The pope offers a prayer tool: your hand

The pope offers a prayer tool: your hand December 15, 2014


From Vatican Insider: 

“When I pray God breathes in me.” This is the opening phrase of the 40-page prayer book signed by Francis and handed out to faithful present in St. Peter’s Square for today’s Angelus and the traditional “Bambinelli Blessing”. The front cover of the booklet published by Libreria Editrice Vaticana, the Vatican publishing house and titled “Prayers” features a 3rd century fresco from the Catacombs of Priscilla, depicting a man who is praying with his arms wide open and pointing toward the sky.

The prayer book is a collection of the most important, popular and easily memorisable prayers of the Christian tradition. It can be used for day-to-day prayer, but also helps remind faithful to pray for special situations and needs, ensuring that no one is forgotten. Pages 32 and 33 contain a drawing of a hand outlining some prayer intentions suggested by Francis and how to pray for various individuals using our five fingers as an aid.

The thumb, which is “the finger nearest to us”, helps us think of and pray for those who are closest to us; “these are the people that come most easily to mind”; praying for our loved ones “is a pleasant duty”. The index finger reminds us to pray for those who instruct and guide others, so “those who teach and care for others”. “Teachers, professors, doctors and priests” fit into this category. The middle finger is the longest and reminds us of our “leaders”, the people “who hold the fate of our country in their hands and influence public opinion … They need God’s guidance.”

The fourth finger is the ring finger. “This is our weakest finger, as any piano teacher will tell you.” It is there to remind you to pray for the weak, for those who face trying situations and for the sick,” who need “our prayers day and night”. He also urged faithful to pray for married couples. Finally, the small finger reminds us that “we must feel little before God and our neighbours” and that we should pray for ourselves: “Once you have prayed for everyone else, you will be able to better understand what your needs are, looking at them from the right perspective”.

Read more. I hope someone publishes this in English. It would be a great resource.

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