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LO: To to show understanding of how belief in Jesus Christ, the uniting presence in Holy Communion, shapes the lives of Christians.
The Communion Rite focuses on peace, unity and forgiveness. The Christian family comes to the Lord’s table united in love of Jesus and of one another. They pray the ‘Our Father’ between the Eucharistic prayer and the giving of Holy Communion. It sums up everyone’s prayers and hopes. It is addressed to ‘Our Father’, not ‘my Father’, so uniting the family of God into the love of the Father. It was the prayer that Jesus himself gave us. It is sometimes called our family prayer.
The disciples asked Jesus for help to pray and he gave them this prayer. It is the prayer which unities all Christians, whatever their denomination.
“Pray then in this way:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And do not bring us to the time of trial,
but rescue us from the evil one.
For if you forgive others their trespasses,
your heavenly Father will also forgive you;
but if you do not forgive others,
neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. Matthew 6:9-15
This version of the prayer is different from the one used at Mass. (The two versions are below.) Go through the words highlighting those which are more unusual and discuss their meaning.
Notice the structure of the prayer:
The first part is addressed to God: honouring and longing for the coming of God.
The second part asks for our needs: food, forgiveness, avoidance of difficulty.
The last part applies to our daily lives: forgiving others.
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be Thy name;
Thy kingdom come;
Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
Questions to think about:
Write the Our Father out in sections (line) and for each section (line), explain how you would apply the prayer to daily life, particularly emphasising unity.