CONTEMPLATIVE

PRAYER

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The Contemplative Prayer Group meets most Tuesdays at 7pm in the church. Please consult the bulletin to confirm the dates.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that, "the Christian tradition comprises three major expressions of the life of prayer: vocal prayer, meditation, and contemplative prayer. They have in common the recollection of the heart." 

Contemplative prayer is the simple expression of the mystery of prayer. It is a gaze of faith fixed on Jesus, an attentiveness to the Word of God, a silent love. It achieves real union with the prayer of Christ to the extent that it makes us share in his mystery.

Probably most of us, if we think of contemplative prayer at all, we regard it as something that is beyond us and practiced only by a few contemplative monks and nuns whose whole lives are devoted to prayer. Yet respected and experienced spiritual guides say that contemplation is often given to those you would least expect—to harassed mothers and people who think they can’t pray, to children, to the sick and dying, to people with no head learning about prayer or Scripture or theology. God sometimes seems to speak, heart to heart, in this mysterious way, to the untaught and unpracticed. None of us should imagine that the ways of contemplative prayer are closed to us, because God is always infinitely larger than our expectations.

Contemplation, like all prayer, is pure gift, and not anything we can achieve. It happens when prayer becomes, wholly and utterly, the flow of God’s grace, transforming the land it flows through, like Ezekiel’s stream. Or it happens when we lose consciousness of our own part in it and become simply receptors and carriers of grace. It happens when we realize that our transformation depends on nothing but God's grace and love, and, let go of all activity to try to achieve our own redemption.

For more information, CONTACT: Tom Carroll carrolltj@aol.com