PRAYER, CHARISMA, PHENOMENA
Why should I pray?
I would like to understand why we must pray to the Lord, the Holy Virgin, the saints, and how. I am sad that I do not know why I should pray. I am sure that others feel the same.
To me your question seems fundamental. It may look simplistic to people who pray naturally and easily, who feel the need to get in touch with the Lord to obtain His help.
Prayer is a dialogue with God, with our Heavenly Father, with the Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit, as well as with the Virgin Mary and God's friends, the saints. Prayer must well up from a humble, trustful and sincere heart. Prayer must be perseverant. In Holy Scripture did Jesus not say that we must pray persistently (Lk 11: 5sq)? Paul repeats the same teaching. "Keep on praying", he says (Rm 12: 12).
The whole Bible encourages prayer by the reader and provides examples of prayer, mostly the psalms. Jesus taught his disciples how to pray (Mt 6: 5ss). But prayer must not be an excuse to neglect charity and God's will (Mt 7: 21).
Christ himself gave us the example of prayer. He often prayed the whole night (Lk 6: 12). He prayed at all important moments of his life. He prayed in the temple and the synagogue. He prayed alone and with his disciples.
Prayer has many forms. There is the great liturgical prayer, the Church's prayer expressed in the Divine Office, the sacraments, especially the Eucharist. There is also private prayer, individual or group. As we pray, we meditate on God's Word, we praise God, we thank God, we ask for forgiveness, we beg for help...
Saint Paul wrote: "When we cannot choose words in order to pray properly, the Spirit himself expresses our plea in a way that could never be put into words, and God who knows everything in our hearts knows perfectly well what He means..." (Rm 8: 26-27).
We are God's children, but we are weak. We must obtain the Lord's help. This is why He invites us to pray: "Ask and you shall receive" (Mt 7: 7sq).
Prayer is the breath of our soul, in church, at home, on the road, as we rest or at work. Prayer makes us worship God, praise Him, thank Him, ask Him for forgiveness and obtain His grace. Who does not need prayer to honor God and obtain His blessing?
We turn towards the Virgin Mary, Saint Anne and other saints, so that they will intercede for us and join their supplications to ours.
Index of section