Prayer is simply stated conversation with God—just like when you converse with friends, the salesclerk at the supermarket, or your children. There are many different ways, methods, and traditions of prayer. With the slack of regular meetings and the slow of routine activities and a "vacation" schedule for July and August, new and different opportunities to pray arise, like an early morning walk in the woods, a peaceful sit beside a quiet lake, a morning beach romp, or even a warm curl-up while the rain of a tropical storm blows through on its way out to sea. All of these are perfect times to pray and have a conversation with God. Explore the various possibilities below!
Centering Prayers by Peter Traben Haas is a collection of inspired prayers crafted as brief preludes or postludes to periods of personal, contemplative prayer. It is written as a daily companion for exploring more deeply the Love of God. Centering prayer, also known as the prayer of silence, helps you quiet your mind from the constant thoughts and impulses, and frees your true self to experience more of God’s love in the very core of your being.
Centering Prayer by Brian D. Russell teaches that sitting quietly in God's presence can change your life. Centering Prayer is a new, but ancient, way to pray. Discover how to experience God’s love at your core, freeing you to love others, and even yourself. In Dr. Russell's words, “Sensing God’s love for me has been so transformational that it almost feels as though I’ve experienced conversion all over again,” he writes. He became calmer, less anxious, less reactive, freed of past wounds, and a better listener in the presence of others.
Prayers of the Reformers by Thomas McPherson honors the prayer tradition of well-known reformers, who were leaders of their time: Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Knox, Thomas Cranmer, Lancelot Andrewes. Their prayers express their hopes and concerns. These prayers, arranged by author and subject, open a window into the personal faith and spirituality of those on the front lines of great upheaval in the church and culture. Their wisdom speaks across the centuries to our world today, torn by competing religious and political factions and challenges to the institutions of faith.
The Jesus Prayer by Frederica Matthewes-Green tunes the heart to God. This jewel of Eastern Christianity aims at enabling a person to be in God’s presence, rather than to focus on feelings or thoughts about God. In the earliest centuries of faith, Christians in the deserts of Palestine and Africa sought a short prayer that could be easily repeated, to acquire the habit of “prayer without ceasing.” The result was The Jesus Prayer.
Doors Into Prayer by Emilie Griffin is another invitation into prayer. Whether you are a beginner at prayer or fully engaged in the life of prayer, this little book offers profound insight and encouragement. Emilie discusses the relentless human hunger for prayer, the seeming elusiveness of God, the pitfalls of discouragement and doubt, and the whispers of consolation that come through prayer. She invites us to mend the ragged edges of our own prayer lives, and to set out once again on the remarkable adventure that is prayer.
Art and Prayer by Timothy Verdon explores the beauty of turning to God. Prayer is natural for human beings, a spontaneous impulse common in all people but there is an “art of prayer.” Faith and prayer become creative responses by which creatures made in the image and likeness of the Creator relate to him with help of the imagination. Timothy Verdon explores these essential interactions in this magnificent book. Richly illustrated, Monsignor Verdon explains that images work in believers as tools that teach them how to turn to God, a lovely combination of art, beauty and prayer.
For children, we have video resources on prayer in both the Protestant and Catholic traditions.
Kids and Prayer Catholic by Mickey McGrath OSFS
Kids and Prayer Protestant by Rachel Hackenburg
Our Essential Prayer series includes several inspiring possibilities! Essential Celtic Prayers by Thomas McPherson—people from all faiths and none at all find in the Celtic tradition an expression of spirituality deeply connected to nature, and vibrantly alive; a spiritual rootedness we long for in the twenty-first century, that is both simple and richly diverse. This book is a collection of some of the most beautiful prayers of the Celtic tradition that speak to us across the centuries. The early Celts felt God’s sacred presence all around in the natural world.
Essential Mystic Prayers—again appealing to all people, the prayers of the mystical tradition express and speak to our deepest needs. These vibrant prayers sometimes appeal for knowledge, or seek a sense of the love of God; some express questions or doubts, and some contemplation and action. This book is a collection of some of the most beautiful of these prayers.