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On the way we have travelled, we have shared, as an introduction, various reflections and experiences, which have culminated in the beautiful message addressed to us by our Father General.

Today, we propose a personal or family/group prayer meeting with Jesus. He waits for us, he looks at us and follows us attentively. Listening to us and contemplating us makes him happy. Praying is something very simple: listening to his voice within us; filling ourselves with his peace and quiet; telling him about our life in confidence; looking at him and telling him that we love him very much… This is the secret of the prayer of the heart.

We invoke God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the foundation of all that exists: nature, trees, animals and people, especially those who are most needed of his love. We are all born of God’s heart. He always remains in us. He does not abandon us. We attend to our breathing. We close our eyes to visible things and our ears to noises. We pay attention to our inner self, that sacred land that God gives us every day. We call calmly, slowly to Jesus, with much love, without raising our voice, because He listens to us in the depths of our heart.

To paraphrase the Gospel parable that accompanied us a few days ago (Mt. 13:31-32), continual prayer is like a seed that the farmer sowed in his field. It is as simple an activity as putting a seed in the ground. Jesus sows it in our hearts. If we take care of it and let it grow, it will become a great tree in which our thoughts and feelings, our joys and sorrows, our successes and failures, as well as those of our brothers and sisters, will take shelter, receiving the life that is born of God.

Our hearts are a little like that good soil, or like those shells with which St. Joseph Calasanz exhorted us to gather God’s grace in order to pour it out in compassion and mercy. To be earth and shell is the vocation of every prayerful heart, with that receptivity specific to those who feel called to live and work in this most fertile harvest, at the service of the little ones and the abandoned. In silence we think about our heart. And we ask ourselves about the feelings and thoughts that dwell in it. If they help or hinder the presence of God. And we ask Him without rushing: Lord Jesus, sow in me a prayerful heart like yours.

Now we extend the prayer, letting this short song of Geña Benítez pray in our hearts.

 

To conclude our prayer, let us also think of everyone whose heart, near or far from us, can also be good soil where the spirit of prayer can germinate. Each child can pray for the heart of his classmate and his teacher, of his parents and his siblings. Parents can pray for the hearts of their children. Educators will feel much joy if they pray for the other educators in their school. In each school we can intercede for the other schools and Piarist works in the Demarcation. In each Demarcation, we can pray for the heart of our whole Order. And our Order prays for the whole Church and children all over the world. That God’s grace may sow in everyone a prayerful heart.

Thus, we pray unceasingly to Jesus: Lord Jesus, sow in me / in us / in our family / in our school / in our Demarcation / in our Order / in our Church / in every child and young person / a prayerful heart like yours.

Thus, the water of grace will soak our hearts, soften the hardness of our soil, and mould us into the image of the wounded heart of Jesus.

To conclude, we refer you to the drawing at the top of this post, drawn by Elena Gámez, a parent and educator at our school Escuelas Pías in Valencia (Spain), for our continuous prayer. Look at it, contemplate it and let it speak to your heart.