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How praying the Our Father can unite all Christians in prayer

Grupa ludzi trzyma się za ręce i modli się przy Pismie Świętym

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Philip Kosloski - published on 05/14/24

The Our Father is an inherently unitive prayer, as it automatically includes all Christians and is a common prayer that all Christians agree upon.

While Christians around the world may differ in how they worship God, one prayer that they all share in common is the Our Father.

It is a prayer that Jesus himself taught his disciples and is the foundation of all Christian prayer.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church meditates on this reality in its section on the Lord’s Prayer, highlighting the word, “Our”:

Grammatically, “our” qualifies a reality common to more than one person. There is only one God, and he is recognized as Father by those who, through faith in his only Son, are reborn of him by water and the Spirit. The Church is this new communion of God and men. United with the only Son, who has become “the firstborn among many brethren,” she is in communion with one and the same Father in one and the same Holy Spirit. In praying “our” Father, each of the baptized is praying in this communion: “The company of those who believed were of one heart and soul.”

CCC 2790

The Our Father unites all Christians together in God, even though there may still exist divisions among Christians on earth:

For this reason, in spite of the divisions among Christians, this prayer to “our” Father remains our common patrimony and an urgent summons for all the baptized. In communion by faith in Christ and by Baptism, they ought to join in Jesus’ prayer for the unity of his disciples.

CCC 2791

Gathering all into one family

Praying the Our Father should be a constant reminder to love all Christians and to seek to end all divisions.

God desires that we may all be one, and the Our Father is a first step to achieving this unity:

The baptized cannot pray to “our” Father without bringing before him all those for whom he gave his beloved Son. God’s love has no bounds, neither should our prayer.52 Praying “our” Father opens to us the dimensions of his love revealed in Christ: praying with and for all who do not yet know him, so that Christ may “gather into one the children of God.” God’s care for all men and for the whole of creation has inspired all the great practitioners of prayer; it should extend our prayer to the full breadth of love whenever we dare to say “our” Father.

CCC 2793

While most of us will likely never live to see the full unity of Christians on this earth, praying the Our Father can give us a foretaste of Heaven, where all are united with God and all divisions are elminated.

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