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Chapter 36. Jesus Taught Us to Pray • 487

Jesus gave us an example of this when he was in Gethsemane on

the eve of his Passion and death. He first asked that the cup of suffering

might pass from him but also prayed, “Not my will but yours be done”

(Lk 22:42).

What is God’s will? In creating us, God established a plan for how

to live in a fully human and spiritual manner. Jesus came to us to show

us exactly what that means. The Lord Jesus asks us to be his disciples

and shape our lives by faith. The Second Vatican Council reminds us

that “the disciple is bound by a grave obligation toward Christ . . . to

understand the truth received from him, faithfully to proclaim it and

vigorously to defend it” (

Declaration on Religious Liberty




], no. 14).

Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread

“‘Our daily bread’ refers to the earthly nourishment necessary to every-

one for subsistence, and also to the Bread of Life: the Word of God

and the Body of Christ” (CCC, no. 2861). We draw our life from the

Eucharist each time we receive Holy Communion.

Just before he left this earth, the Lord Jesus promised to be with

us every day. In a remarkable manner, Jesus is present to us in the

Divine Sacrament, because he is himself the Bread of Life available

to us. The Church’s contemplation always centers itself on the Lord

in this Sacrament, which contains the whole treasure of the Church,

Jesus Christ.

At the same time, we ask for our material needs. While we seek what

we need for our own maintenance and development, we must never for-

get the poor of the world, who so often lack daily bread. We are called

to have solidarity with them and work for their physical and spiritual

welfare. We pray for our “daily” bread, implying that we pray for what

we need for today and will pray again each day for the needs of that day.