Dear Friends in Christ,
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7:7-11). It is so important to bring Our Lord through prayer into everything we do. A notable example of this are the intentions that are going onto our parish Christmas tree for the front of the church. We will pray during the season, as long as the tree is up, for the intentions and prayers on the balls. We could have just had a decorated tree, but instead, it will be full of prayers. I always advise that all of our various ministries always begin their meetings and events with prayer. We are so blessed to have over five prayer groups in our parish. The prayer that takes place before the Most Blessed Sacrament and at the grotto. Living without prayer is empty and sterile. Our school day begins with prayer, and I hope that sports events begin with prayer. Every part of our parish life is to be a vehicle for the glory of God not of self. If it is not connected to Christ, I believe that we can let it go to make room for other ways to be with Jesus. Brother Lawrence in his work, The Practice of the Presence of God said of prayer, “He does not ask much of us, merely a thought of Him from time to time, a little act of adoration, sometimes to ask for His grace, sometimes to offer Him your sufferings, at other times to thank Him for the graces, past and present, He has bestowed on you, in the midst of your troubles to take solace in Him as often as you can. Lift up your heart to Him during your meals and in company; the least little remembrance will always be the most pleasing to Him. One need not cry out very loudly; He is nearer to us than we think.” The way to really prepare for Christmas is prayer. Praying when waking, praying at various times throughout the day, and certainly prayer on your lips at the close of the day. Advent is such a short season and is such an incredibly special time. If you only have one priority, let it be prayer. To be spiritually dead is truly being dead. Let us pray!
God bless you,