What Little Children Can Teach Us About Prayer | Archdiocese of Washington

When it comes to our struggle in prayer there are some things that we need to unlearn. For too many, private prayer is often a formal, even stuffy affair, that drips of boredom and unnecessary formality and has lots of rules. Perhaps we learned some of our lessons too well.

And yet many of the youngest children have not learned these lessons, and they seem to pray with great ease. They are unassuming and will say almost anything to God. It is true that children may have a lot to learn about public and liturgical prayer, but when it comes to personal and private prayer they have much to teach us.

Perhaps a parable is in order:

A young girl received her First Holy Communion and, when she returned to her pew, she was noticed by her parents to be in rather deep prayer. After Mass they asked her, “What were you praying about after your First Communion?” “Well,” she said, “I prayed for mommy and daddy, and my (dumb) brother too! And then I sang Jesus a song, and told him a ghost story.”

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