In response to his disciples’ request “Lord, teach us to
11:1), Jesus entrusts them with the funda
mental Christian prayer, the Our Father.
“The Lord’s Prayer is truly the summary of the whole
the “most perfect of prayers.”
It is at the
center of the Scriptures.
It is called “the Lord’s Prayer” because it comes to us
from the Lord Jesus, the master and model of our
The Lord’s Prayer is the quintessential prayer of the
Church. It is an integral part of the major hours of the
Divine Office and of the sacraments of Christian
initiation: Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist. In
tegrated into the Eucharist it reveals the eschatologi
cal character of its petitions, hoping for the Lord,
“until he comes” (
“OUR FATHER WHO ART IN HEAVEN”
In the Roman liturgy, the Eucharistic assembly is invited
to pray to our heavenly Father with filial boldness; the Eastern
liturgies develop and use similar expressions: “dare in all confi
dence,” “make us worthy of . . .” From the burning bush Moses
heard a voice saying to him, “Do not come near; put off your shoes
from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy
Only Jesus could cross that threshold of the divine
holiness, for “when he had made purification for sins,” he brought
us into the Father’s presence: “Here am I, and the children God has
1: PL 1, 1251-1255.
25 St. Thomas Aquinas,
II-II, 83, 9.