Monday, June 2, 2014

Interior Prayer (Monday Morning in the Desert)

Yesterday during worship, our Gospel reading was from John 17:1-11, and it contained what is known as the "high priestly prayer" of Jesus.   It is a prayer which emphasizes the unity of Jesus with God the Father, as well as our unity with each other and with Christ.

As I have discussed before, the Carthusian order of monks is perhaps the closest thing we have in the Western tradition of the Church to the Desert Fathers and Mothers.  The Carthusians teach that our ability to pray comes from the unity we have with Christ, and through the power of the Holy Spirit, our Advocate:

"Prayer is the respiration of our being, hidden with Christ in God. It is silence of the mystery that we are; or cry of the hope of things unseen, of a waiting which is not yet fully consummated.  At such times, prayer rises from the depth of our heart, revealing to us who we are: a prayer that comes from beyond us, and yet which is within us, a prayer which is the manifestation of a love and a will which are mysteriously at one with God, and supremely efficacious.  This is the work of the other Advocate promised by Jesus (John 14:17)."

(From the book, "Interior Prayer" by an anonymous Carthusian, translated by Sister Maureen Scrine, p. 80).  

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