Monday, June 18, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 486 b.

YOUCAT Question n. 486 b - What do Christians express by prayer postures?

(Youcat answer) Christians bring their life before God through the language of the body: They cast themselves down before God. They fold their hands in prayer or stretch them out (the Orante position). They genuflect (bend the knee) or kneel before the All-Holy God. They listen to the Gospel while standing. They meditate while seated.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2632) Christian petition is centered on the desire and search for the Kingdom to come, in keeping with the teaching of Christ (Cf. Mt 6:10, 33; Lk 11:2, 13). 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 (Cf. Acts 6:6; 13:3). 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 (Cf. Rom 10:1; Eph 1:16-23; Phil 19-11; Col 1:3-6; 4:3-4, 12). By prayer every baptized person works for the coming of the Kingdom.

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Standing in the presence of God expresses reverence (you stand up when a superior enters) and also vigilance and readiness (you are ready to set out on a journey immediately). If at the same time the hands are outstretched in praise of God (the Orante position), the person praying assumes the original gesture of praise. While sitting in God’s presence, the Christian listens to what is happening interiorly; he ponders the Word in his heart (Lk 2:51) and meditates on it. By kneeling, a person makes himself small in the presence of God’s greatness. He recognizes his dependence on God’s grace. By prostrating himself, a person adores God. By folding the hands, a person overcomes distraction, “recollects himself” (gathers his thoughts) and unites himself to God. Folded hands are also the original gesture of petition.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2631) The first movement of the prayer of petition is asking forgiveness, like the tax collector in the parable: "God, be merciful to me a sinner!" (Lk 18:13). 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" (1 Jn 3:22; cf. 1:7-2:2). Asking forgiveness is the prerequisite for both the Eucharistic liturgy and personal prayer.

(The next question is: Why should we petition God for other people?)

No comments: