Tuesday of the First Week of LentLectionary: 225

Reading 1 IS 55:10-11
Thus says the LORD:

Just as from the heavens

the rain and snow come down

And do not return there

till they have watered the earth,

making it fertile and fruitful,

Giving seed to the one who sows

and bread to the one who eats,

So shall my word be

that goes forth from my mouth;

It shall not return to me void,

but shall do my will,

achieving the end for which I sent it.

Responsorial Psalm PS 34:4-5, 6-7, 16-17, 18-19
R. (18b) From all their distress God rescues the just.

Glorify the LORD with me,

let us together extol his name.

I sought the LORD, and he answered me

and delivered me from all my fears. 

R. From all their distress God rescues the just.

Look to him that you may be radiant with joy,

and your faces may not blush with shame.

When the poor one called out, the LORD heard,

and from all his distress he saved him.

R. From all their distress God rescues the just.

The LORD has eyes for the just,

and ears for their cry.

The LORD confronts the evildoers,

to destroy remembrance of them from the earth.

R. From all their distress God rescues the just.

When the just cry out, the LORD hears them,

and from all their distress he rescues them.

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted;

and those who are crushed in spirit he saves.

R. From all their distress God rescues the just.

Verse Before The Gospel MT 4:4B
One does not live on bread alone,

but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.

Gospel MT 6:7-15
Jesus said to his disciples:

“In praying, do not babble like the pagans,

who think that they will be heard because of their many words.

Do not be like them.

Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
“This is how you are to pray:
Our Father who art in heaven,

hallowed be thy name,

thy Kingdom come,

thy will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread;

and forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those who trespass against us;

and lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil.
“If you forgive men their transgressions,

your heavenly Father will forgive you.

But if you do not forgive men,

neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.”

“This is how you are to pray: ‘Our Father in heaven…’ ” –Matthew 6:9
The “Our Father” is not only a prayer but the Lord’s pattern for all authentic prayer. In the “Our Father,” the Lord teaches us how to pray. St. Augustine taught that the “Our Father” is not only the pattern of prayer but also the criterion for all authentic prayer intentions. Therefore, we should not pray for something unless it fits into the “Our Father.”
St. Thomas Aquinas taught that the “Our Father” is not only the criterion for authentic prayer petitions but also the criterion for all godly desires. If it does not fit into the “Our Father,” we should not even want it (see Catechism, 2763). St. Thomas Aquinas also taught that the “Our Father” reveals the order in which godly desires should be desired (see Catechism, 2763). This means that our first desire is for anything that would help God’s children become holy and thereby make God the Father’s name hallowed (Mt 6:9). Then we can desire whatever contributes to God’s kingdom coming and His will being done (Mt 6:10).
Consequently, when we pray the “Our Father” in the right way, we are transforming our prayer, desires, lifestyles, and lives. In effect, when we pray the “Our Father,” we are proclaiming new life in Christ, the “radical newness” of Baptism (see Lay Members of Christ’s Faithful People, Pope John Paul II, 10), and the Great Jubilee of international justice and freedom (see Lv 25:8ff).
Traditionally, the priest at Mass has invited us to pray the “Our Father” by saying: “We dare to pray…” I dare you to pray the “Our Father.”
PRAYER: “Abba…” (Mt 6:9, our transl.)

PROMISE: My Word “shall not return to Me void, but shall do My will, achieving the end for which I sent it.” –Is 55:11

PRAISE: St. Perpetua, whose terror was increased by anxiety for her young child, was permitted to hold and nurse him before she was led to her execution.


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