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Saints Feast Family
~Exploring Catholic Patron Saints of the Day & their Feasts (Catholic Cuisine)
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Prayer & Prayer Beads

Amen means I Believe

Four Basic Forms of Prayer

  1. Blessing and Adoration (praising God)

  2. Prayer of Petition (asking for what we need, including forgiveness)

  3. Prayer of Intercession (asking for what others need)

  4. Prayer of Thanksgiving (for what God has given and done)
     

Prayer of Blessing and Adoration 
In this prayer we express praise and honor to God. We praise God for giving us life, for the wonder and beauty of our world, and for all the many blessings we enjoy. We open ourselves up to praise God for all the wonders of creation.  This form of prayer encourages bodily expression, such as standing with arms raised or dancing.

Prayer of Petition 
This is probably the most familiar prayer form of prayer. We are often taught to ask God for the things we need, but asking and praying for them are not necessarily the same. When we pray our petitions, we are asking God, who loves us very much, for something that we believe is good—for ourselves or for others. By using this form of prayer we are mindful of the needs of others as well as of our own needs. We are aware that God wants us to bring our problems and worries to prayer knowing that he will always hear and answer those prayers. God may answer our prayers in a different way and in a different timeframe than we are seeking but God will always give us what we need.

Prayers of petition serve to remind us that God expects us to care for one another and for all his creation. We can pray about the ordinary experiences of life— for people who are sick, for someone who needs a job, for help in our school work, for a safe trip. We pray for peace in our families and in our world.  We can also express our sorrow and contrition to God in our prayer.

Prayer of Intercession 
This form of prayer is prayer on behalf of others. This form of prayer can be a source of blessing upon others, the Church, and our world. Because we know that Our Lady and the saints intercede for us before God, the Church encourages us to pray to them for their intercession. Such prayer can bring us great strength and courage and also great peace of mind and heart.

Prayer of Thanksgiving 
This form of prayer helps us to be grateful for God's many blessings, spiritual and temporal, and helps us to recognize and appreciate all the good things God gives to us. Reserving some time to praise and thank God for his gifts—the gift of life; the gift of our families and friends; the gift of food, clothing, and shelter; and the numerous other gifts we often take for granted—helps us to form a true spirit of gratitude.

Tips for praying: 

  1. Find a quite place and time.  Prayer can be done anywhere but it is good to have a place that is conducive to relaxing and focusing our attention on God.  Finding a regular time to pray each day can also be helpful to making prayer an important daily routine.

  2. Calm yourself and put away distractions.  It is important to be relaxed when we pray by finding a comfortable posture. 

  3. Use formal prayers or speak what you feel to God, or a combination of each.  It is important to note that there is no “right” way to pray.  Experiment with styles and forms of prayer.  Prayer is an ongoing, developing relationship with God.

  4. Take time to listen.  God does speak to us in prayer but we need to listen with our hearts.  Be open to what God is telling you rather than just on what you want to or expect to hear.

  5. Use the Bible in your prayer

  6. Keep a journal of prayer

  7. Have a proper attitude.  Prayer requires openness to God and a desire to worship and get to know God better.
     

Meditative prayer

Meditation is one of the many styles of prayer.  Meditation engages our head and heart in seeking a deeper union with God.  It enables us to slow down and quiet our hearts so that we can hear God’s voice and communicate with God in a deeper way.  Mediation can last a few minutes or hours.  It can strengthen our relationship with God and allow us to get in touch with ourselves.

The process of meditation can involve several steps:

  • Find the time and place which is conducive to meditation.  It is important to pick a time when one is alert and able to focus and a comfortable and quiet place.

  • Prepare to pray by relaxing your body so that you can devote your attention to prayer.  Some people use muscle relaxing exercises and breathing exercises.

  • Choose a word or phrase to focus your attention on God.  Some people use “Jesus” or “Abba” or “Jesus saves” or “Jesus loves me.”

  • Connect the word or phrase with your breathing.  Silently repeat the word or phrase in tune with your breathing.  Let the word resonate within you.  The repetition helps to focus on and remain open to God’s presence.  If you become distracted, focus again on repeating the word or phrase.

http://www.bostoncatholic.org/Being-Catholic/Content.aspx?id=11444

 

Prayer Beads

 

Jesus Beads

A strand of 100 wooden beads, the Jesus Beads are a devotional tool honoring the name of Jesus and imploring the mercy of God. Marked with a wooden Jerusalem cross, the beads may be tucked in a stamped black pouch (included) for protected transport and storage. The beads and cross are handcrafted using the pruned branches of the olive trees growing on the hills of Bethlehem and Jerusalem. 

