“The living and true God tirelessly calls each person to that mysterious encounter known as prayer” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2566). “Prayer is the raising of one’s mind and heart to God, or the petition of good things from him in accord with his will” (Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 534). “Whether we realize it or not, prayer is the encounter of God’s thirst with ours. God thirsts that we may thirst for him” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2560).
All prayer should lead us to a deeper union with God. We can pray personally and individually, or within our families, or when we worship together at Mass. Although there are many ways to pray, the Church’s tradition highlights four basic elements of prayer:
The Church’s tradition also presents three principal expressions of our prayer:
If you would like to learn more about prayer, Part Four of the Catechism of the Catholic Church has a very beautiful summary of what the Church believes and teaches about the life of prayer.
Click here to review familiar Catholic prayers.
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