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Time to Pray

Click to spend some time in prayer with God.
We are offered life in Christ, what better way to belong! Also pray for community here.

belonging
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Sometimes we can feel alone or that we just don't fit in. The need may be for companionship, a listening ear, or a quiet hug. What does God offer us in our aloneness?

Even if we are connected in community or family life, we may still need direction and guidance to nurture a sense of belonging.

When asking for help from God, we sometimes may feel disheartened if God doesn't seem to help in the way we would want. While people sometimes testify to God's miraculous healing power in their life, many more simply express their need for God. They speak of a peace and strength that can come through prayer which helps them to bear their present trials.
 
Spend time with some traditional Catholic prayers or find out more about the Bible and Prayer.

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Why not pray to God now? While we may experience loneliness, we can draw comfort in knowing we are not truly alone. God dwells in our hearts. When praying to God, it is important to share your own words and feelings. It is also important to sit in silence with God.

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We sometimes look for special prayers in our encounter with God. This extract is taken from the Hymn of St Patrick, patron saint of Ireland. It brings us to an awareness that Jesus Christ, our God, is truly with us.

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
I bind unto myself today the strong name of the Trinity.

We are invited to participate in the Divine life of the Trinity - what an amazing thought! Certainly, this should give us much fuel for our prayer.

The saints are great models for us of the way to imitate Christ and we can appeal to them to pray for us. The greatest disciple, and our greatest saint, is of course, Mary, the Mother of Jesus.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.
Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners,
now, and at the hour of our death. Amen.
 
If you are part of a community or family and wanting to deepen your sense of belonging, praying together is a wonderful way of inviting the Spirit to enrich your life in common.

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People sometimes wish they could hear God speak to them in prayer. Through the Scriptures we have the opportunity to encounter the word of God. The pages of the Bible are not magic. We cannot answer our every question by opening its pages at random, yet when we approach the Scriptures prayerfully and with an open heart, God speaks to us through the text. It is the heart of God speaking to our heart. Spend some time with Scriptures every day.

St Paul in his letters to the various Christian communities of the early church, offers much wisdom in the way of living in community or bearing the times of isolation.

Pray with Paul's letter to the Philippians (4:4-9)
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near.Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.

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In the Mass, the Eucharist, we pray for belonging and community.

Our whole introductory rite, at the beginning of Mass, is to gather us as the Body of Christ. When we pray "I confess..." at this time, it is a ready admission of "what we have done and what we have failed to do" in turning away form the love of God and of our neighbours. This enables us to move forward joyfully, recognising that God and the People of God seek to bring us back into full unity.

The very act of receiving communion is our participation in the Body of Christ. We receive not only Christ present in the forms of bread and wine, but share Christ present in these forms with our brothers and sisters. In this sharing we become one, in a spiritual union that is deeper than any family or cultural bond.

Seeking belonging and community?
Contact the local parish in your area or approach one of our services and groups.
 
Peace be with you.

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  • Wednesday, 21 November 2012
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