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On Prayer Deacon D. Gannon, J.D., M.A..

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1 On Prayer Deacon D. Gannon, J.D., M.A.

2 Course Outline (high level)
Prayer In the Son and Spirit Universal call to prayer & holiness Necessity of prayer Prayer Indispensable for holiness Presuppositions, (Wellsprings) to Prayer What is Prayer Types of Prayer Jesus and Prayer 2598 – 2616 Method

3 Course Outline (cont’d)
Ways and Guides of Prayer The Way of Prayer Guides to Prayer 2683 – 2696 The Three Ages of the Interior Life Purgative, Illuminative and Unitive Way St. Teresa of Avila - Mansions St. John of the Cross – Dark Night St. Therese – Little Way of Spiritual Childhood Abandonment to Divine Providence

4 Sources & Recommended Readings
Abandonment to Divine Providence – Caussade Catechism of the Catholic Church Christian Perfection and Contemplation – Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange Collected Works of St. John of the Cross Collected Works of St. Teresa of Jesus Complete Spiritual Doctrine of St. Therese - Jamart Difficulties in Mental Prayer – Rev. Eugene Boylan Divine Mercy – Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska Fire Within – Rev. Thomas Dubay The Imitation of Christ – Thomas a’ Kempis I Want To See God / I Am a Daughter of the Church – P. Marie-Eugene, O.C.D. Introduction to the Devout Life – St. Francis de Sales Life of Christ – Bishop Fulton J. Sheen Meeting God in the Heart – Douglas Bushman Summa Theologica – St. Thomas Aquinas St. Jane de Chantal – On Prayer Story of a Soul – St. Therese of Lisieux The Three Ages of the Interior Life – Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange Various works from Dom Hubert VanZeller Various Church Encyclicals by Pope John Paul II

5 Tonight … Prayer Indispensable for holiness
Prayer In the Son and Spirit Universal call to prayer & holiness Necessity of prayer Prayer Indispensable for holiness Presuppositions, (Wellsprings) to Prayer What is Prayer Types of Prayer Jesus and Prayer 2598 – 2616 Method

6 Universal Call to Prayer
The Holy Father has addressed the leaders of all Catholic evangelized laity at the Vatican in these words: "Holiness has at its core the contemplation of the Lord Jesus, and all our millennium planning must seek to lead people to a deeper awareness of the One Who is the only Savior of the world. This requires mature and faithful prayer. Let your communities and movements become genuine 'schools' of prayer where the meeting with Jesus is expressed not just in imploring help, but also in praise, thanksgiving, adoration, contemplation, listening and ardent devotion, until the heart truely 'falls in love' (Novo Millennio Incunte, 33). "Put out into the deep of prayer in order to put out into the deep of mission." This touches on the theme of our section of the CCC – Jesus’ Prayer – 2616; Mary - Pope John Paul II, April 2001

7 “Operatio Sequitur Esse”
… Actions flow from being. Transverberation of St. Teresa What is first in intention is last in execution First three CCC pillars: Creed/Revelation & Sacramental life & Moral Life … ordered to UNION with God…

8 Universal Call to Holiness
Pope John Paul II … in his Apostolic Letter Novo Millennio Ineunte points to holiness as the cornerstone of the disciple’s life saying: "It is necessary…to rediscover the full practical significance of chapter 5 of the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium, dedicated to the ‘universal call to holiness….This…objective gift of holiness is offered to all the baptized”.

9 Universal Call to Holiness
St. John of the Cross Here it ought to be pointed out why there are so few who reach this high state of perfect union with God. It should be known that the reason is not because God wishes that there be only a few of these spirits so elevated.; He would rather want all to be perfect, but He finds few vessels that will endure so lofty and sublime a work.” The Living Flame of Love, st.2, no.27

10 Universal Call to Holiness
St. Teresa of Avila “…the Lord invites us all; and, since He is Truth Itself, we cannot doubt Him … As He said we were all to come, without making this condition, I feel sure that none will fail to receive this living water unless they cannot keep to the path.” (The Way, end of Chapter 19) “He did not say: ‘Some must come by this way and others by that’ His mercy is so great that He has forbidden none to strive to come and drink of this fountain of life.” (The Way, Chapter 17)

11 … can an ordinary person like me become HOLY??
Two words: Mary & Joseph No miracles No visions Ordinary family struggles searched for Jesus complied with Mosaic laws fled from tyrrany Lived in simplicity and poverty Hidden and unknown lives! Read from Caussade here on how easy it is to be holy – where he mentions Mary and Joseph’s ordinary life. Sound like anyone you know???

12 Yet … we know … Caussade on Mary … Mary and Joseph attained the pinnacle of prayer and holiness above all human beings… In context of marriage & family Amidst a community that probably didn’t understand or accept them very well In hiddeness & obscurity Their lives were ordinary, even mundane In faith and abandonment to God’s providence Read p. 4 in Abandonment

13 Necessity of Prayer Prayer integrates one's life
"A Christian who does not pray is like a man who neither thinks nor wills--a mere animal in the spiritual life." Father Eugene Boylan in DIFFICULTIES IN MENTAL PRAYER--preface (pp. x-xi): "A short time ago I was told by a very learned man that souls without prayer are like people whose bodies or limbs are paralyzed: they possess feet and hands but they cannot control them. In the same way, there are souls so infirm and so accustomed to busying themselves with outside affairs that nothing can be done for them, and it seems as though they are incapable of entering within themselves at all.“ - St. Teresa of Avila THE INTERIOR CASTLE (First Mansions, chapter 1, p. 31)

14 Apostolic Letter of the Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II August 28, 1986
Necessity of Prayer AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO Apostolic Letter of the Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II August 28, 1986 The doctrine of the necessity of the divine grace becomes the doctrine of the necessity of prayer, on which Augustine insists so much, because, as he writes, "it is certain that God has prepared some gifts even for those who do not pray, such as the beginning of faith; but other gifts only for those who pray, such as final perseverance.“ De dono persev. 16,39: PL 45,1017

15 Apostolic Letter of the Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II August 28, 1986
Necessity of Prayer AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO Apostolic Letter of the Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II August 28, 1986 "Your desire is itself your prayer; and if your desire is continuous, then your prayer too is continuous.”

16 Necessity of Prayer Pope John Paul II in his Apostolic Letter Novo Millennio Ineunte Common to the life of every disciple of Jesus, regardless of his or her individual vocation, is the necessity of prayer and witness. Pope John Paul II in the same Apostolic Letter states: "This training in holiness calls for a Christian life distinguished above all in the art of prayer….Prayer develops that conversation with Christ which makes us his intimate friends….This reciprocity is the very substance and soul of the Christian life…"

17 Necessity of Prayer St. Alphonsus de Ligouri
Let us also reflect on the necessity of prayer. St. Chrysostom says that, as the body without the soul is dead, so the soul is dead without prayer. He also teaches that, as water is necessary to prevent the decay of plants, so prayer is necessary to preserve us from perdition. God wills that all men be saved. (1Tim 2:4) Preparation for Death or "Considerations on the Eternal Truths" by St. Alphonsus de Liguori, Redemptorist Fathers, NY (1926) pp

18 Necessity of Prayer St. Alphonsus de Ligouri
Ask, and you shall receive. He who asks, receives; then, says St. Teresa, he who does not ask, does not receive. And before her, St. James said the same thing. You have not, because you ask not. (James 4:2) Prayer is particularly necessary to obtain the virtue of continence. And said the wise man, as I knew that I could not otherwise be continent, except God gave it, I went to the Lord, and besought Him. Let us conclude this point. He who prays, is certainly saved; he who does not pray, is certainly lost. All the elect are saved by prayer; all the damned are lost by neglect of prayer, and their greatest despair is, and will be forever, caused by the conviction, that they had it in their power to save their souls so easily by prayer, and that now the time of salvation is no more.

19 Prayer Indispensable for Holiness
"The pursuit of perfection is utterly impossible without mental prayer --which, of course, may be made quite unconsciously. In fact, it may be said that if a man does not pray he cannot save his soul." Prayer is indispensable for holiness. a. Universal call to holiness. Chapter five of THE DOGMATIC CONSTITUTION ON THE CHURCH (LUMEN GENTIUM) of the Second Vatican Council II entitled "The Universal Call to Holiness in the Church." The official Latin title is: "De universali vocatione ad sanctitatem in Ecclesia". Notice the word "vocatione": vocation. One can see immediately that everyone-- religious, priests, lay persons-is called to holiness. It is our "vocation" to be holy, to be saints. On September 3, 1988, Pope John Paul II addressed the parishioners of the church where St. John Bosco was baptized. At that time, he said: "The Second Vatican Council reminds us that the call to holiness has its original source in baptism. All the baptized, because they have been grafted onto Christ, are guided by divine grace and by the Holy Spirit to follow the way of Christian perfection." (L'Osservatore Romano, English edition, 26 September 1988, N. 39, p. 14). And what does this have to do with prayer? Simply this: No one will be holy unless he prays. b. Prayer is necessary for holiness. (1) I will quote again from Father Eugene Boylan, DIFFICULTIES IN MENTAL PRAYER, the preface (pp. x-xi): "The pursuit of perfection is utterly impossible without mental prayer--which, of course, may be made quite unconsciously. In fact, it may be said that if a man does not pray he cannot save his soul." (2) Later in the same preface, he says: "Nor do we think that even lay-people by their life are debarred for hoping for such progress in prayer as we indicate in this book. Anyone who is prepared to serve God with good-will, and devote sufficient time daily to spiritual reading and to prayer, may reasonably expect to grow in friendship with God, which is, to progress in prayer. The difficulties of the laity in the interior life need more detailed treatment than can be given in this book but they are not insuperable, and need not prevent any lay person of good will from trying to lead an interior life of prayer even in the world" (pp. xi-xii). So, we see that prayer is indispensable for holiness, for friendship with God. This will be elaborated upon later. Let us now turn to the second part of our talk: SOME DEFINITIONS AND DESCRIPTIONS OF PRAYER Father Eugene Boylan, DIFFICULTIES IN MENTAL PRAYER, the preface (pp. x-xi):

20 Prayer Indispensable for Holiness
Later in the same preface, he says: "Nor do we think that even lay-people by their life are debarred for hoping for such progress in prayer as we indicate in this book. Anyone who is prepared to serve God with good-will, and devote sufficient time daily to spiritual reading and to prayer, may reasonably expect to grow in friendship with God, which is, to progress in prayer. The difficulties of the laity in the interior life need more detailed treatment than can be given in this book but they are not insuperable, and need not prevent any lay person of good will from trying to lead an interior life of prayer even in the world" (pp. xi-xii). Prayer is indispensable for holiness. a. Universal call to holiness. Chapter five of THE DOGMATIC CONSTITUTION ON THE CHURCH (LUMEN GENTIUM) of the Second Vatican Council II entitled "The Universal Call to Holiness in the Church." The official Latin title is: "De universali vocatione ad sanctitatem in Ecclesia". Notice the word "vocatione": vocation. One can see immediately that everyone-- religious, priests, lay persons-is called to holiness. It is our "vocation" to be holy, to be saints. On September 3, 1988, Pope John Paul II addressed the parishioners of the church where St. John Bosco was baptized. At that time, he said: "The Second Vatican Council reminds us that the call to holiness has its original source in baptism. All the baptized, because they have been grafted onto Christ, are guided by divine grace and by the Holy Spirit to follow the way of Christian perfection." (L'Osservatore Romano, English edition, 26 September 1988, N. 39, p. 14). And what does this have to do with prayer? Simply this: No one will be holy unless he prays. b. Prayer is necessary for holiness. (1) I will quote again from Father Eugene Boylan, DIFFICULTIES IN MENTAL PRAYER, the preface (pp. x-xi): "The pursuit of perfection is utterly impossible without mental prayer--which, of course, may be made quite unconsciously. In fact, it may be said that if a man does not pray he cannot save his soul." (2) Later in the same preface, he says: "Nor do we think that even lay-people by their life are debarred for hoping for such progress in prayer as we indicate in this book. Anyone who is prepared to serve God with good-will, and devote sufficient time daily to spiritual reading and to prayer, may reasonably expect to grow in friendship with God, which is, to progress in prayer. The difficulties of the laity in the interior life need more detailed treatment than can be given in this book but they are not insuperable, and need not prevent any lay person of good will from trying to lead an interior life of prayer even in the world" (pp. xi-xii). So, we see that prayer is indispensable for holiness, for friendship with God. This will be elaborated upon later. Let us now turn to the second part of our talk: SOME DEFINITIONS AND DESCRIPTIONS OF PRAYER

21 Hence … we are all called …
To perfection To holiness To love Supernatural life begun here on earth – LaGrange on Grace. … the seeds for perfection came with baptism and the indwelling of the Holy Trinity Prayer and holiness in action is for YOU and ME!

22 Wellsprings of Prayer – Presuppositions 2652 to 2662
Word of God Liturgy Theological Virtues – grace in the soul “Today” – ‘Sacrament’ of the Present Moment CONVERSION

23 Presuppositions for Prayer
“Remote Dispositions for Prayer”: One must believe and trust that an intimate relationship with God is possible. existence and love of God implied here One's conscience must be at peace. One must surrender oneself totally to God's will in one's life. to the extent one does not, one does not progress One must have a desire to get in touch with God - often happens with pain or suffering I will look at four (4) remote conditions of prayer.(One could list more). (1) First I will say something about their importance. (2) Then I will list them. (3) Finally, I will elaborate on them. 1 The IMPORTANCE of these dispositions In my estimation if these dispositions are not present, one's prayer will be less fruitful--not totally ineffectual because these dispositions can develop as one's prayer life develops. But one can still say that one's prayer life will not be fully mature until these dispositions are fully mature. In a sense, then, one can say that these dispositions are as important, if not more important, than prayer itself. Hence the reason we will spend a good deal of time on this tonight. For one's prayer depends on them. And prayer--as a relationship with God--will not develop without them. Furthermore, when a person complains that he is having difficulties in his prayer life, sometimes--not always--his difficulties are traceable to these dispositions--which have never fully been cultivated. Yet because they are so basic, they are often taken for granted or forgotten about.

