that praying is loving him, that praying is living with him, and that means making his words come true ... being one with the will of Jesus twenty-four hours a day, living for him, through him, and with him.”  Bl. Teresa of Calcutta.

And from the Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2010:  Prayer is turning the heart towards God.  When a person prays, they enter into a living relationship with God.  Prayer is the great gate leading into faith.  Those who pray no longer live on their own, for themselves, and by their own strength.  They know there is a God to whom they can talk.  People who pray entrust themselves more and more to God.  Even now they seek union with the one whom they will encounter one day face to face.  Therefore, the effort to pray daily is part of Christian life.  Of course, one cannot learn to pray in the same way one learns a technique.  As strange as it sounds, prayer is a gift that we obtain through prayer.

October is the last month of the Year of Faith.  There will be a discussion about Prayer, using Bishop Malcolm’s short video on Saturday, 2nd November in the hall after 10am Mass.

 

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