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624

Part Four

A

rticle

2

IN THE FULLNESS OF TIME

2598

The drama of prayer is fully revealed to us in the Word

who became flesh and dwells among us. To seek to understand his

prayer through what his witnesses proclaim to us in the Gospel is

to approach the holy Lord Jesus as Moses approached the burning

bush: first to contemplate him in prayer, then to hear how he

teaches us to pray, in order to know how he hears our prayer.

Jesus prays

2599

The Son of God who became Son of the Virgin also learned

to pray according to his human heart. He learns the formulas of

prayer from his mother, who kept in her heart and meditated upon

all the “great things” done by the Almighty.

41

He learns to pray in

the words and rhythms of the prayer of his people, in the syna­

gogue at Nazareth and the Temple at Jerusalem. But his prayer

springs from an otherwise secret source, as he intimates at the age

of twelve: “I must be in my Father’s house.”

42

Here the newness of

prayer in the fullness of time begins to be revealed: his

filial prayer,

which the Father awaits from his children, is finally going to be

lived out by the only Son in his humanity, with and for men.

2600

The Gospel according to St. Luke emphasizes the action of

the Holy Spirit and the meaning of prayer in Christ’s ministry. Jesus

prays

before

the decisive moments of his mission: before his Father’s

witness to him during his baptism and Transfiguration, and before

his own fulfillment of the Father’s plan of love by his Passion.

43

He

also prays before the decisive moments involving the mission of his

apostles: at his election and call of the Twelve, before Peter’s confes­

sion of him as “the Christ of God,” and again that the faith of the

chief of the Apostles may not fail when tempted.

44

Jesus’ prayer

before the events of salvation that the Father has asked him to fulfill

is a humble and trusting commitment of his human will

to the loving will of the Father.

41 Cf.

Lk

1:49; 2:19; 2:51.

42

Lk

2:49.

43 Cf.

Lk

3:21; 9:28; 22:41-44.

44 Cf.

Lk

6:12; 9:18-20; 22:32.

470-473

584

534

535, 554

612

858, 443