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Christian Prayer

633

For in this hope we were saved.”

103

In the end, however, “with sighs too

deep for words” the Holy Spirit “helps us in our weakness; for we do not

know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us

with sighs too deep for words.”

104

2631

Thefirstmovement of theprayer of petition is

asking forgiveness,

like the tax collector in the parable: “God, be merciful tome a sinner!”

105

It is a prerequisite for righteous and pure prayer. A trusting humility

brings us back into the light of communion between the Father and his

Son Jesus Christ and with one another, so that “we receive from him

whatever we ask.”

106

Asking forgiveness is the prerequisite for both the

Eucharistic liturgy and personal prayer.

2632

Christian petition is centered on the desire and

search for the

Kingdom to come,

in keeping with the teaching of Christ.

107

There is

a hierarchy in these petitions: we pray first for the Kingdom, then

for what is necessary to welcome it and cooperate with its coming.

This collaboration with the mission of Christ and the Holy Spirit,

which is now that of the Church, is the object of the prayer of the

apostolic community.

108

It is the prayer of Paul, the apostle par

excellence, which reveals to us how the divine solicitude for all the

churches ought to inspire Christian prayer.

109

By prayer every

baptized person works for the coming of the Kingdom.

2633

When we share in God’s saving love, we understand that

every need

can become the object of petition. Christ, who assumed

all things in order to redeem all things, is glorified by what we ask

the Father in his name.

110

It is with this confidence that St. James

and St. Paul exhort us to pray

at all times.

111

III.

P

rayer of

I

ntercession

2634

Intercession is a prayer of petition which leads us to pray

as Jesus did. He is the one intercessor with the Father on behalf of

all men, especially sinners.

112

He is “able for all time to save those

who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make

103

Rom

8:22-24.

104

Rom

8:26.

105

Lk

18:13.

106

1 Jn

3:22; cf. 1:7-2:2.

107 Cf.

Mt

6:10, 33;

Lk

11:2, 13.

108 Cf.

Acts

6:6; 13:3.

109 Cf.

Rom

10:1;

Eph

1:16-23;

Phil

1:9-11;

Col

1:3-6; 4:3-4, 12.

110 Cf.

Jn

14:13.

111 Cf.

Jas

1:5-8

; Eph

5:20;

Phil

4:6-7;

Col

3:16-17;

1 Thess

5:17-18.

112 Cf.

Rom

8:34;

1 Jn

2:1;

1 Tim

2:5-8.

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