24 Presuppositions for Prayer
Let’s elaborate on these dispositions …

25 Presuppositions for Prayer
Important: When analyzing the life of prayer and how one is disposed… Understand this is not a “linear” path Prayer disposes our active life and vice-versa Active life Prayer life

26 Presuppositions for Prayer
One must believe and trust that an intimate relationship with God is possible. Support for this belief and trust: From St. John's Gospel "Anyone who loves me will be true to my word, and my Father will love him; we will come to him and make our dwelling place with him" (Jn. 14:23) From St. John's First Epistle "We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us" (1 Jn 4:16). Support for this belief and trust We see in both these instances that an experiential knowledge of God is possible for those who love him. Father Raymond Brown, in his Anchor commentary on the works of St. John, says that St. John speaks about a person's having an "experiential knowledge of God."   Papyrus fragment of St John's Gospel, Chapter 18, verses Dating from the first half of the second century A.D., it is believed to be the earliest surviving manuscript of the New Testament. Greek Payprus 457. How to Pray Holy Spirit – see Gospel passage on indwelling of Father, Son and Holy Spirit "If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth, 9 which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you.” Jn 14:15 “I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me, because I live and you will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you. Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me. And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him." Jn 14:18 Holy Spirit – indwelling of the Holy Trinity … in your soul and the presence of Sanctifying Grace … enables you to pray in your soul. The Holy Spirit teaches you how.

27 Presuppositions for Prayer
One must believe and trust that an intimate relationship with God is possible. I From St. Teresa of Avila (INTERIOR CASTLE, Mansions One [Image edition, pp ]): "where the most secret things pass between God and the soul" (p. 29), St. Teresa says: "I am sure that, if any one of you does not believe this, she will never learn it by experience. For God's will is that no bounds should be set to His works" (pp )    (b) After speaking about God's generosity in bestowing his favors and consolations on people and saying that he reveals his secrets to his loved ones in the center of their souls …

28 Presuppositions for Prayer
One must believe and trust that an intimate relationship with God is possible. I Existence of God Proofs for God’s existence Revelation of God to Man So God exists, but has he said anything to us? Crucifixion Second Person of Blessed Trinity Redemption God’s merciful love

29 Presuppositions for Prayer
II One's conscience must be at peace Our Source for this disposition is St. Jane Chantal (On Prayer, p. 14): "Remote preparation consists in nothing more than this: peace of conscience, watchfulness over our senses, a normal awareness of God, a familiar conversation with the Divine Majesty in one's soul, and above all the liberation of the soul from all ungoverned affections and passions. The fact is that we must strip ourselves of anything which can trouble our minds or conscience and which can prevent us from maintaining ourselves in a spirit of recollection and interior liberty."

30 Presuppositions for Prayer
II One's conscience must be at peace What does this mean? (1) ONE'S CONSCIENCE MUST BE CLEAR: Authenticity in relationship (2) IF ONE'S CONSCIENCE IS NOT CLEAR, THEN ONE MUST GET IT CLEAN. HOW? by sorrow, by conversion in one's heart. by reconciliation with God in the Sacrament of Penance. One then manifests one's sorrow publicly and one is given the assurance that forgiveness is given. Freedom of spirit, freedom from burdens, then follows. (1) ONE'S CONSCIENCE MUST BE CLEAR: Explanation: How can I say to my divine friend that I love him, when I know something is wrong, when my heart is not cleansed, when something is weighing me down, when something is not right in our relationship. (2) IF ONE'S CONSCIENCE IS NOT CLEAR, THEN ONE MUST GET IT CLEAN. HOW? [a] by sorrow, by conversion in one's heart. [b] by reconciliation with God in the sacrament of Penance, if this is necessary. One then manifests one's sorrow publicly and one is given the assurance that forgiveness is given. Freedom of spirit, freedom from burdens, then follows. [c] St. John of the Cross summarizes this when he says: "More does God desire of thee the least degree of purity of conscience than all the works that thou canst do" (SPIR. MAX.12, p. 220 in Peers, vol. 3).

31 Presuppositions for Prayer
II One's conscience must be at peace "More does God desire of you the least degree of purity of conscience than all the works you can do" (SPIR. MAX.12, p. 220 in Peers, vol. 3). (1) ONE'S CONSCIENCE MUST BE CLEAR: Explanation: How can I say to my divine friend that I love him, when I know something is wrong, when my heart is not cleansed, when something is weighing me down, when something is not right in our relationship. (2) IF ONE'S CONSCIENCE IS NOT CLEAR, THEN ONE MUST GET IT CLEAN. HOW? [a] by sorrow, by conversion in one's heart. [b] by reconciliation with God in the sacrament of Penance, if this is necessary. One then manifests one's sorrow publicly and one is given the assurance that forgiveness is given. Freedom of spirit, freedom from burdens, then follows. [c] St. John of the Cross summarizes this when he says: "More does God desire of thee the least degree of purity of conscience than all the works that thou canst do" (SPIR. MAX.12, p. 220 in Peers, vol. 3).

32 Presuppositions for Prayer
III Total surrender to God’s will in one’s life Our Source for this disposition is St. John of the Cross: "Any one of these imperfections, if the soul has become attached and habituated to it, is of as great harm to its growth and progress in virtue as though it were to fall daily into many other imperfections and casual venial sins.....For as long as it has this there is no possibility that it will make progress in perfection, even though the imperfection be extremely slight” Chains of St. Peter Our Source for this disposition is St. John of the Cross (ASCENT OF MOUNT CARMEL, Book 1, chap. xi, no. 4.[p. 145 in Image edition]): St. John of the Cross speaks of imperfections in the spiritual life of a person, saying that we cannot entertain even the slightest ATTACHMENT to creatures. Notice: attachment. That is, a clinging on to something instead of an absolute clinging on to God. St. John is adamant about this. Also very frank. He says: "Any one of these imperfections, if the soul has become attached and habituated to it, is of as great harm to its growth and progress in virtue as though it were to fall daily into many other imperfections and casual venial sins.....For as long as it has this there is no possibility that it will make progress in perfection, even though the imperfection be extremely slight"--then he makes an analogy which is often cited: "For it comes to the same thing whether a bird be held by a slender cord or by a stout one; since, even if it be slender, the bird will be well held as though it were stout, for so long as it breaks it not and flies not away. It is true that the slender one is the easier to break; still, easy though it be, the bird will not fly away if it be not broken. And thus the soul that has attachment to anything, however much virtue it possess, will not attain to the liberty of Divine union." (ASCENT OF MOUNT CARMEL, Book I, chapter xi, no. 4, pp in Image edition) (ASCENT OF MOUNT CARMEL, Book 1, chap. xi, no. 4.[p. 145 in Image edition]):

33 Presuppositions for Prayer
III Total surrender to God’s will in one’s life … then he makes an analogy which is often cited: "For it comes to the same thing whether a bird be held by a slender cord or by a stout one; since, even if it be slender, the bird will be well held as though it were stout, for so long as it breaks it not and flies not away. It is true that the slender one is the easier to break; still, easy though it be, the bird will not fly away if it be not broken. And thus the soul that has attachment to anything, however much virtue it possess, will not attain to the liberty of Divine union." Our Source for this disposition is St. John of the Cross (ASCENT OF MOUNT CARMEL, Book 1, chap. xi, no. 4.[p. 145 in Image edition]): St. John of the Cross speaks of imperfections in the spiritual life of a person, saying that we cannot entertain even the slightest ATTACHMENT to creatures. Notice: attachment. That is, a clinging on to something instead of an absolute clinging on to God. St. John is adamant about this. Also very frank. He says: "Any one of these imperfections, if the soul has become attached and habituated to it, is of as great harm to its growth and progress in virtue as though it were to fall daily into many other imperfections and casual venial sins.....For as long as it has this there is no possibility that it will make progress in perfection, even though the imperfection be extremely slight"--then he makes an analogy which is often cited: "For it comes to the same thing whether a bird be held by a slender cord or by a stout one; since, even if it be slender, the bird will be well held as though it were stout, for so long as it breaks it not and flies not away. It is true that the slender one is the easier to break; still, easy though it be, the bird will not fly away if it be not broken. And thus the soul that has attachment to anything, however much virtue it possess, will not attain to the liberty of Divine union." (ASCENT OF MOUNT CARMEL, Book I, chapter xi, no. 4, pp in Image edition) (ASCENT OF MOUNT CARMEL, Book I, chapter xi, no. 4, pp in Image edition)

34 Presuppositions for Prayer
III Total surrender to God’s will in one’s life St. Matthew (19:29): "Moreover, everyone who has given up home, brothers or sisters, father or mother, wife or children or property for my sake will receive many times as much and inherit everlasting life.“ St. John (12:24-25): DEATH TO SELF … "Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit. …Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will preserve it for eternal life.” (Mt 10:39) Sacred Scripture gives us [c] St. Mark (10:29-30): "Jesus answered: `I give you my word, there is no one who has given up home, brothers or sisters, mother or father, children or property, for me and for the gospel who will not receive in this present age a hundred times as many homes, brothers and sisters, mothers, children and property--and persecution besides--and in the age to come, everlasting life.'" And 31: "Many who are first shall come last, and the last shall come first." (2) Meaning: Unconditional Surrender [a] A Description of this surrender: using a quotation from Adrienne Von Speyr in a book entitled CONFESSION, She describes this surrender as a "readiness, an expectant, accepting movement toward God." The word "confession" has a very broad sense for Von Speyr. I will quote the whole passage in which these words are found: But one can ask why one is called upon to make this surrender. That is, the reason why one is called upon to make this surrender. Another way of saying this: What is the theological basis for this surrender? One could also say that without this basis one would be hard pressed to find a basis for sin--or a sense of sin. Let's call this the theology of surrendering to God. [b] The theology of surrendering to God. I would like to look at three factors here: [1] Acknowledgement of God as God or the transcendence of God [2] Acknowledgement of God as Provident, that is, as having a plan for the universe [3] A Willingness on our part to surrender to God.

35 Presuppositions for Prayer
III Total surrender to God’s will in one’s life What does this mean? To surrender ourselves to God by a total abandonment of self, and to lose ourselves in the abyss of our nothingness so as to find ourselves again only in God, is to perform the most excellent act of which we are capable, and which contains in itself the substance of all the other virtues. This is the one thing necessary which our Lord recommends in His Gospel. - Abandonment p. 440 The more we banish from ourselves all that is not God, the more we shall be filled with God… the practice of perfect self-annihilation consists in having no other care but to die wholly to self in order to make room for God to live and work in us. - Ibid p. 440

36 Presuppositions for Prayer
III Total surrender to God’s will in one’s life What does this mean? 2611 The prayer of faith consists not only in saying "Lord, Lord," but in disposing the heart to do the will of the Father. Jesus calls his disciples to bring into their prayer this concern for cooperating with the divine plan.

37 Presuppositions for Prayer
IV The desire to get in touch with God Our Source for this disposition is Father Hubert Van Zeller, a contemporary spiritual writer--now dead. He says in a book entitled Approach to Prayer : What does this mean? (1) This condition is obvious: If we hope to achieve something, we must desire it, want it, search for it, take the means to achieve it. If we want to enter into a dialogue with God--which is what prayer is--then we have to want to communicate with God. (2) There is a consolation in this whole scenario. It is this: God wants that communication more than we do. St. John of the Cross says: "First, it must be known that, if a soul is seeking God, its Beloved is seeking it much more." (Living Flame of Love, stanza 3, no. 27, p. 66 in Vol. 3 of Peers complete works). "While there are many dispositions for prayer, the one condition of prayer is the desire to get in touch with God" (p. 1)

38 Presuppositions for Prayer
IV The desire to get in touch with God There is a consolation in this whole scenario. It is this: God wants that communication more than we do! St. John of the Cross says: What does this mean? (1) This condition is obvious: If we hope to achieve something, we must desire it, want it, search for it, take the means to achieve it. If we want to enter into a dialogue with God--which is what prayer is--then we have to want to communicate with God. (2) "First, it must be known that, if a soul is seeking God, its Beloved is seeking it much more." (Living Flame of Love, stanza 3, no. 27, p. 66 in Vol. 3 of Peers complete works). "First, it must be known that, if a soul is seeking God, its Beloved is seeking it much more." (Living Flame of Love, stanza 3, no. 27, p. 66 in Vol. 3 of Peers complete works).

39 Presuppositions for Prayer
IV The desire to get in touch with God This desire often intensifies as we undergo trials and sufferings Anything that causes questioning … “why?” Surrender / Abandonment come when one finds no consolation or help in self or the world What does this mean? (1) This condition is obvious: If we hope to achieve something, we must desire it, want it, search for it, take the means to achieve it. If we want to enter into a dialogue with God--which is what prayer is--then we have to want to communicate with God. (2) "First, it must be known that, if a soul is seeking God, its Beloved is seeking it much more." (Living Flame of Love, stanza 3, no. 27, p. 66 in Vol. 3 of Peers complete works).

40 What Prayer is NOT … Associated with feeling or mere “thinking”…
Concomitant with extraordinary phenomena levitation, visions, ecstasy, etc. (a) Support for this belief and trust We see in both these instances that an experiential knowledge of God is possible for those who love him. Father Raymond Brown, in his Anchor commentary on the works of St. John, says that St. John speaks about a person's having an "experiential knowledge of God."    (b) After speaking about God's generosity in bestowing his favors and consolations on people and saying that he reveals his secrets to his loved ones in the center of their souls … But what does this mean? Two conclusions 1st Conclusion ONE SHOULD NOT SET LIMITS ON God's generosity, that is, on God's Providence with reference to oneself. What does this mean? Sometimes one will hear a person say that God's graces, the joys of the spiritual life, God's consolations, God's spiritual blessings, mystical experience and so forth are for others, for his saints, not for me. Or sometimes people will say that these blessings are only for religious or priests, not for me. But how can anyone say something like that? This is presumptuous, for we don't know God's providence. We don't know his mind. We don't know his will for us. And yet people will say this time and time again. I heard it when I was assigned to a parish and I heard this from college students. For me, this is a cop-out. It gives me an excuse to throw in the towel when things get tough. It enables me to justify my behavior, to rationalize. I can say: "I don't have to change my behavior because God is not calling me to be a saint." And when trials and temptations come my way, I can say: "I don't have to make tough choices. Or fight courageously." Why? "Because God is not calling me to be a hero, to be extraordinary. He is not calling me to be a saint, and so on." 2nd Conclusion One believes THAT SANCTIFYING GRACE IS A LIFE WHICH SHOULD GROW. For a Christian believes that: [1] Grace is given at Baptism, but this only the beginning of one's supernatural life, the seed of glory. [2] Grace is fully mature in heaven when one sees God face to face. So, why should a Christian think that his baptismal grace should remain idle during his whole lifetime? Why should he be satisfied with an infant's supernatural life, when he is growing physically, emotionally, intellectually, and so forth? Why can't our grace-life grow also? But this is what it means to grow in intimacy with God, to love him, to live in his presence, to be saturated in a divine atmosphere. God wants us to experience already in this life some of the joys of the eschaton, the final age. Book of Revelation (3:20) says: "Here I stand, knocking at the door. If anyone hears me calling and opens the door, I will enter his house and have supper with him and he with me." Although this passage speaks of the joys of the after-life, of future eschatology, one can still use it analogically to speak of the present life, of present joys, of an already realized eschatology. And we already spoke above about God making his abode in the hearts of those who love him. Furthermore, St. Paul says with reference to God: "My grace is sufficient for you." And the Gospels tell us to "Ask and you shall receive." So, with reference to this first disposition to prayer, we have to believe and trust that an intimate relationship with God is possible. Let us turn to the second remote disposition for prayer: Peace of Conscience.

