As we launch a new online Bible and Prayer resource, we reflect on an image from the life of St Anthony of Padua whose own prayer was attentive to Christ.
On one of his many journeys, St Anthony of Padua took lodging with a man who kindly allowed him the use of a room in which he could pray. The man, curious about his lodger, peeked through the door whilst Anthony was at prayer. As he sneaked a peek there, in the arms of his lodger, appeared a small child, the infant Jesus. Today, images of St Anthony show him holding Christ.
The image is a simple yet beautiful one and reminds us of an important and central Christian belief: that in becoming human, God has placed himself completely at our disposal—and, like any child, he demands our attention.
Perhaps this picture also promotes an important aspect of prayer. When we pray, we seek God’s presence and attend to him. Like Mary before Anthony, and like Anthony before us, we are called to attend to Jesus in prayer.
Prayer is not simply something done within the walls of a church building. We are called to attend to Jesus throughout our daily life. This is particularly important at this present time when some church buildings remain closed and, even if some churches like St Mary’s remain open, some people still feel unable to leave their home or they feel safer shielding themselves from possible pandemic dangers.
Day by Day
Our most recent project has prayer at its heart. We have launched a new sister website which brings a daily bible reading, reflection and prayer, along with other resources which are gradually being added. Each daily post is deliberately brief so that is can either be used ‘on the go’ or as a starting point to more thought and reflection, wherever you are.
The bible reading is taken from one of the readings at the daily Mass celebrated here at St Mary’s, and so offers an important connection with the daily round of prayer and worship offered in this place.
We are using a temporary domain name until we decide if the resource has any use and longevity – we’ll review this over the next few weeks.
In addition to the daily post (which is shared on our social media platforms – Twitter and Facebook – as well as direct into the inbox of those who subscribe) we’ve added some Holy Words: ‘well-prayed’ prayers, as well as additional resources for prayer through the day called ‘Holy Hours’. Whilst we wish to keep the site as simple as possible, we’ll be trialling other resources too so, if you’re interested, please do keep revisiting!
To check out the website, click here