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You are here: Documents > The Liturgy of the Hours > General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours  Back one page.

Table of Contents
Table of ContentsChapter I-II. Prayer of the ChurchEndnotes

Chapter I-I. Prayer of Christ

Christ The Intercessor With The Father

3. When the Word, proceeding from the Father as the splendor of his glory, came to give us all a share in God's life, "Christ Jesus, High Priest of the new and eternal covenant, taking human nature, introduced into this earthly exile the hymn of praise that is sung throughout all ages in the halls of heaven." [3] From then on in Christ's heart the praise of God assumes a human sound in words of adoration, expiation, and intercession, presented to the Father by the Head of the new humanity, the Mediator between God and his people, in the name of all and for the good of all.

4. In his goodness the Son of God, who is one with his Father (see Jn 10:30) and who on entering the world said: "Here I am! I come, God, to do your will" (Heb 10:9; see Jn 6:38), has left us the lesson of his own prayer. The Gospels many times show us Christ at prayer: when his mission is revealed by the Father; [4] before he calls the apostles; [5] when he blesses God at the multiplication of the loaves; [6] when he is transfigured on the mountain; [7] when he heals the deaf-mute; [8] when he raises Lazarus; [9] before he asks for Peter's confession of faith; [10] when he teaches the disciples how to pray; [11]when the disciples return from their mission; [12] when he blesses the little children; [13] when he prays for Peter. [14]

The work of each day was closely bound up with his prayer, indeed flowed out from it: he would retire into the desert or into the hills to pray, [15] rise very early [16] or spend the night up to the fourth watch [17] in prayer to God. [18]

We are right in thinking that he took part both in public prayers: in the synagogues, which he entered on the Sabbath "as his custom was;" [19] in the temple, which he called a house of prayer; [20] and in the private prayers that for devout Israelites were a daily practice. He used the traditional blessings of God at meals, as is expressly mentioned in connection with the multiplication of the loaves, [21] the last supper [22] and the meal at Emmaus. [23] He also joined with the disciples in a hymn of praise. [24]

To the very end of his life, as his passion was approaching, [25] at the last supper, [26] in the agony in the garden, [27] and on the cross, [28] the divine teacher showed that prayer was the soul of his Messianic ministry and paschal death. "In the days of his life on earth he offered up prayers and entreaties with loud cries and tears to the one who could deliver him from death and because of his reverence his prayer was heard" (Heb 5:7). By a single offering on the altar of the cross "he has made perfect forever those who are being sanctified" (Heb 10-14). Raised from the dead, he lives for ever, making intercession for us. [29]

Table of ContentsChapter I-II. Prayer of the ChurchEndnotes

You are here: Documents > The Liturgy of the Hours > General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours  Back one page.

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The Catholic Liturgical Library
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You are here: Documents > The Liturgy of the Hours > General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours  Back one page.

Home | New | FAQ | Search | Forum | Links


All contents © copyright, 1998-2014
The Catholic Liturgical Library
http://www.catholicliturgy.com