41 What is Prayer? What we do in church, or before meals or when we need something…? Formulas we speak to God? Something clergy does? Feelings, emotions … St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church: Things we want God to do for us ‘Requirement’ to ‘say’ our prayers – at least at Mass on Sunday … anything beyond this? No one talks “about” prayer, but it is often referred to Real answer – only way we can truly know and do God’s Will (which is how we get to Heaven); only way we can truly LOVE God and our neighbor; only way we can be truly ‘happy’ (distinction between pleasure and happiness here) and experience peace. Presuppositions to Prayer Grace in the soul (regular confession, frequenting sacraments) – friendship with God Desire to do God’s Will - Abandonment Actually taking ‘some’ time daily “Mental prayer, in my view, is nothing but friendly intercourse, and frequent solitary converse, with Him Who we know loves us.” Life, viii; Peers, I, 50 … Catechism of the Catholic Church quotes Teresa, above in its definition of contemplative prayer…

42 What is Prayer - Definitions
Broad Sense: Catechism of the Catholic Church: “Prayer is the raising of one’s mind and heart to God…” St. John Damascene, De fide orth. 3, 24:PG 94, 1089C "It is not easy to give a brief, satisfactory definition of prayer. The verb `to pray' means literally to ask for something--and yet prayer is much more than just asking God for something. Any definition of prayer must show that it is more than an activity of the intellect. A person's will, affections, and activities are all to be lifted up to God, bringing about an intimate personal relationship with Him.“ Rev. Ronald Lawler – The Teaching of Christ

43 What is Prayer – Narrow Sense (2626 to 2643)
2628,29 Adoration: Which is essentially a gaze at the wonderfulness of God, his majesty, his transcendence, his goodness, etc. Thanksgiving: Which is essentially a manifestation of gratitude to God for what he has given to us and to others, the world, grace, his Son, our life, faith, grace, etc. Contrition: Which is essentially an expression of sorrow for our sins and transgressions. Implied therein is a request for God's forgiveness and mercy (e.g. Psalm 50, the Miserere). Petition: Which is essentially a begging for help. This, as mentioned, is the precise theological meaning of prayer, pleading to God for his help, grace and sustenance. 2637 2631 The narrow (precise, specific) sense of the word "prayer" a. Again St. John Damascene is our source. He says prayer is "a petitioning of God for what is fitting" (same reference as above, same page, etc.) b. St. Thomas Aquinas likewise speaks of prayer in the precise sense of the word--as asking for something. One can readily see that this narrow meaning is restricted to what is sometimes called the prayer of petition. Before moving on to the third part of our talk, we might just mention the four (4) ends, reasons, or motives for praying---known well to all of us: 2629

44 Vocal Prayer Mental Prayer Two Kinds of Prayer
(See Lawler, The Teaching of Christ, chapters 24 and 25) a. Vocal Prayer b. Mental Prayer ******** a. Vocal Prayer (Three brief remarks will be made about this) First remark: What is vocal prayer? a) Use of set formulas of words. b) Quotation from Father Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest): "Vocal prayer indicates that form of prayer in which one makes use of set formulae of words, endeavoring, at the same time, with more or less success, to conform one's mind to their meaning. But if the mind and heart are not in some way at work, there is no true prayer at all." (p. 24). c) Examples of vocal prayers (of prayers whose words we do not make up, but which someone else has made up): (1) The Our Father (2) The Hail Mary (3) The Rosary (4) The Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) which priests and religious and some lay persons are praying daily (5) The Mass Second remark: Vocal Prayer is not just reciting words. We must use our minds and wills. Quotations: a) Father Boylan again: "In vocal prayer, we say something given to us from the outside and we endeavor to `mean' what we say." (The Spiritual Life of the Priest, p ). b) St. Teresa of Avila: Interior Castle, First Mansions, chap. 1, pp , in Image edition: "As far as I can understand, the door of entry into this castle is prayer and meditation: I do not say mental prayer rather than vocal, for, if it is prayer at all, it must be accompanied by meditation. If a person does not think Whom he is addressing, and what he is asking for, and who it is that is asking and of Whom he is asking it, I do not consider that he is praying at all even though he be constantly moving his lips." Third remark: Another division of Vocal Prayer: a) Private: When a person prays alone, reciting set words, set formulas b) Public: When a person prays with others, e.g. at the Eucharist, or the common recitation of the Rosary. a. Mental Prayer (two brief comments about this: what mental prayer is and two basic phases in the practice of it). First remark: What is it? a) No set formulas of words are used. We create the method. We prayer in our own words. We formulate prayers revolving around our concerns, our needs. And our acts of love focus on those concerns. b) Quotation: (1) Boylan, The Spiritual Life of the Priest: "By mental prayer we here understand that form of prayer in which one endeavors to originate the thought in one's own mind, and so to get the will to move in some way toward God. In practice, it makes no difference to the existence of `mental' prayer whether this interior action manifests itself in external words or not; if the prayer originates interiorly, it is for practical purposes mental prayer." (p. 24) (2) The Author of The Cloud of Unknowing: "My intention in all this is certainly not to discourage you from praying out loud when the Holy Spirit inspires you to do so. And if the joy of your spirit overflows to your senses so that you begin to speak to God as you might to a man, saying such things as `Jesus,' `sweet Jesus,' and the like, you need not stifle your spirit. God forbid that you should misunderstand me in this matter. For truly, I do not mean to deter you from external expressions of love. God forbid that I should separate body and spirit when God has made them a unity. Indeed, we owe God the homage of our whole person, body and spirt together. And fittingly enough he will glorify our whole person, body and spirit, in eternity. In anticipation of this eternal glory, God will sometimes inflame the senses of his devout friends with unspeakable delight and consolation even here in this life. And not just once or twice but perhaps very often as he judges best. This delight, however, does not originate outside the person, entering through the windows of his faculties, but wells up from an excess of spiritual joy and true devotion of spirit. Comfort and delight like this need never be doubted or feared. In a word, I believe that anyone who experiences it will not be able to doubt its authenticity." (Image edition, chapter 48, pp ). Second remark: Two basic phases in the practice of mental prayer (according to some authors): the intellectual phase and the volitional phase. a) The intellectual phase (or faith phase) The mind considers something here. The imagination may be involved, for example, if one is thinking about an aspect of or mystery in Our Lord's life. b) The volitional phase (or charity phase) The will makes acts of love. Recall the four purposes of prayer: adoration, thanksgiving, contrition, petition. Prayer must include these acts of the will, otherwise what I am doing is not really prayer at all, but only an exercise of the mind. My will, my heart, my love of God must be present. Let us now make a couple of comments about method at prayer.

45 Types of Prayer Catechism sets out these expressions of prayer at
Vocal – Pater Noster Meditation – Rosary, Stations of the Cross Contemplative – yearning, gazing, pondering, loving … mostly wordless … Note there are several levels of prayer within Contemplation … we will dig into these throughout the course.

46 Types of Prayer Vocal “In case you should think there is little gain to be derived from practicing vocal prayer perfectly, I must tell you that, while you are repeating the Pater Noster or some other vocal prayer, it is quite possible for the Lord to grant you perfect contemplation.” St. Teresa of Avila - The Way of Pefection, xxv; 104 May want to read some selections from I Want To See God, p. 182- The saint wants liturgical prayer, like every other vocal prayer, to be vivified by interior prayer. - P.Marie-Eugene, I Want To See God p.191

47 Types of Prayer Meditation
“Meditation consists in making reflections or considerations on a subject chosen in advance, to arrive at a fruitful conviction or resolution.”- P.Marie-Eugene, IWTSG, p. 194 Meditation is a form of prayer which enriches and deepens the individual's devotion to the Lord. Within the Christian tradition, to meditate is to reflect upon some religious theme, typically a scene taken from the Lord's life on earth. Both thought and imagination are utilized as one tries to envision such scenes. In contrast during contemplation all such thinking comes to a standstill, and God communicates with the soul wordlessly. Since God Himself initiates contemplation, it is regarded as mystical or supernatural prayer, a gratuitous gift from God. “I only want you to be warned that, if you would progress a long way on this road and ascend to the Mansions of your desire, the important thing is not to think much, but to love much.” - St. Teresa, IV Mansions, i

48 Types of Prayer Contemplation
CCC The Catechism leads with St. Teresa’s description: “Contemplative prayer [oracion mental] in my opinion is nothing else than a close sharing between friends; it means taking time frequently to be alone with him who we know loves us.” St. Teresa of Avila – CCC 2709 Loving conversation with the One you love – St. Teresa of Jesus An act of the WILL Remember how important it is for you to have understood this truth -- that the Lord is within us and that we should be there with Him. If one prays in this way, the prayer may be only vocal, but the mind will be recollected much sooner; and this is a prayer which brings with it many blessings. It is called recollection because the soul collects together all the faculties (i.e. the will, the memory, and the understanding) and enters within itself to be with its God. Its Divine Master comes more speedily to teach it, and to grant it the Prayer of Quiet, than in any other way... Those who are able to shut themselves up in this way within this little Heaven of the soul, wherein dwells the Maker of Heaven and earth, and who have formed the habit of looking at nothing and staying in no place which will distract these outward senses, may be sure that they are walking on an excellent road, and will come without fail to drink of the water of the fountain, for they will journey a long way in a short time. ...I should like to be able to explain the nature of this holy companionship with our great Companion, the Holiest of the holy, in which there is nothing to hinder the soul and her Spouse from remaining alone together, when the soul desires to enter within herself, to shut the door behind her so as to keep out all that is worldly and to dwell in that Paradise with her God. I say "desires", because you must understand that this is not a supernatural state but depends upon our volition, and that, by God's favour, we can enter it of our own accord... For this is not a silence of the faculties: it is a shutting-up of the faculties within itself by the soul. ...We must cast aside everything else, they say, in order to approach God inwardly and we must retire within ourselves even during our ordinary occupations. If I can recall the companionship which I have within my soul for as much as a moment, that is of great utility. Contemplation is a gaze of faith, fixed on Jesus. “I look at Him and he looks at me” CCC 2715

49 Types of Prayer Mental There is no question of reserving the term ‘contemplation’ to the supernatural or infused contemplation of which St. Teresa speaks, beginning with the Fourth Mansions. Any act of knowledge and simple gaze on truth under the influence of love is genuine contemplation. Rev. P.Marie-Eugene, I Want to See God p.459 (See Lawler, The Teaching of Christ, chapters 24 and 25) a. Vocal Prayer b. Mental Prayer ******** a. Vocal Prayer (Three brief remarks will be made about this) First remark: What is vocal prayer? a) Use of set formulas of words. b) Quotation from Father Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest): "Vocal prayer indicates that form of prayer in which one makes use of set formulae of words, endeavoring, at the same time, with more or less success, to conform one's mind to their meaning. But if the mind and heart are not in some way at work, there is no true prayer at all." (p. 24). c) Examples of vocal prayers (of prayers whose words we do not make up, but which someone else has made up): (1) The Our Father (2) The Hail Mary (3) The Rosary (4) The Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) which priests and religious and some lay persons are praying daily (5) The Mass Second remark: Vocal Prayer is not just reciting words. We must use our minds and wills. Quotations: a) Father Boylan again: "In vocal prayer, we say something given to us from the outside and we endeavor to `mean' what we say." (The Spiritual Life of the Priest, p ). b) St. Teresa of Avila: Interior Castle, First Mansions, chap. 1, pp , in Image edition: "As far as I can understand, the door of entry into this castle is prayer and meditation: I do not say mental prayer rather than vocal, for, if it is prayer at all, it must be accompanied by meditation. If a person does not think Whom he is addressing, and what he is asking for, and who it is that is asking and of Whom he is asking it, I do not consider that he is praying at all even though he be constantly moving his lips." Third remark: Another division of Vocal Prayer: a) Private: When a person prays alone, reciting set words, set formulas b) Public: When a person prays with others, e.g. at the Eucharist, or the common recitation of the Rosary. a. Mental Prayer (two brief comments about this: what mental prayer is and two basic phases in the practice of it). First remark: What is it? a) No set formulas of words are used. We create the method. We prayer in our own words. We formulate prayers revolving around our concerns, our needs. And our acts of love focus on those concerns. b) Quotation: (1) Boylan, The Spiritual Life of the Priest: "By mental prayer we here understand that form of prayer in which one endeavors to originate the thought in one's own mind, and so to get the will to move in some way toward God. In practice, it makes no difference to the existence of `mental' prayer whether this interior action manifests itself in external words or not; if the prayer originates interiorly, it is for practical purposes mental prayer." (p. 24) (2) The Author of The Cloud of Unknowing: "My intention in all this is certainly not to discourage you from praying out loud when the Holy Spirit inspires you to do so. And if the joy of your spirit overflows to your senses so that you begin to speak to God as you might to a man, saying such things as `Jesus,' `sweet Jesus,' and the like, you need not stifle your spirit. God forbid that you should misunderstand me in this matter. For truly, I do not mean to deter you from external expressions of love. God forbid that I should separate body and spirit when God has made them a unity. Indeed, we owe God the homage of our whole person, body and spirt together. And fittingly enough he will glorify our whole person, body and spirit, in eternity. In anticipation of this eternal glory, God will sometimes inflame the senses of his devout friends with unspeakable delight and consolation even here in this life. And not just once or twice but perhaps very often as he judges best. This delight, however, does not originate outside the person, entering through the windows of his faculties, but wells up from an excess of spiritual joy and true devotion of spirit. Comfort and delight like this need never be doubted or feared. In a word, I believe that anyone who experiences it will not be able to doubt its authenticity." (Image edition, chapter 48, pp ). Second remark: Two basic phases in the practice of mental prayer (according to some authors): the intellectual phase and the volitional phase. a) The intellectual phase (or faith phase) The mind considers something here. The imagination may be involved, for example, if one is thinking about an aspect of or mystery in Our Lord's life. b) The volitional phase (or charity phase) The will makes acts of love. Recall the four purposes of prayer: adoration, thanksgiving, contrition, petition. Prayer must include these acts of the will, otherwise what I am doing is not really prayer at all, but only an exercise of the mind. My will, my heart, my love of God must be present. Let us now make a couple of comments about method at prayer.

