THE WAY OF PRAYER
In the living tradition of prayer, each Church proposes to
its faithful, according to its historic, social, and cultural context, a
language for prayer: words, melodies, gestures, iconography. The
Magisterium of the Church
has the task of discerning the fidelity
of these ways of praying to the tradition of apostolic faith; it is for
pastors and catechists to explain their meaning, always in relation
to Jesus Christ.
Prayer to the Father
There is no other way of Christian prayer than Christ.
Whether our prayer is communal or personal, vocal or interior, it
has access to the Father only if we pray “in the name” of Jesus.
The sacred humanity of Jesus is therefore the way by which the
Holy Spirit teaches us to pray to God our Father.
Prayer to Jesus
The prayer of the Church, nourished by the Word of God
and the celebration of the liturgy, teaches us to pray to the Lord
Jesus. Even though her prayer is addressed above all to the Father,
it includes in all the liturgical traditions forms of prayer addressed
to Christ. Certain psalms, given their use in the Prayer of the
Church, and the New Testament place on our lips and engrave in
our hearts prayer to Christ in the form of invocations: Son of God,
Word of God, Lord, Savior, Lamb of God, King, Beloved Son, Son
of the Virgin, Good Shepherd, our Life, our Light, our Hope, our
Resurrection, Friend of mankind. . . .
But the one name that contains everything is the one that
the Son of God received in his incarnation: Jesus. The divine name
may not be spoken by human lips, but by assuming our humanity
The Word of God hands it over to us and we can invoke it: “Jesus,”
The name “Jesus” contains all: God and man and
the whole economy of creation and salvation. To pray “Jesus” is to
invoke him and to call himwithin us. His name is the only one that
contains the presence it signifies. Jesus is the Risen One, and