How to Pray Like Mary


In this edition of A Minute with Mary, Paul explores two great aspects of prayer that we often neglect: praise and thanksgiving.

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When Mary visited her cousin St Elisabeth, we read in Luke 1:46-55, of Mary’s beautiful prayer that we call the Magnificat. Notice this is a prayer of praise. Mary does not utter one word of petition. Why? Because Mary is carrying the baby Jesus – the God-man. What more could She want? She has Jesus, so She has everything! Mary’s focus is to declare prayers of praise, trust and thanksgiving.

Now this is a great example for us. While it is important we bring all our needs to Jesus and Mary without limitation, we must also include in our prayers, quality time for giving God glory, declarations of trust and heartfelt gratitude through our praise and thanksgiving.

Scripture teaches us the importance of gratitude. We see this in Jesus reaction when the ten lepers were healed and only one returned to Jesus to say ‘thank you’. Jesus calls us to charity and to look beyond ourselves. Failure to give thanks reveals that we are still totally focused on our own selfish wants, and this is totally incompatible with the Christian way of life.

One perfect time for thanksgiving is when we too, like Mary, are carrying Jesus – after receiving Him in Holy Communion. Be sure not to leave the Church after Mass until you have had time to give thanks for all His countless graces. After all, the word ‘Eucharist’ means ‘to give thanks’.

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