50 Types of Prayer Mental "By mental prayer we here understand that form of prayer in which one endeavors to originate the thought in one's own mind, and so to get the will to move in some way toward God. In practice, it makes no difference to the existence of `mental' prayer whether this interior action manifests itself in external words or not; if the prayer originates interiorly, it is for practical purposes mental prayer." Boylan, The Spiritual Life of the Priest, p. 24 (See Lawler, The Teaching of Christ, chapters 24 and 25) a. Vocal Prayer b. Mental Prayer ******** a. Vocal Prayer (Three brief remarks will be made about this) First remark: What is vocal prayer? a) Use of set formulas of words. b) Quotation from Father Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest): "Vocal prayer indicates that form of prayer in which one makes use of set formulae of words, endeavoring, at the same time, with more or less success, to conform one's mind to their meaning. But if the mind and heart are not in some way at work, there is no true prayer at all." (p. 24). c) Examples of vocal prayers (of prayers whose words we do not make up, but which someone else has made up): (1) The Our Father (2) The Hail Mary (3) The Rosary (4) The Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) which priests and religious and some lay persons are praying daily (5) The Mass Second remark: Vocal Prayer is not just reciting words. We must use our minds and wills. Quotations: a) Father Boylan again: "In vocal prayer, we say something given to us from the outside and we endeavor to `mean' what we say." (The Spiritual Life of the Priest, p ). b) St. Teresa of Avila: Interior Castle, First Mansions, chap. 1, pp , in Image edition: "As far as I can understand, the door of entry into this castle is prayer and meditation: I do not say mental prayer rather than vocal, for, if it is prayer at all, it must be accompanied by meditation. If a person does not think Whom he is addressing, and what he is asking for, and who it is that is asking and of Whom he is asking it, I do not consider that he is praying at all even though he be constantly moving his lips." Third remark: Another division of Vocal Prayer: a) Private: When a person prays alone, reciting set words, set formulas b) Public: When a person prays with others, e.g. at the Eucharist, or the common recitation of the Rosary. a. Mental Prayer (two brief comments about this: what mental prayer is and two basic phases in the practice of it). First remark: What is it? a) No set formulas of words are used. We create the method. We prayer in our own words. We formulate prayers revolving around our concerns, our needs. And our acts of love focus on those concerns. b) Quotation: (1) Boylan, The Spiritual Life of the Priest: "By mental prayer we here understand that form of prayer in which one endeavors to originate the thought in one's own mind, and so to get the will to move in some way toward God. In practice, it makes no difference to the existence of `mental' prayer whether this interior action manifests itself in external words or not; if the prayer originates interiorly, it is for practical purposes mental prayer." (p. 24) (2) The Author of The Cloud of Unknowing: "My intention in all this is certainly not to discourage you from praying out loud when the Holy Spirit inspires you to do so. And if the joy of your spirit overflows to your senses so that you begin to speak to God as you might to a man, saying such things as `Jesus,' `sweet Jesus,' and the like, you need not stifle your spirit. God forbid that you should misunderstand me in this matter. For truly, I do not mean to deter you from external expressions of love. God forbid that I should separate body and spirit when God has made them a unity. Indeed, we owe God the homage of our whole person, body and spirt together. And fittingly enough he will glorify our whole person, body and spirit, in eternity. In anticipation of this eternal glory, God will sometimes inflame the senses of his devout friends with unspeakable delight and consolation even here in this life. And not just once or twice but perhaps very often as he judges best. This delight, however, does not originate outside the person, entering through the windows of his faculties, but wells up from an excess of spiritual joy and true devotion of spirit. Comfort and delight like this need never be doubted or feared. In a word, I believe that anyone who experiences it will not be able to doubt its authenticity." (Image edition, chapter 48, pp ). Second remark: Two basic phases in the practice of mental prayer (according to some authors): the intellectual phase and the volitional phase. a) The intellectual phase (or faith phase) The mind considers something here. The imagination may be involved, for example, if one is thinking about an aspect of or mystery in Our Lord's life. b) The volitional phase (or charity phase) The will makes acts of love. Recall the four purposes of prayer: adoration, thanksgiving, contrition, petition. Prayer must include these acts of the will, otherwise what I am doing is not really prayer at all, but only an exercise of the mind. My will, my heart, my love of God must be present. Let us now make a couple of comments about method at prayer.

51 Types of Prayer Mental Two Basic Aspects: Intellectual (Faith phase) – mind or imagination is considering something Volitional (Charity phase) – the will makes acts of love Prayer must include these acts of the will, otherwise we are a ‘clanging symbol’ as noted earlier – remember, prayer is not necessarily ‘felt’ (See Lawler, The Teaching of Christ, chapters 24 and 25) a. Vocal Prayer b. Mental Prayer ******** a. Vocal Prayer (Three brief remarks will be made about this) First remark: What is vocal prayer? a) Use of set formulas of words. b) Quotation from Father Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest): "Vocal prayer indicates that form of prayer in which one makes use of set formulae of words, endeavoring, at the same time, with more or less success, to conform one's mind to their meaning. But if the mind and heart are not in some way at work, there is no true prayer at all." (p. 24). c) Examples of vocal prayers (of prayers whose words we do not make up, but which someone else has made up): (1) The Our Father (2) The Hail Mary (3) The Rosary (4) The Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) which priests and religious and some lay persons are praying daily (5) The Mass Second remark: Vocal Prayer is not just reciting words. We must use our minds and wills. Quotations: a) Father Boylan again: "In vocal prayer, we say something given to us from the outside and we endeavor to `mean' what we say." (The Spiritual Life of the Priest, p ). b) St. Teresa of Avila: Interior Castle, First Mansions, chap. 1, pp , in Image edition: "As far as I can understand, the door of entry into this castle is prayer and meditation: I do not say mental prayer rather than vocal, for, if it is prayer at all, it must be accompanied by meditation. If a person does not think Whom he is addressing, and what he is asking for, and who it is that is asking and of Whom he is asking it, I do not consider that he is praying at all even though he be constantly moving his lips." Third remark: Another division of Vocal Prayer: a) Private: When a person prays alone, reciting set words, set formulas b) Public: When a person prays with others, e.g. at the Eucharist, or the common recitation of the Rosary. a. Mental Prayer (two brief comments about this: what mental prayer is and two basic phases in the practice of it). First remark: What is it? a) No set formulas of words are used. We create the method. We prayer in our own words. We formulate prayers revolving around our concerns, our needs. And our acts of love focus on those concerns. b) Quotation: (1) Boylan, The Spiritual Life of the Priest: "By mental prayer we here understand that form of prayer in which one endeavors to originate the thought in one's own mind, and so to get the will to move in some way toward God. In practice, it makes no difference to the existence of `mental' prayer whether this interior action manifests itself in external words or not; if the prayer originates interiorly, it is for practical purposes mental prayer." (p. 24) (2) The Author of The Cloud of Unknowing: "My intention in all this is certainly not to discourage you from praying out loud when the Holy Spirit inspires you to do so. And if the joy of your spirit overflows to your senses so that you begin to speak to God as you might to a man, saying such things as `Jesus,' `sweet Jesus,' and the like, you need not stifle your spirit. God forbid that you should misunderstand me in this matter. For truly, I do not mean to deter you from external expressions of love. God forbid that I should separate body and spirit when God has made them a unity. Indeed, we owe God the homage of our whole person, body and spirt together. And fittingly enough he will glorify our whole person, body and spirit, in eternity. In anticipation of this eternal glory, God will sometimes inflame the senses of his devout friends with unspeakable delight and consolation even here in this life. And not just once or twice but perhaps very often as he judges best. This delight, however, does not originate outside the person, entering through the windows of his faculties, but wells up from an excess of spiritual joy and true devotion of spirit. Comfort and delight like this need never be doubted or feared. In a word, I believe that anyone who experiences it will not be able to doubt its authenticity." (Image edition, chapter 48, pp ). Second remark: Two basic phases in the practice of mental prayer (according to some authors): the intellectual phase and the volitional phase. a) The intellectual phase (or faith phase) The mind considers something here. The imagination may be involved, for example, if one is thinking about an aspect of or mystery in Our Lord's life. b) The volitional phase (or charity phase) The will makes acts of love. Recall the four purposes of prayer: adoration, thanksgiving, contrition, petition. Prayer must include these acts of the will, otherwise what I am doing is not really prayer at all, but only an exercise of the mind. My will, my heart, my love of God must be present. Let us now make a couple of comments about method at prayer.

52 Types of Prayer Mental Mental prayer paves the way for contemplation (viz. supernatural or infused prayer) Mental prayer is often used in connection with the gift of infused prayer or contemplation. So right now, we’re talking about mental prayer as disposing oneself for contemplation (infused prayer) (See Lawler, The Teaching of Christ, chapters 24 and 25) a. Vocal Prayer b. Mental Prayer ******** a. Vocal Prayer (Three brief remarks will be made about this) First remark: What is vocal prayer? a) Use of set formulas of words. b) Quotation from Father Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest): "Vocal prayer indicates that form of prayer in which one makes use of set formulae of words, endeavoring, at the same time, with more or less success, to conform one's mind to their meaning. But if the mind and heart are not in some way at work, there is no true prayer at all." (p. 24). c) Examples of vocal prayers (of prayers whose words we do not make up, but which someone else has made up): (1) The Our Father (2) The Hail Mary (3) The Rosary (4) The Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) which priests and religious and some lay persons are praying daily (5) The Mass Second remark: Vocal Prayer is not just reciting words. We must use our minds and wills. Quotations: a) Father Boylan again: "In vocal prayer, we say something given to us from the outside and we endeavor to `mean' what we say." (The Spiritual Life of the Priest, p ). b) St. Teresa of Avila: Interior Castle, First Mansions, chap. 1, pp , in Image edition: "As far as I can understand, the door of entry into this castle is prayer and meditation: I do not say mental prayer rather than vocal, for, if it is prayer at all, it must be accompanied by meditation. If a person does not think Whom he is addressing, and what he is asking for, and who it is that is asking and of Whom he is asking it, I do not consider that he is praying at all even though he be constantly moving his lips." Third remark: Another division of Vocal Prayer: a) Private: When a person prays alone, reciting set words, set formulas b) Public: When a person prays with others, e.g. at the Eucharist, or the common recitation of the Rosary. a. Mental Prayer (two brief comments about this: what mental prayer is and two basic phases in the practice of it). First remark: What is it? a) No set formulas of words are used. We create the method. We prayer in our own words. We formulate prayers revolving around our concerns, our needs. And our acts of love focus on those concerns. b) Quotation: (1) Boylan, The Spiritual Life of the Priest: "By mental prayer we here understand that form of prayer in which one endeavors to originate the thought in one's own mind, and so to get the will to move in some way toward God. In practice, it makes no difference to the existence of `mental' prayer whether this interior action manifests itself in external words or not; if the prayer originates interiorly, it is for practical purposes mental prayer." (p. 24) (2) The Author of The Cloud of Unknowing: "My intention in all this is certainly not to discourage you from praying out loud when the Holy Spirit inspires you to do so. And if the joy of your spirit overflows to your senses so that you begin to speak to God as you might to a man, saying such things as `Jesus,' `sweet Jesus,' and the like, you need not stifle your spirit. God forbid that you should misunderstand me in this matter. For truly, I do not mean to deter you from external expressions of love. God forbid that I should separate body and spirit when God has made them a unity. Indeed, we owe God the homage of our whole person, body and spirt together. And fittingly enough he will glorify our whole person, body and spirit, in eternity. In anticipation of this eternal glory, God will sometimes inflame the senses of his devout friends with unspeakable delight and consolation even here in this life. And not just once or twice but perhaps very often as he judges best. This delight, however, does not originate outside the person, entering through the windows of his faculties, but wells up from an excess of spiritual joy and true devotion of spirit. Comfort and delight like this need never be doubted or feared. In a word, I believe that anyone who experiences it will not be able to doubt its authenticity." (Image edition, chapter 48, pp ). Second remark: Two basic phases in the practice of mental prayer (according to some authors): the intellectual phase and the volitional phase. a) The intellectual phase (or faith phase) The mind considers something here. The imagination may be involved, for example, if one is thinking about an aspect of or mystery in Our Lord's life. b) The volitional phase (or charity phase) The will makes acts of love. Recall the four purposes of prayer: adoration, thanksgiving, contrition, petition. Prayer must include these acts of the will, otherwise what I am doing is not really prayer at all, but only an exercise of the mind. My will, my heart, my love of God must be present. Let us now make a couple of comments about method at prayer.

