Pray Like A Nun

Really, the title of this post should be “Pray Like A Nun or A Sister.” There is a difference, even though we Catholics typically use the words interchangeably. A nun lives a monastic life, usually cloistered – away from the world. She spends her day in prayer and work behind the walls of the monastery, where there is little contact with the “outside.”

A sister lives in community with her fellow sisters, but they live in the world. There are sisters who teach, who are nurses, social workers, counselors, midwives, and on and on. Their lives are meant to be active: to be a sign of Christ in our world. (For a complete and excellent explanation, see here.)

Now, back to “Pray Like A Nun.” No, we are not suggesting that you formally pray six times a day while still doing your job (but wouldn’t it be great if we all did?) However, nuns can certainly teach us a thing or two about prayer.

For instance, St. Catherine of SienaYou, eternal Trinity, are a deep sea. The more I enter you, the more I discover, and the more I discover, the more I seek you. Perhaps before or after Mass, you can spend just a few minutes in prayer to the Holy Trinity.

Then there is St. Therese’ of LisieuxDo you realize that Jesus is there is the tabernacle expressly for you – for you alone? He burns with the desire to come into your heart…” Wow! Make sure your time spent before the tabernacle and during Mass truly focuses on Jesus and His immense love for you.

St. Teresa Benedicta of the CrossLet go of your plans. The first hour of your morning belongs to God. Tackle the day’s work that he charges you with, and he will give you the power to accomplish it. How many of us start our day without a thought to God? Before our feet hit the floor in the morning, we should lift our hearts and minds to God.

Mother Angelica:  We need to be attuned to the Will of God so that we only ask for the things He desires, then you will get all you ask. It has been said that the phrase from the Lord’s Prayer, “thy will be done,” is the perfect prayer. Are we praying that with sincerity of heart and mind and will?

We’ve all heard Catholic school stories where Sister hit everyone with a ruler or made the same kid stay after school to clean erasers because he forget his homework every day. Nuns and sisters are not icons of days gone by, or the butt of jokes and stories. These holy women, dedicated to Christ, have a lot to teach us. Are we listening?