Fr. James Martin, S.J.: Practicing extraordinary prayer in Ordinary Time

  Ludovico Carracci, "Madonna and Child with Saints" (detail), 1607. Met Museum. 

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We’re really getting deep into Ordinary Time now. At least the church is. How about you? Christmas and Epiphany have probably already receded in your mind and Lent won’t come for a while. So maybe you wonder: What can I pray about? Well, Ordinary Time is one of my favorite times of the year because we follow Jesus through his exciting public ministry of preaching and healing.

So if you sometimes have a hard time thinking about what to pray about, as many of us do during our longer prayer periods, now might be a good time to pray with the Gospels. It doesn’t have to be complicated. Just use an online resource like the US Conference of Catholic Bishops website, or a daily prayer book, like Give Us This Day, or Living with Christ, or Magnificat, and pray with the Daily Gospel reading. Imagine yourself in the scene, or talk to God about the story, or see if an insight comes, or simply pick a part of the story you and just rest with it. It’s Ordinary Time for sure, but you may find that your prayer can be extraordinary.  

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