53 Jesus and Prayer 2598 to 2616 2598 The drama of prayer is fully revealed to us in the Word who became flesh and dwells among us. 2599 Filial prayer of Jesus to His Father

54 Jesus and Prayer 2598 to 2616 Perfect Prayer Jesus is our model for all things, including prayer – one person, two natures Jesus prayed in silence, alone, usually at night on a mountain Jesus prayed before important events Our Father, the answer to: “Lord, teach us to pray”

55 Jesus and Prayer Where and When ?
Cf. 2602 Rising early the next morning, he went off to a lonely place in the desert; there he was absorbed in prayer … Mk 1:35 He often retired to deserted places and prayed. Lk 5:16

56 Jesus and Prayer Important Events Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, then returned from the Jordan and was conducted by the Spirit into the desert for forty days, where he was tempted by the devil. During that time he ate nothing… Lk 4:1-2

57 Jesus and Prayer Important Events 2600-2605
Before Father’s witness to him in baptism and transfiguration Before his ministry begins – 40 days Before selecting the Twelve Before raising Lazarus Last Supper before offering himself Agony in the Garden of Olives From the Cross of crucifixion

58 Jesus and Prayer From the Sermon on the Mount onwards, Jesus insists on conversion of heart … once committed to conversion, the heart learns to pray in faith… Whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you receive it, and you will” 2610 Mk 11:24 Three principal parables on prayer in St. Luke’s Gospel:

59 Jesus and Prayer Lord’s Prayer is summary of the whole Gospel
Our Father … the perfect prayer CCC Jesus was praying at a certain place, and when he ceased, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray as John taught his disciples…” Lk 11:1 Cf. 2601 Lord’s Prayer is summary of the whole Gospel

60 Jesus and Prayer Lord’s Prayer
St. Thomas Aquinas Run through all the words of the holy prayers [in Scripture] and I do not think that you will find anything in them that is not contained and included in the Lord’s Prayer…

61 Jesus and Prayer Lord’s Prayer
The Lord’s Prayer is the most perfect of prayers … in it we ask, not only for all the things we can rightly desire, but also in the sequence that they should be desired. This prayer not only teaches us to ask for things, but also in what order we should desire them. St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church CCC 2763

62 Mary’s Prayer 2617 to 2619 "Behold I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be [done] to me according to your word." "Fiat ". Mary intercedes for us – Cana “He has looked with favor on his lowly servant”

63 Tonight Ways and Guides of Prayer The Way of Prayer 2663 - 2682
Guides to Prayer 2683 – 2696 The Three Ages of the Interior Life (Stages of Prayer) Purgative, Illuminative, and Unitive Way St. Teresa of Avila - Mansions St. John of the Cross – Dark Night St. Therese – Little Way of Spiritual Childhood Abandonment to Divine Providence

64 ‘Method’ and Prayer With method Without method
Two modes of operation at prayer: With method Without method TWO WAYS OF OPERATING AT THE TIME OF PRAYER ITSELF 1. What are these two ways? a. Prayer without method b. Prayer with method ********* 2. Before elaborating on these two ways of approaching prayer, I would like to make two comments. First comment: What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. I will not go into that now. Different people have expressed this attraction differently. a) St. Jane Chantal: "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" (Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59). b) Father Hubert Van Zeller: "For a soul to discover a way of praying, there is no need to know about the ways by which souls pray. Nor is it necessary to know about the faculties which are engaged in the act of prayer. It is not even necessary to work through a list of sentiments appropriate to prayer. To learn how to pray, all that is needed is the will to correspond" (Approach to Prayer, 1958, p. 2). Also: "Methods are best not learned but evolved" (p.15) c) Father Lehodey (The Ways of Mental Prayer): Father Lehodey, after talking about the four purposes of prayer: thanksgiving, adoration, petition and reparation, quotes another spiritual writer Schram, who says: "Prayer can apply itself to any one of the acts we have just enumerated in preference to any of the others. Nay, more, vocal or mental prayer, however prolonged, may limit itself to a single one of these acts, because there is no obligation nor necessity to join them always together, and also because it may happen that more fruit, more fervour and devotion may be derived from the continuous dwelling upon a single one than from dwelling upon them all at one time. In such a case we ought to confine ourselves to that one which is more profitable, without trying to go through them all in the one prayer." (pp. 2-3 in Lehodey). d) St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition): "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation." SUMMARY OF THIS POINT: Let the Holy Spirit dictate one's prayer. Let him lead. Then let us respond to his impulses. Second comment: A general principle concerning the quantity of method: Use as little method as possible. Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" (p. 27). Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" (p. 27). ********************* Let us now turn to method at the actual time of prayer itself. The foregoing remarks should give us a cue. 3. Prayer without method (This is the easiest one to talk about). a. Description 1) This kind of prayer is ready-made. This is the kind of prayer in which God takes the initiative. All we have to do is to cooperate with his grace, to say "yes" to his overture, to consent to his bidding. 2) Examples: a) First an analogy, an example from every day life: A person goes into a supermarket to buy some fruit or vegetables. He notices that he can buy them in two different ways: (1) In an all-packaged way, and (2) In a non-packaged way. In the all-packaged way, the store manager (or food distributor) has already put the fruit or vegetables into a nice, neat plastic bag, all sealed, all ready to go. All the customer has to do is to pick up the bag and pay for it. In the non-packaged way, the person has to select the individual fruits or vegetables, put them into a bag and then pay for them--a more complicated process. Prayer without method is similar to the all-packaged way of buying vegetables. God has done most of the work for us. All we have to do is to cooperate with him. b) An example from St. Jane Chantal: (Incidentally, Father Eugene Boylan, the Trappist, says that St. Jane is second only to St. Teresa of Avila as the best woman spokesperson on prayer [Difficulties in Mental Prayer, p. 101]). St. Jane: "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." (St. Chantal on Prayer, p. 16). She also says that the person should then become (p. 16): 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is inspired prayer, as opposed to discursive prayer. c. Conclusion: This of course is the easiest kind of prayer, since it is made so spontaneously, promptly and easily. It corresponds more to the prayer of light described above. But this is not real life. God does not always bless us with this kind of prayer. So, let's turn to the second kind: Prayer with method---which in many ways is more difficult to talk about. 4. Prayer without method 1) This is the kind of prayer we have to grind out. 2) It may not be arid or dry, but it still requires a process, a procedure; whereas the prayer without method was spontaneous--almost without work. 3) This prayer is similar to--perhaps the same as--the prayer which St. Teresa describes as using conduits to get water, that is, to get refreshment and sustenance in the spiritual life. 4) The procedures used in this kind of prayer can be learned from books on prayer, by asking advice, from a spiritual director and from one's own reflection. We spoke a little about this when we talked about mental prayer. Ultimately prayer is something we learn by doing. It is an art. People can help us so that we proceed in the proper fashion, but ultimately we must sit down and do it. And only individual persons, not groups, can do this. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is discursive prayer, as opposed to inspired prayer. This is the kind of prayer which the Catechism speaks about as meditation. ******* Before looking at Part 7, I would like to make a two comments on the time for prayer 1. Quantity (How much time?) I would suggest minutes a day. According to Lehodey, one half of that time–-at most--should be spent on considerations, that is, on thinking about something spiritual. The rest of the time should be spent on loving God, making will-acts. We already spoke about the four purposes of prayer. 2. When should one pray? A) If possible, at a regular time. We are then more psychologically prepared for prayer ahead of time. B) Select a time when we can be relatively relaxed, so that we avoid as many distractions as possible. They will still come, but we can avoid some of them by the time we choose.

65 ‘Method’ and Prayer But first, two comments:
1. What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. - Lepak TWO WAYS OF OPERATING AT THE TIME OF PRAYER ITSELF 1. What are these two ways? a. Prayer without method b. Prayer with method ********* 2. Before elaborating on these two ways of approaching prayer, I would like to make two comments. First comment: What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. I will not go into that now. Different people have expressed this attraction differently. a) St. Jane Chantal: "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" (Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59). b) Father Hubert Van Zeller: "For a soul to discover a way of praying, there is no need to know about the ways by which souls pray. Nor is it necessary to know about the faculties which are engaged in the act of prayer. It is not even necessary to work through a list of sentiments appropriate to prayer. To learn how to pray, all that is needed is the will to correspond" (Approach to Prayer, 1958, p. 2). Also: "Methods are best not learned but evolved" (p.15) c) Father Lehodey (The Ways of Mental Prayer): Father Lehodey, after talking about the four purposes of prayer: thanksgiving, adoration, petition and reparation, quotes another spiritual writer Schram, who says: "Prayer can apply itself to any one of the acts we have just enumerated in preference to any of the others. Nay, more, vocal or mental prayer, however prolonged, may limit itself to a single one of these acts, because there is no obligation nor necessity to join them always together, and also because it may happen that more fruit, more fervour and devotion may be derived from the continuous dwelling upon a single one than from dwelling upon them all at one time. In such a case we ought to confine ourselves to that one which is more profitable, without trying to go through them all in the one prayer." (pp. 2-3 in Lehodey). d) St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition): "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation." SUMMARY OF THIS POINT: Let the Holy Spirit dictate one's prayer. Let him lead. Then let us respond to his impulses. Second comment: A general principle concerning the quantity of method: Use as little method as possible. Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" (p. 27). Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" (p. 27). ********************* Let us now turn to method at the actual time of prayer itself. The foregoing remarks should give us a cue. 3. Prayer without method (This is the easiest one to talk about). a. Description 1) This kind of prayer is ready-made. This is the kind of prayer in which God takes the initiative. All we have to do is to cooperate with his grace, to say "yes" to his overture, to consent to his bidding. 2) Examples: a) First an analogy, an example from every day life: A person goes into a supermarket to buy some fruit or vegetables. He notices that he can buy them in two different ways: (1) In an all-packaged way, and (2) In a non-packaged way. In the all-packaged way, the store manager (or food distributor) has already put the fruit or vegetables into a nice, neat plastic bag, all sealed, all ready to go. All the customer has to do is to pick up the bag and pay for it. In the non-packaged way, the person has to select the individual fruits or vegetables, put them into a bag and then pay for them--a more complicated process. Prayer without method is similar to the all-packaged way of buying vegetables. God has done most of the work for us. All we have to do is to cooperate with him. b) An example from St. Jane Chantal: (Incidentally, Father Eugene Boylan, the Trappist, says that St. Jane is second only to St. Teresa of Avila as the best woman spokesperson on prayer [Difficulties in Mental Prayer, p. 101]). St. Jane: "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." (St. Chantal on Prayer, p. 16). She also says that the person should then become (p. 16): 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is inspired prayer, as opposed to discursive prayer. c. Conclusion: This of course is the easiest kind of prayer, since it is made so spontaneously, promptly and easily. It corresponds more to the prayer of light described above. But this is not real life. God does not always bless us with this kind of prayer. So, let's turn to the second kind: Prayer with method---which in many ways is more difficult to talk about. 4. Prayer without method 1) This is the kind of prayer we have to grind out. 2) It may not be arid or dry, but it still requires a process, a procedure; whereas the prayer without method was spontaneous--almost without work. 3) This prayer is similar to--perhaps the same as--the prayer which St. Teresa describes as using conduits to get water, that is, to get refreshment and sustenance in the spiritual life. 4) The procedures used in this kind of prayer can be learned from books on prayer, by asking advice, from a spiritual director and from one's own reflection. We spoke a little about this when we talked about mental prayer. Ultimately prayer is something we learn by doing. It is an art. People can help us so that we proceed in the proper fashion, but ultimately we must sit down and do it. And only individual persons, not groups, can do this. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is discursive prayer, as opposed to inspired prayer. This is the kind of prayer which the Catechism speaks about as meditation. ******* Before looking at Part 7, I would like to make a two comments on the time for prayer 1. Quantity (How much time?) I would suggest minutes a day. According to Lehodey, one half of that time–-at most--should be spent on considerations, that is, on thinking about something spiritual. The rest of the time should be spent on loving God, making will-acts. We already spoke about the four purposes of prayer. 2. When should one pray? A) If possible, at a regular time. We are then more psychologically prepared for prayer ahead of time. B) Select a time when we can be relatively relaxed, so that we avoid as many distractions as possible. They will still come, but we can avoid some of them by the time we choose. "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" St. Jane DeChantal, Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59

66 ‘Method’ and Prayer "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation.“ St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition) TWO WAYS OF OPERATING AT THE TIME OF PRAYER ITSELF 1. What are these two ways? a. Prayer without method b. Prayer with method ********* 2. Before elaborating on these two ways of approaching prayer, I would like to make two comments. First comment: What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. I will not go into that now. Different people have expressed this attraction differently. a) St. Jane Chantal: "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" (Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59). b) Father Hubert Van Zeller: "For a soul to discover a way of praying, there is no need to know about the ways by which souls pray. Nor is it necessary to know about the faculties which are engaged in the act of prayer. It is not even necessary to work through a list of sentiments appropriate to prayer. To learn how to pray, all that is needed is the will to correspond" (Approach to Prayer, 1958, p. 2). Also: "Methods are best not learned but evolved" (p.15) c) Father Lehodey (The Ways of Mental Prayer): Father Lehodey, after talking about the four purposes of prayer: thanksgiving, adoration, petition and reparation, quotes another spiritual writer Schram, who says: "Prayer can apply itself to any one of the acts we have just enumerated in preference to any of the others. Nay, more, vocal or mental prayer, however prolonged, may limit itself to a single one of these acts, because there is no obligation nor necessity to join them always together, and also because it may happen that more fruit, more fervour and devotion may be derived from the continuous dwelling upon a single one than from dwelling upon them all at one time. In such a case we ought to confine ourselves to that one which is more profitable, without trying to go through them all in the one prayer." (pp. 2-3 in Lehodey). d) St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition): "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation." SUMMARY OF THIS POINT: Let the Holy Spirit dictate one's prayer. Let him lead. Then let us respond to his impulses. Second comment: A general principle concerning the quantity of method: Use as little method as possible. Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" (p. 27). Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" (p. 27). ********************* Let us now turn to method at the actual time of prayer itself. The foregoing remarks should give us a cue. 3. Prayer without method (This is the easiest one to talk about). a. Description 1) This kind of prayer is ready-made. This is the kind of prayer in which God takes the initiative. All we have to do is to cooperate with his grace, to say "yes" to his overture, to consent to his bidding. 2) Examples: a) First an analogy, an example from every day life: A person goes into a supermarket to buy some fruit or vegetables. He notices that he can buy them in two different ways: (1) In an all-packaged way, and (2) In a non-packaged way. In the all-packaged way, the store manager (or food distributor) has already put the fruit or vegetables into a nice, neat plastic bag, all sealed, all ready to go. All the customer has to do is to pick up the bag and pay for it. In the non-packaged way, the person has to select the individual fruits or vegetables, put them into a bag and then pay for them--a more complicated process. Prayer without method is similar to the all-packaged way of buying vegetables. God has done most of the work for us. All we have to do is to cooperate with him. b) An example from St. Jane Chantal: (Incidentally, Father Eugene Boylan, the Trappist, says that St. Jane is second only to St. Teresa of Avila as the best woman spokesperson on prayer [Difficulties in Mental Prayer, p. 101]). St. Jane: "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." (St. Chantal on Prayer, p. 16). She also says that the person should then become (p. 16): 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is inspired prayer, as opposed to discursive prayer. c. Conclusion: This of course is the easiest kind of prayer, since it is made so spontaneously, promptly and easily. It corresponds more to the prayer of light described above. But this is not real life. God does not always bless us with this kind of prayer. So, let's turn to the second kind: Prayer with method---which in many ways is more difficult to talk about. 4. Prayer without method 1) This is the kind of prayer we have to grind out. 2) It may not be arid or dry, but it still requires a process, a procedure; whereas the prayer without method was spontaneous--almost without work. 3) This prayer is similar to--perhaps the same as--the prayer which St. Teresa describes as using conduits to get water, that is, to get refreshment and sustenance in the spiritual life. 4) The procedures used in this kind of prayer can be learned from books on prayer, by asking advice, from a spiritual director and from one's own reflection. We spoke a little about this when we talked about mental prayer. Ultimately prayer is something we learn by doing. It is an art. People can help us so that we proceed in the proper fashion, but ultimately we must sit down and do it. And only individual persons, not groups, can do this. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is discursive prayer, as opposed to inspired prayer. This is the kind of prayer which the Catechism speaks about as meditation. ******* Before looking at Part 7, I would like to make a two comments on the time for prayer 1. Quantity (How much time?) I would suggest minutes a day. According to Lehodey, one half of that time–-at most--should be spent on considerations, that is, on thinking about something spiritual. The rest of the time should be spent on loving God, making will-acts. We already spoke about the four purposes of prayer. 2. When should one pray? A) If possible, at a regular time. We are then more psychologically prepared for prayer ahead of time. B) Select a time when we can be relatively relaxed, so that we avoid as many distractions as possible. They will still come, but we can avoid some of them by the time we choose.

