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Prayer

Humility in Prayer According to St. Teresa of Avila

July 9, 2018 2 Comments
Humility in Prayer According to St. Teresa of Avila

I have written before on humility in prayer as St. Augustine sets it forth. In today’s post I look to the same topic, but this time as St. Teresa of Avila presents it in her treatise The Way of Perfection. In setting forth her teaching, I have substantially reworked the order of her reflections. St. […]

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A Mysterious Word in the Lord’s Prayer

December 13, 2017 16 Comments
A Mysterious Word in the Lord’s Prayer

Pope Francis recently made news by indicating a preference for translating the phrase “lead us not into temptation” as “do not let us fall into temptation.” He did not say that the English rendering should be changed, only that He was supportive of a recent similar change made to the French translation. I have written […]

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Praying for Those Who Have Died Is a Work of Mercy

November 2, 2017 5 Comments
Praying for Those Who Have Died Is a Work of Mercy

What is the value of one prayer? I suspect it is far greater than any of us imagine. Prayer changes things, sometimes in obvious ways, but more often in subtle and even paradoxical ways. But prayer is surely important, even when we don’t experience its immediate effects. Perhaps this is why Jesus taught us to […]

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Meanwhile We Pray – In Humility, Always in Humility

October 26, 2017 3 Comments
Meanwhile We Pray – In Humility, Always in Humility

We are often quite certain that we know what is best for us. Therefore, we pray, asking God for good health, prosperity, or victory in some cause. But what if it is better for us to be unhealthy, to be poor, or to lose? Can we really say we know what is best and confidently […]

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On the Power of Liturgy and Prayer

May 31, 2017 0 Comments
On the Power of Liturgy and Prayer

There is a text from the Acts of the Apostles (read last week at Mass) that sets forth quite well some of the qualities of the Sacred Liturgy. Although the “liturgy” cited in this passage is not a Mass, the description should apply to all our liturgies; from the Liturgy of the Hours to baptism, […]

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The Universal Prayer

March 16, 2017 2 Comments
The Universal Prayer

To my mind, one of the most remarkable prayers ever written was one attributed to Clement XI, who was pope from 1700-1721. Many have never heard it. The prayer is called “universal” because of its sweeping themes. Upon completing it one might well ask if anything at all was left out! If you are looking […]

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Is It Time to Restore the Full Psalter to the Liturgy of the Hours?

January 8, 2017 26 Comments
Is It Time to Restore the Full Psalter to the Liturgy of the Hours?

One of the great gifts of reading the Liturgy of the Hours (also called the Breviary) faithfully over the years faithfully is that the Scriptures become deeply impressed upon the mind, heart, memory, and imagination. This is especially true of the psalms that are repeated every four weeks, all year long, every year. But there […]

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On the Necessity of Prayer

December 1, 2016 5 Comments
On the Necessity of Prayer

To say that something is “necessary” is to declare that it is so essential that to be without it causes grave if not deadly harm. The word comes from Latin: ne- (not) + cedere (to withdraw, go away, yield). The root sense is that what is necessary is something from which we cannot stray, something […]

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