Listening is an important way we pray at Mass. It’s vital to listen to the scriptures that are read and the homily that’s preached, but we also need to listen to the prayers we say as well. This is especially true of the Eucharistic prayer.
I recorded an audio file of the 2nd Eucharistic Prayer for Various Needs and you can listen to it at the end of this blog, if you wish. Listen and reflect on the words. The Eucharistic prayers help us understand the mystery we celebrate.
Think about the words of the prayer and ask yourself what they mean. For example, take the dialogue that opens every Eucharistic prayer:
“The Lord be with you.
And with your spirit.
Lift us your hearts.
We have lifted them up to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord, our God.
It is right and just.”
The Lord is with us as we pray and and lifts up our hearts to the divine presence. That presence expands our vision of life and broadens our awareness of who we are. We’re moved to thank God.
What do we thank God for? Certainly for the blessings of our life at hand, but we don’t stop there. In God’s presence we become aware of the blessings of creation and redemption given to us by God, our Father, through Jesus Christ.
The Eucharist calls us into a large world, infinitely larger than our own time and place. If fact, it brings us into the context of eternity. We’re in touch with the beginnings of our universe and reach out to the end of time, when God’s kingdom will come. We belong to this great world as children of God. We have been blessed with a promise far beyond our imagination.
We receive this promise through Jesus Christ whose love we recall in the gifts of bread and wine. He is present and tells us to remember him.
Here’s an audio of a Eucharistic Prayer