67 ‘Method’ and Prayer Second comment
Let the Holy Spirit dictate your prayer. Use as little method as possible. "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" p. 27 Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) TWO WAYS OF OPERATING AT THE TIME OF PRAYER ITSELF 1. What are these two ways? a. Prayer without method b. Prayer with method ********* 2. Before elaborating on these two ways of approaching prayer, I would like to make two comments. First comment: What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. I will not go into that now. Different people have expressed this attraction differently. a) St. Jane Chantal: "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" (Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59). b) Father Hubert Van Zeller: "For a soul to discover a way of praying, there is no need to know about the ways by which souls pray. Nor is it necessary to know about the faculties which are engaged in the act of prayer. It is not even necessary to work through a list of sentiments appropriate to prayer. To learn how to pray, all that is needed is the will to correspond" (Approach to Prayer, 1958, p. 2). Also: "Methods are best not learned but evolved" (p.15) c) Father Lehodey (The Ways of Mental Prayer): Father Lehodey, after talking about the four purposes of prayer: thanksgiving, adoration, petition and reparation, quotes another spiritual writer Schram, who says: "Prayer can apply itself to any one of the acts we have just enumerated in preference to any of the others. Nay, more, vocal or mental prayer, however prolonged, may limit itself to a single one of these acts, because there is no obligation nor necessity to join them always together, and also because it may happen that more fruit, more fervour and devotion may be derived from the continuous dwelling upon a single one than from dwelling upon them all at one time. In such a case we ought to confine ourselves to that one which is more profitable, without trying to go through them all in the one prayer." (pp. 2-3 in Lehodey). d) St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition): "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation." SUMMARY OF THIS POINT: Let the Holy Spirit dictate one's prayer. Let him lead. Then let us respond to his impulses. Second comment: A general principle concerning the quantity of method: Use as little method as possible. Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" (p. 27). Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" (p. 27). ********************* Let us now turn to method at the actual time of prayer itself. The foregoing remarks should give us a cue. 3. Prayer without method (This is the easiest one to talk about). a. Description 1) This kind of prayer is ready-made. This is the kind of prayer in which God takes the initiative. All we have to do is to cooperate with his grace, to say "yes" to his overture, to consent to his bidding. 2) Examples: a) First an analogy, an example from every day life: A person goes into a supermarket to buy some fruit or vegetables. He notices that he can buy them in two different ways: (1) In an all-packaged way, and (2) In a non-packaged way. In the all-packaged way, the store manager (or food distributor) has already put the fruit or vegetables into a nice, neat plastic bag, all sealed, all ready to go. All the customer has to do is to pick up the bag and pay for it. In the non-packaged way, the person has to select the individual fruits or vegetables, put them into a bag and then pay for them--a more complicated process. Prayer without method is similar to the all-packaged way of buying vegetables. God has done most of the work for us. All we have to do is to cooperate with him. b) An example from St. Jane Chantal: (Incidentally, Father Eugene Boylan, the Trappist, says that St. Jane is second only to St. Teresa of Avila as the best woman spokesperson on prayer [Difficulties in Mental Prayer, p. 101]). St. Jane: "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." (St. Chantal on Prayer, p. 16). She also says that the person should then become (p. 16): 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is inspired prayer, as opposed to discursive prayer. c. Conclusion: This of course is the easiest kind of prayer, since it is made so spontaneously, promptly and easily. It corresponds more to the prayer of light described above. But this is not real life. God does not always bless us with this kind of prayer. So, let's turn to the second kind: Prayer with method---which in many ways is more difficult to talk about. 4. Prayer without method 1) This is the kind of prayer we have to grind out. 2) It may not be arid or dry, but it still requires a process, a procedure; whereas the prayer without method was spontaneous--almost without work. 3) This prayer is similar to--perhaps the same as--the prayer which St. Teresa describes as using conduits to get water, that is, to get refreshment and sustenance in the spiritual life. 4) The procedures used in this kind of prayer can be learned from books on prayer, by asking advice, from a spiritual director and from one's own reflection. We spoke a little about this when we talked about mental prayer. Ultimately prayer is something we learn by doing. It is an art. People can help us so that we proceed in the proper fashion, but ultimately we must sit down and do it. And only individual persons, not groups, can do this. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is discursive prayer, as opposed to inspired prayer. This is the kind of prayer which the Catechism speaks about as meditation. ******* Before looking at Part 7, I would like to make a two comments on the time for prayer 1. Quantity (How much time?) I would suggest minutes a day. According to Lehodey, one half of that time–-at most--should be spent on considerations, that is, on thinking about something spiritual. The rest of the time should be spent on loving God, making will-acts. We already spoke about the four purposes of prayer. 2. When should one pray? A) If possible, at a regular time. We are then more psychologically prepared for prayer ahead of time. B) Select a time when we can be relatively relaxed, so that we avoid as many distractions as possible. They will still come, but we can avoid some of them by the time we choose.

68 ‘Method’ and Prayer Prayer Without Method
God takes the initiative … cooperate with Him ! "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." St. Chantal on Prayer, p.16 She also says that the person should then become : 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. TWO WAYS OF OPERATING AT THE TIME OF PRAYER ITSELF 1. What are these two ways? a. Prayer without method b. Prayer with method ********* 2. Before elaborating on these two ways of approaching prayer, I would like to make two comments. First comment: What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. I will not go into that now. Different people have expressed this attraction differently. a) St. Jane Chantal: "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" (Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59). b) Father Hubert Van Zeller: "For a soul to discover a way of praying, there is no need to know about the ways by which souls pray. Nor is it necessary to know about the faculties which are engaged in the act of prayer. It is not even necessary to work through a list of sentiments appropriate to prayer. To learn how to pray, all that is needed is the will to correspond" (Approach to Prayer, 1958, p. 2). Also: "Methods are best not learned but evolved" (p.15) c) Father Lehodey (The Ways of Mental Prayer): Father Lehodey, after talking about the four purposes of prayer: thanksgiving, adoration, petition and reparation, quotes another spiritual writer Schram, who says: "Prayer can apply itself to any one of the acts we have just enumerated in preference to any of the others. Nay, more, vocal or mental prayer, however prolonged, may limit itself to a single one of these acts, because there is no obligation nor necessity to join them always together, and also because it may happen that more fruit, more fervour and devotion may be derived from the continuous dwelling upon a single one than from dwelling upon them all at one time. In such a case we ought to confine ourselves to that one which is more profitable, without trying to go through them all in the one prayer." (pp. 2-3 in Lehodey). d) St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition): "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation." SUMMARY OF THIS POINT: Let the Holy Spirit dictate one's prayer. Let him lead. Then let us respond to his impulses. Second comment: A general principle concerning the quantity of method: Use as little method as possible. Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" (p. 27). Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" (p. 27). ********************* Let us now turn to method at the actual time of prayer itself. The foregoing remarks should give us a cue. 3. Prayer without method (This is the easiest one to talk about). a. Description 1) This kind of prayer is ready-made. This is the kind of prayer in which God takes the initiative. All we have to do is to cooperate with his grace, to say "yes" to his overture, to consent to his bidding. 2) Examples: a) First an analogy, an example from every day life: A person goes into a supermarket to buy some fruit or vegetables. He notices that he can buy them in two different ways: (1) In an all-packaged way, and (2) In a non-packaged way. In the all-packaged way, the store manager (or food distributor) has already put the fruit or vegetables into a nice, neat plastic bag, all sealed, all ready to go. All the customer has to do is to pick up the bag and pay for it. In the non-packaged way, the person has to select the individual fruits or vegetables, put them into a bag and then pay for them--a more complicated process. Prayer without method is similar to the all-packaged way of buying vegetables. God has done most of the work for us. All we have to do is to cooperate with him. b) An example from St. Jane Chantal: (Incidentally, Father Eugene Boylan, the Trappist, says that St. Jane is second only to St. Teresa of Avila as the best woman spokesperson on prayer [Difficulties in Mental Prayer, p. 101]). St. Jane: "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." (St. Chantal on Prayer, p. 16). She also says that the person should then become (p. 16): 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is inspired prayer, as opposed to discursive prayer. c. Conclusion: This of course is the easiest kind of prayer, since it is made so spontaneously, promptly and easily. It corresponds more to the prayer of light described above. But this is not real life. God does not always bless us with this kind of prayer. So, let's turn to the second kind: Prayer with method---which in many ways is more difficult to talk about. 4. Prayer with method 1) This is the kind of prayer we have to grind out. 2) It may not be arid or dry, but it still requires a process, a procedure; whereas the prayer without method was spontaneous--almost without work. 3) This prayer is similar to--perhaps the same as--the prayer which St. Teresa describes as using conduits to get water, that is, to get refreshment and sustenance in the spiritual life. 4) The procedures used in this kind of prayer can be learned from books on prayer, by asking advice, from a spiritual director and from one's own reflection. We spoke a little about this when we talked about mental prayer. Ultimately prayer is something we learn by doing. It is an art. People can help us so that we proceed in the proper fashion, but ultimately we must sit down and do it. And only individual persons, not groups, can do this. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is discursive prayer, as opposed to inspired prayer. This is the kind of prayer which the Catechism speaks about as meditation. ******* Before looking at Part 7, I would like to make a two comments on the time for prayer 1. Quantity (How much time?) I would suggest minutes a day. According to Lehodey, one half of that time–-at most--should be spent on considerations, that is, on thinking about something spiritual. The rest of the time should be spent on loving God, making will-acts. We already spoke about the four purposes of prayer. 2. When should one pray? A) If possible, at a regular time. We are then more psychologically prepared for prayer ahead of time. B) Select a time when we can be relatively relaxed, so that we avoid as many distractions as possible. They will still come, but we can avoid some of them by the time we choose.

69 Growth in the Spiritual Life
Genuinely simple and pure Christian souls have always been acquainted with completely spontaneous and intimate prayer. “I look at the Lord and he looks at me” Lagrange says to keep methods simple, at best – it is a means to an end (p Ages) Notes prayer depends principally on Grace of God … A person prepares for [prayer] far less by processes thant would remain mechanical … than by HUMILITY: “God giveth grace to the humble” Jas. 4:16

70 ‘Method’ and Prayer My gloss: The real “method” is disposing oneself for prayer by imitating Christ. Confession Mass Ordering/Mortification of Passions Spiritual Reading Corporal/Spiritual Works of Mercy Living the Beatitudes TWO WAYS OF OPERATING AT THE TIME OF PRAYER ITSELF 1. What are these two ways? a. Prayer without method b. Prayer with method ********* 2. Before elaborating on these two ways of approaching prayer, I would like to make two comments. First comment: What we do at prayer is determined according to our attraction. Actually it is grace which is moving us to pray in a certain fashion. This sounds as if prayer is determined by whim or that prayer has no objective base, but is determined by one's relative or subjective state. Experience and direction will correct this abuse if it is found. I will not go into that now. Different people have expressed this attraction differently. a) St. Jane Chantal: "What we do in prayer must be determined according to our attraction, whether it be by meditation or by a simple gazing upon God, according as He may lead us" (Prayer, p. 19. See also p. 59). b) Father Hubert Van Zeller: "For a soul to discover a way of praying, there is no need to know about the ways by which souls pray. Nor is it necessary to know about the faculties which are engaged in the act of prayer. It is not even necessary to work through a list of sentiments appropriate to prayer. To learn how to pray, all that is needed is the will to correspond" (Approach to Prayer, 1958, p. 2). Also: "Methods are best not learned but evolved" (p.15) c) Father Lehodey (The Ways of Mental Prayer): Father Lehodey, after talking about the four purposes of prayer: thanksgiving, adoration, petition and reparation, quotes another spiritual writer Schram, who says: "Prayer can apply itself to any one of the acts we have just enumerated in preference to any of the others. Nay, more, vocal or mental prayer, however prolonged, may limit itself to a single one of these acts, because there is no obligation nor necessity to join them always together, and also because it may happen that more fruit, more fervour and devotion may be derived from the continuous dwelling upon a single one than from dwelling upon them all at one time. In such a case we ought to confine ourselves to that one which is more profitable, without trying to go through them all in the one prayer." (pp. 2-3 in Lehodey). d) St. Francis De Sales: Introduction to the Devout Life (2nd Part, chapter I, no. 8; p. 79 in Image edition): "If during vocal prayer you feel your heart drawn and invited to mental prayer, do not refuse to take it up. Let your mind turn gently that way, without being concerned at not finishing the vocal prayers you intended to say. The choice you have made is more pleasing to God and more profitable to your soul. I except the Divine Office, if you are obliged to say it. In that case you must fulfill your obligation." SUMMARY OF THIS POINT: Let the Holy Spirit dictate one's prayer. Let him lead. Then let us respond to his impulses. Second comment: A general principle concerning the quantity of method: Use as little method as possible. Father Eugene Boylan (The Spiritual Life of the Priest) "There are books and books of `methodized' prayer, which are of great help to some, but to others only a hindrance, for prayer is an individual thing, and methods purely means toward an end. All we have to say about the choice is, that if one must err, err on the side of simplicity. We go to prayer to pray--to talk to God. The first step then is to make contact with Him" (p. 27). Also: "Let us say that each one should use just as much or just as little method as he finds helpful" (p. 27). ********************* Let us now turn to method at the actual time of prayer itself. The foregoing remarks should give us a cue. 3. Prayer without method (This is the easiest one to talk about). a. Description 1) This kind of prayer is ready-made. This is the kind of prayer in which God takes the initiative. All we have to do is to cooperate with his grace, to say "yes" to his overture, to consent to his bidding. 2) Examples: a) First an analogy, an example from every day life: A person goes into a supermarket to buy some fruit or vegetables. He notices that he can buy them in two different ways: (1) In an all-packaged way, and (2) In a non-packaged way. In the all-packaged way, the store manager (or food distributor) has already put the fruit or vegetables into a nice, neat plastic bag, all sealed, all ready to go. All the customer has to do is to pick up the bag and pay for it. In the non-packaged way, the person has to select the individual fruits or vegetables, put them into a bag and then pay for them--a more complicated process. Prayer without method is similar to the all-packaged way of buying vegetables. God has done most of the work for us. All we have to do is to cooperate with him. b) An example from St. Jane Chantal: (Incidentally, Father Eugene Boylan, the Trappist, says that St. Jane is second only to St. Teresa of Avila as the best woman spokesperson on prayer [Difficulties in Mental Prayer, p. 101]). St. Jane: "The great method for mental prayer is simply this: that there is none when the Holy Spirit has taken charge of the person who is meditating, for then He does with the soul as it pleases Him, and all rules and methods vanish away." (St. Chantal on Prayer, p. 16). She also says that the person should then become (p. 16): 1) like clay in the hands of a potter 2) like wax receptive to an impression of a seal 3) like a blank sheet upon which the Holy Spirit writes his will. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is inspired prayer, as opposed to discursive prayer. c. Conclusion: This of course is the easiest kind of prayer, since it is made so spontaneously, promptly and easily. It corresponds more to the prayer of light described above. But this is not real life. God does not always bless us with this kind of prayer. So, let's turn to the second kind: Prayer with method---which in many ways is more difficult to talk about. 4. Prayer with method 1) This is the kind of prayer we have to grind out. 2) It may not be arid or dry, but it still requires a process, a procedure; whereas the prayer without method was spontaneous--almost without work. 3) This prayer is similar to--perhaps the same as--the prayer which St. Teresa describes as using conduits to get water, that is, to get refreshment and sustenance in the spiritual life. 4) The procedures used in this kind of prayer can be learned from books on prayer, by asking advice, from a spiritual director and from one's own reflection. We spoke a little about this when we talked about mental prayer. Ultimately prayer is something we learn by doing. It is an art. People can help us so that we proceed in the proper fashion, but ultimately we must sit down and do it. And only individual persons, not groups, can do this. b. Theological explanation of this kind of prayer: it is discursive prayer, as opposed to inspired prayer. This is the kind of prayer which the Catechism speaks about as meditation. ******* Before looking at Part 7, I would like to make a two comments on the time for prayer 1. Quantity (How much time?) I would suggest minutes a day. According to Lehodey, one half of that time–-at most--should be spent on considerations, that is, on thinking about something spiritual. The rest of the time should be spent on loving God, making will-acts. We already spoke about the four purposes of prayer. 2. When should one pray? A) If possible, at a regular time. We are then more psychologically prepared for prayer ahead of time. B) Select a time when we can be relatively relaxed, so that we avoid as many distractions as possible. They will still come, but we can avoid some of them by the time we choose. Active life Prayer life

