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All Issues > Volume 17, Issue 2


<< Thursday, March 8, 2001 >> St. John of God
 
Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25
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Psalm 138 Matthew 7:7-12
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LENT: A SCHOOL OF PRAYER

 
"Queen Esther, seized with mortal anguish, likewise prayed to the Lord." —Esther C:12, our transl.
 

A week ago, on Ash Wednesday, the Lord through His Church commanded us to enter into a season of almsgiving, prayer, and fasting (Mt 6:2, 5, 16). Each of these penitential practices, even prayer, are difficult for us. "We do not know how to pray as we ought" so the Spirit helps us in our weakness (Rm 8:26). We sometimes pray wrongly because we pray selfishly (Jas 4:3). We definitely need Jesus to teach us to pray (Lk 11:1).

We pray well when we:

  • focus on God, our Father (Mt 6:9),
  • pray through Christ and in the Spirit,
  • pray together to our Father (Mt 6:9) and our King (Est C:14),
  • make our prayer priorities the holiness of God's name, the coming of His kingdom, and doing His will (Mt 6:9-10),
  • pray as chosen people (Est C:16) and God's adopted sons and daughters,
  • pray the Mass and other sacraments,
  • pray in faith and forgiveness (see Mk 11:24-25),
  • "present our needs to God in every form of prayer and in petitions full of gratitude" (Phil 4:6),
  • pray always (Lk 18:1),
  • pray the first thing in the morning (Mk 1:35),
  • pray with the angels and the saints, especially Mary (see Acts 1:14), and
  • pray silently (see Lam 3:26).

Lent is not only a time to pray; it is also a time to learn to pray. May your prayerful Lent lead to a life of deep prayer.

 
Prayer: Father, teach me to pray from the Scriptures and the Catechism.
Promise: "Ask, and you will receive. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and it will be opened to you." —Mt 7:7
Praise: When St. John's hospital burned, he carried out all the patients through the flames, but no one was burned (see Is 43:2).
 
 
 
Nihil obstat: Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, August 9, 2000
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 18, 2000
 
The Nihil obstat and Imprimatur are a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free from doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil obstat and Imprimatur agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.
Volume 17, Issue 2
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