A printed card includes a brief explanation and history: Jesus Beads originated in the tradition of the Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches. Called a chotki, the strand may have as many as 100 beads or as few as 25. The chotki is traditionally used as a silent "breath prayer", with "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God" prayed on inhalation and "have mercy on me, a sinner" prayed on exhalation. This is known as the Jesus Prayer, or the Prayer of the Heart, which invokes the Holy Name of Jesus and implores His divine mercy. (You can read about the "Jesus Prayer" in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraphs 2665-2669.)

 

Rosary Bracelet

one decade

 

Rosary Ring
one decade

 

Tenners Rosary
one decade

 

Chaplet Prayer
St Michael: 9 groups of 3 beads: The Our Father, then the Hail Mary (9 choirs of angels) 
Rosary of Mary's 7 Sorrows: 7 groups of 7 beads
Divine Mercy 
Sacred Heart of Jesus

 

Make your own rosary with homemade beads!
 

 

Make your own rosary
 

 

Deeper Prayer
 

Song of Love

Vatican City, Apr 26, 2017 / 12:29 am (CNA).- It is interesting that in her appearances at Lourdes, Fatima and other locations, the Mother of God repeatedly recommends praying the Rosary. She does not invite us to pray the Divine Office, or to do spiritual reading, or Eucharistic Adoration, or practice interior prayer or mental prayer. All the mentioned forms of prayer are good, recognized by the Church and practiced by many saints. Why does Mary “only” place the Rosary in our hearts?

We can find a possible answer by looking at the visionaries of Lourdes and Fatima.

Mary revealed herself to children of little instruction, who could not even read or write correctly. The Rosary was for them the appropriate school to learn how to pray well, since bead after bead, it leads us from vocal prayer, to meditation, and eventually to contemplation. With the Rosary, everyone who allows himself to be led by Mary can arrive at interior prayer without any kind of special technique or complicated practices.

This does not mean – and I want to emphasize this point – that praying the Rosary is for “dummies” or for simple minded people. Even great intellectuals must come before God as children, who in their prayers are always simple and sincere, always full of confidence, praying from within. All Christians are called to the kind of interior prayer that allows an experience of closeness with God and recognition of his action in our lives.

We can compare the Rosary to playing the guitar. The vocal prayers – the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Glory Be – are the central prayers of Christianity, rooted in Scripture. These are like the rhythm in a song.   But simply strumming a guitar is not a song. And mindless repetition of words is not interior prayer.

In addition to rhythm, keys are needed. The Mysteries of the Rosary are like the chords on the guitar. The vocal prayers form the framework for meditation on the Mysteries. There are always these five chords to the rhythm of the repetition of the prayers, which make the lives of Jesus and Mary pass before our eyes.

With meditation, we go on reflecting on what happens in each Mystery and what it means for our lives: At Nazareth, the Son of God is incarnated in Mary. In Holy Communion, He also comes to me. In Gethsemane, Jesus sweats blood. He suffers, is in anguish, and yet his friends remain asleep. Can I keep vigil with Him or do my eyes close with tiredness? On Easter morning, Jesus rises and breaks forth from the tomb. The first day of creation brought light. The first day of the week conquered death and gave us life. Christ can change the darkness in my life into light.

And so, our prayer begins to change into music. That is to say, it is no longer monotonous and boring, but now it is full of images and thoughts. And when the grace of God permits, it is also filled with supernatural illuminations and inspirations.

There is one more thing needed to have really great music, or to have a prayer that is even more profound and intimate: the melody that the heart sings. When playing the guitar, a voice is needed to interpret the song. When praying the Rosary, it is the song of our heart, as we place our own life before God, to the tempo of the prayers and meditations.

It is this song of the heart that allows us to enter into the mysteries of the Rosary: For my sake you were scourged, and it was I who struck you. Forgive me! You have ascended into Heaven, Lord. I long for You, I for your kingdom, my true homeland. In contemplation, the person praying sees the mysteries pass before his eyes, and at the same time he abides in particular affections or movements of the heart before God.

The one who prays sings the song of his own life, in which naturally there can arise specific desires: You wanted to be the son of a human Mother; help my sick mother! You were crowned with thorns; help me in this financial difficulty which I can't get out of my head. You sent the Holy Spirit; without You I don't have the courage or the strength to make a good decision.
 

https://angelusnews.com/content/how-to-pray-the-rosary-more-deeply