71 The Way of Prayer 2663 to 2679 Prayer to the Father, Jesus and Holy Spirit To Jesus, through Mary, perfect models of faith and prayer

72 Guides for Prayer 2683 to 2691 “Cloud of Witnesses”
2684 In the communion of saints, many and varied spiritualities have been developed throughout the history of the churches… Tonight … we will take the three great Carmelite Doctors as our “witnesses”…

73 Purgative, Illuminative, Unitive Way
Growth in the Spiritual Life Purgative, Illuminative, Unitive Way Saints and Theologians throughout the ages have referred to growth in the spiritual life as comprised of “3 Ages” as Garrigou-Lagrange sets out… Rev. Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.

74 Growth in the Spiritual Life
Purgative Way Illuminative Way Unitive Way Beginners Proficients “Perfect” Discursive prayer Dark Night of the Senses Inspired prayer Dark Night of the Spirit Inspired prayer Mental Prayer Overview of the stages of prayer at a high level. We will talk about these components of the spiritual life and growth in prayer. Degrees of Contemplative Prayer: Prayer of Quiet This is a prayer bestowed by God. While this prayer lasts, the individual's faculties are stilled and the soul is enlarged. A great and profoundly peaceful interior quiet is experienced. Prayer of (Incipient) Union (also known as rapture or ecstatic prayer) While rapt in prayer the individual is usually unable to engage in sense perception, voluntary motor activity, or rational thought. The individual's memory typically ceases functioning, and the individual doesn't know who he or she is. Nonetheless the individual reports having incredibly rich spiritual experiences during this time period. Sometimes the mystic can convey something of these revelatory experiences; at other times there are no words to describe what has passed for the mystic has heard the "ineffable words of God". The mystic may or may not experience a sensation of rapid motion during rapture; when this sensation occurs the mystic is unable to tell whether his body is in motion, or whether his soul is in motion apart from his body. People who have had this experience say it feels as though they are being transported to another realm. Although many Christian mystics report being surrounded by or filled with a bright light in this other realm, St. Teresa herself says very little about this. Following rapture the individual feels greater reverence for God and less attachment to the world. When he regards himself, he feels more humble and contrite than ever. Prayer of Spiritual Marriage (also known as union with God) The previous forms of contemplative prayer come and go, but the prayer of spiritual marriage is pretty much a permanent state. At onset both body and soul typically feel as though they are being flooded with a non-physical light. This light often stays with the individual from this point onward, although variations in intensity are often noted. After the initial experience, these individuals feel one in spirit with God. They enjoy a continual sense of God's presence and companionship. Even when feeling some outward distress, these saintly individuals experience a profound peace within themselves. Unlike those rapt in prayer, they typically remain in full possession of their faculties. They no longer seek personally gratifying experiences, but instead seek to please God in all they do. Such individuals report feeling a great and uniform love for other people, whether these other people would regard themselves as their friends or enemies. In union with God, these individuals also tend to be very active in the world, perhaps more active than they have ever been before in their lives. In such activities they are completely absorbed in serving God, and feel profound gratitude whenever they have been given an opportunity to engage in such service. Put P.Marie-Eugene’s flow chart here. Vocal prayer Mediation Active Recollection Prayer of Quiet (touches) Infused Prayer Prayer of Union (permanent state) Meditation Infused Contemplation Teresian Mansions IV, V VI, VII I, II, III

75 Threshold of Mystical Life
Degrees of Charity Virtues Gifts Purifications Prayers Teresa’s Mansion Beginners (Purgative Way) Ascetical Life Initial virtues, first degree of charity, temperance, chastity, patience, first degress of humility Gifts of the Holy Ghost rather latent, inspirations at rare intervals, slight aptitude as yet to profit by them. The soul is especially conscious of its activity Active purification of the senses and of the spirit, or exterior and interior mortification Acquired prayer: vocal prayer, discursive prayer affective prayer, which becomes more and more simple, called the prayer of active recollection. First and Second Mansion Proficients (Illuminative Way) Threshold of Mystical Life Solid virtues, second degree of charity, obedience, more profound humility, spirit of the counsels The gifts of the Holy Ghost begin to manifest themselves, especially the tree inferior gifts of fear, knowledge and piety. The soul, more docile now, profits more from inspirations and interior illuminations. Passive purification of the senses, under the influence especially of the gifts of fear and knowledge. Concomitant trials. Entrance into the illuminative way. Initial infused prayer, isolated acts of infused contemplation in the course of the acquired prayer of recollection; then, prayers of supernatural recollection and of arid or consoled quiet. The gift of piety Third and Fourth Mansion The Perfect (Unitive Way) Mystical Life Eminent and heroic virtues, third degree of charity, perfect humility, great spirit of faith, abandonment, almost unalterable patience. The higher gifts manifest themselves more notably and frequently. The soul is dominated by the Holy Ghost. Great passivity in His regard, which does not exclude the activity of the virtues. Purification of the spirit under the influence especially of the gift of understanding. Concomitant trials in which are manifested the gifts of fortitude and counsel. Entrance into the perfect unitive way Infused prayers of simple union, of complete union (sometimes ecstatic) of transforming union , under the more and more marked influence of the gift of wisdom. Concomitant favors. Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Mansion Dark Night of the Senses Dark Night of the Spirit

76 Growth in the Spiritual Life
Genuinely simple and pure Christian souls have always been acquainted with completely spontaneous and intimate prayer. “I look at the Lord and he looks at me” Lagrange says to keep methods simple, at best – it is a means to an end (3A Vol I, p. 445) Notes prayer depends principally on Grace of God … A person prepares for [prayer] far less by processes that would remain mechanical … than by HUMILITY: “God giveth grace to the humble” Jas. 4:6; 3A Vol. 1, p. 446

77 Growth in the Spiritual Life
Preparation for growth in prayer … Prayer must be prepared for by an act of HUMILITY and proceed from the three theological virtues … the generous soul FLIES, so to speak, like a bird by the effort of its wings, but the breath of the Holy Spirit sustains this effort and rather often bears the soul farther aloft than it could go by its own virtues A p. 448

78 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
Two conversions ordinarily occur in the majority of the saints and in religious who become perfect; one, by which they devote themselves to the service of God; the other, by which they give themselves entirely to perfection. Lagrange, 3A, v.2, p. 23 quoting Rev. Lallemant Second Conversion …

79 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
Second Conversion … Why is it necessary? Christ commanded it – “Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect” Matt. 5:48 Roots of sin are still firmly implanted Inattentiveness to venial sins Humility very important Under the pretext of prudence, they begin to consider the little aspects of great things and to see less and less the great aspect of the daily duties of Christian life and the value of fidelity in little things Lagrange, 3A, v.2, p.27

80 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
Second Conversion … The true means of acquiring the science of the saints… is to have recourse not so much to books as to interior humility, purity of heart, recollection, and prayer… when a soul has attained to entire purity of heart, God Himself instructs it … Lagrange, 3A, v.2, p.28 What are its fruits? An interior man will make more impression on hearts by a single word that is animated by the spirit of God than another by an entire discourse … thus intimate conversation with God, which is the basis of the interior life, will gradually take the place of conversation with ourselves. Lagrange, 3A, v.2, p.29

81 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
Second Conversion … What have the saints said of it? St. Catherine of Sienna: … these weak ones … relax their energy, impatiently turning backwards, and sometimes abandon, under color of virtue, many of their exercises, saying to themselves: This labor does not profit me. All this they do because they feel themselves deprived of mental consolation. Such a soul acts imperfectly, for she has not yet unwound the bandage of spiritual self-love, for had she unwound it, she would see that, in truth, everything proceeds from Me that no leaf of a tree falls to the ground without My providence … Lagrange, 3A, v.2, p.31 (quoting The Dialogue)

82 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
Second Conversion … What have the saints said of it? St. Peter’s denial and subsequent conversion Wept bitterly Prayed Holy Spirit came He then imitated Christ to the Cross The imperfect soul which loves the Lord with a love that is still mercenary, ought to follow Peter’s example after his denial of Christ Lagrange, 3A, v.2, p.32

83 1st Mansions 2nd Mansions 3rd Mansions 4th Mansions 5th Mansions
Action of God Activity of Soul 1st Mansions No manifestation Avoids mortal sin 2nd Mansions Sensible consolations and aridities. Applies itself to prayer, to recollection , to the correction of faults … sustained by sp reading, direction (meditation) 3rd Mansions Facility in recollection. In a well organized life of piety, it carefully avoids sin, and practices the prayer of simplicity. 4th Mansions Interior presence of God manifested by a blinding light (Night) by a sweet captivation (passive recollection, quiet) Respects action of God in prayer; peace, silence, moderated activity. Energetic asceticism to destroy spiritual capital sins. 5th Mansions Habitual captivation of the will, sometimes after mystical grace of union. Fidelity to the Law; obedience. 6th Mansions God purifies and enriches by His touches in the soul Surrender and silent patience. Poverty and hope. 7th Mansions Divine conquest completed; utilization for the Church. Perfect chastity and charity. In the service of the Church. God intervenes with general help. First Phase God intervenes with particular help. Second Phase

84 Teresian Mansions I First Three mansions
Teresa says little about the first 3 mansions Discursive meditation and vocal prayers Soul trying to emerge from several petty faults Perform good works … BUT … Still absorbed in worldly matters … “still puffed up with worldly honors and ambitions” Here, “the important thing is not to think much, but to love much”… IC 4, Ch.1, p.76

85 Teresian Mansions I First Three mansions (cont’d)
“Because they are free from serious sin the King does dwell in their castle, but they have only a tenuous relationship with Him, and they scarcely see his light, so submerged are they in things of this world” IC mans 1, Ch. 2 pp 40-1; Fire Within, Dubay pp. 82-3 As for the seed that fell among thorns, they are the ones who have heard, but as they go along, they are choked by the anxieties and riches and pleasures of life, and they fail to produce mature fruit. Lk 8:14

86 Teresian Mansions II Second Mansions
A battleground where the conflict between the world and the divine call is being waged … there is a tug of war The virtues are “young” … and “have not yet learned to walk” Must be generous, willed welcome to hardships and dryness in prayer “First Water”: Pulling water from the well bucket … by bucket…

87 Teresian Mansions III Third Mansions
Teresa curiously notes that there are “many such souls in the world” (viz. lay folks) that reach this stage. Careful not to offend God Ordinarily, people spend a long time in this mansion Discursive prayer still occurring in this mansion, but more “affective” and “simplified” prayer – mental prayer emerging (lapsing in and out)

88 Teresian Mansions III Third Mansions
A good test as to where you are? “They avoid committing even venial sins; they love doing penance; they spend hours in recollection; they use their time well; they practice works of charity toward their neighbors; they are very careful in their speech and dress and in the government of their household … “ IC Mans 3, Ch. 1, p. 59 Suggests focusing on indwelling presence of God here

89 Teresian Mansions IV More on this later… DARK NIGHT of SENSES Active
Passive More on this later…

90 Teresian Mansions IV Fourth Mansions
Teresa expounds deeply on this and subsequent mansions (30/70 rule) Beginning of infused contemplation Mingling of human and divine modes of prayer Transition between the two is a snagging point No images, no ideas, no concepts, no visions Loving attention; dry desire; strong thirsting or yearning… Not the result of reasoning or reading They are given … infusion is serene purifying Can be delicate or as one advanced in this mansion … burning, powerful, prolonged TRANSFORMATIVE of the person – gradually, usually

91 Teresian Mansions IV Fourth Mansions
Distinguishes ‘discursive’ meditation from this ‘infused’ prayer Teresa calls this the ‘suspension of the faculties’ God takes the initiative, taking over the will, intellect and imagination The intellect ceases to work because God suspends it, as I shall explain afterwards if I know how … He Himself gives it that which holds its attention and makes it marvel; and without reflection it understands more in the space of a creed than we can understand with all our earthly diligence in many years. Trying to keep the soul’s faculties busy and thinking you can make them be quiet is foolish. Life, Ch. 12, No. 5, p 87

92 Teresian Mansions IV Fourth Mansions
This is a divine absorption in knowing and loving and seeking Distinguishes two kinds of infused prayer: Initial “recollection” – infused and gentle awareness given by God; sense begin to lose their hold upon the person; “with a call so gentle that even they can hardly recognize it” FW, Dubay, p. 87 Prayer of Quiet … “Second Water”: Transporting water via “numerous conduits”

93 Teresian Mansions IV Fourth Mansions Prayer of Quiet
The soul is so satisfied with God that as long as the recollection lasts the quiet and calm are not lost since the will is united with God even through the two faculties are distracted; in fact, little by little the will brings the intellect and the memory back to recollection. Even though the will may not be totally absorbed, it is so well occupied, without knowing how, that no matter what efforts the other two faculties make, they cannot take away its contentment and joy. Life, Ch. 15, No. 1, p. 102; FW, Dubay, p.88

94 Teresian Mansions IV Fourth Mansions Prayer of Quiet
Avoid placing obstacles – learn receptivity Infused contemplation cannot be acquired Habitual practice of prayer necessary! IV This prayer is a little spark fo the Lord’s true love which he begins to enkindle in our soul … it is impossible NOT to understand soon that this little spark cannot be acquired Life, Ch. 15, No. 4, p. 103

95 Teresian Mansions IV Fourth Mansions Prayer of Quiet
However, all activity of mind and will ought not cease, unless God causes it … Distractions occur here, as the infusion is faint and fragile … St. Teresa notes the mind is as wild as a madman, “wandering off after the most ridiculous things in the world”. The most one should do is occasionally, and quite simply to utter a single word, like a person giving a little puff to a candle, when he sees it has almost gone out, so as to make it burn again Way, Ch. 31, p. 204

96 Moving from Meditation to Contemplation …
Active Recollection “Remember how important it is for you to have understood this truth -- that the Lord is within us and that we should be there with Him.” “It is called recollection because the soul collects together all the faculties (i.e. the will, the memory, and the understanding) and enters within itself to be with its God. Its Divine Master comes more speedily to teach it, and to grant it the Prayer of Quiet, than in any other way... “ Way of Perfection, xxviii

97 Moving from Meditation to Contemplation …
Active Recollection “Those who are able to shut themselves up in this way within this little Heaven of the soul, wherein dwells the Maker of Heaven and earth, and who have formed the habit of looking at nothing and staying in no place which will distract these outward senses, may be sure that they are walking on an excellent road.” Way of Perfection, xxviii

98 Moving from Meditation to Contemplation …
Active Recollection “… you must understand that this is not a supernatural state but depends upon our volition, and that, by God's favour, we can enter it of our own accord... For this is not a silence of the faculties: it is a shutting-up of the faculties within itself by the soul. ...We must cast aside everything else, they say, in order to approach God inwardly and we must retire within ourselves even during our ordinary occupations.” Way of Perfection, xxix

99 Moving from Meditation to Contemplation …
Active Recollection The soul must put forth energetic effort… This is not a supernatural or mystical prayer. It's just plain work. Time and again the individual becomes distracted and falls away from his prayer. But whenever he realizes that he has let his mind drift, he brings it back to God once again. The work comes to an end (temporarily at least) when God bestows contemplation. Fr. Roy Lepak, S.T.D.

100 Teresian Mansions V Fifth Mansions GROWTH!
Full union – prayer of union Distractions STOP Short in duration – never more than half an hour – but makes up via intensity and certitude of God’ presence – viz. indwelling People who receive this remember the day and the hour it happened years later No longer satisfied with worldly pleasures, as they are incomparable to this joy and experience

101 Teresian Mansions V Fifth Mansions Soul absorbed in deep delight
Distinguished from “Rapture”, which is felt exteriorly as well as interiorly … and lasts longer The faculties are almost totally united with God to be occupied completely with God … the consolation, sweetness, delight are incomparably greater than that experienced in the previous prayer … this prayer is glorious foolishness, a heavenly madness” IC, Mans 5, Ch. 1, p.99; Life, Ch 16, No 2-3, p.109

102 Teresian Mansions VI Sixth Mansions Are we there yet? No!
Different advanced experiences of God in mansion VI: Ecstasy Rapture Transport Spiritual betrothal Levitation (yes, I said “levitation”) Fourth Water: rain Note: we are in the normal progression of deepening communion with the Trinity; not “extraordinary” … though uncommon because of people’s lack of generosity to God.

103 Teresian Mansions VI Sixth Mansions (cont’d) Resistance is futile !
Can occur very often … “The soul really seems to have left the body. he feels as if he has been in another world … and has been shown a fresh light there, so much unlike any to be found in this life that, if he had been imagining it … all his life long, it would have been impossible for him to obtain any idea of them … great things are revealed …” IC, Mans. 6, Ch 5, pp St. Joseph of Cupertino “The flying monk” Read various passages from Dubay, p. 97 et seq.

104 Teresian Mansions VI Sixth Mansions (cont’d)
Dryness and emptiness can still occur Called a ‘sober inebriation’ by saints Surprisingly, as one advances beyond this, raptures cease! “… the person continues to advance in God-centeredness and in living the specifics of the Gospel message … one’s will is left “completely absorbed” and one’s mind can be entirely transported for a day or even for several days … there are no attachments to anything created, no pleasure seeking in worldly things.” Dubay, FW, p. 102 Read Dubay, FW, p. 103 quote …

105 Teresian Mansions VII Seventh Mansions
Culmination of contemplation on earth – beatific vision is only next step towards God Spiritual Marriage Intellectual vision of the Blessed Trinity Transforming union – permanent indwelling of the Lord Dual awareness: person can carry on ordinary business of life while attending to the indwelling of the Holy Trinity No fear of death Instrument for the good of the Church

106 Teresian Mansions VII Seventh Mansions (cont’d)
“The spirit becomes enkindled and is illumined as it were, by a cloud of the greatest brightness. It sees these Three Persons, individually, and yet, by a wonderful kind of knowledge which is given to it, the soul realizes that most certainly and truly all these three Persons are one Substance and one Power and one Knowledge and one God alone; so that what we hold by faith the soul may be aid here to grasp by sight, although nothing is seen by the eyes, either of the body or of the soul, for it is no ordinary vision” IC, Mans. 7, Ch 1, pp

107 Degrees of Contemplative Prayer
Prayer of Quiet Prayer of Incipient Union (rapture or ecstatic prayer) Prayer of Spiritual Marriage (union with God)

108 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
Dark Night of the Senses Active purification Spiritual pride, gluttony and sloth 7 capital sins – roots are still deep Energetic asceticism/mortification external and interior Passive purification Active purification not enough to pull the roots out – “God shall have to lead it into the passive purgation of the dark night The cross sent by God to purify us must complete the work of mortification which we impose on ourselves

109 Entry into the Dark Night of the Soul (senses)
We’ve spoken a lot about how one takes steps to prepare oneself … How does God act upon us in the passive purification of the senses? How do we know if this purification is happening to us? Are there any signs by which we might discern this?

110 Growth in the Spiritual Life
Purgative Way Illuminative Way Unitive Way Beginners Proficients “Perfect” Discursive prayer Dark Night of the Senses Inspired prayer Dark Night of the Spirit Inspired prayer Mental Prayer Overview of the stages of prayer at a high level. We will talk about these components of the spiritual life and growth in prayer. Degrees of Contemplative Prayer: Prayer of Quiet This is a prayer bestowed by God. While this prayer lasts, the individual's faculties are stilled and the soul is enlarged. A great and profoundly peaceful interior quiet is experienced. Prayer of (Incipient) Union (also known as rapture or ecstatic prayer) While rapt in prayer the individual is usually unable to engage in sense perception, voluntary motor activity, or rational thought. The individual's memory typically ceases functioning, and the individual doesn't know who he or she is. Nonetheless the individual reports having incredibly rich spiritual experiences during this time period. Sometimes the mystic can convey something of these revelatory experiences; at other times there are no words to describe what has passed for the mystic has heard the "ineffable words of God". The mystic may or may not experience a sensation of rapid motion during rapture; when this sensation occurs the mystic is unable to tell whether his body is in motion, or whether his soul is in motion apart from his body. People who have had this experience say it feels as though they are being transported to another realm. Although many Christian mystics report being surrounded by or filled with a bright light in this other realm, St. Teresa herself says very little about this. Following rapture the individual feels greater reverence for God and less attachment to the world. When he regards himself, he feels more humble and contrite than ever. Prayer of Spiritual Marriage (also known as union with God) The previous forms of contemplative prayer come and go, but the prayer of spiritual marriage is pretty much a permanent state. At onset both body and soul typically feel as though they are being flooded with a non-physical light. This light often stays with the individual from this point onward, although variations in intensity are often noted. After the initial experience, these individuals feel one in spirit with God. They enjoy a continual sense of God's presence and companionship. Even when feeling some outward distress, these saintly individuals experience a profound peace within themselves. Unlike those rapt in prayer, they typically remain in full possession of their faculties. They no longer seek personally gratifying experiences, but instead seek to please God in all they do. Such individuals report feeling a great and uniform love for other people, whether these other people would regard themselves as their friends or enemies. In union with God, these individuals also tend to be very active in the world, perhaps more active than they have ever been before in their lives. In such activities they are completely absorbed in serving God, and feel profound gratitude whenever they have been given an opportunity to engage in such service. Put P.Marie-Eugene’s flow chart here. Vocal prayer Mediation Active Recollection Prayer of Quiet (touches) Infused Prayer Prayer of Union (permanent state) Meditation Infused Contemplation Teresian Mansions IV, V VI, VII I, II, III

111 Entry into the Dark Night of the Senses
St. John of the Cross describes three signs as follows: I We find no comfort in the things of God, nor in created things … For when God brings the soul into the dark night in order to wean it from sweetness and to purge the desire of sense, He does not allow it to find sweetness or comfort anywhere. It is then probable, in such a case, that this dryness is not the result of sins or of imperfections recently committed; for if it were, we should feel some inclination or desire for other things than those of God … JC, DN Bk.I, Ch.9

112 Entry into the Dark Night of the Senses
II The memory dwells ordinarily upon God with a painful anxiety and carefulness, the soul thinks it is not serving God, but going backwards… … because it is no longer conscious of any sweetness in the things of God … but the spirit is, nevertheless, ready and strong… Now, if they who are in this state knew how to be quiet, … they would have, in this tranquility, a most delicious sense of this interior food [which is the commencement of contemplation] JC, DN, Bk.1, Ch. 9

113 Entry into the Dark Night of the Senses
II More … This food is so delicate that, in general, it eludes our perceptions if we make any special effort to feel it; it is like the air which vanishes when we shut our hands to grasp it. For this is God’s way of bringing the soul into this state… all the soul can do of itself ends… the peace and the work of God in the spirit amid the dryness of sense. JC, DN, Bk.1, Ch. 9

114 Entry into the Dark Night of the Senses
III The inability to meditate and make reflections and to excite the imagination, as before, notwithstanding all the efforts we may make … for God begins now to communicate Himself, no longer through the channel of sense, as formerly, in consecutive reflections by which we arranged and divided our knowledge, but in pure spirit, which admits not of successive reflections, and in the act of pure contemplation( to which the special inspiration of the Holy Ghost gives rise in us). JC, DN, Bk.1, Ch. 9

115

116 Conduct in the Dark Night of the Senses
Garrigou Lagrange sets out 4 Rules of conduct: Docility to a spiritual director Trust in God Simple and loving gaze on God Abstaining from seeking to feel consolation

117 To reach satisfaction in all – desire satisfaction in nothing.
To come to the knowledge of all – desire the knowledge of nothing. To come to possess all – desire the possession of nothing. To arrive at being all – desire to be nothing. To come to enjoy what you have not – you must go by a way in which you enjoy not. To come to the knowledge you have not – you must go by a way in which you know not. To come to the possession you have not – you must go by a way in which you possess not. To come to be what you are not – you must go by a way in which you are not. In this nakedness, the spirit finds its quietude and rest … St. John of the Cross

118 Abandonment to Divine Providence
Jean Pierre de Caussade Great spiritual writer; spiritual director of visitation nuns at Nancy. “Sacrament of the present moment” – a practical ‘how to’ for the Little Way of Spiritual Childhood of St. Therese Therese may have read Caussade Spiritual letters and Abandonment to Divine Providence key works.

119 Abandonment to Divine Providence
Acceptance of ordinary, daily experiences as God’s will. Self “annihilation” … death to self (will). Perseverance in prayer despite no consolation or even feeling devotion or love. Prayer of faith – surrender of whole self to God – “naked faith” described by John of the Cross.

120 Abandonment to Divine Providence
Prayer leads to abandonment. It is the way, the door that opens us to a relationship with God … of trust based on theological virtues. Naked faith; unsupported; no consolation sought or received… Teresa of Calcutta “I have not experienced feeling-wise the love of Christ for years.” … Communicating via His absence.

121 Abandonment to Divine Providence
“… you consistently stop to examine your doubts and fears instead of disregarding them in order to cast yourself blindly into God’s hands and headlong upon his bosom. In other words, you wish in every case to be given a firm guarantee to make your self abandonment easier.” “… complete distrust of self combined with utter trust in him which is born of self abandonment are the two great props of the spiritual life.”

122 Abandonment to Divine Providence
We progress in abandonment by self-forgetfulness, casting even our concern for our spiritual state and sanctity in God’s hands, not relying on self (Pelagius) … this “most nearly ensures salvation”.

123 Abandonment to Divine Providence
“Do you know that almost the whole of the interior life is embraced in going your ways before him with your head bowed and your mood one in which self is obliterated? It is merely a question of learning how to do this in submissive peace and trusting self-abandonment. This then is my word to you: do but so live and you will have achieved everything.; all the rest God will perform, though what he accomplishes you may well neither see nor feel.”

124 Little Way of Spiritual Childhood
Two Characteristics Everything is a grace – childlike trust and absolute confidence in God’s providence and love. Perfection of Christian life consists not in doing great things, but little things with great love for Jesus. Faith to see God’s will in ordinary life events. Abandonment and naked faith; surrender to perceived darkness and dryness in one’s soul - Experienced especially at the end of her life

125 Little Way of Spiritual Childhood
“Unless you be converted and become like little children, you shall not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven” (Mt. 18:3) “You know well enough that Our Lord does not look so much at the greatness of our actions, nor even at their difficulty, but at the love with which we do them.” Therese: “It is in conformity with the spirit of the little way not to desire to see anything.”

126 Little Way of Spiritual Childhood
Empty Hands… When comes the evening of life, I shall stand before Thee with empty hands, because I do not ask Thee, My God, to take account of my works. All our works of justice are blemished in Thine Eyes. I wish therefore to be robed with Thine own Justice, and to receive from Thy Love the everlasting gift of Thyself. I desire no other Throne, no other Crown but Thee, O my Beloved.”

127 Thank you! Questions Parish Retreat Inquiries


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